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Changes to MWF Exposure Limits on the Horizon

April 9, 2019

Recently, Swedish experts announced a change to the maximum recommended level of exposure to metalworking fluids (MWFs) commonly applied during machining processes.  These airborne mists create a variety of health risks to workers as well as the work environment.  Acceptable exposure limits set by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and other entities has generally been set at 5mg/m3 in the US; Sweden’s new recommendation is 0.2mg/m3, which is extremely low, and very few technologies can keep up with this.  These values are based on a threshold limit value of exposure based on an 8 hour/day, 40/hour work week schedule.

If left untreated, oil mist hangs in the air and settles in all surfaces – this includes machines, floors, and human skin.  Breathing these vapors causes serious respiratory problems and irritates the eyes, nose, throat, and skin.  All of these scenarios create hazardous circumstances for shop owners, and opens up the door to problems with OSHA.

High-efficiency HVAC systems are not designed to eliminate these contaminants from the workplace, which is why oil mist collection devices are becoming more prevalent in the shop scene.  One size machine does not fit all, so machines are matched with the appropriate collector depending on airflow rates.

In the report presented by the Swedish Occupational Health Authority, health risks connected to high levels of oil mist and oil smoke exposure include respiratory health issues, skin breakouts and breakdown, irritation to the eyes and mucous membranes, kidney disease and liver problems.

Clean Air America prides itself on manufacturing American-made, OSHA compliant plus equipment for operations including machining, die casting, parts washing, and more.  The Clean Air ZeroMist™ and ZeroSmoke™  units clean the air up to 99.995% before returning the clean air to the facility.  Using Swedish technology, Clean Air America is waves ahead of OSHA regulations.

Are you ready to learn more? Just contact us! We will gladly make a site visit, measure the air quality from and around your machines, and present a report of how Clean Air America can change the environment for your workshop.  Email, visit our website at or call 866.665.1829 for more information!


industrial, Manufacturing, oil mist

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