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Handle With Care: Tips for Magnet Safety

Tip for magnet safetyMagnets might appear small and shiny, but don’t under estimate their strength.  Just like most things there are some common sense guidelines for handling magnets.  These tips for magnet safety can help prevent personal injury and property damage.

  • Wear gloves and take care when handling magnets.  Pinching, snapping or crushing can easily occur when a finger is caught between two attracting magnets. Many of our magnets come with plastic spacers just for this reason.
  • Wear protective eye wear.  Magnets are very brittle and pieces can easily chip or shatter if they accidentally snap together, sending shards flying.
  • Magnets are not toys.  Do not give to children to play with.
  • Do not swallow magnets. They can do severe damage to internal organs, resulting in surgery or death.
  • Magnets can interfere with pacemakers and other medical devices such as magnetic ports.  Avoid wearing badge magnets, decorative magnetic clips or similar items near the device.
  • Many magnets are coated with nickel to prevent corrosion.  People with nickel allergies should avoid prolonged handling of these magnets.
  • Always properly store and label industrial magnets.  Their extreme strength poses an added risk to users who may be unaware of the magnet’s capabilities.
  • Always store magnets in “Off” position or with shields, if available.
  • Take care in placing electronics, such a cell phones, near magnets to avoid damage.  Magnets can alter or erase the important information stored on older electronics including computer diskettes, audio/video cassettes, credit cards or other magnetically stored media and electronic equipment.
  • Magnets affect compasses and navigational equipment. For this reason, we do not recommend shipping most magnets by air – without being properly packed and shielded strong magnets are classified as dangerous good for air transportation.  Refer to our shipping magnets page for additional information.

While many of magnets with low pull strength may not pose the same danger that very strong rare earth magnets do, it’s always a good idea to treat magnets with respect.  Safety first!

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