Professional painters: Important painting safety tips
Did you know?
Preservatives are pesticides that protect paints and coatings from spoiling both in the can and once applied to the surface.
If label directions are not followed, overexposure to these preservatives could occur, which may lead to negative health effects.
Effects of overexposure can include:
- Irritation of your skin, eyes, or lungs
- Harm to the digestive system
- Increased risk for different types of cancer
Health effects can vary from one preservative to another and exposure protection may be required, such as coveralls or a respirator
You can reduce your exposure
Use appropriate personal protective equipment:
- Chemical-resistant gloves
- Painters hat (or other head covering)
- Eye protection
Ensure proper ventilation in the area you are painting:
- Open windows
- Use fans
- Continue ventilation after painting is finished
Professional painters: Always ensure you read the paint labels
Some painting methods (e.g. airless sprayer) may require personal protective equipment
Personal protective equipment is listed on the paint can label if required.
When using an airless sprayer, read the label for any required personal protective equipment.
Check Safety Data Sheets (SDS) for additional guidance.
Professional painters using an airless sprayer must wear cotton coveralls over a long-sleeved shirt and long pants, chemical-resistant gloves, a painter's hat, and a respirator with National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)-approved organic-vapour-removing cartridge with a prefilter approved for pesticides, or a NIOSH-approved canister approved for pesticides during paint application.
For more information:
Pesticides used as preservatives in paints and coatings - Paint preservative risk assessments
Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety - Occupational Safety and Health for painters
- Date modified: