gas masks and filters

prepping for nuclear, biological and chemical warfare

eight things to know about gas masks before you buy

gas masks and filters
Protective gas mask for child
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Gas Masks and filters
Are you ready for nuclear, biological or chemical warfare?

It's a stereotype of the Doomsday Prepper: a gas mask. Yet a
Gas Mask might just save your life. What do you know about gas
masks? Probably not much. No worries! We'll get you started and
we'll answer your questions about gas masks.

What to Know about a Gas Mask
You will survive only three minutes without air in a chemical
attack, so get your gas mask on quickly! Oh, but first you must
buy one... and they are difficult to get right now. Amazon is sold
out of gas masks!

There are eight things to know before buying a gas mask:
  1. Surplus gas masks usually aren't a good deal.
  2. Gas masks were not created equally. Get an NBC gas
  3. You'll need spare filters!
  4. Your gas mask must be secured before the attack or
  5. Facial hair will not work with gas masks (and most do
    not fit children).
  6. Remove the plastic filter plug and know how to operate
    your gas mask.
  7. Your location matters, as attacks will likely happen over
    large cities.
  8. You can't live in a gas mask, though you may very well
    drink from one!

Read the full story: Eight things to know before buying a gas mask, by Survivalist
Creek Stewart.

Questions about Gas Masks:
#1: Since surplus gas masks usually aren't a good deal, where
do you get a quality gas mask?
The real question is "where can you get a gas mask at all?" Gas
masks are not easy to find at the moment. Since the
Ebola fear
that spread panic in October of 2014 sales of gas masks went
through the roof and manufacturers have been working hard to
restock. It's all about supply and demand, and well into 2015 the
demand is high!Owning a surplus gas mask is better than no gas
mask at all.

What constitutes a quality gas mask? The highest caliber of gas
mask you can buy is an NBC gas mask. Be sure it also has a
NATO filter.

#2:  Why is it so important to get an NBC gas mask?
NBC masks cover Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical exposures.
These are the top three threats that a soldier would face, which
is why military personnel has access to them in targeted zones,

Reasons to own a gas mask, include:
  1. Nuclear: particles of radioactive fallout from accident or
  2. Biological: Anthrax (bacterial agent); Ebola, Avian flu and
    other pandemics; also volcanic ash.
  3. Chemical: mustard gas, sarin gas,  tear gas, blister gas,
    blood gas, choking gas (nerve agent), etc.

Your family deserves the protection of an NBC mask. NBC gas
masks serve to protect you from toxic gases and fumes (nuclear,
biological, chemical). They have the benefit in a pandemic
situation of sealing over the nose and mouth to create a superior
barrier over traditional surgical masks; however, NBC gas masks
are also not disposable, which would present a contamination
problem for
combatting and preventing Ebola.

#3: What about a Niosh gas mask, aren't those good too?
When you're around solvents, pesticides, and paint a NIOSH
mask will help protect you against these airborne contaminants.

#4: What's the difference between a respirator and a gas
A respirator is a general term for a protective device worn over
the mouth and nose (or covering the entire face) to prevent
inhalation of dust, smoke, or noxious substances. While the
refers to gas mask as respirators, and surprisingly doesn't
recommend them*,  could be as simple as a dust mask or surgical
mask. A gas mask on the other hand is a more substantial
protective shield and breathing apparatus with the specific
purpose of covering a person's face as a defense against
poisonous gas.

*Say what!? The U.S. government does not recommend gas
masks during a chemical threat (because of a false sense of
security). They say that gas masks don't fit everyone. This is
true! Children and people with beards will have a problem with
gas masks because they will not be snug enough to allow the
proper barrier.

#5: What is an N95 or N100 respirator.
The classification of N95 or N100 is for respirators cleared by FDA
for use by healthcare workers. Think of them as surgical masks!
They are disposable, one time use only and do not protect the
entire face. For an Ebola pandemic, you'll want a full-face

#6: Where can I get a child's gas mask?
Many sizes of kids gas masks are sold out on Amazon. Left is a
youth gas mask designed to fit thin faces.

Choosing a gas mask for your child is difficult, but it offers true
peace of mind. Pictured right, the gas mask with NATO filter fits
kids ages 3-12. It's quite a range, but it's the best you can find
when it comes to protecting your children from biochemical
warfare, and you'll be happy to have this mask in your preps. See
also the infant model right.

  • Bookmark this page if you don't find the NBC gas mask
    you need for a child, because they will return to stock

#7: What other gear do I need for a gas mask?
Consider the following additions:
  • Chemical suit (with booties and gloves);
  • canteen and hydration straw;
  • Kevlar tactical helmet
  • gas mask pouch
  • spare filters!

#8: How long can you wear a gas mask?
Realistically, you can only wear a gas mask for a few hours for  
many reasons:
  • Overheating: A gas mask will become too hot.
  • Headaches: Severe headaches from pressure were a
    common complaint during the Gulf war.
  • Exhaustion: There's a lot of work needed todraw air through
    a carbon filter in a gas mask.
  • Eating and drinking: While there is gear available to drink
    through your gas mask (be sure you have a hydration plug),
    eventually you'll need to eat (and you can't do that through
    a gas mask)!

