Safety tips for handling paint

Safety tips for handling paint
Painting your home, or even giving one room a colourful makeover, can be a fun and creative activity the whole family can join in on. However, it is important to keep in mind that paint is a toxic and highly flammable substance that, if used incorrectly, can pose a danger to your family. Follow these top tips to make your painting experience a fun and safe one:

1. Wear appropriate protective gear. When handling paint, some splashes and drops are inevitably going to land on your skin. Wear thick, non-porous gloves when applying water-based paint, and solvent-resistant chemical gloves when applying solvent-based paints.

A cheap, disposable face mask should be worn to limit the amount of paint fumes inhaled if one is painting for extended periods of time over a large surface, especially if you are indoors. Ensuring good ventilation when painting inside is also a must, so make sure all your windows and doors are fully open. This will also help the strong smell of wet paint to dissipate and speed the drying time of your paint.

2. Handle solvent-based paints with extra care. Solvent-based paints are also known as oil-based paints and pose a potential health hazard if not stored or used correctly. As solvent-based products are highly flammable, they should be kept away from all sources of heat and electrical circuits, wires or appliances in the event a spark or electrical fire comes into contact with the paint. Open flames are also a dangerous element to have in close proximity to solvent-based paints and fireplaces and cigarettes should be put out when the paint is being used.

These paints should always be stored in cool areas with adequate air flow and on high-level shelves to prevent pets or children from accessing them. After making use of solvent-based paints, any rags, paintbrushes, clothes, gloves or clothing that has been contaminated by the paint must be thoroughly washed, or discarded in the case of rags that are no longer needed.