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Why Fume Extraction Systems are Crucial for Factories

The fact that fumes from manufacturing processes such as welding metal and shaping plastic can be harmful to employees is not news to anyone running a factory.  Exactly what harm can be caused by which process is not so straight forward, however, and managing these risks can be a complex and expensive business.  Having the right HVAC system installed not only helps keep staff safe but can also extend the life of equipment by extracting fumes and managing environmental conditions that have adverse effects on delicate electrical and mechanical machinery.

Health Risks

Different manufacturing materials produce different types of fumes and have a variety of possible health risks:

Chemical Fumes

The risks involved with chemical fumes vary hugely depending on the type of chemical being used and they can range from skin irritation to cancer.

Exhaust Fumes

Extended expose to exhaust fumes can affect the respiratory system in a number of ways which are well documented.  More information about the different types of exhaust fumes and their effects can be found here.

Metal Welding Fumes

There are a number of health risks associated with long exposure to welding fumes and they vary according to the type of welding undertaken:

Pneumonia – can result from lung infections caused by all different types of welding fumes.
Asthma – can be caused by exposure to the gases chromium oxide and nickel oxide released during stainless steel welding.
Cancer – all welders are at risk from exposure to carcinogenic fumes.
Metal fume fever – is flu like symptoms which can be caused but working with galvanised metals or mild steel welding.
Throat and lung irritation – is created by inhaling ozone during all types of welding.  Extreme exposure can lead to pulmonary oedema (fluid in the lungs).

Plastic Fumes

Heating, cutting and melting plastic can release the following chemicals:
Hydrogen chloride, styrene, phenol, butadiene, formaldehyde, acrolen, acetone, alkenes and butane.
These can cause a frightening array of unpleasant conditions, some of which are long term and irreversible.  They include:

Cancer, impotence and other reproductive problems, asthma, severe irritation of the nose, lungs and eyes, headaches, confusion, liver and kidney damage and a variety of skin conditions.

These are risks no employer would want to expose their staff to.  Additionally, some chemicals can corrode metal and other materials along with damage caused by excess heat, cold or moisture.

A Bespoke Solution

Custom made HVAC systems that are specifically tailored to your exact requirements can not only keep employees safe from different types of fumes and harmful particles in the air, they can reduce humidity, keep temperatures at optimum levels and do so in an energy efficient and cost saving manner.  To find out how our HVAC systems could work for your factory, call + 44 (0)1903 733911 or email info@transcoolsystems.co.uk.