What are painting health and safety concerns?
Painting and its associated activities comes with many basic health and safety risks. These are due not only to the direct toxicity of the chemicals themselves. Sanding and other removal methods have risks. You’ll be familiar with the example of dust generated by cleaning and sanding. You will find information about three of the greatest concerns below.
Old paints contain lead. Lead based paints were banned in Australia in 1906 and the USA in 1978. However the painting trade in the UK was still selling and using them until 1992! Many painted surfaces older than this are still covered in lead-based paint inside and/or outside. It can be on anything. It may be underneath later coats but is still dangerous. You and especially your vulnerable pregnant women, babies and children may be exposed to lead. This exposure occurs due to chipping, flaking, sanding and stripping. Thus many people like to get lead paint removed from everything in their living and working environments. It’s definitely a job for professionals.
VOCs - Volatile Organic Compounds
VOCs are mainly synthetic chemicals used as solvent, binders, etc in building and painting. Even natural animal products like shellac are dissolved in toxic solvents. Resins, whether natural or synthetic, have toxicity levels. So do most paints, varnishes and stripping products, and many stains. It’s not such a problem when they are dry, cured and bound onto surfaces. However you can request products that are low or no VOC. They are effective. Plus you can be sure you’ve done the maximum to ensure painting health and safety.
Dust is a physical health hazard. It is irritating to the respiratory system due to the particles breathed in. Allergy and hay fever sufferers may be particularly susceptible. However it can also be toxic. The risk is mainly if it’s coming out of lead based paints during removal. Therefore there are methods of working that minimize dust production.
How we work for painting health and safety
Firstly, we follow the best practices of the PaintSafe initiative of The British Coatings Federation and the Painting and Decorating Association. We wish to ensure health and safety during all phases of work. From preparing to painting to the drying process we apply these standards of care. We also apply them to sanding, stripping, staining, varnishing and lacquering.
We suggest employing our professional service for all your painting related work. This is especially so if lead paints may be present. We’ve got the know-how and equipment to deal with it. Furthermore we can dispose of the toxic waste safely for you.
We are aware of the VOC concerns during painting and related jobs. You can ask us for low and no-VOC products because of this. Babies, asthmatics and allergy sufferers especially benefit. Additionally, people find it a popular choice for the health of humans, animals and the environment generally. However we will work as safely as possible as per the national guidelines even if you do not choose low VOC products. You’ll be cared for to the best standards available. Also we’ll advise you about fast-drying products, as well as ventilation during drying times.
Our painters use sanding equipment and techniques that do not release dust. Therefore your air will be breathable and clean throughout the work. In addition your spaces will be left dust-free. Our goal is to ensure the painting health and safety of you as well as our workers.
Cleanliness - last but not least
We realize that cleaning up our mess in every way is part of painting health and safety care. Therefore we clean up properly while we work, and at the completion of the job.