Original article

Scand J Work Environ Health 1984;10(4):263-266    pdf

doi:10.5271/sjweh.2332

Solvent exposure in construction and maintenance painting.

by Riala R, Kalliokoski P, Pyy L, Wickstrom G

Exposure to solvents in interior house painting was determined by industrial hygiene surveys and questionnaires on work history. Painting work was observed in 92 work situations at 18 sites, mainly during maintenance work. The effects of the size of the work area, the volume of air, the type of paint, the amount used, the method of application, and the use of ventilation on the solvent concentrations were also studied. In small, poorly ventilated rooms the concentration of solvent naphtha averaged 275 ppm when alkyd paints were used. Wall and ceiling painting with alkyd paints yielded an average solvent naphtha concentration of 210 ppm, and window and door painting 80 ppm. The presence of a strong draft reduced the solvent concentrations by two-thirds. The painters' average lifetime dose of solvent naphtha was 12.2 kg, the average annual dose 0.54 kg. These levels decreased over the study period. The mean 8-h concentration of solvent naphtha in the breathing zone averaged 40 ppm over the painters' total worklife.