Working on a construction site comes with its fair share of risks. While most factory or construction-site related risks are often associated with the use of heavy equipment and falls, high temperature or heat-related emergencies should also be a point of concern for site managers. As a result, all construction sites need cooling mechanisms to keep workers safe during the summer or extremely high-temperature conditions.
The best cooling gear options for construction workers should reduce heat stress by a considerable amount. Some of the most common gear for cooling workers include cooling vests, cooling sleeves, cooling towels (and bandanas), spot coolers, misting systems, cooling helmets, and pop-up canopies.
Besides discussing some of the best cooling gear options for factory and construction workers, the article will also examine each product’s pros and cons. The in-depth information should help you bring in the best cooling products to keep your workers cool and safe enough during construction.
Helmets are must-have personal protective equipment for all construction workers. However, not all helmets are ideal for heat reduction and cooling. Heat reducing helmets are aimed to provide both protection from injury and excessive heat. Below are some of the best helmets for keeping construction workers cool.
Constructed from high-quality ABS material, this construction helmet is both strong and lightweight for comfortable wearing. The Pyramex Ridgeline Hard Hat features a ratchet suspension that is easy to adjust and modify to fit the head dimensions of different workers.
This highly convenient helmet is ideal for both low (-22°F or -30°C) and high temperatures (140°F or 60°C). For increased comfort, the hat has a low-profile ridgeline that allows for a natural and more secure fit. The product also features a washable and easily replaceable sweatband, a conveniently vented pressure pad, and an adjustable rear suspension for ultimate comfort.
- Made from high-quality ABS material for enhanced strength and rigidity
- Lightweight and low profile for better coverage
- The sweatband, pressure pad, and adjustable rear suspension allow for personalized comfort
- Ideal for both high and low temperatures
- Costly due to its advanced features
- The low-profile ridgeline might be uncomfortable for some people
The Lohaswork Safety Hard Hat boasts a vented shell that allows for better cooling when working on hot summer afternoons. For improved performance and protection from impact, the hat is made from high-quality ABS material.
You’ll love the one-finger adjustment design that makes it easier to customize the size for a perfect fit. There is also a large-enough gap between the cap liner and cap shell, which provides better head protection than most other helmets.
- Has vented holes (5) on each side that can be closed on rainy days
- Has side slots for mounting additional accessories like face shields, headlamps, and hearing protection
- Low profile design for better fit and coverage
- Durable and rigid due to the use of high impact ABS
- Not the most affordable construction hat in the market
- The holes can prove problematic in wet condition
The Gateway Vented Safety Helmet has a sleek, streamlined, snake-head-like design that increases comfort and convenience. The presence of a vented shell means workers can stay cool when working on hot sunny days.The product satisfies ANSI Z89 standards for reverse donning, high-visibility, and lower temperature, making it appropriate for use on the construction site. The presence of nylon suspension (six-strap) allows for increased comfort and impact absorption simultaneously.
- Modern design that prioritizes both safety and comfort
- Vented shell ensures heat escapes effectively, thus keeping workers cool
- Tough and durable due to the use of polyethylene material in construction
- Customizable into different sizes for enhanced comfort
- Has a soft brow pad that helps in moisture absorption
- The rotating ratchet suspension isn’t too flexible in terms of adjustment
This helmet is among the toughest in the market and is ideal for high-temperature environments due to its vented design. The 3M SecureFit Safety Helmet features a unique pressure diffusion technology that reduces forehead pressure by up to 20%.You’ll also love the 6-point, easy turning, and smooth ratchet suspension that sits low on the user’s head, thus allowing for a customizable fit. The presence of back and side vents means the air will circulate effectively across the hat.
This capable helmet also stands out due to its UV indicator that notifies the wearer when it needs replacement due to its inability to shut out UV rays.
- Ideal for cooling workers in high-temperature environments
- Features the pressure diffusion technology that reduces overall forehead pressure
- Has a smooth, 6-point ratchet suspension that allows for ease of customization
- Has a UV indicator that notifies users when the hat needs replacement
- Costly to purchase for all construction workers
The Defender Safety Helmet scores high in terms of quality and durability. The presence of a sliding vent system allows for smooth cooling in extra hot conditions and easy closure of the vents in case of rain.
In terms of the ability to accommodate accessories, not too many construction helmets compared to this highly capable hat. You can easily attach a visor, headlamp, or earmuff at the attachment points.
