Pneumatic tools Safety
We will start this article by highlighting how air tools work and the associated safety concerns with misusing them. There are some common mistakes people make when using air tools. Air tools or Pneumatic tools include chippers, drills, hammers, jackhammers, nail guns, wrenches, and sanders are typically tools powered by an air compressor and run with air. They have all the same safety issues as their electric or gas powered counterparts — and then some, thanks to the highly compressed air that powers them. This article addresses some of the best strategies for pneumatic tools safety, if you cannot understand and implement them, there is no need to work with air tools. Let us address them one tip at a time.
One of the most essential safety tips for using pneumatic tools, according to OSHA, is getting hit by an attachment that flies off. Always use a safety clip or retainer to prevent attachments, such as chisels on a chipping hammer, from being ejected during tool operation.
Air tools that shoot nails, rivets, staples, or similar fasteners and operate at pressures more than 100 pounds per square inch (6,890 kPa), must be equipped with a special device to keep fasteners from being ejected unless the muzzle is pressed against the work surface. A safety retainer must be installed when using pneumatic tools to prevent attachments such as chisels on a chipping hammer from being ejected during tool operation.
Air hose Safety when using pneumatic tools
Air hoses connected to air tools help to transfer the air; hence, it is important always to inspect them before use. Pneumatic tools must be checked to see that they are fastened securely to the air hose to prevent them from becoming disconnected. A short wire or positive locking device attaching the air hose to the tool must also be used and will serve as an added safeguard.
If an air hose is more than 1/2-inch (12.7 millimeters) in diameter, a safety excess flow valve must be installed at the air supply source to reduce pressure in case of hose failure. When the air hose fails, it will create a whipping hazard. A safety excess flow valve to reduce pressure when a hose fails should be installed if the hose is more than ½ inch in diameter.
Ensure all hose connections are secured by positive locking devices to prevent accidental disconnection. A high-pressure disconnected hose can whip around wildly and strike nearby workers.
Before working on any tools, eye protection is a must
Eye protection and head and face protection are required for employees working with pneumatic tools. Alert other nearby workers to keep a safe distance when operating pneumatic tools.
PPE is a must. Pneumatic tools are often noisier than their electric and gas powered counterparts due to the high-pressure exhaust, so failing to wear hearing protection is another mistake. Eye, face, and head protection can save you from flying objects — fragments, nails, sawdust, wood chips, etc. — that can zoom from pneumatic tools. Nearby coworkers can be protected with screens.
Explore and follow all safety tips and strategies to safely operate an air tool. you will never regret this effort.
THIS IS OSHA'S REGULATIONS FOR PNEUMATIC TOOL SAFETY
This is OSHA’s Construction Standard for Pneumatic Power Tools, review 29 CFR 1926.302 (b).
TEND INDUSTRIAL SUPPLIES TOP 5 PNEUMATIC TOOL SAFETY TIPS
Whenever you are working with air power tools like nail guns, drills, hammers, and air guns, Tend Industrial Supplies technical team recommends you follow these pneumatic tool safety precautions, which also is in line with OSHA’s Construction Standard for air tools 29 CFR 1926.302 (b).
1. Always read the product manual.
We recommend reading the coordinating manufacturer operating instructions before operating your pneumatic tool and air compressor. They will provide tool-specific information on the handling, usage, warnings, and maintenance procedures to follow for the highest level of safety. All products from Shinano Pneumatics come with a manual to direct users on use and installation processes.
2. Always wear proper personal protective equipment (PPE).
High-impact body protection, primarily eye protection like safety glasses or goggles, is required when working with pneumatic tools. Still, complete head and face protection can be used for additional protection. In addition, it’s recommended that the employer provides safety toe shoes or work boots, hard hats and hearing protection at no cost to their employees. PPE a standard requirement for any workshop to protect their workers from accidents.
3. Follow product guidelines for air pressure and use relief coupler.
Maintain safe air pressure ranges for tools, valves, and fittings. When cleaning surfaces keep air pressure below 30 psi and never “dead-end” compressed air against yourself or anyone else. And, never use compressed air to clean oneself or clothing. All air tools have specific guidelines from the manufacturers for air pressure. It is recommended that you use a relief coupler for your tools. A relief-type air coupler is the only way to connect your tool to an air supply. It’s a quick connect with a pull-down sleeve that allows compressed air in the tool to be relieved when disconnected. It reduces the risk of accidental discharge after the tool has been disconnected.
4. Never carry the tool by the hose and disconnect it from air supply when unused.
Do not carry or hold pneumatic tools by the hose or connections. This could put undue pressure and stress on these components, leading to early failure of the hose and/or injury. Always disconnect your tool from the air supply and remove the magazine whenever your pneumatic tool is not used. This prevents accidental discharge from occurring when you are taking a break, at lunch or finished working for the day. Securing your air tool with lanyards when working at high locations is a standard safety practice.
5. Know your trigger and how to use it.
One of the best ways to improve the pneumatic tool safety program is to start by understanding the various trigger mechanisms and the contact safety tip. Operators of pneumatic tools should know the location of the trigger and how it works. How a trigger functions depends on the order in which controls are activated and whether the trigger discharges multiple nails or single nails when activated. Most common trigger types are:
- Full Sequential Trigger
- Contact Trigger
- Single Sequential Trigger
- Single Actuation Trigger
Finally, this should be added as a safety tip for people who like to experiment on tools: DO NOT MODIFY YOUR TOOL. Modifying an air tool can make you bypass the safety features such as the trigger or other components. Such actions can greatly increase the probability of injury. Horse fighting is another probable activity in workplaces. Power tools are no joke; many injuries happen due to horseplay. Never point a tool at yourself or others or misuse the tools.
Pneumatic tools powered by compressed air are commonly used in industrial and construction settings. Ensuring their safe operation is crucial to prevent injuries. Here are some of the best strategies for pneumatic tools safety based on the provided search results:
Top Safety Tips:
- Follow Manufacturer Guidelines: Maintain safe air pressure ranges for tools, valves, and fittings.
- Read the Product Manual: Always read the product manual for proper operation and safety guidelines.
- Wear Proper PPE: Always wear safety glasses or a face shield, safety shoes or boots, and hearing protection.
- Regular Inspection: Check gauges, connectors, hoses, and guarding regularly for any signs of damage or deterioration.
- Proper Maintenance: Keep tools clean, lubricated, and maintain them according to the manufacturer's instructions.
Additional Safety Measures:
- Post warning signs where pneumatic tools are used and set up screens or shields in areas where nearby workers may be exposed to flying fragments, chips, dust, and excessive noise.
- Use only the attachments recommended by the manufacturer for the tools being used.
- Turn off the air pressure to the hose when not in use or when changing power tools.
Adhering to these safety tips and measures can significantly reduce the risk of accidents and injuries associated with pneumatic tools.
Always prioritize safety and ensure workers are trained on safe tool operation, inspection, compressed air hazards, proper PPE requirements, and tool storage.