Tag Archive | "standards"

Do you need a work place gas detector?


If you work in a strata warehouse with offices in the front and manufacturing and / or service work taking place in the rear, you may be exposing yourself to harmful gases and vapours without realizing it.

Think about it.

You spend 6 to 8 hours of your day at work and chances are you have minimal ventilation at best. Poor indoor air quality can cause symptoms such as Sick Building Syndrome and Building Related Illness.

Sick Building Syndrome is related to chemical, particulate or biological exposure that cannot be related to a specific cause but are alleviated when the occupant leaves the building. Individuals report symptoms such as headaches, nausea, fatigue and drowsiness, to eye, nose, and throat irritation.

Building-Related Illness is a specific illness with a known cause that is a result of exposure to an indoor agent. Examples are Legionnaire’s disease and Pontiac Fever.

Commercial gas detectors should be placed not only in the rear of the strata unit where the work is taking place but in the front offices for the protection of administration staff as well. Buying a low cost residential carbon monoxide (CO) detector is simply not sufficient in a work place as seen in the comparison table below.

Residential Gas Detectors

  • Low Cost
  • Easily found in local hardware stores
  • Alarm on a timed basis
  • Cannot activate ventilation equipment, phone dialer or any other alarm or notification device
  • Only calibrated before it leaves manufacturing plant.
  • Exposure limits for 8-hour time weighted average (TWA) and for 15-minute short term exposure limit (STEL) time periods

Commercial Gas Detectors

  • More expensive than residential gas detectors
  • Must be purchased through an authorized distributor/contractor
  • Alarm condition when the 15-minute average limit has been reached or surpassed
  • Can be set up to automatically activate ventilation equipment, a phone dialer or virtually any other alarm or notification device using the on-board dry contact relays
  • Workplace must meet local (provincial, state, OSHA-USA) health and safety exposure standards for toxic gas exposure
  • Professionally calibrated every month for toxic environments and 6 months to a year for non-toxic environments.
  • Provide a warning when the 8-hour average limit is reached or surpassed

Worker safety is first and foremost. Depending on what kind of work is being carried on in your place of business, some things need to be considered before purchasing a gas detector: the types of gas(es) to detect, sensor placement, and migration of gases.

You may need or desire to have gas detectors for other gases such as combustibles (flammables) which would include natural gas, propane, solvent vapours, paint vapours, etc.

Sensor placement is important for early detection and consideration must be given to the target gas. For example, natural gas is lighter than air while propane and all solvents are heavier than air. Therefore, it is recommended that natural gas sensors should be placed near the ceiling and propane sensors should be placed 6” above the floor. If sensors are to be installed in areas that could or will be considered “wash down” areas, it is imperative that a water tight enclosure be selected and a splash guard for protection of the sensor and internal electronic circuit. It is also important to ensure that the installer takes the proper steps to seal the conduit or wiring leading into the transmitter to prevent liquid incursion by using the proper conduit seals or water tight cable clamps.

The migration of toxic or combustible gases between neighboring strata units depends on the type of work they are carrying on. For example, CO is only slightly lighter than air and can migrate very easily throughout a building.

Once gas detectors are installed, they eventually need to be serviced for not only best performance but to ensure they respond well and quickly to the target gas and provide early detection of unsafe gas build up. Most local agencies responsible for health and safety regulations require that work place gas detectors be “bump” tested for safety. This means exposing the sensor(s) to a known concentration of the target gas and confirming they respond to it. If this is an enforced requirement, it may be too costly to purchase the equipment required to achieve this goal. In cases like this, your local gas detection supplier or service company may provide this service. When considering bump testing of sensors, it is important to discuss this with experts in the gas detection field. Some sensors are consumable and bump testing them with high concentrations of target gas to get them into alarm condition can shorten then life span of a costly sensor element.

Always discuss your application with your local gas detection equipment manufacturer / supplier to ensure you get the proper product for your application and to ensure you are aware of the maintenance / service costs, sensor life spans, cost of sensor element replacement, etc. then budget for these things.

Written by: Frank Britton, CETCI’s General Manager

Posted in Environment, Health, Indoor Air QualityComments (13)

Six Factors to Consider Prior to Choosing an Electronic Enclosure Pt. 6 of 6


Choosing the right enclosure maybe as important as selecting the right product. An electronic enclosure, also known as housing, helps protect the circuit board allowing it to function properly. Elements (e.g. water, wind, dust, dirt, heat, cold, humidity, and chemicals) in the surrounding environment could damage or deteriorate the product (see Figure 1).

