How to Play it Safe While Painting
If you have read any of our blogs so far, or just a little about us, you know we love painting. But, we also take it seriously. Painting carries some inherent risks. From potential falls to paint in your eyes, it can cause injuries. As a company, we are all too aware of injuries that are covered under workman’s compensation laws. While accidents happen, there are ways to keep safe while painting and we wanted to share a few important ones that have kept our injuries and accidents to a minimum and allow us to complete jobs in a reasonable amount of time.
Wear Safety Equipment
You may be thinking that painting involves no equipment. You just roll some brushes on a wall then call it a day. This could not be further from the truth. Painting absolutely requires some standard safety equipment. Aside from wearing clothes you don’t mind getting dirty, wear safety goggles to avoid getting paint in your eyes. Wear knee and elbow pads if you will be on leaning or kneeling for extended periods of time. Also, keep your skin covered so you do not come into contact with harmful chemicals. Most importantly, consider a mask to keep from allowing paint and fumes into your lungs.
You can find common safety equipment at your local paint store.
Use the Right Tools
Imagine trying to paint a ceiling using a kitchen chair. You may find yourself wobbling back and forth and eventually falling. Just like you would not use a frying pan without something to hold the hot handle, you should not paint without the right tools. The proper tools vary depending on the task at hand. Items like ladders will help you easily reach places without risking falling or straining muscles. Using a paint brush with an extended handle will help as well. In some cases, automation can help avoid repetitive use injuries. Before you start painting, give us a call or visit your local paint store to get the right tools for the job to avoid injuries.
Read the Instruction Manuals
Paint brushes may not come with a manual to tell you how to use them. But, paint will have instructions and safety warnings as may some of your protective gear and tools we referenced earlier. Take the time to read this information. It could make the difference between getting hurt or not. Below are some things you may read on paint labels or elsewhere, for example.
● Solvents are highly flammable – keep these paints away from all sources of heat, and never expose directly to an open flame.
● Store in cool, well-ventilated areas.
● Keep these products out of reach of pets and children.
● Dispose of rags properly – rags soaked with oil-based materials can ignite spontaneously if not spread out to dry.
● Ensure good ventilation with open windows and doors.
● Wear protective equipment.
● Keep children and pets out of the painted area.
When painting, it is important to read all instructions so you know what you’re dealing with. Mix the wrong chemicals, store something the wrong way, or try to clean something the wrong way can lead to a negative health outcome. Please take the time to read.
Take Your Time
Painting can have a physical toll on your body. We know. When you only do it once in a while, you feel that toll greater than when your body is accustomed to the rigors of the work. Do not rush your paint job. Take your time and lots of breaks to stretch, rest, and rehydrate. Not doing so can lead to cramps, pulled muscles, and even torn body parts such as rotator cuffs. Yes, painting can send you to the hospital if you are not careful. If you feel an unusual ache or pain, please do not just take some pain medication and push through. Stop and rest until you feel better. What you are painting will be there waiting when you get back.
Painting is fun, but also a serious business. Before you paint consider all the safety protocols that will help make it fun, efficient, and not leave you cursing the experience. Call or email us to ask any questions about painting safety you have!