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A Guide to Sandblast Room Ventilation

One of the most critical aspects of sandblast rooms is ventilation of dust. Proper dust ventilation ensures you remain safe, meet pertinent safety standards like OSHA requirements, and provides a visible area to blast in making it easier for your blast operator to be able to blast effectively. This article will cover factors that you should consider and a lot of the common safety guidelines that you need to follow when you are considering ventilation of a blast room.

Sandblast Room Ventilation Factor 1 – What you are blasting off

The dust you are creating is a critical factor that you must be aware of. The dust you create will have an impact on whether you can safely reintroduce the ventilated blast room air back into your manufacturing facility. If the dust contains certain harmful contaminants at certain levels you may require additional filtration, like a HEPA filter in order to be able to safely remove the contaminants from the dust collector exhaust air so that you can return the air to your facility. Ultimately to know whether you need this filtration requires a full examination of sources of fresh air, replenished air, and contaminant which can be done by properly trained professionals.

The dust you create will also effect if you have special requirements for your duct work that is used with your industrial dust collector.  If there is any risk of your dust being explosive, which is an issue for a variety of blast applications you can require special requirements to the design of your dust collection system including explosion relief panels in the duct and in the blast collector itself. These sorts of requirements are things that you have to verify with OSHA and other applicable certifying bodies, which OSHA can help you in determining important agencies to be involved.

Sandblast Room Ventilation Factor 2 – The size of the blast Room

There are requirements for the air speed in blast rooms. Depending on what you are blasting off and the media you use the ventilation of the blast room speed can vary.  This chart contains a general overview of dust collector speeds that are commonly required depending on the blast media used, though ultimately you must ensure you verify a blast dust collector meets all pertinent safety standards.

In addition to what you are blasting off the design of the blast room will matter as well. The way you calculate the CFM need for a cross draft vs downdraft blast room is different and will require different ventilation speeds. The cross draft blast room is calculated by taking the width and height of the room opening x the required speed in FPM while a downdraft blast room ventilation requirement is calculated by taking the width and length of the blast room x the required air speed in FPM. Essentially the larger the face opening of a cross draft design blast room the bigger a dust collector while the larger the floor footprint of a downdraft blast room the larger the dust collector.

Sandblast Room Ventilation Factor 3 – The Volume of Dust

The volume of dust that you think will be created will also be critical to consider.  With high volumes of dust being created you will often want to consider a dust collector that has a higher CFM rating then the minimal requirements. The higher CFM will allow you to remove dust more effectively and allow you to have better visibility in your blast area. This will be something that you can verify with a blast room company like us to see if a higher CFM dust collector will or will not make sense.

Ultimately by considering these important factors in sandblast room ventilation you can be better prepared that you are safely venting your blast room of dust. You should always coordinate with critical safety organizations like OSHA and work with a reputable blast room equipment company that can help you in ensuring your dust collection is properly designed for your blast room ventilation needs.

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