For example, large temperature variations between the inside and outside of the enclosure can result in pressure differences that may create a vacuum and draw water through the fittings or component and gasket seals. Or when moist air reaches its dew point, it can no longer hold its form and forms moisture droplets being formed on any available surfaces. This is called condensation. When temperatures are below freezing, it will condense into frost. After time, corrosion occurs and causes electrical resistance, which in turn generates additional heat, product performance problems, rusting, increasing risk of circuit shorting out, and arcing and sparking incidences.

Here are six factors to think about before choosing an enclosure:

  • Environment
  • Application
  • Thermal management requirements
  • Enclosure performance standards
  • Material
  • Size

————————————————————————————————–

SIZE

When specifying, enclosure size needs to be considered. Some questions to think about are:

  • Where will the equipment be mounted?
  • Does your application have specific enclosure location requirements?

It is essential to look at all six determinants – environment, application, thermal management requirements, enclosure performance standards, material, and size – prior to choosing an enclosure. Understanding all six factors will help you make a better choice when it comes to choosing the correct enclosure for the job. In essence, it will promote safety, define minimum levels of product performance, and minimize future maintenance expenses.

Written by: Teresa Kouch, Marketing

Posted in Enclosures, ProductsComments (7)

Six Factors to Consider Prior to Choosing an Electronic Enclosure Pt. 5 of 6


Choosing the right enclosure maybe as important as selecting the right product. An electronic enclosure, also known as housing, helps protect the circuit board allowing it to function properly. Elements (e.g. water, wind, dust, dirt, heat, cold, humidity, and chemicals) in the surrounding environment could damage or deteriorate the product (see Figure 1).

For example, large temperature variations between the inside and outside of the enclosure can result in pressure differences that may create a vacuum and draw water through the fittings or component and gasket seals. Or when moist air reaches its dew point, it can no longer hold its form and forms moisture droplets being formed on any available surfaces. This is called condensation. When temperatures are below freezing, it will condense into frost. After time, corrosion occurs and causes electrical resistance, which in turn generates additional heat, product performance problems, rusting, increasing risk of circuit shorting out, and arcing and sparking incidences.

Here are six factors to think about before choosing an enclosure:

  • Environment
  • Application
  • Thermal management requirements
  • Enclosure performance standards
  • Material
  • Size

————————————————————————————————–

MATERIAL

Deciding on the appropriate material for the enclosure, potential environmental threats and application location should be considered. Enclosures are constructed of metals (eg. aluminum, steel) or non-metallic materials (eg. plastic, fiberglass), depending on application performance requirements as seen in Table 4. Table 5 describes the advantages and disadvantages of each enclosure material.

Table 4: Application Performance & Enclosure Materials

Table 5: Advantages & Disadvantages of Enclosure Materials

Written by: Teresa Kouch, Marketing

Continue to pt. 6 of 6 >>>

Posted in Enclosures, ProductsComments (2)

Six Factors to Consider Prior to Choosing an Electronic Enclosure Pt. 4 of 6


Choosing the right enclosure maybe as important as selecting the right product. An electronic enclosure, also known as housing, helps protect the circuit board allowing it to function properly. Elements (e.g. water, wind, dust, dirt, heat, cold, humidity, and chemicals) in the surrounding environment could damage or deteriorate the product (see Figure 1).

For example, large temperature variations between the inside and outside of the enclosure can result in pressure differences that may create a vacuum and draw water through the fittings or component and gasket seals. Or when moist air reaches its dew point, it can no longer hold its form and forms moisture droplets being formed on any available surfaces. This is called condensation. When temperatures are below freezing, it will condense into frost. After time, corrosion occurs and causes electrical resistance, which in turn generates additional heat, product performance problems, rusting, increasing risk of circuit shorting out, and arcing and sparking incidences.

Here are six factors to think about before choosing an enclosure:

  • Environment
  • Application
  • Thermal management requirements
  • Enclosure performance standards
  • Material
  • Size

————————————————————————————————–

ENCLOSURE PERFORMANCE STANDARDS

It is important to understand the enclosure ratings and the level of protection they provide because a single enclosure does not protect against all the elements equally.

To standardize enclosure performance in North America, the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA), Underwriters Laboratories Inc. (UL), and Canadian Standards Association (CSA) are the commonly recognized standards organization. To standardize enclosure performance internationally, the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) prepares and publishes international standards for all electrical, electronic, and related technologies.

Table 1 describes the NEMA, UL, CSA, and IEC enclosure ratings for both non-hazardous and hazardous locations. For hazardous locations in North America, NEMA has categorized it further and separated it by class, division and groups as seen in Table 2. The class defines the general nature of hazardous material in the surrounding atmosphere, the division defines the probability of hazardous material being present in an ignitable concentration in the surrounding atmosphere, and the group defines the hazardous material in the surrounding atmosphere. The difference between NEMA and UL is that NEMA does not require a third party testing and leaves compliance completely up to the manufacturer.

Table 1: Enclosure Ratings for Non-Hazardous & Hazardous AreasTable 1: Enclosure Ratings for Non-Hazardous & Hazardous Areas

Table 2: NEMA Classes, Divisions & Groups for Hazardous AreasTable 2: NEMA Classes, Divisions & Groups for Hazardous Areas

Table 3: IEC Enclosure RatingsTable 3: IEC Enclosure Ratings

Written by: Teresa Kouch, Marketing

Continue to pt. 5 of 6 >>>

Posted in Enclosures, ProductsComments (8)

Six Factors to Consider Prior to Choosing an Electronic Enclosure Pt. 3 of 6


Choosing the right enclosure maybe as important as selecting the right product. An electronic enclosure, also known as housing, helps protect the circuit board allowing it to function properly. Elements (e.g. water, wind, dust, dirt, heat, cold, humidity, and chemicals) in the surrounding environment could damage or deteriorate the product (see Figure 1).

For example, large temperature variations between the inside and outside of the enclosure can result in pressure differences that may create a vacuum and draw water through the fittings or component and gasket seals. Or when moist air reaches its dew point, it can no longer hold its form and forms moisture droplets being formed on any available surfaces. This is called condensation. When temperatures are below freezing, it will condense into frost. After time, corrosion occurs and causes electrical resistance, which in turn generates additional heat, product performance problems, rusting, increasing risk of circuit shorting out, and arcing and sparking incidences.

Here are six factors to think about before choosing an enclosure:

  • Environment
  • Application
  • Thermal management requirements
  • Enclosure performance standards
  • Material
  • Size

THERMAL MANAGEMENT REQUIREMENTS
To maximize the efficiency and lifecycle of products, it is important to be able to manage heat buildup. Whether it’s to dissipate or to add heat, effective thermal management is vital.

Written by: Teresa Kouch, Marketing

Continue to pt. 4 of 6 >>>

Posted in Enclosures, ProductsComments (4)

Six Factors to Consider Prior to Choosing an Electronic Enclosure Pt. 2 of 6


Choosing the right enclosure maybe as important as selecting the right product. An electronic enclosure, also known as housing, helps protect the circuit board allowing it to function properly. Elements (e.g. water, wind, dust, dirt, heat, cold, humidity, and chemicals) in the surrounding environment could damage or deteriorate the product (see Figure 1).

For example, large temperature variations between the inside and outside of the enclosure can result in pressure differences that may create a vacuum and draw water through the fittings or component and gasket seals. Or when moist air reaches its dew point, it can no longer hold its form and forms moisture droplets being formed on any available surfaces. This is called condensation. When temperatures are below freezing, it will condense into frost. After time, corrosion occurs and causes electrical resistance, which in turn generates additional heat, product performance problems, rusting, increasing risk of circuit shorting out, and arcing and sparking incidences.

Here are six factors to think about before choosing an enclosure:

  • Environment
  • Application
  • Thermal management requirements
  • Enclosure performance standards
  • Material
  • Size

APPLICATION
Application can be associated with market or product. Market applications would be locations such as water treatment plants, parking garages, pools, arenas, repair shops, food plants, etc. Product applications would be physical enclosure requirements such as wall mount, duct mount, easy access, etc.

Written by: Teresa Kouch, Marketing

Continue to pt. 3 of 6 >>>

Posted in Enclosures, ProductsComments (4)

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Gas Detectors

CETCI gas detectors are used to detect many different gases. Some of the most common are Carbon Monoxide, Carbon Dioxide, Nitrogen Dioxide, Nitric Oxide, Ammonia, Chlorine, Ozone, Combustible Gases like Methane and Propane, Oxygen, Refrigerants and more.

IAQ Monitors

The YES Series of IAQ Monitors are essential for those responsible for conducting Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) Investigations. These instruments are specifically designed to measure and record the quality of indoor air in offices, buildings, homes, schools, parking garages, ice rinks, etc.