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Everything You Need To Know About Paint Booth Filters

Paint booth filters are extremely important. Choosing the right filter and changing it before it gets clogged, is about safety and maintaining a quality spray. It’s about keeping the air of the paint booth ventilated, clean and breathable.

The moment the filter becomes useless and the air becomes toxic isn’t always noticeable. This guide is to help you ensure the air in your shop and paint booth never doesn’t that point.

How to Choose a Paint Booth Filter

Choosing the right filter is a matter of knowing the different types of filters available, what each filter offers, and how well they’d coordinate with the filtration system you’ve implemented in your shop.

The different types of paint booth filters include:

  • Air makeup filters
  • Intake filters
  • Exhaust filters
  • Paint arrestor pads


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Air makeup filters

Essentially, an air makeup filter permits the proper flow and volume of air to fill a paint booth, while simultaneously extracting large particles of contaminants and extending the life of other filters in the system. They typically achieve this through a comprehensive blend of polyester and nylon fibers, though sometimes microfiber is used.

Depending on the system you have, this type of air filter may be just the first stage of filtration for your paint booth. Here’s what’s available within this category:

There is little difference in the output of these different filters, so your choice will depend on system specifications.

Intake filters

Intake filters are one of the most common types of spray booth filters, used in both downdraft and crossdraft booths.

This is because paint booth intake filters strain the air that is flowing into the booth, removing as much contamination as possible. The reason this is so important is because a single spec of dust can negatively affect a paint job. Because of this, most filters are placed in either the ceiling, walls, or doors in which the air is taken in.

Here’s where things get complicated, each paint booth is different and requires a different filter. Depending on your system, you’ll be choosing one of the following types:

  • Roll media
  • Flat media
  • Cut pads
  • Extended surface
  • Unconstructed
  • Self-supported
  • Dry texture
  • Tacky

Exhaust filters

The principle of exhaust filters is essentially the same as intake filters, except, for the rest of automotive shop. These filters cleanse the air before it is released from the paint booth, mostly by collecting the overspray.

Doing this keeps all the chemicals and particles that we shouldn’t breathe within the booth and the outside air clean. Exhaust pad and panel filters are made with thick weaves polyester or fiberglass fiber that holds large supplies of paint to protect your fans. Avoid constant replacement while maintaining proper pressure in the booth.

While most exhaust filters are single stage, there are some that use all three of the following single stage filters to form a comprehensive system. The single stage paint booth exhaust filters include:

  • Bag filters
  • Pad filters
  • Multi-layered roll media

Arrestor pads

In the previous section, under exhaust filters, we mentioned the need for filters to be able to hold a good amount of overspray in order to protect the fans and the environment. This is exactly what an arrestor does.

Most arrestor pads are made of fiberglass or polyester, but the paint booth filter you choose will be dependent on whether you use a wet or dry system for overspray capture.

Paint Booth Filter Maintenance

Just like any tool or piece of equipment in an auto shop, maintenance needs to be done to continue quality work, retain power output, and prevent the breakdown of equipment and the associated costs.

Without regular replacement of your filters, overspray will build-up on your fans, plenum, and stacks, requiring costly replacements or repairs later on.

But it’s not just about the high price of not replacing your filters, but about safety. The air quality in the paint booth and the fumes create a need to meet standards set by the NFPA and OSHA.

These regulations are:

  • OSHA: flammable particles must be filtered out of paint booths, and air current must be properly ventilated. An exhaust system must be running continuously during paint booth use, and all exhausted air must be pushed out of the booth rather than recycled into it.
  • NFPA: If a spray application uses flammable materials, these hazards must be mitigated by extraction and or collection through paint booth air filters.

Tips for maintaining your spray booth exhaust filters

There are several things you can do to extend the life of your filters, and other parts of your paint booth system. Follow these tips to save your body shop time and money:

  • Keep your paint booth clean to decrease the risk of contamination and maintain air quality. This will also help to keep the build-up of paint spray lower.
  • Establish a routine for checking and maintaining your entire paint booth filter system. This schedule should include the checking, cleaning, and replacement of all parts necessary.
  • Filters for paint booth can be delivered regularly and scheduled out to coordinate with the volume of your paint booth use.
  • Paint booth filters disposal must be in compliance with EPA standards, since it is considered a hazardous and toxic material due to paint and chemical contaminants.


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When to replace filters

The replacement of your filters will depend largely on the volume of use and the type of system you have, but there are other factors. These include:

  • Type of filter
  • Paint type
  • Booth design
  • Fan speed
  • Temperature
  • Spray equipment
  • Cleanliness of booth
  • How long you’ve had the filter without a change

One way of checking whether you should replace your filter, and the best indicator that the filter is failing, is to check the manometer pressure gauge and compare it to the manufacturer specs.

Buying Automotive Paint Booth Filters

When choosing a spray booth filter, check manufacturer standards to ensure that you are selecting a filter that will work for your specific booth. Filters that don’t fit or don’t meet specifications won’t work correctly, greatly affecting their efficiency and ability to filter the air properly, putting equipment and employees at risk.

If you’re looking to replace your paint booth filters, Auto Body Toolmart has a wide selection of paint booth filters for crossdraft and downdraft systems.

Keep quality air flowing through your booth, with paint booth filters from Auto Body Toolmart.

 

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