What is a DOP/PAO Test?
DOP/PAO testing is a very quick process that tests the integrity of the HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filter using DOP or PAO solutions in their operational conditions.
These solutions generate a gas type smoke and then generate gas particles that will be greater than .03 microns. The test will certify the HEPA filter is fully functioning and there is no leakage or damage.
Meaning of DOP?
DOP (Dispersed Oil Particulate) is a dispersed aerosol used to test the integrity of HEPA filters.
Meaning of PAO?
PAO (Poly Alpha Olefin) is a non-carcinogen liquid which is a most common replacement for DOP.
When to do DOP test
Any equipment that has a HEPA filter should be tested every time the equipment is moved or going to be used on a new project (every four weeks if on same project). For the best results testing should be done on-site to ensure that the units have not been damaged due to transportation or daily activities at the work site.
Also rough handling of the equipment can cause the filter seals to become loose from around the HEPA filter therefore causing leakage and making them unsafe for workers who are counting on them while working in hazardous conditions.
HEPA filters are composed of usually fiberglass fibers randomly arranged. To qualify as HEPA the air filter must remove at least 99.97% of all airborne particles greater than 0.3 micrometers in diameter from the air that passes through it.