Are you considering using dry ice in your home for cleaning, food preservation, or even as a decoration for the holidays? Even though dry ice can be useful around your home at various times throughout the year, it’s extremely cold and can burn your skin if you don’t take proper safety precautions before handling it. Here are seven tips so you can protect yourself and use dry ice safely around your home.
Know the Dangers
Dry ice can be particularly dangerous if you don’t know the risks associated with not only the dry ice, but also the vapors around it. Since dry ice is way below freezing, at about -109 F, touching it with your bare hands can cause frostbite or other serious injuries. If you are using dry ice in an unventilated area, the carbon dioxide that is produced as it sublimates can also be toxic.
Wear Long Clothing
The best protection against accidental exposure to dry ice is to cover up! Gloves and goggles should be worn and a long-sleeved shirt, long pants, and close-toed shoes will help protect your skin from splashes.
Never use your bare hands to handle dry ice! Tongs are a great tool to use, especially if they have serrated edges. If you do not have a pair of tongs around your home, you can use an oven mitt or a towel while handling the dry ice.
Use a Chisel
Never try to break larger pieces apart by using your hands or stepping on it, instead, use a chisel and a mallet by setting your chisel to the desired point and tapping lightly with the mallet. Always wear eye protection when chiseling because chips of dry ice can fly into your eyes.
Use in a Well-Ventilated Area
Since dry ice sublimates instead of melts, carbon dioxide vapors coming off of the dry ice can build up in an area and cause dizziness, headache, even suffocation or loss of consciousness. Using your dry ice either outside or in an area with good air circulation will prevent any negative side-effects.
Don’t use an Airtight Container
While storing your dry ice in a cooler can preserve it until you’re ready to use it, storing dry ice in an airtight cooler can lead to an explosion. Make sure if you’re going to store your dry ice that it’s in a styrofoam container.
Melt the Ice When You’re Done
If you have extra dry ice, you can speed up the sublimation process by pouring warm water over it until it’s completely gone. Don’t dump dry ice down a drain or throw it away, as it can damage your pipes or cause a carbon dioxide buildup in your home. It is especially important to never leave children unattended around dry ice.
Dry Ice Cleaning with Dry Ice Corp
Dry Ice Corp is the largest regional supplier of dry ice and related products in the Northeastern United States. Our dry ice is fresh and delivered right to your doorstep. We are happy to help you determine the best way to ship your goods, whether you have a huge amount of cookies or a single pie, and help you select the perfect amount of dry ice for the job. Give us a call at (201) 767-3200 or contact us online for a quote. To connect with us online, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, and Twitter.