Welding is the word used to describe the process of permanently joining pieces of metal or plastic together andinvolves using heated tools to melt the materials and fuse them with the help of pressure. It is a fairly dangerous activity for those who have chosen it as a profession, or for those who simply enjoy it as a hobby in their spare time, therefore there is a variety of Welding safety gear that must be utilised.
Electric Shocks and UV Light
Due to the fact the welding equipment itself is heated using an electrical current, and is made from metal, when you use it to melt other pieces of metal together you do risk getting electric shocks. This will only happen if part of your body is touching grounded metal, but to avoid the risk altogether make sure you’re wearing gloves made from a non-conductive material, rubber is usually best.
When you heat any material to a high temperature, it will emit thermal radiation, which takes the form of light in the case of heating metals. Welding emits high levels of UV light thanks to using such high temperatures. For this reason, you need to wear eye protection which is usually integrated into standard welding helmets.
Noise and Fumes
Welding also produces a considerable amount of noise due to the fact you are applying pressure to hard materials on a consistent basis, and because of the processes taking place as the materials change consistency. Welding can also be a slow process, so you are likely to be exposed to high noise levels for a considerable amount of time. To cancel this out, make sure you wear over ear protection.
Similarly, when a metal is heated above a certain temperature, just like with any solid, it begins to vaporise which in the case of welding causes toxic fumes that mustn’t be inhaled. These fumes usually contain a mixture of metals and other harmful substances such as Carbon Monoxide and Argon. To avoid breathing in these fumes, you must use a respirator when welding.
When you weld metal, small particles with become dislodged during the process, which are likely to have reached a very high temperature beforehand. Therefore, there is a high chance that you can be scalded. This is on top of the risk of accidentally touching the equipment and burning yourself more significantly. All body parts must be protected from burns using heat and fire resistant clothing, boots and a helmet.
If you’re considering welding as a career or a hobby, you must make sure you use all of the relevant safety equipment, or you risk obtaining a number of injuries and long-term health issues. You must protect yourself from electric shocks using insulating gloves, and UV lights using protective eyewear.
The loud noise produced can be cancelled out by ear protection, and you can avoid breathing in any harmful fumes by using a respirator. Finally, wear heat proof clothing, a helmet, and boots to stop yourself being scalded. For more DIY and construction tips, take a look at workingdaddy.com, for example their article on how to turn your garage into a DIY heaven.