How to Use an Infrared Paint Stripper

Remove Varnish From Boats

Heat has been used for many years to strip paint. Infrared heat allows you to work faster than a standard heat gun, without working any harder. Infrared heat stripping is quick and easy with Speedheater™ products. These innovative paint strippers work by gently heating paint to the point at which it can be safely removed. Speedheater™ products draw the natural wood resins back to the wood’s surface, effectively rejuvenating it.

Speedheater™ Products Are Safe and Easy to Use

Heat guns operating at 800-1100F degrees heat paint to these levels. Lead paint gives off invisible fumes when heated around 900F degrees. Once lead paint turns to fumes, special organic vapor face masks must be worn to protect workers. In addition, using blowing heat on painted surfaces greatly increases the risk of often-undetected fire behind the wood surface being stripped. Infrared rays heat paint in a different way and do not heat whatever is behind the wood. This minimizes the risk of fire.

Using Speedheater™ Paint Strippers

Speedheater™ products are incredibly easy to use. Once turned on and warmed up, the Speedheater™ can be held just a few inches from the paint. The paint will begin to bubble and smoke. The Speedheater™ should then be removed, and the paint simply scraped away. A pull scraper works best for removing paint, as it will not mar the wood.

The Speedheater™ Cobra is small enough to be used with just one hand. This allows you to reach more areas and hold a scraper in your other hand while working. The original Speedheater™ is larger and works well on bigger areas such as windows, doors and siding.

It’s a good idea to work in small sections until all of the paint is removed. Reheating sections that have just been heated can cause the wood to burn. You will need to work quickly so that you do not scorch the wood or paint. It only takes two to three seconds to heat paint with the Speedheater™ Cobra and twenty to thirty seconds with the original Speedheater™.

When removing paint from pieces that are not attached to a building or other object, it’s a good idea to clamp them down. This ensures that your piece won’t move around while you’re working on it.

Whenever you stop working with your Speedheater™, it’s important to set it down with the heating element facing up. This will prevent it from burning the surface it’s placed on.

Infrared Heat Stripping with Speedheater™ Products

Speedheater™ products remove paint, varnish and adhesives quickly and easily. Paint is removed in large pieces that can be easily disposed of. Please contact us for more information about Speedheater™ products.

Infrared Paint Removal: Why Outsource When You Can DIY?

If you want a good-looking, long-lasting new paint job on the outside of your home, your woodwork or even furniture, stripping off all the old paint is a must. But it is the most time-consuming and painful portion of painting. In fact, many people skip the stripping and just paint over old, uneven paint, or hire someone else to do it for them. But what if you had a way to remove paint that was clean, easy, and non-toxic?

Most paint stripping systems have a downside. Abrasive methods like power sanding and shaving are effective on flat siding, if you are skilled and can handle holding them vertically for hours. But they spread lots of dust, which can be laden with lead. High heat stripping methods have a high risk of fire. Chemical strippers can be toxic and give off horrible fumes. Most environmentally-friendly chemical strippers are slower and may take many applications.

Removing paint with infrared heat, using the Speedheater™ Standard or Cobra, is the best alternative for paint stripping! It’s quick, since it only takes 20-30 seconds of infrared exposure to soften paint. The Speedheater™ infrared rays soften paint by heating it to 400° – 600° F. Most heat guns heat paint to over 1000°F! Lead begins to vaporize into toxic gas above 1100°F. When the Speedheater™ is used properly, no lead gas is emitted, the risk of fire is low, and minimal lead dust is created.

DIYers who are thinking of hiring someone for their paint stripping because of lead paint concerns can easily use Speedheater™ themselves. When the paint is soft and scraped, lead dust is not generated. The paint scrapings clump together and drop onto a tarp, which makes clean up much easier, faster and safer!

For DIYers with large areas to strip, adding the Speedheater™ Arm makes paint stripping even faster! The arm holds the Speedheater™ Standard, so that you can heat one area ahead of you while scraping the already-heated area. How’s that for efficient use of a tool?