#9: What's the most important thing to know about gas
The most important thing to know about gas masks is that they
can fail from improper use. Problems may also arise from the
circumstance of use.

Problems with gas masks
Having a gas mask is a good start, but it's not a failsafe and you
may have some problems, including:

  • Fogging: Fogging is a problem, particularlt if you're prone to
    cry as children often are! This was true of the gulf war, when
    kids were crying fogged up their gas masks impeding
    visibility and effectiveness. Some gas masks have a nose
    cup to prevent fogging.

  • Claustrophobia: Kids will become restless and will have the
    most difficulty in wearing gas masks for extended periods;
    however, anyone who suffers from claustrophobia is at risk
    for taking a gas mask off too early.

  • Improper use: During the Gulf War parents accidentally
    suffocated their children by forcing them to wear gas mask in
    which they forgot to properly remove the plastic filter on the
    carbon filter!

  • Some gas effects both lungs and skin. A gas mask won't
    protect you against the skin blistering power of mustard gas
    (though it provides a level of protection from inhalation of
    mustard gas)! You'll need other protective gear for your skin,
    including chemical suit, boots, and gloves in addition to your
    gas mask.

  • It may be too late. Chemical detection kits are available to
    warn you of chemical agents, but such detection kits are
    difficult to source (without one, you may not know when to
    put on a gas mask and it may be too late).

Questions to ask yourself:
  • Do you know how and when to use a gas mask?
  • Do you have decontamination equipment and know how to
  • How are you going to drink? Get yourself a specially
    designed canteen.
  • Do you know how to put on a child's gas mask? Negative
    pressure on a child can cause suffocation!
  • Can you afford to be without a gas mask? At the bottom of
    the page are gas masks that are sold out on Amazon!

Gas Masks for Prepper Families

  • Family Gas Mask Set: Prepare your family with the Gas Mask
    Family Kit, which include four Israeli Adult Survival Gas
    Masks with NBC NATO Filters and 4 Air Supply Units. Pictured
    immediate right, the Israeli Gas mask is considered by
    professional reviews as one of the most reliable gas mask in
    the market and available at an incredible price. An NBC
    (Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical) gas mask is the best
    choice for your family.

Final thoughts about gas masks...
A respirator is part of an emergency preparedness plan. For
nuclear, biological or chemical substances, you should also have
a shelter-in-place plan. The goal of a shelter-in-place is to help
filter the large amounts of debris which may infiltrate the air and
which may be contaminated.

A respirator (gas mask)is only effective when:
  1. You use the correct respirator. Be careful not to buy a
    costume gas mask. Look for an NBC gas mask that protects
    against Nuclear, Biological and Chemical attack.
  2. It fits properly.  Pay close attention to children, people with
    small faces or facial hair. A respirator will help reduce
    exposure to certain airborne contaminants; however, misuse
    may result in sickness or death.
  3. You know how to use it. Respirators require proper training.
  4. It's available when you need it. By the time you realize you
    need your gas mask, it might be too late, such is the case
    with nerve agents, which are the most toxic and fast-acting.
  5. It's not already contaminated. Even the most sophisticated
    gas mask might be for one use only and should be disposed.
    Contagion or chemical exposure could render a gas mask
    useless on the second go around. How many respirators can
    you stock for Ebola?

Respirator types:
There are many kinds of respirators:
  • Respirator: Generic term to mean surgical mask, escape
    hood or gas mask
  • Dust mask: (N-95, N100) sawing, bagging or processing
    minerals, coal, iron ore, flour, metal, wood, pollen, and
    certain other substances.
  • Surgical mask. Surgical masks are disposable coverings for
    mouth and nose to protect against infection during surgical
  • Anti viral face mask: An antiviral face mask inactivates
    some harmful pathogens, including imminent strains of
    influenza, such as H1N1, avian flu and swine flu. (It contains
    citric acid, zinc and copper to inactivate flu viruses.)
  • Escape hoods: Smoke escape mask has a filter designed to
    remove dangerous smoke particles from the air. The price of
    these kinds of respirators varies greatly! Immediate right is
    a powered escape mask that provides 30-minute protection
    for fire, smoke chemical spills, sarin or mustard gas, nuclear
    contamination or other terrorist threats, so it's an NBC gas
    mask. The other escape hood is good only for escaping fire.
  • NIOSH gas mask (N95 and N100). NIOSH-approved
    respirators are for use in environments containing certain oil
    and non-oil based particles. It's an air-purifying respirator
    that filters particles from the air the user is breathing.
  • NBC Gas Mask. This full-face respirator protects against
    Nuclear, Biological and Chemical substances.

Happy endings...
Most preppers will eventually get a gas mask, though it may not
be one of their first purchases. The first priority is always food
and water. When you get yourself a gas mask remember also
coveralls as part of your complete biochemical protection kit.

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