The EPS foam on the inside provides extra impact strength, while the chin cup and chinstrap help to hold the helmet safely in position. Additionally, the sweatband is designed to absorb sweat, which consequently prevents sweat from trickling.
- Features a high-quality EPS foam that provides extra protection in case of impact
- Has a visor, earmuff, and headlamp attachment points
- The suspension system provides extra protection from impact, especially from the top
- The chin strap adjustment (lateral) allows for a snug fit
- Among the costliest hard hats for construction workers
Similar to helmets, vests are must-have gear in factory and construction settings. Besides enhancing visibility, some vests are designed to help construction workers keep cool despite working in hot conditions. Below are some of the best construction vests for cooling.
The FlexiFreeze Ice Vest is a great way to keep construction workers cool when working in scorching conditions. The vest can accommodate an impressive 96 ice cubes, which is integral in reducing the overall core temperature.
This handy construction vest is made from rip-stop and neoprene materials, which helps to reduce its overall weight. The ice panels are easy-to-remove and can be machine washed. Users can easily remove panels and swap them out for cooler ones when looking to remain cool for long periods.
Due to its ability to stay cool for long, the FlexiFreeze Ice Vest is a great option for construction workers with heat-sensitive conditions or people working in areas associated with heat stress.
- Can fit 96 ice cubes for effective cooling
- Adjustable in four areas, making it ideal for different-sized construction workers
- Lightweight and easy to wash
- The panels can be removed and replaced with other ice-cold panels
- Available in both the Velcro closure and zipper closure systems
- Some customers claim the zipper is of poor quality and likely to fail after repeated use
The New Home Innovations Cooling Vest is designed to reduce overall skin temperature while maintaining a favorable core temperature. This vest also helps to reduce sweating and delay dehydration, thus promoting effective working.
The product also comes with highly absorbent cool packs made from a super absorbent polymer and gel. These cooling packs help keep construction workers cooler for longer, thus making the vest ideal for high-temperature environments.
- Great for maintaining low body temperature during construction work
- Comes with cool packs made from gel and super absorbent polymer
- Made from breathable material that allows construction workers to remain cool
- Adjustable shoulder and torso straps provide increased comfort for different sized people
- Concerns have been raised about the zipper quality
- Cooling packs must be purchased from the manufacturer (New Home Innovations)
The Ergodyne Chill Evaporative Cooling Vest is made from polymer-embedded fabric that maintains low temperature when soaked in cold water for under five minutes. All it takes is a re-soak, and the jacket will leave the workers cool for longer.
For enhanced performance, the cooling vest is made from a quilted nylon exterior while the liner is water-repellant, allowing for ease of wearing above a shirt. The product also features mesh side panels that enhance the wearer’s mobility and improve overall breathability.
- Lightweight and ideal for long-term usage
- Easy to activate and reactivate as all it takes is a soak in cold water
- Provides cooling relief for several hours
- Ventilated on the sides to allow for better cooling
- Might not soak up water well due to its thin profile
The Alphacool Original Cooling Ice Vest is filled with Alphacool gel (water-based and non-hazardous). The ice cooling vest is capable of managing up to 2 hours of cooling. Its lightweight nature and ease of use make it ideal for construction workers working in extremely hot conditions.The presence of the adjustable shoulder and wrist straps makes the gel ideal for different-sized people. Its slim but wide profile also allows for instant core cooling, which is crucial for people with heat-related medical conditions like heat strokes, heat cramps, and hot flashes.
- Features a short-fit design that clears the waist of the wearer for easy movement
- Easily customizable
- Provides instant cooling relief
- Contains a patent-pending water-based cooling gel that helps to keep the body cool for up to two hours
- The straps aren’t of the best quality and can break after repeated usage
This cooling vest made by Fly Racing features a polymer-embedded fabric that absorbs water and provides a cooling effect as the water evaporates slowly. The vest only needs two minutes of soaking before it’s ready for use.
While not meant specifically for construction work, this vest can provide the much-required cooling when worn inside protective construction gear. You won’t need an ice pack or batteries to use this lightweight vest, making it convenient for usage in busy construction sites.
- Uses the evaporative cooling system to provide the desired cooling
- Requires two minutes of soaking to provide extended cooling
- Designed to hold water for several hours as it evaporates
- The water rapidly evaporates on extra hot days
The Hyperkewl Evaporative Cooling Vest is made from both Hyperkewl and nylon fabric, which allows for proper cooling throughout the day. This construction jacket comes in different sizes and colors, making it ideal for different sized construction workers.
