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What Are the Best Tips for Sandblasting with Water?

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  • Written By: Amy Rodriguez
  • Edited By: Shereen Skola
  • Last Modified Date: 05 September 2016
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The best tips for sandblasting with water are choosing a strong compressor, proper blasting technique, and adjusting the equipment correctly. Regional water supplies should also be considered; areas in drought may require a different blasting technique, such as using silica sand. In addition, any surrounding observers should be cleared from the area to prevent any accidental injuries.

Sandblasting with water requires a strong compressor to force the water droplets out rapidly enough to peel off paint or another surface covering. As a result, the consumer must check the air compressor's specifications; the owner's manual should list the maximum pressure emitted from the compressor and its each pressure level application. Both electric and gas powered air compressors can be used for outdoor sandblasting.

Proper technique is imperative for removing paint and other substances while sandblasting with water. The sandblaster should not be pointed directly into one area for a long period of time; rather, it should be swept from side to side in a steady motion. Often, it is good practice to choose a test area on the surface that is on the perimeter so that the blaster's pressure can be checked for proper strength. Once the desired pressure is reached to obtain the needed results, the user should then begin a sweeping action to cover the remaining surface area.

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Each sandblasting with water process requires the machine's parts to be well adjusted. The pressure valve should be set during the test area procedure; however, the blaster's water nozzle should be adjusted as well. A fan shaped water output will not produce the sandblasting power needed to treat the surface. Sandblasting with water requires a tight stream of liquid to achieve any affect on the finish. Slowly adjusting the nozzle will ensure a strong stream without damaging any surfaces.

It may not be possible to use water for blasting if an area is suffering from a drought. Sandblasting requires many gallons of water to move through the system; this water typically drains into municipal sewer lines as waste. Before choosing a water sandblasting procedure, consider the area's water situation. It may be necessary to use an alternative blasting media, like sand or glass beads, to achieve the needed appearance. Safety should be the most important item to consider during sandblasting with water, and both people and animals should be removed from the surrounding area, as the strength of the stream can easily injure someone.

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