Laminators are perfect for office, school and home use. These machines help to protect documents and extend their longevity. When laminated, colourful printouts stay bright and contrasting shades stay truer for longer than documents that haven’t been laminated. Since the laminator uses heat to bond the plastic material to paper, it’s important to take care to operate it safely. Here are some tips on how to do exactly that.
Wear Appropriate Clothing
Hot rollers pull the lamination material through the machine during operation. Unfortunately, anything that’s too close to the rollers can unintentionally get dragged in as well. For example, loose clothing, long hair and dangling jewellery can become caught in the rollers while it’s pulling laminated material through the machine. When this happens, severe burns and injuries can occur. For this reason, it’s important to roll up long sleeves or wear short-sleeve shirts or other appropriate clothing before you turn on the machine. You should also tie up long hair and remove jewellery such as long chains and bracelets.
Store Your Machine in a Cabinet or Specified Area
Store your laminator in a locked storage cabinet when it’s not in use. This helps keep users who are not aware of the safety practices from tampering with the machine. If your machine is small, a cabinet should be sufficient. If your machine is of the industrial kind, you’ll need to set up a large enough area specifically for the laminating process. This will also require fire extinguishers, sufficient power outlets and safe storage for laminating supplies. Check that your production environment complies with all regulations. To verify that your setting is adequate, speak with industry experts beforehand.
Precautions to Take When Operating Your Machine
To operate your machine safely, you should take the following precautions:
- Remove items that shouldn’t be laminated from the input shelves. The only items that should be on the input shelves are the lamination film and the materials that are to be laminated.
- Laminate within the maximum size limits for lamination materials. Every laminator model is different, so be sure to review your user manual for size limitations.
- Keep pets and children away from the machine when it’s in use.
- Take away all beverages and other liquids you find on the table where the laminating machine sits. If a spill has already occurred, turn off the machine and unplug it. The same holds true if you smell smoke or any unusual odour coming from the machine.
- Cover moving parts with machine safety guards if you have an industrial grade-laminating machine. Do everything you can to reduce accidents.
- Avoid placing foreign objects in the machine or between the rollers. Poking with pens, scissors or letter openers to remove jams can ruin the equipment and lead to costly repairs.
- Wait at least 30 minutes after a jam to allow time for the machine to cool down. Hot parts can cause serious burns. If the jam is hidden where you can’t see or locate the problem, or if the machine remains too hot to touch, don’t risk injury. Call a professional to analyse the situation and fix the jam safely.