The use of Hyperkewl fabric allows the vest to keep the wearer cool for up to 10 hours, while the full zipper keeps it attached to the body. All it needs is a gentle soak, and it’ll keep wearers cool for extended periods.
- Comes in a variety of sizes and colors to suit construction work
- Has a full-zipper while the V-neck style allows increases overall comfort
- Doesn’t have a swelling gel or slimy residue
- Easy to activate and reactivate
- Might need to be rewetted regularly in extremely hot environments
Erdogyne uses PVA material in manufacturing this towel to provide instant cooling relief. All it takes is a gentle soak for the towel to keep the user cool for several hours. The towel works by providing a cooling sensation once the PVA material absorbs water.
This product can come in handy in construction setups, more so in extremely hot construction sites. For drip-free cooling, it’s best advised to wring out the excess water, but soaking the towel for a minute or two is enough to provide a cooling sensation for up to 4 hours.
- Machine washable and reusable
- Ideal in heat stress prevention
- Can last long (up to 4 hours) on a single soak
- Provides instant cooling relief
- Might need repeated soaking to provide the desired cooling effect
The Chill Pal Mesh Cooling Towel is designed to provide extended periods of cooling. The towel employs a thin, comfy, and highly breathable design to keep the wearer cool. The use of mesh allows for increased comfort due to its softness and gentleness on the skin.
The towel covers a large surface area, giving you increased evaporative power to exploit. Users will need to soak the towel for a couple of minutes and wring it out before placing it on the neck or forehead. This product comes with its carry pouch for ease of mobility.
- Has a larger surface area compared to other towels
- Simple to use as only a gentle soak is needed
- Made from mesh material that’s gentle on the skin and highly breathable
- Maintains a cooling effect for extended periods
- Tends to dry too quickly when exposed to the sun
Made from 89% polyester and 11% Spandex, this helmet liner is designed to eliminate issues of soaked sweat in helmets. The Skull Cap Helmet Liner is highly breathable and easy to wash, features that make it ideal for daily use in construction settings.
Construction workers who wear this helmet liner experience functional cooling immediately when they put it on. The immediate cooling results from the product’s moisture-activated cooling fabric. Using this skull cap regularly also protects your head from harmful UVA and UVB rays.
- Easy to wear due to its pull-on closure
- Made from high-quality materials
- Prevents sweating even for heavy sweaters
- Lab-tested and proven to absorb harmful radiation
- Isn’t as elastic as most people expect
The Portable Outdoor Misting System by Ergodyne is among the most effective in the business. This bad boy can cool an area up to 14°C (57°F) below the ambient temperature, thus providing the required cooling for construction workers on hot afternoons.
This pump can manage an impressive 20 minutes of misting, and the continuous hose connection ensures the cooling effect is well-distributed across the cooling area. The pump is high-performance, while the heavy-duty plastic tank has an easy-to-remove funnel for smooth refilling.
- Can manage 20 minutes of proper cooling
- Can cool a location up to 14°C (57°F)
- The pressure-release valve has a 40PSI maximum capacity and is self-locking
- The hose connection allows for continuous misting
- The mister can start to drip after a while
This cooler by Yeti has a capacity of up to 26 cans and can keep ice cool thanks to its unique Permafrost Insulation. The Yeti Tundra Cooler boasts a rotomolded construction that makes it stronger and less likely to break.
This cooler is highly portable, making it ideal for use by construction workers looking to carry their cooler packs. The latches are extra secure as they use a heavy-duty rubber, thus eliminating the risks of busted latches.
- Strong and compact for use in construction sites
- Keeps ice very cold for long hours courtesy of its PermaFrost Insulation
- Portable enough for use by construction workers on the move
- The capacity isn’t large enough to accommodate the needs of many construction workers
The importance of keeping construction workers cool enough cannot be overstated, especially when working during the summer. This is because most of the protective gear is usually thick and made from heavy materials that trap excessive heat underneath, thus increasing the risk of heat stress.
Luckily, there are several cooling options that are fit for use in construction sites, as discussed in the above article. From jackets to helmets, misters, and even towels, there is a wide variety of cooling gear that can help keep construction workers cool and effective regardless of the heat.