Sandblasting is used for many different purposes, and it can be a surprisingly effective way to clean a number of surfaces. Sandblasting is often used to etch decorative designs into freshly poured concrete, providing a unique look for homes and businesses. Sandblasting is also used to remove graffiti, paint and other stains from finished concrete, and to remove rust from metal surfaces. But even though sandblasting is a powerful technique, it is important to use the equipment properly and follow the right procedures.
Dress for sandblasting with safety in mind. Sandblasting equipment, by its very nature, is very powerful, and it is important for those who use this equipment to operate it with safety in mind. One of the most important pieces of safety equipment for those using sandblasting equipment is a sturdy pair of goggles that cover the entire surface of the eye. The safety goggles you use should be the wraparound variety--it is important that there are no gaps.
A good respirator is another vital piece of sandblasting safety equipment. When you are sandblasting the equipment you use is blasting a high-pressure stream of sand toward the surface, and that high -pressure blast means that lots of dust and debris will be stirred up. This debris can be abrasive to your skin, so it is important to wear gloves and long sleeves. That debris can be even more damaging to your lungs, and it is critical to wear a respirator that is designed for use with high-pressure sandblasting equipment.
Use the Right Equipment
Sandblasting uses a combination of sand and compressed air to create a high-pressure blast designed to clean and etch surfaces. Since the sand plays a critical role it is important to use only the finest and highest-quality sand. The sand you use must be free of dirt, debris and other imperfections.
The other part of the equation is the air, and it is important to have the proper air compression to get the best results. The minimum air pressure you will need is 70 psi, but if you can ramp that up to at least 100 psi, sandblasting should be a lot more effective.
Make Clean Up Easy
Sandblasting is a messy job, but there are some things you can do to make it easier to clean up after you are done. Before you get started, drape the entire work area with a heavy tarp. That makes it a lot easier to recapture the used sand and effectively clean up after the sandblasting is done.