PortaCount Fit Testing – Common issues and how to solve them


As RPE experts and Fit2Fit accredited quantitative fit testing trainers we see a lot of PortaCount machines.

Here are a few of the most common issues our customers have, and how to solve them:


Everybody keeps passing their fit tests!

Okay, I admit – this doesn’t sound like much of a problem – but it’s important to remember that no single respirator will fit every person.
If you’re seeing an unusually high pass rate it might be that your mask’s fit factor has been set up incorrectly.

All FFP3 respirators and Half Masks should have a Pass Level fit factor of 100.

When setting up a new respirator on your PortaCount machine it gives you the option to enter a ‘PASS LEVEL’. According to the HSE INDG 479 – the official document governing face fit testing here in the UK – the minimum fit factor for an FFP3 or Half Mask is 100.


The exercises look different

PortaCount machines are used across the world to ensure workers are wearing suitably fitting RPE; however, different countries have different protocols to follow.

In the UK, your PortaCount should be set to test using the HSE INDG 479 protocol.

To check if your machine has been set to the correct database, select Global Settings from the top left menu. In the Global Settings window make sure that the Default Protocol is set to HSE INDG 479 – as shown above. 
When performing a fit test, please ensure this protocol is not changed from HSE INDG 479. If it is, the fit test will be invalid.


My fit test report is wrong

PortaCount machines generate fit test reports based on the data entered by the user and the results of the testing. If your report states a different make/model of respirator to the one you were wearing it is likely that your tester entered the wrong details.
Fit Testing is make/model specific. If your report is wrong, your certificate is invalid.

Enter the correct information before starting the fit test.

It is essential that you select the corresponding respirator to what you are being fit tested on. Your fit test shows that only that particulate make/model/size of respirator is suitable for you. If your exact make/model/size of respirator is not an option, select NEW from the Respirators tab and fill out the details accordingly.


For more information, get in touch with one of our RPE Experts today.