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Air Makeup Units (AMUs) Are HUMMIN’

AMU production 1014 (2)amu production 1014It’s going to be 85 in Greensboro, NC today, but cooler weather is just around the corner!  How do I know that?  Well, I just walked through our Sure-Cure air makeup unit (AMU) production shop, and things are hummin’.  We have four units on the bench in process and several more in the queue this week. These Sure-Cure AMU’s are in big demand.  ETL-certified and tested, they are among the safest units on the market today.

The Sure-Cure will provide gas-heated warm air inside your spray painting booth to speed curing time, even on the coldest days!  With a guaranteed 80 degree rise over ambient air temperature, if it is 0 degrees outside it will be 80 degrees inside your booth!  No more waiting hours or days for dry time.  Plus you can put it into cure mode at the end of the day and go home.  The unit will shut off automatically when the paint is cured.

If you have an Air Makeup Unit that is more than 10 years old you may be a candidate for a new high-efficiency Sure-Cure AMU.  Many of the old style Air Makeup Unit’s contain heat exchangers that can crack over years of use.  This greatly reduces the ability of the unit to heat the air to the desired temperature.  It could also result in dangerous fumes being emitted into your booth or painting area!

Our units are popular because Standard Tools is committed to a 2 to 3 week turnaround in producing these units, even in the winter months.  Other manufacturers take 8 to 12 weeks to ship an AMU!  So get your order in today, and be ready for the cold when it gets here!

PAINT BOOTH AIR FLOW: HOW IT WORKS

During spray jobs in a paint booth, the exhaust system must draw substantial quantities of air out of the shop in order to operate. These volumes must be replenished with equal volumes of air coming into the booth.

STE_AMU Full CornerAIR MAKE-UP (AMU) is defined as…a mechanical means of replacing air that has been exhausted out of the booth.

It’s simple…. it’s all about paint booth air flow. How much air in being put into the booth and how much is being taken out. Airflow while spraying takes the over-spray away from the paint job and out of the booth.

Air in – Air out. Air in – Air out. Air in – Air out. Air in – Air out. That’s it. With the Sure-Cure Air Makeup Unit, you control the amount of air pushed into your booth. Why would you need to push air into your booth?

NEGATIVE AND POSITIVE BOOTH PRESSURE
When the exhaust fan of the booth is turned on, it creates a “negative” air pressure in the booth cabin (taking out more air than is being put in). When there is a negative air pressure, the booth will try to suck in as much air as possible, including dirt and debris from outside the booth. THINK VACUUM CLEANERS.   

To counter this “negative” pressure, an Air Makeup Unit (AMU) unit is used to supply air to replace the air being exhausted. If the AMU is designed to force more air into the booth than is exhausted…the booth is said to have “positive” air pressure. In this case, the booth has more air than outside the booth and when a door is opened, dirt and debris is pushed away from the booth. THINK STANDING IN FRONT OF A FAN. Continue reading PAINT BOOTH AIR FLOW: HOW IT WORKS

Spray Booth Code Requirements

workplace-safetyCODES,CODES, CODES. (Spray Booth Code Requirements). It’s like when you’re in school and it’s always rules, rules, rules. They can be challenging, but we all know that they exist to promote the safe design, production and use of spray booths.  They are what keep the folks working in the booth safe.

The codes are founded on common sense and from incidents from the field, like fires and explosions.

Governmental agencies or third-party groups, like the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) or Underwriter’s Laboratories (UL), create, administer and enforce the codes.

As a manufacturer of paint spray booths, the codes are very important to us, and everything we do to create the safest work environment for our customer that is possible.

 

THE THREE “C’S” AND HOW WE USE THEM:

Compliant Compliant means that Standard Tools uses the code as the basis in guiding our design, production and documentation.   We meet or exceed the requirements based on our interpretation of the code.

Certified A third-party testing lab like Intertek/ETL tests our booths and compares our production to the code and judges it to meet or exceed the code requirements.  When we pass the testing, we get certification. We label our product, trace the product after it’s sold and go through a routine audit by the NRTL to ensure that Standard Tools continues to comply with the code.

