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General Chat Thread, Are Laser printers harmful? in General; Originally Posted by NickJones Okay, similar to this... In a bid to save costs, it has been suggested to me ...
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    Joanne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NickJones View Post
    Okay, similar to this... In a bid to save costs, it has been suggested to me that I start emptying waste toner bottles myself rather than sending them back to manufacturer and buying new ones. What are people's thoughts on this?
    I've done it... go outside with a bin and a mask and away i did go!! If you wear work scruffs then you'll be fine. If not then wear an apron too. Only takes a couple of minutes.

    I'm sure there is something wrong about it... chemicals and environment and all.... but saves a few quid... which is of course... more important to the school :P

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    To be honest, i've seen no concrete proof that laser's cause any long term effects. Saying that, there are studies being done on it and if they prove to be hazardous then fair enough.

    Although I do object against big laser printers... lifted one up once (partly my fault due to the posture I took to lift it) and half way onto the table *RIIIPP*... there goes the back of my favorite trousers. Had to wear my hoody around my waist all day. My GF did not like me that night

    The other techy laughed

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    Yeah, the HP Colour Laser 5500 here in technology took a bit of man handling. Took 4 of us to lug it around.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NickJones View Post
    Okay, similar to this... In a bid to save costs, it has been suggested to me that I start emptying waste toner bottles myself rather than sending them back to manufacturer and buying new ones. What are people's thoughts on this?

    Anything to do with Laser or Photocopier toners seems to result in people looking like they've been down a coal mine.

    I'd want the school to provide protective clothing before I started on it. I have to comply with a smart dress code here - I would not want to get Toner over my clothes.

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    stratisphere's Avatar
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    We did it for a while. It is messy... but nothing serious as long as your careful.

    The problem we found is with most lasers, they will only survive 2-4 refills. Even if you empty the waste tank. After that the actual parts in the tank start to go cr*py and print quality goes down fast. Worst case scenario, we had one printer die totally due to part's failing.

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    As an absolute - laser printers are harmful to techs -mainly due to skin damage due to touching hot parts and possible long term lung defects due to inhalation of toner dust.

    (don't think Ozone has any effect but you never know!)

    As a risk assesment, I keep my hands off the hot parts and keep my mouth shut when changing toner carts.

    Re-filling carts is an unnecessary risk AFAIC and I wouldn't do it.

    regards

    Simon

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    Thinking about this logically.. if you're going to start messing with the toner you want to be in a well ventilated room (preferably outside) and in an area where there are no children.

    Toner is a very fine dust and as such comes under the usual header of a hazard for anyone with asthma, etc... Common sense really, you don't want to be breathing it in, you don't want it coating everything and you don't want it around the kids.

    Take MDF dust for example... Who knew but that stuff comes under carcinogenic because it's so fine and as such doesn't get expelled from the lungs once breathed in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by contink View Post
    At a guess the possible (and I emphasise that word "possible") vectors for ill health would be:
    - size of the toner in relation to inhalation
    - ozone output from printing process
    - having one dropped on you by Synack
    crikey! i think the atmosphere in beijing would do more damage than a toner!!!

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    Of course they are! Why last night my Laser Printer tried to stab me in my sleep and my wireless access point laced all the food in the house with poison! Harmful things these technological devices I tell ye!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pottsey View Post
    “is this the next on the list of harmful things in ICT as the wirless access point waves thing has died down a bit?”
    Accept printers really are harmful it’s not a fad/unproven like wireless.

    You must wear gloves when changing toner cartridges and not get toner on the skin if you do wash your hands right away. All techs are meant to be given a stock of medical gloves. You’re in your rights to refuse changing ink without gloves.

    You’re not meant to sit xxx distance near a laserprinter or photocopier and you must have good air ventilation. Saying that it takes something like 8 hours of none stop printings on modem laseprinters to get the air at toxic levels without ventilation. Photocopyers a lot less time.

    If you can small the Ozon which is a sweat kind of smell the levels are too high and harmful.

    The laser on the photo copier damage the eye and shouldn’t be looked at, you should never photocopy with the lid open. Apart from the Health reasons the lid open user's something like x10 more link.

    Without good ventilation you will get lung damage over time if the laserprinter and photocopier get heavy use. The toner is toxic as well as it seeps into the skin.

    Where did you get this information from?

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    Various place’s, the last one was a Health and safety Workshop a few months back. I was told about the gloves and toner a few years back a well as at the workshop.

    HS put up these around my office
    http://www.lhc.org.uk/members/pubs/factsht/76fact.pdf which explains the dangers of Printers and photocopys

    "3.Siting and ventilation – ventilation is crucial! Ensure that the area in which the machine is sited has a complete change of air every hour, that the exhaust vent is kept free of obstruction, and that no-one is situated next to the exhaust vent of the machine.Where possible no-one should work in the same room as a copier and where this is not possible no-one should be within 3m of the machine.Machines should not be sited in clusters or in rooms of total volume less than 25 cubic metres."

    I used that one to get the photocopy moved away from me. That and the noise one as I couldnt make phonecalls.

  12. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by pottsey
    The laser on the photo copier damage the eye and shouldn’t be looked at, you should never photocopy with the lid open. Apart from the Health reasons the lid open user's something like x10 more link.
    Ok the point about more toner is correct as it then covers the page in black toner if the lid is left up so its a waste, and it increases jamming. But the laser, if they are correct, which looks a bit suss to me as they should know a copier uses Toner not Ink!!, is pants. The laser unit in a copier is hidden deep inside it, as it is in a laser printer, so its well away from eyes and hands. I know as I've had one out before and the only way you could laser your eyes with it was to have quite a few panels off that shouldn't be off in normal daily use and various safety catches on doors wedged / jammed to make it think they were still on. If you are doing that you should take adequate precautions such as safety glasses designed for filtering out the laser radiation, gloves etc.

    I think they are getting at the light that is used for the scanning, and this light is no more harmful than a normal flurecent light fitting that you may have in your kitchen at home or the IT room at work.

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    .. and just to update this little nugget..

    Fraunhofer boffins: Laser printers safe after all ? The Register

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