Fume, or smoke, is a collection of airborne particulate matter and gases, produced by combustion or pyrolysis. It also contains a certain volume of air entrained within a mass. There are many different kinds of fumes. Read on to learn about different types and safety precautions.

Defining fume hoods

Fume hoods are local ventilation devices that are designed to limit exposure to harmful or toxic fumes. These ventilation devices can help protect employees from potentially hazardous fumes and toxic airborne materials. Fume hoods are commonly used in laboratories, manufacturing facilities, and hospitals. They are especially useful in laboratories and medical facilities that perform hazardous procedures.

The first step to maintaining a fume hood is to make sure it is in working order. Check the hood’s magnehelic gauge and Standard Operating Configuration (SOC). Make sure the readings are within 15 percent of the sticker’s reading. If they are more than 15 percent off, there’s a problem.

Fume hoods are necessary to prevent the release of harmful chemicals into the air. They help reduce the amount of hazardous particles and chemical spills that can harm employees. In addition to providing protection from vapors, fume hoods also come equipped with safety glass and spill-containment features.

Modern fume hoods feature high-quality materials. Many models feature six-millimeter thick panels with smooth surfaces for easy cleaning. Additionally, hoods that feature an air foil sill are designed to direct air flow across a work surface without accumulating on the sides. However, it is important to remember that these fume hoods are not meant to contain perchloric acids. Perchlorates tend to accumulate on surfaces and can detonate when contact is made. For this reason, specialized perchloric acid fume hoods are designed to prevent this danger.

The next step in ensuring a fume hood works properly is to make sure that it is free of obstacles in the way of air flow. You should not use your fume hood as an extra storage cabinet, since it can obstruct the air flow and cause an unsafe environment for workers. The hood should also be raised off the work surface, which will prevent leaks.

Safety precautions to take

If you are exposed to fumes, you need to take appropriate safety precautions to protect yourself. These fumes can damage your lungs and other organs. They can also cause respiratory diseases, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and lung cancer.

Proper ventilation is essential to minimize the amount of harmful fumes. Proper ventilation can be achieved by making sure that fumes are exhausted through a suitable exhaust system. It is also important to use downdraft booths to combat fume buildup. These booths are very effective at reducing fumes and have good air ventilation.

If the fumes are caused by a manufacturing process, the process should be separated to limit the exposure of workers. For example, the newly produced rubber should be moved into a separate area to reduce fumes. Another way to minimize personal exposure is to limit the amount of time that workers are exposed to the dust. Using automatic feed and take-off devices is also beneficial. Finally, workers should wear protective clothing appropriate to the handling conditions.


The inspection of fumes in the work environment is a critical component of safety in the workplace. A proper inspection will help keep workers and the public safe. To ensure proper operation, fume hoods should be regularly tested and maintained. There are a number of factors that should be taken into account, including the type of fumes being used, and the room and building where the hood is located.

Several organizations have developed standards for fume hood inspection. The basic procedures include visual inspection of airflow blockage and the cleanliness of the inside surfaces of fume hoods. The sash of the hood should also be kept clean, and the hood should have adequate airflow. The operators should also ensure that the hood is maintained at a suitable height for the fumes to be contained.

The Departments of EHS and Facilities and Campus Services share responsibility for testing fume hoods on campus. If the hood fails an inspection, a warning sign is placed on its sash. In these cases, the building coordinator will make arrangements for a repair or alternative hood use.