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Working in the heating and cooling industry puts HVAC technicians in potentially dangerous situations every day. Their hands might get cut by sharp edges of sheet metal as they install an air conditioning unit, receive electrical shocks when repairing a malfunctioning furnace, or suffer serious chemical burns when adding refrigerant. Want to grow your HVAC business? Click here to get a demo.
Along with other necessary protective gear, a good pair of HVAC work gloves shields techs from cuts, burns, abrasions, puncture wounds, and electrical shocks.
The best pair of gloves not only protects your hands, but also provides good grip and dexterity, breathable comfort, and non-slip action—and, of course, easier access to smartphones and tablets for today’s tech-savvy techs.
HVAC professionals recommend wearing comfortable, well-fitting safety gloves when doing nuts-and-bolts work or tapping on a mobile tablet, cut-resistant gloves when working with sheet metal, duct work, and other sharp objects, and rubber-insulated gloves when dealing with electrical applications.
All three types of HVAC gloves can be found at hardware stores such as Lowe's or Home Depot, or ordered online.
To help HVAC techs and others in the skilled trades gather the tools and information they need to work safely and efficiently, we compiled a list of the 10 best gloves for HVAC work categorized by:
Safety work gloves
Safety work gloves
HVAC techs wear safety work gloves as they perform a variety of on-the-job tasks, from unscrewing nuts and bolts in order to repair an HVAC unit to swiping through product details and photos on their mobile tablet as they give customers information for a replacement system.
Look for work gloves that offer durability and dexterity, are non-slip, and protect the hands while doing routine tasks.
Examples of Safety Work Gloves:
Mechanix Material 4X Work Gloves: Rugged, heavy-duty gloves made of synthetic leather and designed to be abrasion-resistant and machine washable. They fit tightly with an adjustable cuff strap, offer durability with a reinforced thumb and index finger, and come with a ventilated back to keep hands cool and dry.
MCR Safety Gloves: Made with touchscreen-friendly fingers, these safety gloves also feature a back made with lightweight, flexible material that fits snugly and comfortably. A synthetic leather palm with reinforced thumb prevents wear and tear, and the adjustable cuff provides a custom fit.
Maxiflex 34-874 Ultimate Nitrile Grip Work Gloves: Featuring foam nitrile on the palm and fingers, this breathable work glove provides optimal grip and dexterity for HVAC techs in the field. The design of these nitrile gloves mimics the "hand at rest,” reducing fatigue and increasing comfort. Special knitting along the wrist ensures debris and dirt stay out of the glove and keep hands clean.
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Gloves with different levels of cut resistance are specified by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), a private nonprofit organization that develops consensus standards for a wide range of products, services, processes, and systems.
ANSI classifies cut-resistant gloves by nine levels, with the heavier weight indicating greater cut resistance.
Cut A1: ≥ 200
Cut A2: ≥ 500
Cut A3: ≥ 1,000
Cut A4: ≥ 1,500
Cut A5: ≥ 2,200
Cut A6: ≥ 3,000
Cut A7: ≥ 4,000
Cut A8: 5,000
Cut A9: 6,000
Examples of Gloves with Cut Resistance:
Dex Fit Cut-Resistant Gloves: Thin gloves with excellent cut resistance on the palm and back, these ANSI Cut A5 gloves feature form-fitted fingertips to easily use your smartphone or tablet, and the foam nitrile palm helps you keep a steady grip. Also breathable, machine washable, and come with a flexible cuff for better fit.
Ansell’s HyFlex: Featuring advanced grip technology in a lightweight design, these ANSI Cut A7 gloves are coated in nitrile and lined with Kevlar, stainless steel, nylon and spandex. The "Ansell Grip” coating on the palm prevents dry, wet, or slightly oily materials from slipping out of your grasp, and reduces muscle fatigue on the job.
MCR Safety Gloves – Predator Mechanics Gloves: These ANSI Cut A6 gloves offer additional grip on the palm for wet, dry, and slightly oily conditions, as well as a cut-resistant material on the palm and an impact-resistant material on the back. Also lined with Kevlar and a steel shell, the patented Predator® tire tread pattern TPR on the back of the hands protects against cuts, impacts, and punctures.
Endura Superior Goatskin Leather Work Gloves: These Kevlar-lined goatskin leather protector gloves provide optimal protection from cuts and punctures, as well as against arch flashes and sparks. Available in eight sizes (including extra large), Endura’s leather protective gloves combine comfort and durability with an ANSI Cut A4 rating.
Rubber-insulating gloves for HVAC work
HVAC contractors need to keep a pair of rubber-insulator gloves stocked and ready as part of their truck's inventory to protect against electrical HVAC safety hazards. Even though rubber doesn’t conduct electricity, it’s important to note not all insulating gloves offer the same level of protection against electrical current.
ASTM International, an organization that develops technical standards and safety information for a wide range of materials, products, and services, specifies several classes of rubber-insulator gloves.
Top Rubber-Insulating Gloves:
Ansell Gloves 113744 Marigold: These natural rubber gloves meet both ASTM D120 specifications and OSHA regulations. Rated Class 0, the Ansell glove provides protection up to 1,000 Volts AC or 1,500 Volts DC. The anatomical design and straight cuff ensure the glove fits comfortably under leather protectors.
Magid Safety M011B9 Electrical Gloves: This rubber-insulated Class 0 electrical glove provides low-voltage protection up to 1,000 Volts AC or 1,500 Volts DC, and meets ASTM D120 specifications and OSHA regulations. Made of natural rubber, the glove offers dielectric properties, as well as superior dexterity, flexibility, and excellent grip. A contoured shape lessens hand fatigue and chafing while maximizing overall comfort.
National Safety Apparel Rubber Voltage Insulating Glove Kit: This all-in-one kit from National Safety Apparel offers maximum safety and protection, including both a Class 0 rubber-insulating glove and a leather protector glove to guard against arc flashes and provide puncture resistance.
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