Code Compliance for Spray Booths in Canada — Things to Be Aware Of Before You Buy

Code Compliance – Canadian spray booth owners need to deal with more than just a little more snow in the winter.

Code Compliance is an issue that has been talked about quite a bit on the GFS Booth Blog, and for good reason. It’s consistently one of the biggest issues in the world of spray booths that receives far too little attention. It’s surprising to see so many spray booth owners taking a casual position with matters of code compliance when the reality is that if your booth doesn’t meet code, you’re not going to be spraying anything until the inspector says so. This could end up costing a business a substantial amount in field modifications to the equipment and lost productivity.

The majority of spray booths installed in Canada are sold by US-based manufacturers. Canadian buyers need to ensure that the booth they purchase is from a manufacturer that understands that for customers in Canada, there are specific criteria that must be met that differ slightly from those south of the 49th parallel. Certain codes related to things like electrical requirements or duct work will vary from city to city, but there are some regulations that apply nationwide or province-wide, regardless of the municipal jurisdiction that the booth will be installed in.

Here’s a list of the key issues that Canadian spray booth owners should be aware of when evaluating equipment suppliers and distributors who install and service the equipment:

  1. Gas train components on powder ovens must have CSA labeling to comply.  Other items may be required per municipality, such as TSSA requirements and documentation for FM approval.
  2. Control panels must carry a cUL listing.
  3. All lighting must be ETLc listed for code compliance.
  4. Air replacement units must have a remote reset on the AMU (many manufacturers provide only an automatic reset which is typically operated through the remote control panel and not on the unit).
  5. When providing a recirculating cure system (either a paint/cure, or an oven) you must provide explosion relief per NFPA-86.  New NFPA requirements DO NOT require explosion relief when using a force-dry/variable air volume cure system.
  6. Per new ordinances in Ontario, paint mix rooms must be fitted with fire dampers at intake and exhaust locations (1 hour minimum rating).
  7. All motors must carry a CSA and/or cUL rating for code compliance
  8. All air replacement units with a cure cycle (anywhere over ambient) must carry a ANSI Z83.25/CSA 3.19 listing.
  9. All other air replacement units that are used for ambient heating only require a ANSI Z83.4/CSA 3.7 listing.
  10. All paint booth exhausts must be fitted with an air proving switch to ensure exhaust is operating correctly.  If there is a failure, this will shut down the painting operation.
  11. Per new ordinances in Manitoba, you must provide an intake damper on outdoor mounted air replacement units.  This is also becoming a standard in other provinces.
  12. Most paint booth applications in Alberta require stamped drawings from a licensed Alberta engineer.
  13. All paint booth designs must comply to NFPA-33.

As you can see,  there’s a lot to be aware of. But taking the time to ask these questions of your equipment supplier BEFORE you buy can save you a great deal of headache when you go to start up your new booth. By ensuring that your suppliers meets all the codes, and that the distributor who installs and services the booth is intimately familiar with all regulations in your area, you can breathe easy. Taking these steps ahead of time means that when the time comes to start putting paint jobs through your booth you can do so safely and without worry.

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