A painting and drying spray booth is the place in which a vehicle (or other item) is painted, with a spray gun. Spray booth has air channel working under a low pressure to clear the air in booth to ensure clean working environment. This is followed by drying and curing process where the air inside the booth is heated for faster drying time and perfect finish. During the painting phase air is derived from outside of the facility through the ceiling filter system. Then the air is extracted through the grates and air channel in the floor, where paint particles and any other contaminators are caught by filters. This allow a clean air to be return back to the environment. During the drying phase the air is heated to the chosen temperature and 90% of the heated air is reused for maximum efficiency and savings.
The air channel in the floor can be placed in a metal base which require a ramp at the vehicle entrance (this is a standard for all our spray booth up to 8 meters long) or for leveled access (recommended for bigger spray booths) in an excavated pit. Spray booths are equipped with diesel burner and fan-motor units, those can be placed on the side or rear of the booth. For safety reasons all spray booths should have an emergency exit on the side or back.
Why to use a spray booth?
Most important reasons to use a spray booth are as following:
To limit the application of a dangerous material to a limited controlled environment
To prevent dangerous over spray and volatiles to escape from limits and cause a fire or explosion close to the operations
To control air/fuel mixture in order to prevent formation of a flammable mixture
To provide a clean environment to be used for painting
How booths work
Painting Phase - Fresh air (blue arrows) is drawn from outside. Then it is prefiltered to ensure any impurities are removed. Next the air is heated to the desired temperature if necessary. This will be dependent on the temperature outside. Next the heated air (red arrows) is moved through another filter in the ceiling inside the booth. The exhaust fan is pulling the air down to the floor. The traveling downwards air collects the overspray. The ducts are evenly distributed through the booth to prevent "dead spots", where the air might not be removed at the same speed. The paint particles are collected by the floor filter. Next it passes through another filter to ensure is clean enough to be released back outside.
Drying Phase - during the drying phase only the fresh air fan works in order to recirculate the hot air ans safe energy. The fresh air damper is open to allow 10% of fresh air intake. The fresh air is mixed with the already heated 90% air. Next is reheated to reach the desired temperature, passes through the plenum inside the booth. Pressure created will push some of the excess air out through the opened exhaust unit. The hot air is then travel again to the fresh air unit to be mixed with 10% fresh air and being reheat again.
Ok, so you made the decision to invest in your workshop and buy a new spray booth. It might be your first one or with increased demand you are looking to expand your business. You still have the same aim: to get the best for your money. You want a product that is efficient, reliable, safe, easy to use, cheap to run and provides best and cleanest working environment. How do you make sure you making the right choose? What to look for?
When it come to cars, we know their types, how they differ and what are their advantages and disadvantages. We know how to asses them, looking at the engine size, power and fuel consumption. With spray booths, it is similar.
First let’s look at the different types:
SMART booths - this are the cheapest one, often with just plastic covers or nothing on the sides, which offer very minimum protection and separation of the painting area. The structure is very basic and often materials used are of poor quality. The control of the working environment is very limited. The air flow will be very weak and uneven. There is no insulation to prevent heat loss. Therefore they are not very efficient and are much more expensive to run.
Semi draught - with air flowing from the top and extracted at the back or side. The construction is solid with insulated panels (most of the time) and proper circulation of the air. However the air flow is uneven through the booth, this increase the working and drying time and there decrease productivity.
Down draught - this is most often the equivalent of the A class car. You get a solid steel structure with insulated panels. The air flow is even, fast and powerful all the way through the booth, thank to the air travelling from top to the bottom. It also perform the fastest when it come to the air clearance time, so you get minimum exposure, best environment to work in and best performance. Also thanks o the efficiency you will safe money on running costs.
Next we should have a look at the structure of the booth and the quality of panels. What you want is good metal framework with fully insulated panels, including the roof. If the booth is well insulated, the efficiency increase and you can save on the running costs of the booth. For safety is also good to investigate, what material is used for insulation. It is also important to look carefully at the panel’s coating. It becomes more common to use electrostatically applied powder coating, which creates perfect and durable finish.
The most important function of the booth is to clean the air fast and efficiently. You want to minimize exposure to hazardous vapours and clean the air as fast as possible. Normally the companies give the air flow capability of their spray booths, and as you would expected the higher the better. For the performance the type of fan used is very important. The strongest and most effective ones are the industrial centrifugal fan, but often manufacturers opt for the cheaper axial fans.
We all know that we can not assess a product just by price, as quite often a cheapest product is a false economy. It is not as efficient, effective and long-lasting as we would like and we end up spending more on running it, it won’t allow us to get the best performance and we might need to replace it sooner than we think. However, hopefully now you know what to look at, when choosing a spray booth and get the best product for your workshop.
How to choose a spray booth best for your workshop?
Optimum illumination in a spray booth is crucial for colour matching, uniformity of finish and in providing best working condition for the painter.
Correct lighting must allow an even and consistent light distribution and minimize or completely prevent any glares and shadows. The placement of the fixtures in the top corners, inclined at 45° allows us to achieve this.
However the quality, colour, intensity and uniformity of the lighting lies in the fixtures.
Our company is continuously researching to improve our spray booths. One of the latest project was looking at the lighting and use of more energy efficient and environmentally friendly LED fixtures. It was a challenging job to find the perfect lights that will provide the correct colour, brightness and premium lightning that is needed inside the spray booth. Now we are proud to announce that we not only found the perfect fixtures, but also for the UK market LED lighting is part of our standard installation.
LED lighting offer very uniform and consistent illumination, in comparison with the standard fluorescence tubes, which can deteriorate in colour and brightness with time and have the tendency to flicker at the end of their life. They have also longer life expectancy of 10 to 20 years. Most importantly they can reduce the energy bill by 40-60% (depending on the fixtures previously used), which is so welcome by everyone. Additionally, it will not only decrease the carbon footprint of the workshop, but also eliminate disposal issues (and cost) as the LED tubes do not contain mercury.
Any questions regarding our new lighting or Firat Spray Booths email us: