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Are Laser Printers a Health Hazard?

Discussion in 'Printers' started by Ice Tea, Oct 2, 2017.

  1. Ice Tea

    Mobster

    Joined: Nov 1, 2004

    Posts: 3,382

    I've been reading reviews to try and get an idea of what Laser Printer to buy to replace our old inkjet and i keep coming across user comments that laser printers are a health hazard but no other info other than they wouldn't buy one?

    :eek:
     
  2. snips86x

    Capodecina

    Joined: Nov 14, 2012

    Posts: 16,711

    Location: Close to Swindon, but not Swindon

    The only thing you should really be careful of is the toner dust. If you don't spill it, you're fine :)
     
  3. rotor

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Sep 18, 2012

    Posts: 2,165

    What sites are you reading?! =D

    That's certainly news to me. I mean if you rip one to pieces and shine the laser (it's usually not an actual laser) in your eyes, then maybe...?
     
  4. CaptainCrash

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Sep 17, 2008

    Posts: 1,715

    Old laser printers and photocopiers produced a fair amount of toxic ozone and the general advice was to use them in well-ventilated environments, so this might be the reason for any lingering perception of them being a health hazard. AFAIK modern equipment produces minimal amounts so it's no longer a significant concern.

    There is also some evidence to suggest that inhaling large quantities of toner dust *may* cause health issues, so I'd suggest not doing this to be on the safe side.

    Other than that, I don't think you have much to worry about - it might however be worth mentioning that laser printers generate very high internal voltages to create the electrostatic charges needed to make the toner adhere to the paper, so you'll probably want to avoid throwing water over them or messing about with the innards unless you know exactly what you're doing.
     
  5. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 13, 2006

    Posts: 68,541

    AFAIK only potential health issue is if you are long term in close proximity in poor ventilation. Although its probably being overly cautious IMO it isn't a good idea for instance to have one right next to someone's desk (as in they are inches from it) at work if its pumping out 100s of pages a day, etc.

    Not just older ones - I've a relatively recent cheapy one that definitely produces some ozone - not a huge amount but definitely some.
     
  6. Ice Tea

    Mobster

    Joined: Nov 1, 2004

    Posts: 3,382

  7. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 13, 2006

    Posts: 68,541

    If you just have say one setup in a home office maybe printing off half a dozen pages a day tops I suspect it is going to be insignificant compared to just a short walk along a busy street, etc.
     
  8. Ice Tea

    Mobster

    Joined: Nov 1, 2004

    Posts: 3,382

    [​IMG]

    " Honey , i'm ready to print out those emails you wanted."

    :D
     
  9. EsaT

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Jun 6, 2008

    Posts: 8,058

    Location: Finland

    What about stress caused by all those inkjets with drying ink/clogged nozzles when user would need to actually print something?
    That isn't healthy either.
     
  10. lude1962

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Feb 27, 2014

    Posts: 2,152

    You should be more worried about inhaling toner, the microparticulates will clog up your lungs.
     
  11. rotor

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Sep 18, 2012

    Posts: 2,165

    Hahaha this thread is so awesome!!
     
  12. hondo

    Hitman

    Joined: Feb 26, 2011

    Posts: 757

    Location: Miles South of OCUK


    LMAO

    Mine occasionally smells of ozone too, similar to a photo copier
     
  13. PamelaAnthony

    Associate

    Joined: Feb 20, 2018

    Posts: 7

    Location: United States

    Laser printers use toner as part of the printing process. The toner is an extremely fine powder, which in itself is not classed as a substance hazardous to health, but any dust in substantial concentration is, as it may cause respiratory tract irritation resulting in coughing and sneezing....
     
  14. DarrenM343

    Mobster

    Joined: Oct 19, 2008

    Posts: 4,999

    Company I worked with had the issue raised during a H&S inspection that the laser printer must not be in an unventilated small room. Of course that's with 100+ people sharing it. Walking in there when the printer was under heavy use was not a pleasant experience.
     
  15. HippoTank

    Associate

    Joined: Apr 27, 2018

    Posts: 33

    I bought a small laser printer in 2007 (hp 1020) and have only had to change the toner once I think. And I'm still alive :D
     
  16. Silicon Si

    Gangster

    Joined: Apr 30, 2014

    Posts: 180

    Location: The Matrix

    For normal home use a laser printer will be fine, its just when they are in constant use in large offices,