They’re characteristic of any paint booth – let alone many other industrial settings. What do they all have in common? They produce fumes that have the potential to combust – causing an explosion that could not only injure you and your co-workers, but could also wreak havoc on the environment and indoor air quality if not properly disposed of.
But there’s one simple solution to keeping your paint booth safe and fume free: explosion proof fans, or non-sparking fans. Specifically, these types of fans work to filter out fumes and particles from a hazardous location while minimizing the chances that doing such will result in a spark, thereby greatly reducing the risk of combustion in your work space. Compared with general use fans, they cost more. But, in return, they offer the safest possible form of cooling and caustic fume removal for industrial work places, like paint booths.
What’s more is that they don’t just reduce the risk of combustion in the work environment, but also minimize the chances of workers getting sick by circulating the volatile compounds out of the area. In fact, if you’re considering entering a paint booth that doesn’t have an explosion proof fan installed and/or working correctly – you may want to reconsider. Aside from the benefits of these specific types of industrial fans, they are also an OSHA requirement in most states.
There are three types of explosion proof fans: Type A “blower fans,” which ensure that any materials in contact with the air stream are spark resistant; Type B, which feature nonferrous wheels and rubbing rings; and Type C, which offer nonferrous plates.
With that being said, just because you’ve obtained an explosion proof fan doesn’t mean that you’re immune from danger. Keep these tips in mind as well:
Make sure all other appliances connected to the paint booth are also explosion proof.
Make sure there are no extension cords in use within the booth.
Familiarize yourself with the user’s manual for your explosion proof fan and make sure you make time for appropriate maintenance (i.e., switching out filters).
Make sure your paint booth has a viable exhaust system.