The Speedheater™ System is the perfect set-up for a DIYer who wants to tackle a large painting project but has been putting it off because of the hassle of paint stripping.


Environmentally Friendly Paint Removers

Years ago, the main way to remove paint was by using a fast-working chemical stripper called methylene chloride, which gave off harsh fumes and had a high VOC (volatile organic compounds) content. This compound could only be used in a properly-ventilated area because of its toxicity. In fact, the active ingredients in most common paint removers are organic solvents which may damage the skin, eyes, respiratory tract, nervous system, and internal organs. Also, liquid paint and varnish removers are among the most toxic products used in homes!

Luckily, times have changed and now we have several options for more safely removing old paint from wood surfaces. Chemical strippers using safer ingredients have been on the market for more than 15 years. Thanks to growing interest in “green building,” environmentally-friendly paint removal products are more popular than ever. Many of them are non-caustic gels, and some are even made from soybean or citrus. While liquid strippers eliminate dust, they still leave messy gel and water with paint waste in it. These are hard to contain and often contaminate surrounding areas.

Dry scraping, sanding, and even shaving loose paint are common, modern methods of paint removal, especially on building exteriors. These methods work faster than liquid paint removers, but huge amounts of paint dust and chips fly out beyond the work area and into the environment.

And then there are open torches and high heat guns. They soften the paint, make less dust, and don’t have chemicals to burn you, but they operate at 1000 degrees F, which can release toxic, lead fumes. Plus the extremely high blowing heat greatly increases the risk of fire on the surface or behind it. That’s why we recommend the Speedheater™ Infrared Paint Removal Systems, including our newest product, the Cobra. Speedheaters’ unique infrared rays bubble paint and varnish in as little as two seconds, yet don’t heat coatings high enough to create lead fumes.

Some of the environmentally-friendly benefits of using Speedheater™ Standard and Cobra are:

  • No environmentally hazardous chemicals
  • No contaminated waste water or gels soaking into the ground.
  • 75% less energy consumption than a heat gun.
  • No flying dust and chips.
  • No lead gas released.
  • Mildew, fungus, and algae in wood and on concrete are killed without chemicals.

The safest way to remove lead paint is with Speedheater™ Infrared Paint Removal Systems.



Eco-Strip Announces the Availability of the Speedheater™ Cobra

Speedheater Cobra

Eco-Strip, LLC announced this week the availability of Speedheater™ System’s newest product, the Speedheater™ Cobra. Using 20-year-tested infrared technology, the Speedheater™ Cobra strips paint, varnish and adhesives. Infrared heat stripping with Speedheater™ products has been proven to be quicker, easier and safer than other paint stripping methods.

Heat guns are commonly used to strip paint. However, the blowing heat emitted from a high heat gun is not easy to control. With the Cobra, paint temperatures can be controlled simply by adjusting the distance of the tool from the paint. The Speedheater™ Cobra softens paint and varnish in as little as one to three seconds. Yet it uses 75% less energy than a heat gun.

The Speedheater™ Cobra solves a number of issues associated with other paint stripping methods. There is absolutely no downtime between stripping applications and repainting. The Speedheater™ Cobra removes paint in soft, large pieces that are easily contained. This eliminates messy paint chips and airborne dust which can contaminate surrounding areas. It does not penetrate into the wood. The Speedheater™ Cobra is safe and efficient to use on windows, staircases, tight corners, furniture, boat details and carved wood.

“The Speedheater™ Cobra is a breakthrough in paint stripping technology.” said Catherine Brooks of Eco-Strip. “No other tool matches the Cobra in efficiency, dependability or comfort. We are pleased to offer this product to both professionals and DIYers.”

The Speedheater™ Cobra is fast. Only one, very quick heating application is necessary to completely remove paint. The Cobra can also be used to remove factory-applied paint off cabinets and cars, as well as difficult to remove adhesives such as epoxy and old window putty. The Cobra kills mold, fungus and algae on both wood and concrete.

