Choosing the best firefighting glove is an important part of making sure you have the proper PPE. Although not as evident as turnout gear and other essentials, your gloves play a paramount role in rescue performance.
So, how do you find the best firefighter gloves? At a minimum, the gloves you choose need to meet the NFPA 1971 standard for PPE protection against structural firefighting and proximity firefighting. Beyond that, you need comfortable, protective gloves that fit well, repel water, and provide dexterity.
For more than 100 years, we’ve proudly carried reputable brands of firefighting gear and supplies. Let’s look at your best options in high-performance, protective hand gear.
What are the Different Types of Firefighter Gloves?
These are the most common gloves you will find in the fire service:
Structural Firefighting Gloves: Protect against thermal threat and stress. Typically, they have a protective outer shell, an interior moisture shield, and an overall thermal barrier.
Extrication Gloves: Also called “Rescue Gloves.” These must allow for full movement and dexterity yet prevent injuries such as cuts, abrasions, and even chemicals. These are non-firefighting emergency responder gloves, yet firefighters should have them in addition to structural firefighting gloves.
Wildland Firefighting Gloves: Protect against flame, vapors, hazardous materials, abrasions, and cuts.
What are the Best-selling Gloves for Firefighters?
The LION Commander Ace is LION’s best-selling glove. This glove is a split-grain leather, very comfortable with a sewn-in liner that will never pull out.
The LION Commander Ace firefighter glove features a CROSSTECH moisture barrier which not only keeps your hands dry but is also breathable. This glove is the choice of many major metro departments, including the FDNY. These gloves far exceed the NFPA 1971 standard.
You want a structural pair of gloves that’s easy on and off even when wet, with proven durability. They need to have great dexterity and repel water even after several washings. You also should have at least one backup pair, as well as a pair of extrication gloves.
Other things to consider: Gauntlet cuff or wristlet – this depends on your personal preference. Some firefighters find the gauntlet cuff to be more comfortable and feel it enables more movement. The wristlet has advantages in that it’s able to be tucked inside your jacket for secure placement.
Fire-End has a full lineup of gloves with optional impact resistance, heat resistance, carbon fiber reinforcement, water resistance, and more. Shop online for protective firefighting, extrication, and specialty gloves.
What are Firefighter Gloves Made of?
Firefighter gloves can be made from manmade materials as well as natural leathers, such as split-grain leathers, cowhide, pigskin, kangaroo, and our newest glove: the LION Victory firefighter gloves, which is made of goatskin. (Call us to learn more!)
Should You Stretch Firefighter Gloves?
The best way to break in a glove is to simply wear them. Wearing them allows the glove to conform to your hands. Our Commander Ace and new Victory glove require no break-in period.
Fire-End understands the importance of the fit and physiology variables that come into play with fire protection gear. Ill-fitting gear is a risk, especially for female firefighters. To that end, many LION products are offered in sizes that fit a broader range of body types to eliminate the need for females to alter their gear on their own. Our sales representatives make it a priority to help customers find proper fitting gear.
How Should You Wash Firefighter Gloves?
Gloves can be washed in an extractor just like all other PPE. Let the gloves air dry. Dirt can hide damage, so you’ll want to wash them regularly to ensure they continue to protect. If you spot any damage whatsoever, you need to retire the gloves.
You should inspect your protective gloves regularly (every 12 months minimum). Check with your department on its recommendations.
This helpful video shows how to perform an advanced inspection and how to clean firefighter gloves:
In between washings, don’t let your gear end up where all those lost socks end up. Our Glove Keeper II connects each glove to keep the pair together. Just clip and cinch with the D-ring. Then use that D-ring to hang other objects you might want close at hand.
Our sales reps are always willing to help you find the firefighting gear you need. Contact us today to learn more.