How do I get rid of fumes from welding?
There are 3 basic ways of dealing with welding fumes, and which solution you choose depends upon the amount, and location, of the welding you’re doing.
Fixed bench work
If you are performing most welding work on a bench, you can :
Solution 1 : Fit a extraction Fume Arm onto a nearby wall or beam or install a post for it to swing from. A fume extraction fan can be mounted directly to the Fume Arm and then ducted out to atmosphere via the roof (or out of the wall and then up above the roof line).
TIP: The exhaust needs to be above the roofline to allow the wind to disperse the fumes, reducing the concentration before they fall to ground level again, and are breathed in by your staff or your neighbours staff.
Solution 2 : Use an all in one Welding bench.
This is a bench with built in fume extraction. Fume extraction can be from the top only via a Fume Arm. The pollutants are then ducted out via the roof or, the welding fume solution can be a combination of Fume Arm and Downdraft extraction. This is produced by the Welding Benches own built in fan. You can opt to duct outside or if this is difficult due to location, a Welding Bench can be supplied that not only extracts from the Fume Arm and / or Downdraft on the bench top, but also filters the welding fumes before returning the extracted air safely to the factory space.
A wall mounted Fume Arm and fan with a bit of duct to the roof will cost from around $2000 -$3000 per set.
Welding benches can have built in extraction and filtration, the cost increases but you save on installation costs, holes in roofs and hire of scissor lifts for access, allow $3,000-$7,000
Mobile Fume Extractors
Working in different areas of the workshop ?
An all in one unit that can be moved to where required, or wheeled out of the way to make space in the workshop, can also include pulse cleaning as an option
Solution 1 : Non Pulse cleaning.
Ideal for low volume welding, these units are normally around 600 mm deep and wide and approx a metre high. With a Fume Arm mounted onto the top, the fumes are sucked up the arm and into the filter unit - passing a metal mesh pre-filter screen to capture any large hot particles, then into a second filter which removes the dangerous chemicals in the air, making it safe to be returned to the production area. Mobiles are competitively priced and flexible, all you need is power to the cable (single phase 240V or 3 phase are available). The cartridges vary in price and of course efficiency. Our units have a filter that meets the European F9 standard and is expected to last for 5000 hours of use -about 2-4 years provided its just fumes. The only disadvantage of these mobile fume units is everything goes though the filter cartridge, so if your grinding metals and hot fragments get into the filter cartridge it can damage it and also build up over time reducing efficiency – for a better solution for welding and grinding see Pulse Cleaned Mobiles below .
Solution 2 : Mobile Welding Extractors with Pulsed Compressed Air Cleaning. These units are a step up from Fume Mobiles. Using a Fume Arm to capture the fumes, the welding fumes enter a chamber that has no filter inside. In this first chamber, heavy particles and metal fragments drop out into a collecting tray which slides out to be emptied. The welding fumes then pass through a metal mesh screen into the second large chamber where again, due to the lower air flow by now, even more particles are dropped into a second collection tray. The remaining air travels upwards and through a filter cartridge suspended from the roof of the unit - to atmosphere. The cartridge, being suspended above the filter floor, can then be cleaned by means of compressed air pulses, which blast the dust outwards from the filter cartridge down into the collecting tray.
Advantages are, less particles get onto the filter surface in the first place, and those that do can be blasted off, resulting in much longer filter life. These units are a little more expensive that the Fume Mobiles but ideal in busy workshops with welders operating constantly including grinding.
Mobiles range from $2,000 to $5000 and provided good, safe compliant extraction and are very flexible.
Mobiles with Compressed air Cleaning give longer lasting filter life and cope better with grinding dust as well as welding fumes around $5,000- $10,000
Not everyone can deal with just benches and Mobile Units with their power leads training on the floor, don’t suit every situation. You can of course simply hang Fume Arms or Hood from the roof, but many engineering companies have overhead cranes which prevent this.
Booms, with a Fume Arm mounted onto the end. allow you to swing extraction from the side walls and then swing it out of the way again as required. These Booms can be 1-5 meters long normally (longer and they get difficult to handle) and you fit a Fume Arm of 2/3/4 meters reach onto the end.
A more powerful, fan is required – generally 1.1 or 2.2 kW to provided good suction levels as the pressure loss, or friction, in the Arm / Boom is greater, especially as both Fume Arms and Boom can have articulation, so there may be 3-5 ‘ bends’ to extract the air round.
Advantages – good reach and flexibility of positioning – 2 boom / arm combinations on each side of a factory can cover 16 meters of workspace. If you are building large frames or truck bodies these may be the best solution.
Disadvantages – need a substantial concrete wall or metal structure to be mounted upon as good quality ones, that stand up to industrial usage, weigh a fair bit. (Check the weight)
Boom / Fume Arm combinations offer wide coverage for around $4,000 - 5,000 a set