Epoxy resin is a very useful material in many DIY projects. However, exposure to it can be harmful in a variety of ways. There are many things you need to know before using this polymer, such as what kind of gloves to use with epoxy.
To be clear, latex and nitrile are considered the best gloves for epoxy resin. We’ll go over more details related to the safe handling of this substance.
Keep reading to learn more.
Table of Contents
- Handling Epoxy
- Why Do You Need Gloves for Epoxy Resin?
- Types of Gloves for Handling Resin
- Other Safety Information
- Additional Information
When using resin, not just epoxy, sufficient protection is necessary to spare ourselves messes and injuries. But it is important to use the right glove for each task.
Why Do You Need Gloves for Epoxy Resin?
When uncured, epoxy resin itself is a potent irritant to the skin.
That said, it is the hardener component in epoxy that is considered dangerous. Since this is known to be extremely adhesive, getting it on your skin can be a big problem, depending on how much comes into contact with your body.
Because epoxy is liquid, you should use it expecting spillage and spatters. To ensure that the situation remains manageable, using gloves is recommended. Epoxy gloves should be easy to remove and don to encourage usage.
Types of Gloves for Handling Resin
There are many types of gloves, and one of the key differences is what material they are made of. When it comes to reusable gloves for epoxy resin, latex and nitrile gloves are considered the best ones.
Latex gloves for resin printing have been considered the top choice for a long time due to their thickness, which prevents any sharp material from puncturing the glove surface. Latex is excellent for handling resins because different kinds, including epoxy, do not stick to it.
On the other hand, nitrile gloves for resin use became popular more recently and have started to gain favor over latex. This is due to a few things, the first of which is that latex is more prone to cause allergy or irritation in people. Another point is that it is easier to work with nitrile because it allows for more dexterity and flexibility.
While nitrile is a type of rubber, not all rubber gloves will work well for protection while handling resin. In addition, vinyl gloves should be avoided when handling epoxy resin because they will dissolve.
Other Safety Information
Aside from wearing gloves, there are a few other safety measures you need to take when handling resin.
1. Have sufficient ventilation
When working with chemicals and a lot of dust, proper ventilation is a must. This will keep the air more breathable as unpleasant odors can become a hindrance and potentially impact the result of your work, such as when you’re using resin to seal the boat.
Having proper ventilation for specific building projects may also be required by law, especially when working with chemicals that have potentially harmful fumes.
2. Use protective cover and clothing
Epoxy can be harmful to our skin, and accidentally getting it on your clothes may allow it to get on other parts of our body. In addition to wearing thick clothes with long sleeves and pants to cover your legs, use additional protection such as a plastic apron.
Certain types of resin can potentially ruin clothing, not to mention that it may be expensive to get them off if that’s at all possible with resins, including epoxy, being as adhesive as they are. Use ample covering for your clothes and feet.
3. Protect your eyes
It’s always a good idea to protect your eyes when working on any DIY project, and epoxy is not the only thing you should be looking out for. Dust and stray pieces of different materials can do some real damage to your vision. It’s worth the effort to give yourself extra security because eye injury is no joking matter.
4. Mask up
Using a mask may not be considered a top safety concern, but there are things you’re better off not breathing, such as fumes and dust that you’ll probably have a lot of when working a boat. An N95 mask goes a long way in minimizing inhalation.
Just keep in mind that ventilation and wearing a mask work best together; one is not a substitute for the other. Some people make use of a ventilator mask, and while that may be going overboard, it’s best to go with what makes you feel most comfortable.
1. Why use epoxy resin in the first place?
Epoxy resin is used for many types of projects and is one that is often used for boats. While there are alternatives, epoxy has an advantage because of how much more adhesive it is compared to other popular resin types such as polyester. It is also known to work well with a variety of materials, providing additional versatility.
The biggest downside to epoxy is the price, which can go as much as four times higher than other types.
Using it can also be complicated due to its sensitivity during mixing and preparation. When making minor repairs, it’s a good idea to stick to less expensive resin options.
2. Are there alternatives to nitrile and latex gloves for handling epoxy?
Silicone gloves are a popular choice for many types of activities, but you need to consider what exactly you’ll be using them for.
Epoxy does not stick to this material, so it works well. However, it is important to use specialized silicone gloves for resin when handling epoxy and not those for household chores. Utility gloves made of silicone are easy to find, though nitrile gloves provide better utility.
Nitrile and latex gloves are best to use when handling epoxy resin, although there are alternatives. Just remember to stick to the important safety measures and considerations when working with chemical products.
Know anyone else having trouble with what kind of gloves to use with epoxy? Go ahead and share what you’ve learned. Also, don’t forget to leave any comments or suggestions you might have below.
Remember to boat safely.
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