The Speedheater™ Cobra is specially designed to be small, comfortable and efficient. The tool’s six short bulbs and compact head deliver highly-concentrated infrared rays. The entire tool weighs just 22oz. and has an adjustable Support Bar which can be used to angle the tool from 15 to 60 degrees. This reduces stress on the arm and wrist during use. The Support Bar can also be used to safely store the tool.

About Eco-Strip, LLC

Eco-Strip, LLC is the exclusive US distributor of the Speedheater™ System. The company strives to provide safe and efficient paint stripping products. They offer a variety of Speedheater™ products, painting accessories and tools. Speedheater™ products are available for sale through Eco-Strip’s website. The website also provides valuable information about the use of Speedheater™ products.
For more information about Eco-Strip, please visit

How to Paint a Room

A little paint can go a long way towards improving the look of your home. In fact, painting a room is one of the quickest and easiest ways to give it a makeover. While it’s not necessary to hire a professional, painting a room takes more than just paint and a brush. A little knowledge can help significantly improve the quality of your work.

Preparing Paneled Walls and Wood Trim

Fresh paint needs a porous surface to adhere to. If walls and wood aren’t properly prepared, new paint later can chip or peel. For the best results, existing paint should be removed. However, paint removal can be difficult if you are unsure how to do it.

Traditional paint stripping methods include the use of harsh chemicals or heat guns. These methods are time-consuming and can be hazardous if older layers of paint contain lead. If not properly removed, lead paint can release dust, fumes and chips that can be damaging to the health of you, your family, and your pets. The safest way to remove lead paint is with an infrared heat stripper like the Speedheater™. Speedheater™ gently warms both the paint and the wood so that paint can be removed quickly and easily with no fumes or dust.

If you don’t wish to completely remove old paint, you will need to scuff it up before painting over it. Dry sanding can release lead dust, so be sure to mist the paint with water before sanding it.

Once the surface is stripped and before painting, you will also need to patch up any holes in the walls and cover furniture and the floor with tarps. Remove all switch plates and outlet covers and place painters tape over the remaining sockets.

Paint Edges First

Use angled brushes to reach edges where your roller can’t. Angled brushes create nice, neat paint edges where two edges meet. Carefully applying the edging paint can save you hours on prep work and clean up. Apply a 2” -3” band of paint all around the top edge of the wall and where other colored surfaces meet it. Keep moving while painting, and always level out where the paint is too heavy. Keep a damp rag handy to clean off wet paint where you went over your straight band.

Painting Walls

After your edges are painted, wet your paint roller with water first then paint and use it to apply paint to the rest of the wall. Start by rolling a W or M shape then fill between the lines with vertical strokes. This ensures even coverage. Once the first coat is dry to the touch, you can paint again if necessary.

Eco-Strip offers safe and effective paint stripping with Speedheater™ products. Please contact us for more information.

Removing Paint From Old Windows

Speedheater in action!

Did you know that the Speedheater™ Infrared System is the best way to remove paint from old window frames? Our specialized window tools kit makes it possible to restore old windows without breaking the glass! By combining our specialized tools with the evenly distributed infrared heat from Speedheater, it’s incredibly easy to soften and remove both paint and glazing putty from your older windows.

The Challenge With Older Windows

The challenge with older windows is that too often, their original putty seals have hardened, cracked, and even disappeared. Additionally, the paint remaining on the window frames is peeling and messy. So how do you restore older windows to their former beauty? Strip it all away and put on fresh putty and paint.  Doing this task for dozens of windows in an older home can be daunting, but the Speedheater™ makes it go faster.

DIYers Become Pros

Traditionally, the rock hard putty that remains is chiseled off the fragile wood around the frame. No matter how careful and skilled someone is, the pressure needed to chip off the glazing can gouge the fragile wood and break the glass. More experienced window restorers use high heat guns and take great pride in keeping glass breakage to a miminum. The great thing about our Speedheater™ system is that with Speedheater’s infrared rays and customized window tools, even DIYers become pros at this delicate job.

