Fire Safety Tips While Using Grinding Machines

Industrial & Manufacturing Blog

When using machinery, there is always some risk of fire, and that's true even when you are using a grinding machine. Wondering how to use your machine safely? Here are some tips to help reduce and protect you from risks of fires:

1. Check the grinder for fraying cords and other cord safety issues.

Before starting to grind, always check the grinder for fraying cords. If the safety material around the cord is gone, wires may be exposed, and they can present a fire risk. Also, make sure that any extension cords you use are rated to handle the amount of power your grinder kicks out, and make sure that they are in a state of good repair.

2. Clean flammable substances from the area before starting.

Unfortunately, grinders may throw a couple of sparks whilst you are using them. In most cases, this does not present a danger at all, but if there is a pile of sawdust or other material that is easily flammable near your workstation, that may ignite. To reduce your risk, always thoroughly clean your grinding area before you start working. Remove flammable objects and explosives such as canisters of petrol or cleaning products.

3. Use flame-resistant covers.

If there are certain objects you cannot move and you are worried about them catching on fire, invest in a few fire-resistant covers. These covers can be placed over anything. For example, if you are working in your garage and you have a propane grill with a tank attached to it, you can throw a fire-resistant cover over that whilst you are grinding. Similarly, in an industrial setting, if you have piles of timber or other flammables nearby, you can also cover them.

4. Make sure the wheel guard is tightly attached.

Most grinders have a guard over their wheels. The guard protects your eyes lest any pieces of the wheel break off and fly toward you. However, it also helps to corral sparks and prevent them from flying around the room. Before using the grinder, check to see that the wheel guard is tightly in place. Also, make sure that the wheel is straight and not rubbing against the wheel guard as that too could create sparks.

5.  Check the ventilation openings.

Finally, your grinder has some ventilation holes. Make sure that they are open. They should not be full of goo, dust or debris, and they should not be blocked by tape or other items. They allow air to travel freely through the grinder, helping to prevent fires from starting internally.

6. Use a fire extinguisher.

Finally, your work area should be equipped with a fire extinguisher just in case. Make sure that you invest in the right type of extinguisher, one that can be used on machines. Also, watch its expiration date and replace it as needed.  



16 August 2016

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