Biosafety Cabinets

Are you using your Biological Safety Cabinet correctly?

  • The cabinet must be turned on at least 5-10 minutes before starting work in order to purge the air and remove any particulates.
  • The researcher must wear a closed-front lab coat (or surgical gown) and gloves while working at the cabinet.
  • All materials needed for the manipulations should be placed in the cabinet before the work is initiated to minimize in-and-out motions.
  • Cabinets should not be used for storage. Minimize the amount of long-term materials left in the cabinet.
  • Do not cover the air grills with any items.
  • The researcher should work at least four inches into the cabinet.
  • The entry door to the lab must be kept closed and traffic minimized when the cabinet is in use.
  • Develop procedures for the collection and decontamination of waste materials to avoid clutter and minimize in-and-out motions.
  • The cabinet must be decontaminated with an appropriate disinfectant at the beginning and end of each work operation.
  • Periodic use of 10% household bleach in water is acceptable, but chlorine is corrosive (70% ethanol wipe-down after every bleach use is required).
  • UV-light should only be used as a secondary method to sterilize the cabinet in between uses.
  • All biological safety cabinets must be certified for use 1) when first installed, 2) any time the unit is moved or repaired, and 3) on an annual basis.
  • If large equipment is permanently used in the cabinet (ex: robotic pipette systems) then the cabinet must be certified with the equipment in place.
  • All cabinets will have a certification sticker indicating the last date of testing on the front face of the cabinet

Examples of Biosafety Cabinets

Baker SterilGARD III Advance, Class II, Type A2
Nuaire, Class II, Type A/B3
Labconco, Class II, Type A2