Spraying Waterborne Finish HAZARDS (flammable?)

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Forum topic by PurpLev posted 07-01-2010 04:00 PM 2502 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View PurpLev's profile


8536 posts in 3672 days

07-01-2010 04:00 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question spray spraying finish water borne base hazard light flame pilot heater

I would like to spray some waterborne finish on some projects, and my only 3 options in terms of location would be:

1. garage (somewhat dusty and hot/cold as it’s not insulated)
2. outdoor (windy, sand, grass, rain possibilities)
3. basement (very stable climate, clean, washer/dryer/stuff, water boiler (pilot light), heater)

Of the 3 options, the basement would be the most feasible for me to use because the finish would be best kept under control there. However there is the pilot light of the water heater right next to where I can spray.

I know this is waterborne and should not be flammable, but before I burn down the house out of ignorance, am I correct in my understanding? would I be ok spraying in that area? or should I opt for the garage?

Other than that, I will have a window fan with a furnace filter on it, and a mask with a filter on as well (regardless of where I spray).

Thanks in advance!

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

12 replies so far

View RZH's profile


73 posts in 3133 days

#1 posted 07-01-2010 04:37 PM

Water Bourne finishes are non-flammable.
You need to have a plan for the over-spray though; a fan will work if you can keep the work piece close enough. You might want to setup a lazy susan to support your work while finishing. You can spin the lazy susan rather than repositioning your work piece. I run a fan, close all doors in the shop, and open two windows with furnace filters for the makeup air. I don’t bother with a filter on the exhaust side, if you do you it will fill up quickly.
What is nice about these finishes is they dry quickly, like lacquer. This will minimize dust settling on your finish.
I also try to spray after I run my air cleaner for about an hour in the shop and then I try not to disturb anything that might kick up dust as I spray.

-- Ron

View CharlieM1958's profile


16275 posts in 4242 days

#2 posted 07-01-2010 06:07 PM

Even though flammability is not an issue, you do need adequate ventilation since the vapors will cause dizziness, nausea, etc. in higher concentrations.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View a1Jim's profile


117115 posts in 3601 days

#3 posted 07-01-2010 06:41 PM

Like Ron said water base is not flammable. With your spray system you will minimize over spray but it still is best to wear a respirator and have good ventilation like Charlie said, and since it’s non flammable material you can use a regular box fan to assist with that.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View PurpLev's profile


8536 posts in 3672 days

#4 posted 07-01-2010 07:17 PM

Thanks guys.

Ron – thanks for the suggestions, If not the basement, I was considering using the garage after I let the air filter clean it up some, and wait for the air to settle.

Charlie – what was your point? I thought that was the whole idea of spraying, is it not?

Jim – I do plan on having a box fan with a furnace filter on it at the window, right behind my spray ‘booth’, and wear a respirator of course. Thanks.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View CharlieM1958's profile


16275 posts in 4242 days

#5 posted 07-01-2010 07:38 PM

Sharon… is another tip: Airplane glue works better than Titebond any day. :-)

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View spclPatrolGroup's profile


233 posts in 2918 days

#6 posted 07-01-2010 08:29 PM

If you spray in the house, turn off your furnace, otherwise the cold air return will suck it up into your ducting even if its not flamible you dont want to coat your furnace with poly or something, or have it blown around the rest of the house. Second if spraying outdoors make sure its not windy, or that the wind will blow away from your neighbors car, house, baby, ect.

View PurpLev's profile


8536 posts in 3672 days

#7 posted 07-01-2010 08:36 PM

Thanks Dave, good call on the furnace intake – definitely don’t want the house to smell like a finishing room :) (most of the time)

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Knothead62's profile


2584 posts in 2985 days

#8 posted 07-01-2010 09:40 PM

My wife saw a suggestion on a TV show recently that used a box fan with a furnace filter over the intake side. I used a bungee cord to hold one in place. Surprising how much dust it picks up!

View PurpLev's profile


8536 posts in 3672 days

#9 posted 07-01-2010 09:47 PM

yup knothead62 – thats exactly what I’ve got :)

the trick with those though is placement – they have to be placed in front and in the direction the debris is flying to, as it won’t pick up things too far away.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Ger21's profile


1074 posts in 3155 days

#10 posted 07-02-2010 04:23 AM

I spray in my garage. Be aware that overspray gets everywhere. It’s actually easier to clean up if everything is dusty first, as the overspray settles on the dust, and won’t stick.

Usually I spray with the doors closed, to keep the wind from blowing anything into the finished parts. After I finish spraying, I open up the big door for a minute to let the overspray dissipate.

-- Gerry,

View lew's profile


12102 posts in 3779 days

#11 posted 07-02-2010 04:52 AM


To help reduce the amount of overspray that settles on everything, I make a “spray booth” out of plastic drop cloths. Tack it to the ceiling joist in the basement, sealing off the area serviced by the window fan. I also saw, some place, a fellow used shower curtains, curtain rings and pipes to make the same thing and then he could push the curtains out of the way when not spraying.


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View PurpLev's profile


8536 posts in 3672 days

#12 posted 07-02-2010 05:18 AM

Les – thats exactly what I setup – with tarp, and curtain rings so that I can easily rearrange it, or completely take it off.

Thanks for the ideas, makes me think I am not too far off from a reasonable setup, and still can always revert to the garage if all else fails. just keep the door almost shut with just the box fan taking out the air/overspray.

I think I’m ready to spray :)

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

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