I started in this business in the early 70’s by painting kitchen cabinets for my father's company in Fergus, Ontario. In those days most coating applications were done by hand. Technology had not caught up to the demand and very little precaution was taken for preserving one's health and well being, let alone the environment. Sand blasting was done with silica sand, urethanes where high in isocyanates, lead based paints were common, some contained mercury, and all coatings contained (voc’s) volatile organic compounds (solvents). Paint respirators were new, uncomfortable and filters where relatively expensive. There were few regulations regarding a workers health and safety because there just wasn’t enough knowledge and if there was it was ignored.
As a testament to the above, I would like to pay homage to a former employer, master painter and instructor, Mr. Don O’Brien who forced me to wear a mask when I worked for him and always ensured that I had new filters. Don died in 1986 at the age of 42 from complications brought on by excessive inhalation of solvent vapour and other particulates.
Thank God things are different now, because I am 46. We live in a new millennium, where knowledge is king. We have the ability to change course and only require the economic will to follow. This web site was created to become a source of information for individuals, engineers, architects and coating specifiers who would like to embrace our environmental vision for the future.
There are many types of coatings available on the market today. Some are extremely toxic and antiquated, while others are about as safe as you can make them and still maintain quality performance. The end user is the one who drives the choice. We feel that by educating the end user and sometimes forcing their hand, they will make the right choice. In this world we all have to do our little bit. With that in mind, I make this promise to the world.
Epoxy Solutions shall use the most environmentally safe products whenever possible, regardless of cost, as long as performance is not compromised.
Here are some examples of how we are achieving our environment success.
We do not sandblast with silica and we strongly encourage others to do the same. Silica dust is a proven carcinogen and causes lung cancer. Believe it or not more than half of all blasting done in Canada today is still done with silica.
We use solvent free epoxies and urethanes whenever possible. When we are required to thin the epoxy, because of temperature of penetration we use IPA (isopropyl alcohol).
Our total fleet of vehicles are 2 turbo diesel 5 tons and 3 propane converted pick up trucks.
We sparingly use isocyanate reduced urethanes, but now with the advancement in water based technology most applications can be done that way.
We limit the amount of reducing solvents to a minimum
Our clean up solvent is wood alcohol (methyl hydrate/gas line antifreeze) or IPA
We have an extensive health and safety policy
We have the desire to succeed
We encourage our staff to reduce, reuse and recycle, both at work and at home
I hope that during the course of your tour of our site a little bit of our environmental vision has rubbed off on you, after all, it takes a little bit from everyone who lives in this world to really make a difference.
President and N.A.C.E. Certified Coating Inspector #5705