The Best Coveralls / Boiler Suit For All Occasions

Coveralls, boiler suit or is it actually called an overall. Which ever it is they all look practically the same so why is there so many names for what looks like the same garment.

Are they actually any different or is it a different word for the same thing in different parts of the world. Or is just industry specific?

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The Boiler Suit

The first time the word boiler suit was used was back in October 1928 in the in the Sunday Express (Source). It then states that the garment is know as coveralls in North America or as an overall elsewhere. Wait it gets more confusing so stick around. In the UK the overall is probably better know as a Bib N Brace Overall.

Would would you call a ladies tight fitting boiler suit ? A jump suit. Wait a what does a skydiver wear when he is jumping out of a plane. Yes its called a jumpsuit.

The Origins of The Name The Boiler Suit

Its is thought that the name became so because the people that originally wore them tended to boilers. These were coal fired boilers and they were high maintenance to keep running. The boilersuit was practical as it was a one piece garment covering all the body. Of course except the hands, feet and head.

The practicality was 2 fold on the boiler suit. Firstly once inside the boiler itself to clean it out periodically the one piece stopped soot entering the trouser at the waist. Probably more importantly the one piece boiler suit ensured that no garment got caught entering or leaving the boiler itself.

Coal Fired Boiler (Image Source)

These men had to manually climb into the boilers through a small hatch to clean them. Hence the name Boiler Suit, worn by boiler workers. This could have been fixed boilers or the ones on steam trains.

The Coveralls

Yes the same looking garment as an overall and a boilersuit. However different as the coveralls were designed to go over the wearers regular clothes. This was to protect the regular clothing or to serve another purpose. Of course the very term encompasses covering all which they did.

In the USA they sometimes use the coverall to describe the prison clothes they were in certain states. Other countries police forces and military units are coveralls/jumpsuits. In the UK our fighter pilots wear the very same.

Fire Retardant Overalls / Coveralls

When it comes to the fire retardant overalls it becomes very specific to what industry you are in. There are many standards to the overall/coverall classification. The garment can have many properties such as heat resistant, antistatic properties and chemical resistant. There are many more options so we will have a look at a few.

PPG Workwear boiler suits

Workwear Protection Classification Standards

standard for electrostatic workwear clothing standard Electrostatic Properties EN 1149-5
Electrostatic Properties EN 1149-5
standard for liquid chemical protection EN 13034 Type 6
Provides protection against liquid chemicals EN 13034 Type 6
symbol for flame retardant clothing EN ISO 11612 (A1+A2, B1, C1, E3, F1)
heat protection levels on flame retardant clothing EN ISO 11612 (A1+A2, B1, C1, E3, F1)

The Best Boiler Suit For Chemical Protection 

Chemical protection is so important for your employees because once the chemical reaches the skin it doesn’t stop. The human skin is so susceptible to chemicals as we were not made that way. The only chance of stopping chemical burns to the skin is through chemical protection workwear.

Both examples are from Portwest, however they are market leaders and invest heavily in research to produce the best and safest workwear there is. Both sets of overalls do have other protection properties. However if its just the chemical protection workwear that you are looking for then the Multi Norm Flame FR80 offer excellent value for money. At Half the price of the Modaflame it can’t be beat. 

The Modaflame does offer a wide range of different protection levels and still does represent value for money.

Portwest Workwear 

portwest workwear at PPG Workwear


Portwest Modaflame RIS FR Anti-Static Coverall (MV91)Portwest Multi-Norm Flame Retardant Anti-Static Coverall (FR80)
quilted boiler suit regular boiler suit
This highly advanced coverall provides optimum protection in a range of hazardous environments. Complete safety and versatility are key advantages Features include, a mandarin collar for neck protection, chemical resistance and an external label showing all standards for easy reference
This industry leading flame resistant range provides multi standard
protection for hazardous environments. These state of the art products are
the result of years of experience combined with advanced technology and
market research. Commitment to the health, safety and comfort of the
wearer can be seen in the wide range of products suitable for all climates
and end uses
CE certified
Two tier knee pad pockets allowing two positioning options
Side elastic waist for ultimate wearer comfort
8 pockets for ample storage
Inherent flame resistant qualities will not diminish with washing
Flame resistant industrial wash tape
Class 1 welding protection
Protection against radiant, convective and contact heat
Concealed two-way front brass zip
Radio loops for easy clipping of a radio
Hook and loop cuffs for a secure fit
Action back for extra freedom of movement
50+ UPF rated fabric to block 98% of UV rays
Texpel stain resistant finish repels dirt and stains
Modaflame HVO Woven – 61% Modacrylic, 18% Viscose, 15% Polyester, 5% Aramid, 1% Carbon Fibre
Fabric weight 300gm
EN ISO 11612 (A1+A2, B1, C1, F1)
EN ISO 11611 Class 1 (A1+A2)
EN 1149-5
EN ISO 20471 Class 3
IEC 61482-2 IEC 61482-1-2 Class 1
EN 13034 Type 6
EN Certification available on request
Prices listed exclude VAT
BIZFLAME MULTI has been developed & designed using a highly innovative flame retardant overalls fabric with added anti static properties. Constructed from 99% cotton & interwoven with 1% carbon yarns. Anti-static coveralls The carbon yarns are evenly spread along the wrap to achieve the EN standard. This garment is guaranteed to give comfort & protection at all times
Perfect for the demands of the petrochemical industry. The highly technical fabric provides Flame, Heat, Iron Splash, Chemical, Electric Arc, Anti-Static and Welding protection
Ultimate Multi-Hazzard Protection
High collar
Concealed front stud closure
Concealed side access
Rule pocket with studded flap
2 front chest pockets with studded flaps
2 back pockets with studded flaps
Knee pad pockets
Radio loop
Regular fit
345g Bizflame Multi Fabric
EN 1149-5
EN ISO 11612 (A1+A2 B1, C1, E3, F1)
EN ISO 11611 Class 1 (A1+A2)
IEC 61482-2 IEC 61482-1-2 Class 1
EN 13034 Type 6
ASTM F1959/F1959M-12 (ATPV=13.6 Cal/cm2 (HAF=82%)
EN Certification available on request
Prices listed exclude VAT

Type 4 5 6 Coverall 

Best Standard Non Protection Boiler Suit 

We have gone for B Click Workwear because it represents excellent value for money. High quality industrial workwear that does not break the bank. The basic non protection overall just needs to keep you clean when there are no other dangers present. We like this Click range as you have the same overall and corporate image and swap to the quilted boiler suit in winter.

You would be hard pushed to find a better value coverall with excellent material and assembly standards than Click Workwear 

click workwear by PPG Workwear

Click Quilted Boilersuit (QBS)Click Regular Boilersuit (RPCBS)
quilted boiler suit regular boiler suit
Quilt lined for extra warmth
Concealed two-way zip front
2 breast pockets
Reinforced elasticated waist
2 swing hip pockets with side access
2 rear pockets, one with velcro fastening
Cargo Pocket
Rule pocket
65% Polyester 35% Cotton fabric
Prices listed exclude VAT
Concealed stud front fastening
2 breast pockets with flap
Elasticated waist
2 swing hip pockets with side access
Rear pocket
Rule pocket
65% Polyester 35% Cotton fabric
Prices listed exclude VAT

What is the best boiler suit

It depends on what type of protection you need. There are fireproof coveralls, there are chemically resistant overalls so you need to ensure you pick the correct one for your industry with the relevant safety ratings.

Is a coverall the same as an overall


Yes basically they are exactly the same, read more on our blog post for the information

For the ultimate protection finish off with rigger gloves.