A laboratory fume hood is designed to capture, contain, and exhaust hazardous fumes from the work area. Fume hoods are five-sided enclosures with an adjustable front opening. Fume hoods exhaust contaminants by using a blower motor to capture air inside the hood and ventilate it outside the building. By doing so, hazardous fumes are drawn away from the worker's breathing zone.
Since exposure to volatile chemicals is one of the greatest health and safety hazards to laboratory workers, a fume hood operates as a principle safety device in a laboratory setting. A certified fume hood is paramount to reducing occupational exposure to chemicals, aerosols, and gases. Good fume hood work practices are needed to keep a fume hood functional.
Dow Chemical Corporation, Inc. has provided UIC with access to their fume hood safety video. This video outlines the basic principles that make a fume hood work, and provides an overview of how to safely work with a fume hood.