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Shop Information

Workers are exposed to many harmful substances in autobody shops. To minimize these exposures, shops should have a plan for protecting workers, including engineering controls, such as booths, and specialized equipment, such as ventilated sanders. Workers should be trained and encouraged to use the equipment!

Shops in Yale studies

Yale has been conducting research at autobody shops for over ten years. Read more about what the shops in Yale studies were like and how your shop compares...

Booths provide the best ventilation for painting.


Paint spray booths are a critical part of every autobody shop. They draw the paints, solvents and other chemicals away from the painter, protect other workers in the shop, and provide a good clean environment for the paint job. Read more about…

  • different booth types
  • things to remember when using a booth
  • results from Yale studies on booth ventilation and exposures


Shop ventilation is very important in protecting workers from harmful exposures. Read more about different methods of ventilation...

Vacuum sanders can greatly decrease dust in the shop.


Sometimes there are less harmful products or practices which can be used instead of the toxic ones. Read more about suggested substitutions...

Specialized Products

Several products specialized for the autobody industry can be used to cut down on harmful exposures for workers.

  • ventilated sanders can decrease dust 90%
  • laser gun training tools help decrease overspray
  • computer simulators are used to train painters without paint
  • barrier creams can protect skin

Read more about these products...

Health and Safety Program

Every autobody shop should have a plan or program for the health and safety of its employees. Some parts of this program are required by OSHA, such as the Hazard Communication and Respiratory Protection Programs. The Manager Tools section of this website will guide you in preparing these programs for your shop. There are also other methods to help you protect your workers, such as reminder posters, workplace testing, and work practice feedback.

The chemical health hazards in autobody shops are described in the Worker Information section. Hazards are listed by task along with PPE, controls and work practices recommended for each task.

Many websites have good information on general health and safety programs for autobody shops. See recommendations…