Entering a Cleanroom: Preparation and Procedure – The Garments Employees Must Wear

Cleanrooms are 10,000 times cleaner than a hospital operating room. It takes an incredible amount of technology to achieve and maintain such cleanliness. Huge air filtration systems completely change the air in cleanrooms about 10 times per minute, reducing the changes that there are airborne particles that might harm the product. Keeping the environment clean, however, is only half of the story.

What about the people who work in the cleanrooms?

The thousands of people who all wear “bunny suits” to protect products from from human particles such as skin flakes or hairs. A bunny suit is made of unique, non-linting, anti-static fabric and is worn over street clothes.

Suiting up is a rather involved process, not to mention that every time you enter and leave a cleanroom you have to repeat the steps below:

Cleanroom Coveralls
  1. Store personal items
  2. Discard any gum, candy, ect.
  3. Remove any makeup with cleanroom soap and water
  4. Take a drink of water to wash away any throat particles
  5. Cover any facial hair with a surgical mask or beard/mustache lint-free cover
  6. Put on a lint-free head cover
  7. Clean shoes with shoe cleaners
  8. Put shoe covers on over shoes
  9. Clean any small, pre-approved items to be taken inside
  10. Pick up booties
  11. Sit on “dirty” side of the bench
  12. Put on one bootie (over shoe cover)
  13. Swing bootied foot to “clean” side of the bench
  14. Put other bootie on on the “dirty” side of the bench
  15. Swing bootied foot to “clean” side of the bench
  16. Enter main gowning room
  17. Set aside badge, pager, any other items to be taken inside
  18. Put on nylon gowning gloves
  19. Obtain bunny suit and belt
  20. Put on the bunny suit without it touching the floor
  21. Put on belt
  22. Tuck bunny suit pant legs into booties
  23. Fasten snaps at top of booties
  24. Attach battery pack to belt
  25. Attach filter unit to belt
  26. Plug filter unit into battery pack
  27. Obtain helmet, safety glasses, and ID badge
  28. Put on helmet
  29. Tuck helmet skirt into bunny suit
  30. Zip up bunny suit at shoulders
  31. Attach helmet hose to filter unit
  32. Tighten knob at back of helmet
  33. Put on ID badge
  34. Put on pager
  35. Put on safety glasses
  36. Obtain disposable scope shield
  37. Remove protective covering from both sides of scope shield
  38. Undo front helmet snaps
  39. Attach face shield to helmet
  40. Re-snap from helmet snaps
  41. Examine attire in mirror
  42. Put on latex gloves
  43. Enter the cleanroom

Now not all cleanrooms will follow this exact regimen, but it does give you an idea of what is involved for employees entering a cleanroom. Each step gets the user “cleaner” without contaminating the next layer.

When leaving a cleanroom these steps are taken in opposite order and each layer is disposed of properly. Suits, helmets, and goggles can be cleaned and reused or disposed of. Gloves are almost always one time use items, same with hairnets, bouffants, beard covers, and shoe covers; all are one time use items.

CleanPro® offers a wide range of gowning products from shoe covers to full suits, we can help you keep the integrity of your cleanroom by supplying high quality, dependable cleanroom garments.

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Mel Meadows

Mel Meadows

Mel Meadows is a product specialist with over 13 years of experience. She’s a central source of expertise for thousands of industrial and critical-class products featured on the Production Automation web store. By working directly with manufacturers, Mel deciphers technical documentation and outlines product use in real-world environments. View her profile to learn more about proper techniques, protocol, and product usage in both industrial and cleanroom facilities.
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