TC Numbers and Cartridge Colors

The following table provides the TC (testing and certification) classifications for the respirators commonly used for pesticide applications. The approval number (in the format, ‘TC-XXX-XXX’) applies to the complete respirator ‘assembly’ (e.g, facepiece and air-purifying elements). Respirator approvals are manufacturer- and model-specific; parts, cartridges, or filters cannot be interchanged between different manufacturers. Using any part of a respirator that was not part of the approved assembly, means the respirator is no longer “NIOSH-approved.”

NIOSH Class

Respirator Description
Air-purifying Respirators
TC-21C
  • Powered air-purifying respirator (PAPR) with particulate filter (HE)
TC-14G
  • Gas mask with or without particulate filter (N, R, or P)
  • Tight-fitting PAPR with gas canister with or without particulate filter (HE)
TC-23C
  • Air-purifying respirator with chemical cartridges
  • PAPR with chemical cartridges
  • PAPR with combination chemical cartridge and particulate filter (HE)
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TC-84A
  • Filtering facepiece respirator (N, R, or P)
  • Air-purifying respirator with particulate filter (N, R, or P)
  • Air-purifying respirator with combination chemical cartridge and particulate filter (N, R, or P)
Atmosphere-supplying Respirators
TC-13F
  • Self-contained breathing apparatus
  • Supplied-air respirator with a self-contained escape bottle
TC-19C
  • Supplied-air respirator

 

Cartridges are colored according to the type of contaminant they remove from the air. Refer to the tables below to determine the appropriate color of cartridge for your needs. The table on the left contains colors of respirator cartridges commonly used when handling pesticides. The table on the right has the full spectrum of cartridge colors.