Ten things to consider when selecting chemical resistant gloves

July 27, 2016

Drivers, wash rack workers, and others who handle chemicals often think work gloves are about the same. Nothing could be further from the truth. Knowing how to select the right chemical resistant glove for the task at hand is crucially important.

Because of this, Impact Products, a leading manufacturer of work gloves and other safety products for the professional cleaning industry, offers the following "Ten Things to Know When Selecting Chemical Resistant Gloves:"

1. Know the types of chemicals and chemical ingredients you are working with.

2. Review the chemical's Safety Data Sheets to know what ingredients may be potentially harmful.

3. Chemical resistant gloves are generally made of latex, Nitrile, Neoprene, and PVC. Use a "chemical resistance chart" provided by some glove manufacturers to determine which material will work best with which chemical ingredients.

4. Consider the dexterity of the glove. This refers to how easy the glove is to work with.

5. Look for gloves that are puncture- and snag-resistant. A snag can catch on an object and cause the glove to tear.

6. Determine the needed length of the glove. Long-sleeve gloves, often recommended when working with chemicals, are designed to fit over the hand up to the elbow.

7. Select the right sized glove by measuring at the fullest part of the hand, not including the thumb. Chemical resistant gloves typically come in four sizes: small, medium, large, and extra-large.

8. Choosing incorrect chemical resistant gloves can result in permeation, when a chemical passes through the glove; breakthrough, the time from contact with a chemical and detection of the chemical inside the glove; degradation, when the glove properties change due to chemical contact.

9. OSHA's Standard 29 CFR provides employers with guidelines as to appropriate hand protection.

10. Test the glove.