Complete This term means that all of the requirements in the code have been met by Standard Tools.  The NFPA codes for spray booths go beyond the design, production and documentation that Standard Tools provides.  There are requirements within the codes about the location of the spray booth, an adequate air supply and the use of licensed electricians.

With a car, there is a lot of responsibility that falls on the driver. You could have a really safe car, that was manufactured correctly, but if you fail to wear your seat belt, or you drive carelessly, it won’t matter how safe that car was made. It’s the same with a spray booth. A certified spray booth can be installed in an uncertified manner and that negates the entire certification.  There are responsibilities of the spray booth owner.   The owner is required to know and follow the instructions of safe installation and use that is provided with their spray booth from Standard Tools and Equipment.

CODES CORRELATED TO SPRAY BOOTHS
Standard Tools and Equipment is informed on the codes that apply to spray booth manufacturing and use. We understand how intensive and baffling the “code” can be … hey, sometimes we think that it may as well have been written in actual ‘code’ language

because it would seem just as foreign. Here’s a brief snippet of the codes and how they relate to spray booths.

NFPA-33 Spray Application of Flammable or Combustible Materials. This top-level code drives all other codes that are specific about spray booths and mixing rooms.

OSHA 29CFR19 10 Section 94 Ventilation and Section 107 Spray Application of Flammable or Combustible Materials

This is Federal code from OSHA with more detail about actual spray booth performance and how it relates to worker safety.

IFC International Fire Code, Chapter 15
This is an International code with less detail than NFPA-33.  This often applies to spray booths in foreign-trade zones or in businesses owned by International organizations.

EPA’s NESHAP Rule XXXXXX and Rule HHHHHH
This is Federal code that defines maximum air quality emissions for auto body shops and industrial plants relative to spray operations.

State and local codes typically mimic federal codes but may have added requirements for local considerations like weather or seismic issues.

ANSI Z83.4 and CSA STD 3.7
American and Canadian codes relating to direct-fired heated air makeup systems.

UL-508A and CSA STD 22.2 No.1 4
American and Canadian codes relating to electrical control panels.

Canada has no active top-level code for spray booths.  They recognize NPFA-33 and/or IFC Chapter 15.  They do have codes that are specific to the electrical requirements and heated air makeup units.

Codes are not laws.  Codes are enforceable guidelines to be interpreted by authorities such as local permitting agencies, insurance agencies and federal agencies, such as the EPA.  The law is that a spray booth cannot be operated without a final permit to occupy.  The ruling authority provides that occupancy permit based on their judgment of the codes and the spray operation.  Every effort should be made to comply with the codes, but special situations may be permitted if the ruling authority deems the situation as acceptable.

Should you replace your Air Makeup Unit? Things to consider.

So, you have a heated booth, had it for years. Does it still work? If it does, is it working like it should? Maybe it’s time to look at a new heater and take advantage of the latest technology that will not only save you time, but money as well. (Have no idea what I am talking about? Read our post here about what makeup air is).

A heater that was manufactured ten years ago will not have the same technology or controls as a new unit because there have been many advances in the last decade. (Imagine using a cell phone from 10 years ago to do what you needed today…).

Can you control the temperature? New units have digital temperature read outs for the desired and measured temperatures. This is important information that can save you money. If the outside temperature is 75 degrees, then the burner may not be required. Without the temperature reading, your painter may be turning on the heat out of habit not necessity.

Does your unit have a cure mode? If so, is the airflow reduced during the cure cycle or are you helping to heat your town and fund the gas company? New units will reduce airflow by as much as 50% to increase burner efficiency and keep the heat in the booth longer to provide more even heat flow around the product.

Timers. New units will also have timers in the cure mode so the flash, cure, and cool down are controlled automatically, and at the end of the cure process, the booth and heater shut off automatically. This alone will save a shop 10% in fuel costs.

How are your burners? If the heater you have has a cast iron burner, chances are that the orifices are partially rusted, preventing your burner from operating to its maximum efficiency. Some burners may be closed by as much as 50%. If your booth takes a long time to heat or does not reach temperature on very cold days, this may be AMU-OutsideDoublethe problem. Most new burners, including ours, have aluminum burners that will not rust over time.

