OSHA Standard 1910.242(b) discusses the use of compressed air for cleaning and blowoff. It states that the use of compressed air for cleaning purposes is prohibited if the dead-ended pressure exceeds 30 psig. This phrase means the downstream pressure of the air nozzle or gun, used for cleaning purposes, will remain at a pressure level below 30 psig for all static conditions. In the event that dead ending occurs, the static pressure at the main orifice shall not exceed 30 psi. If it does exceed this pressure, there is a very high potential for it to create an air embolism. An air embolism, left untreated, can quickly impede the flow of blood throughout the body. This can lead to stroke, heart attack, and sometimes death.
So making sure you are in compliance with 1910.242(b) is truly a life and death situation. Most people believe that lowering the pressure to the blow off device is the only method to keep their operators safe from an air embolism. However this can become a problem when you really need the force of greater than 30 PSIG to complete your operation. We at EXAIR want to give you the flexibility to run at any pressure with out the risk of building that 30 PSI of dead-end pressure! We do this with our line of Intelligent Compressed Air® nozzles! All of EXAIR’s Air Nozzles are designed so that the flow cannot be dead-ended. The fins on the Super Air Nozzles are not only useful in amplifying the force by drawing in ambient air, but they also prevent an operator from completely obstructing the airflow.
Another great example of this is our 2″ Flat super air nozzle. The design not only allows the nozzle to amplify the air flow in the blast of air, the over hang will not let the dead end pressure build as it can escape around the edges and bottom!
If you’ve got questions about compressed air safety or have an existing blowoff in place that does not adhere to this OSHA directive, give us a call. We’ll be sure to recommend a solution that will keep your operators and wallets safe!
EXAIR has a history of being a leader in the design, manufacture, quality and safety consciousness of compressed air products within the industrial marketplace. Our design engineers have a focus to ensure our products are engineered to provide optimal performance while maintaining safety and effectiveness. Our Intelligent Compressed Air Products are engineered for safety while also meeting a wide range of standards and certifications.
Air can be dangerous when the outlet pressure of a hole, hose or copper tube is higher than 30 PSIG (2 BAR. All products manufactured by EXAIR have been designed for safety and meet or exceed the OSHA Standard 29 CFR – 1910.242(b) which relates to harmful dead-end pressure.
Noise levels in manufacturing environments also pose a safety risk as compressed air noise often exceeds OSHA noise levels standards used to prevent hearing loss. EXAIR products reduce noise levels to meet or exceed OSHA Standard 29 CFR – 1910.92(a) Maximum Allowable Noise Exposure.
CE marking indicates conformity with health, safety, and environmental protection standards for products sold within the European Economic Area. Unlike OSHA standards, responsibility for CE marking falls solely with the seller of the product. A CE marked product has been tested and certified in a way to meet safety & quality benchmarks specified for that type of product. All EXAIR products that are defined under applicable directives have been tested according to these standards, and carry the CE mark.
The Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive, or RoHS, is another standard borne from the European Union, and is geared towards public & workplace safety by restricting the use of hazardous materials in the manufacture of electronic & electrical equipment. Since its inception in 2006, similar standards have been vigorously adopted around the globe. Electrical portions of EXAIR’s Static Eliminators, EFC Electronic Flow Controls, ETC Electronic Temperature Controls, Digital Flowmeters, Solenoid Valves, and Thermostats all comply with the RoHS Directive.
Section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act doesn’t address a concern for product users, but rather a particularly troubling human rights issue – Conflict Minerals. For almost two decades, trade in tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has been used by some bad people to finance violent campaigns against their neighbors. EXAIR thoroughly and systematically documents our supply chain compliance with this act. We are proudly committed to our support for this effort to help the world be a better place for everyone…especially those in desperate circumstances beyond their control.
EXAIR manufactures Intelligent Compressed Air Products with safety and performance in mind. If you have questions, need a catalog or assistance selecting the best product for your application please contact any of our application engineers.
Throughout my years I have been in many manufacturing facilities. Oddly enough, I have seen nearly every part of a passenger car manufactured and then fully assembled. The amount of compressed air applications in automotive supplier and manufacturing facilities are tremendous. Here are some stories from just a few we have encountered over the years, and all of them can be found in our Application Database.
A component manufacturer, specifically a steering and transmission component manufacturer was having issues with machined parts coming out of a CNC machine with too much oil based cutting fluid on them and not passing inspection process because the oil would throw off the automated measuring system. The part was a splined shaft that the high surface tension oil stayed in the splines. The part was removed from the machine via robotic loader and set onto a fixture. The path to the fixture was outfitted with a Super Air Wipe so the robotic loader could move the part into and out of the air wipes’s airflow and remove the oil. The converging airflow of the Super Air Wipe was ideal to keep the peaks and valleys of the shaft clean of oil and they were able to direct oil back into the cutting machine so no separate collection system was needed.
