While it may seem a greater pain to work in the cold, snow and ice, properly equipped construction sites can perform the job just as well as at any other time! These construction sites, residential and commercial, can be kept on schedule even throughout the coldest months of the year.
In weather that cold, simple construction can become impossible and one of the biggest challenges is protecting against the cold and ice.
A simple solution for winter weather delays: Temporary Heat!
Temporary heating devices are a vital part of being able to work effectively in cold weather. However, as a result of poor selection and careless use, injuries and damaging fires occur every year.
If imporperly used, temporary heating equipment can lead to burns, fires, explosions, carbon monoxide poisoning, and the creation of oxygen deficient atmospheres. So, with the winter season upon us, it's important to review the many types of construction temporary heating tips and devices that are available, and be sure they are used safely.
There are a variety of devices to choose from: Temporary heat units can be fired either directly or indirectly. They can be electric or fueld by: (1) LPG / propane, (2) natural gas, (3) liquid fuel: kerosene, fuel oil, some diesel oils or (4) solid fuel: wood, coal, etc.
Solid fuel heaters are the most uncontrollable and therefore most potentially dangerous. Because of the inherent hazards associated with solid fuel, temporary units can not be used iside or withing 15 feet of any building or structure. This safety requirement makes their use for most temporary heating situation impraticaly.
As the winter months approach, project managers should work with their local temporary heat provider and propane retailer to discuss their construction plans.
Important Winter Construction Heating Tips:
- Never use a "fueled" heater within 10 feet of any debris piles, temporary enclosures, tarps, combustible materials, or fammable material.
- Maintain a good fresh air supply, to avoid oxygen deficient atmosphere: flames uses oxygen.
- Every heating unit, must have a fire extinguisher immediately available.
- The use of temporary heaters in confined spaces is never recommended; when they are used, sufficient ventilation and temperature control must be provided.
- Allow the heater to cool down before it is re-fueled.
- Always turn off the gas supply when the heater is not in-use.
- Never store used or extra LPG containers inside. Only those in use should be present.
- Temporary heaters should be placed at least six feet away from the LP container and not fired toward the container, unless the heater is an approved integrated unit.
- Never manifold more than three 100 pound LPG cylinders together.
- LP cylinders must be secured in the upright position and protected from damage.
Never use LPG below grade level: Be aware that gases such as propane are heavier-than-air, and will settle into any low spots, such as a basement. If there is not way for them to exit, a spark or flame can ignite and explode the concrentation of gas, causing great damage and injuries.
Temporary heaters are great tools, allowing work to continue in cold and damp weather. But remember, they can be dangerous. Take advantage of these winter construction temporary heating tips. Learn how to operate them, and don't take them for granted.