Do you know your booth pressure? Do you have control over the exhaust fan motor, or does it run full speed all the time? New heaters are designed with variable frequency drives that lets you control the speed of the exhaust fan with the turn of a knob and a pressure gauge will display the actual pressure in the booth. This system translates into longer run times between filter changes and more control over the booth pressure.

If you have an older booth and you want to update your heater, or add a heater to a currently un-heated booth… give us a call and we will walk you through up-fitting your booth with the Sure-Cure Air Makeup Unit (the newest AMU to hit the market. Manufactured by a leading paint booth manufacturer.) Our Sure-Cure AMU has a ton of safety features as well as all the latest technology to provide you with an efficient heated booth. Let our design team get to work for you.

TRUCK PAINT BOOTHS: exhaust plenum options

Large spray booths are commonly used to paint trucks, locomotives and boats plus used in many industrial applications. Standard Tools offers a variety of cross-flow, semi-down (a.k.a. modified downdraft) and side-down draft booths. A large truck paint booth is often made in a custom size and has custom features such as an air makeup unit, specific light and door locations and drive-thru doors. Standard size large spray booths are available, but many customers will require custom sizes due to either the available space or the item being coated.

Below are some options are criteria that affect size options:
1. Installing a large truck paint booth is a sizable investment. The booth size should allow for potential growth.
2. Large spray booths require support frames that are part of the booth structure. These frames protrude 5” or 7” beyond the outer dimensions of the booth, depending on the span of panels being supported. Continue reading TRUCK PAINT BOOTHS: exhaust plenum options

Natural gas is leading to an economic revival

Recent studies by several research firms is confirming what many Americans in the Midwest have already come to know: that the continued development of domestic natural gas is leading to an economic revival. It is creating a ripple effect, creating more jobs, saving households money on energy bills and creating more business in the manufacturing sector. We have seen an increase in our business. Continue reading Natural gas is leading to an economic revival

WHY DO I HAVE TO COMPLY WITH SAFETY CODES?

If you are reading this posting we can assume that you are smarter than the average person.  You have shown an interest in using and maintaining your paint booth and equipment in a safe and effective manner.  What happens when we neglect safe practices and don’t follow safety codes?

The Great Molasses Flood
Great Molasses Flood

In January of 1919, a molasses storage tank in a Boston neighborhood collapsed sending two million gallons of thick goo in waves through the streets, killing 21 people and injuring over 150 people. It’s known as the “Great Molasses Flood”. The city had deemed the structure unsafe for the weight of the material stored but had not enforced its findings.

 

Cocoanut Grove Night Club after the fire
Cocoanut Grove Night Club

On November 28th 1942, a huge fire occurred at the Cocoanut Grove Night Club in Boston. 492 people perished in total. The Cocoanut Grove was originally a speakeasy—an illegal bar during alcohol Prohibition—and some of its doors were bricked up or bolted shut. During the 1990s, former Boston Fire Fighter and researcher Charles Kenney had discovered and concluded that the presence of a highly flammable gas propellant in the refrigeration systems—methyl chloride—greatly contributed to the flashover and quick spread of the fire (there was a shortage of freon in 1942 due to the war effort). As a result of the Cocoanut Grove fire and tragedy, the fire ordinances were expanded.

Continue reading WHY DO I HAVE TO COMPLY WITH SAFETY CODES?

TAKE A LOAD OFF! Unloading Your Equipment.

airliner with a globe and autoloader with boxes in a containerSometimes that’s easier said then done. In this case, it doesn’t have to be difficult; it just requires a little pre-planning on your part. To help you, our customers, avoid issues when your equipment is delivered, here are some things you need to know and prepare for.

 

Some folks don’t realize that when they order a piece of equipment, that they are responsible for getting their equipment off of the truck when it’s delivered. (Yes, you will need to have a plan for how to get it off that truck). Freight carriers will not off-load the equipment for you.

