Since 1996, the EPA’s regulations for non-road diesel engines emissions have been phased in through four progressively more stringent tiers. Different tiers went into effect at different dates for different engines, but since 2015, all new non-road diesel engines, including stationary engines, but comply with the EPA’s Tier IV (Final) standard.
Today’s Tier IV compliant diesel engines are far more complex, efficient, and expensive than their unregulated ancestors from the early 1990’s.
How does Tier 4 compare with the previous generation (Tier III)?
For Tier III, the standard focused on reducing NOx (nitrous oxides) and NMHC (all hydrocarbons except methane) emissions to levels on par with federal requirements for on-road diesel engines. Since these non-road emissions were unregulated prior to the Tier Emissions Standards, we have no basis for a hard comparison, but the EPA estimates that since 2010, Tier III has been reducing NOx emissions by about 1 million tons per year. This is the amount of NOx produced annually by about 35 million cars.
Conspicuously absent from Tier III was any limit on PM (particulate matter), although the Tier II limit still applied to Tier III motors.
By guest blogger and former shipyard welder David H.
How important is it to remove welding smoke from the work area? Ask a welder, or ask someone who has to work in the vicinity of welders working in enclosed or semi-enclosed areas.
I recall some years ago working on a Navy general cargo ship. The ship was was undergoing extensive renovations and the hold of the had four or five levels. My employer, a small repair yard in San Francisco, unfortunately did not take air quality in the work area seriously. There were more than 20 of us working in the hold, and some number of us were welders. From a distance you could see where the work was being done — smoke and fumes drifting up out of the hold! In those days, safety requirements weren’t always top of mind. OSHA and other regulations aside, taking care of your workers by providing a safe work environment is simply the right thing to do. Without them your business can never be profitable. By failing to provide a safe workplace, you may lose workers due to health issues and employee turnover or face consequences for not complying with standards.
“respirators are hot and uncomfortable, and many welders simply refuse to use them”
Fume Removal Options
There are a number of ways to deal with welding fume issues. One approach is the use of respirators. I often wore one, but they are hot and uncomfortable, and many welders simply refuse to use them. They can be remarkably expensive, over the long haul, given that filters must be replaced daily. If the mask is a disposable type, the entire mask must be replaced daily.
Portable Smoke Extractors
Portable smoke extractors – sometimes referred to as smoke eaters – are a far better solution. They extract a higher percentage of the fumes than respirator masks and protect everyone in the work area, not just the welders. They can be moved around the job site and from one job site to another, but can also be set up at permanent work stations. These machines can help make sure that your work space is a place where people can get their work done safely. Your employees will thank you.
To view the smoke extractors Red-D-Arc offers for rent head over to our welding fume extractor rental page.
We also have used smoke extractors for sale on our used equipment page.
Guest blogger David J. shares his experience as a shipyard welder for the U.S. Navy.
Need to remove or move a large object welded onto the deck of a ship? Arc gouging equipment can really help speed up the process. I worked as a welder in the shipbuilding/ship repair industry, and especially ship repair, in the San Francisco Bay Area for many years. One particular day I was given the task of finishing up the removal of a pair of bollards that had been mounted on the deck — the navy wanted them moved a few feet forward. Someone else had done the initial cutting, but a rectangular shaped weld measuring about six by three feet, where the bollards had been joined to the deck, remained. This weld was perhaps half an inch wide and protruded above the deck by nearly half an inch. That’s 18 feet of steel nearly half an inch square.
This steel could have been ground flush with the deck, but the time involved using a grinder would have greatly increased the time and cost of the task. With a hand arc gouging torch, see the K4000 manual gouging torch, I made much quicker work of the job. Properly handling the gouging torch, the welder can leave the surface such that the grinder who follows him need only do the lightest touch-up. For bigger jobs and for outfits that routinely have gouging operations, the N6000 metal removal system is recommended for both increased speed and accuracy.