2. A seat bracket manufacturer had issues protecting the lenses on their vision systems from welding spatter. They were again able to reduce the replacement / repair downtime by installing a 9″ Super Air Wipe in front of the robotic mounted lens and keep the spatter / fumes from ever making it to the lens, resulting in expanded run times between repair / downtime.
3. A forging company manufacturing the pistons was having issues reducing the temperature of the pistons as they were assembled to the connecting rods. The solution for them was to install a series of Super Air Amplifiers over the fixtured, indexing line and at each dwell station a Super Air Amplifier would activate and cool down the assembly by moving large volumes of ambient air mixed with small amounts of compressed air onto the surfaces.
4. An automotive manufacturer had issues with stamping shavings and welding debris staying on the surface of parts and fixtures resulting in rework and defective parts. Implementing a series of Super Air Nozzles, and Super Air Knives resulted in debris removal that saved tooling rework as well as production reject parts.
5. Another automotive / recreational vehicle manufacturer needed help with their torture test machine for suspension components. They were utilizing fans to try and keep shock sensors cool and replicate air movement. electric fans were not able to provide a focused airflow and so enter the Super Air Amplifiers. These have also been utilized on engine torture test machines.
These are just a select few of the actual applications that I have actually help with over the course of the years. As a whole, we have helped endless number of automotive industry applications. It doesn’t matter if you are in the automotive industry or just a garage tinkerer, contact and Application Engineer and let us help you with your point of use compressed air application today.
If you’re a regular reader of EXAIR blogs, you’ve seen a number of “brags” on the successful implementation of just about all of our products. Another “more” part of our website is Applications, where you’ll find WAY more brief summaries of EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air Product successes than we can fit in our catalog. These come from conversations, emails, and oftentimes shared photos or videos between EXAIR Application Engineers and our customers. We get to write those up as examples of our products making things better. On the occasions where the customer is willing to work with us to quantify how MUCH better our products have made things, we’re able to do a Case Study. A typical Case Study involves collection of “before/after” data, quantifying the benefits of using EXAIR products. This can include, but is not necessarily limited to :
Compressed air consumption
Safety (OSHA compliance)
At last count, there are over forty entries in our Case Study Library. You can search these by Product, or by Application…depending on what, specifically, you’d like to know. Registration (free and easy) is required to access our Case Studies…if you’re already registered & signed in, you can read the details on any of them. For your immediate viewing, though, here are the pertinent details on just a few:
More durable and efficient Safety Air Guns: This customer’s main concern was the durability of the air gun they were using. This was a situation where they sent one in for Efficiency Lab testing (that’s one of the ways we can help collect “before” data for a Case Study). I did this one, and the customer’s air gun’s trigger BROKE WHILE I WAS TESTING IT. In addition to providing a more durable product (a Model 1310 Heavy Duty Safety Air Gun, specifically), it also reduced the compressed air consumption from 63.5 SCFM to 14 SCFM, and the sound level dropped from 89.9dBA to just 74dBA.
So, back to the title of this blog…how can you “help me help you” with a Case Study? Let’s start with that 2nd part. Upon successful completion of a Case Study, I can “help you” with a credit on the order you placed for the EXAIR product(s) that replaced what you were using before, or a discount on a subsequent order…if, for example you got a Super Ion Air Knife to try out on one of your headlight making machines, and it worked so good you want to put them on the other nine machines (true story).
The “help me” part is pretty easy too. If you have instrumentation (air flow meters, sound level meters, etc.) to gather the “before” data, we can use that for the Case Study. If you don’t, we do. You can send the subject devices in for Efficiency Lab testing…our engineering staff will use calibrated test equipment to work up a detailed performance profile on what you send in. It’s a free service we offer to anyone who wants this data, in fact, and Efficiency Lab testing has no effect on the credits or discounts we offer for participation in a Case Study.
I also “help you” (and “help me”) by keeping your name, and your company’s name, off the Case Study. That way, if your process or product is proprietary in nature, we don’t risk sharing your hard earned success with your competition. We also don’t run afoul of the authorities, like this one last Case Study I’m going to share, where a machine shop was blowing off parts they make for the military that are classified in nature. They had crimped copper tubing pointed at the cutting tool, and it worked…it was just loud and wasteful. They zipped the crimped ends off and installed Model 1100 Super Air Nozzles with a simple compression fitting. Had the photo below shown the machined part in the lathe chuck, “we’re ALL going to prison” according to the customer:
This one, by the way, saved 2.7 SCFM per nozzle (over $840.00 a year in compressed air savings), and reduced the sound level from 96dBA to only 76dBA.
EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air Products have been making things better for compressed air users for almost forty years. If you’d like to find out how MUCH better we can make things for you, give me a call.
Russ Bowman, CCASS
Application Engineer EXAIR Corporation Visit us on the Web Follow me on Twitter Like us on Facebook