 

To help, we can order you a lift gate that will bring your equipment to the ground for easier transport.  Usually, this is the most helpful on shipments containing tire equipment.  We need to know at the time of order that you would like to have a lift gate added to your freight details, as freight trucks do not always come with them and we want to make sure your equipment gets put on the truck with a lift gate! Note: Even with a lift gate, you are still responsible for getting it off the lift gate and into your shop. 

 

Most equipment requires a forklift, wrecker or roll back to off-load equipment because of the weight and dimensions of the shipment. Our lifts weigh 1500 lbs + and are 10’ or more in length. Our paint booths are packaged in crates.  Many of these will not fit on a lift gate due to the dimensions on the crate (many of the crates are 6’ H x 10’ L and 4’ W).

Watch a video on how you can unload your lift if you have a roll back.

Watch a video on how you can unload your paint booth if you have a roll back.

We give you these details when you place your order as well as when we call you with your shipping confirmation. We are eager to help you, just give our customer service department a call at 1-800-336-2776.

How to Measure Your Roof’s Pitch

Finding your roof’s pitch is an important factor to know when you are ordering and planning your Exhaust kits to go with your Standard Tools and Equipment Paint Booth. Here’s how you can find your roof pitch.

Things you’ll need:
• Ladder • Level • Tape Measure • Marker • Pencil • Paper

1. Measure 12-inches on the level & mark.

Mark the length with the marker. Many levels are equipped with a ruler on the side, but marking it will allow it to be more visible.

2. Climb up to the top of your roof.roof pitch

· Make sure the roof is not wet or icy. It is best to walk on a roof when the sun is out and morning dew has evaporated.
· Make sure the ladder does not damage the gutter or side of the roof.
· Ascend the roof. Crouch down or sit, as to minimize the potential for slipping. · You  can measure pitch from any spot.
· Pull out your tape measure about 1 foot or so.

3. Use your level to measure the roof run.

· While holding the tape measure with one hand, pick up the level with the other and place the bottom corner on the roof.
· Using the level’s corner as your pivot point, hold it parallel with the ground.
· Pivot it up or down until the horizontal vial’s bubble is between the two lines.

4. Measure the rise with the tape measure.

· Hold the level parallel to the ground and measure the distance from the roof’s surface to the level’s 12- inch mark.
· Make sure you rotate the tape so it is perpendicular to the level. Write down the rise.

5. Calculate the roof’s slope. 

The number you measured with the tape is the roof’s rise or pitch — the amount the roof’s height rises over 12 horizontal inches. For example, if you measured 3 inches, the roof’s ratio will be a 3:12 pitch. (See illustration).

Monitor & protect your booth 24-hours a day

For anyone who has ever visited our blog, you have already seen a lot of posts about safety. It’s something we take very seriously in the business we’re in…. and we’re hoping you do too.

We KNOW just how dangerous mixing rooms and commercial paint spray booths can be! They comprise of highly flammable liquids, which creates an environment where fire is always a threat. Fumes accumulate, chemicals leak or spill…. if any ignition source is introduced it becomes a potentially devastating combination.

When a fire occurs, systems must be instantaneously shut off and alarms and other electrical devices must be activated in order to save as much property and lives as possible. This type of explosion doesn’t always happen during usage, when someone is there to shut it off manually. What would you do if this happened in the middle of the night? Would you find your shop burned to the ground in the morning?

That’s where a fire suppression system becomes an important component of a spray booth system. (In many cases, this type of system is mandated by local municipalities, and must be installed in your spray booth.)

Generally, a paint booth fire suppression system includes dry chemical tanks that are discharged when heat-sensitive fuses are broken. In the event if a fire, when any one of the fuses break, tensioned cables are released which punctures a C02 canister, thus releasing a chemical fire retardant through nozzles positioned throughout the paint booth and sometimes parts of the exhaust stack. A manual trigger, located at the personnel entrance to the spray booth, allows a user to trigger the system from outside the booth. Other electrical components of the spray booth system may be deactivated when the system is triggered, such as the fan or AMU. The best part, fire suppression systems monitors your paint booth 24-hours a day.

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