How to Protect Your Office Workers From the Harmful Effects of Laser Printers

You’d hardly associate laser printers with health issues. However, workers in industries that rely on heavy-duty printing may be at risk due to prolonged exposure to printing particles. Read on to learn more.

Why Are Laser Printers Dangerous?

At a glance, your laser printer seems perfectly harmless. There are no pointy or otherwise menacing parts that can lead to injuries and no bright lights that cause eye strain.

And you’re right; the risk of laser printers isn’t visible to the naked eye. It comes from nanoparticles released during the printing process. More specifically, toner fumes created when ink is heated up can bring about several genetic and metabolic changes with prolonged exposure. These changes can manifest themselves through neurological and cardiovascular problems, among other things.

To make matters worse, some people are particularly sensitive to the fumes. Pregnant women, most notably, should avoid extended exposure because they may suffer irreversible gene mutation. Since genes are passed onto children, they risk the well-being of their newborn.

How Do You Make Laser Printers Safer?

Although laser printers can be harmful, this doesn’t mean you should remove them from your office. There are two ways to continue to use them while mitigating the risks:

Provide High-Quality Ventilation

Ventilation is the best ally in your combat against laser printer fumes. Your ventilation should have an appropriate exhaust system that considers the size of your office and the position of your employees. As a general rule of thumb, the minimum exhaust rate for your AC system should be 0.5 cubic feet per minute per square foot of floor space or 2.5 liters per second per square meter of floor space.

Additionally, be sure the exhaust emissions travel away from your personnel and workstation. You can put printers in areas with more ventilation or closer to the vent, or where people spend less of their overall time, such as hallways.

Lastly, don’t forget to install a filter into the ventilation system to lower ozone emissions. Otherwise, you may pollute the air around the building with the harmful gases.

Replace Toner Cartridges Properly

Toner is dangerous in all forms, not just as a gas. Spills can irritate the skin and eyes or cause even more severe health issues.

That’s why you should be extra careful when replacing your cartridges. Only let persons with a healthy respiratory system perform the task. Better still, contact your laser printer manufacturer to see if they can send a professional to install a new cartridge. This service is typically included in lease agreements.

Looking to Reduce Printer-Related Hazards? Invest in High-Quality Equipment

Nanoparticles aren’t the only threat to your office team. Another risk stems from using low-quality equipment that causes paper jams and other problems. If your employees aren’t tech-savvy, they may injure themselves when repairing and replacing the components. The most reliable solution is to purchase parts that are less prone to malfunctions.

Copylite offers just that. We have a wide variety of toner cartridges and other laser printer accessories to make your device more functional and reliable. Whether you choose our OEM or aftermarket products, you won’t have to worry about premature breakdowns and repairs. Take a closer look at our offer right here.