The Speedheater™ Tools

How do our tools work on old windows? Use the Speedheater™ to soften the putty. Since the heat is low and evenly distributed, there is little risk of breaking the glass. Once the putty is softened, the Chisel Tool can be used with minimal pressure to smoothly strip away the putty. Next, our Putty Scraper is used to easily remove the remaining, softened putty from the glass surfaces and corners, thanks to its slanted and bevel-edged end. The glass can now be taken out gently without breaking. Using the bent end of the Putty Scraper, the bed under the glass can be thoroughly cleaned out. Finally, the Boomerang Scraper can be used to remove paint from the frame, after 60 seconds of heating the paint with the Speedheater™.

Now you’re ready to apply new glazing, new paint, and new weatherstripping, making your old windows new again!

Childhood Lead Exposure Can Have Lasting Effects In Adults

The Effects of Lead Exposure

Image Courtesy of EPA

Lead exposure has been proven to affect a child’s test scores, memory, learning ability and fine motor skills. Lead exposure has also been linked to behavioral issues in children such as hyperactivity and aggression.  In adults, chronic lead exposure can cause high blood pressure, joint pain as well as memory and concentration issues.

While scientists have already established that lead exposure during childhood harms the developing brain and nervous system, recent studies indicate that it could have long-lasting effects on adult brain function and social mobility. Neurological impacts can occur even with very low blood levels. Another lesser known fact is that lead poisoning can also cause sexual dysfunction in adults.

Where is Lead Found?

Lead is commonly found in old, peeling paint, contaminated soil and water that has passed through lead pipes. Millions of homes across the U.S. still contain lead paint. This paint continues to be the main source of lead exposure.

Safe, Easy Removal of Lead Paint

Many new architects don’t know how to handle historic restorations or about the potential hazards of lead poisoning. Older paint must be removed in such a way that it does not release toxic lead dust or fumes into the air.

Old lead paint is most dangerous when it is peeling, chipping or flaking. In older homes that have recently been painted, lead paint is probably hiding under one or more layers of paint. Simply painting over it does not protect you from danger. The older paint will still peel, causing all layers above it to peel and flake as well.

Many traditional methods of paint removal leave lead dust or chips in and around buildings. Dry sanding, scraping and using heat guns to remove paint release lead dust, fumes and chips into the environment. The safest way to remove lead paint is with Speedheater™ Infrared Paint Remover. Speedheater™ uses infrared rays to warm paint and wood for easy stripping. This method does not create fumes or dust. Pieces are removed in large sections, making cleanup a breeze!

For more information about safe removal of lead paint, please contact Eco-Strip.

Window Restoration Using Speedheater™ And Window Tools

Are You Frustrated With Your Old Windows But Afraid To Fix Them? 
Your old windows are drafty, but you already know that. Over the course of time, the original putty seals have cracked due to temperature fluctuations and in some cases even disappeared this creating a draft that can drive up your heating and cooling bill. To compound matters, the paint on your windows are badly weathered and peeling which is an eye sore. So what is a homeowner to do?  It is time to restore your old windows and give them a makeover.
Accomplishing this task for dozens of windows can be daunting task, but using the Speedheater™ and it’s toolkit makes it go cleaner and faster.  No other tool or method removes paint as effectively. No matter how careful and skilled someone is, the pressure needed to chip off the glazing can gouge the fragile wood and break the glass. The more experienced window restorers use heat guns and pride themselves in keeping those glass breakage. Our Speedheater™’s infrared rays and window tools help even DIYers become pros at this delicate job.
Using low heat, the Speedheater™ infrared rays soften the window’s hardened putty with little risk of breaking the glass.  Using minimal pressure, our Chisel smoothly strips the putty away as it rolls evenly down the wood.
The Speedheater™  putty scraper’s slanted and bevel-edged end easily removes the remaining, softened putty from the glass surfaces and corners. The glass can now be taken out gently without breaking. Next, the bent end of the Putty Scraper thoroughly cleans out the bed under the glass.
By applying new glazing material into the bed and around and over the glass pane, a tight seal is created.  Add good paint and some permanent weatherstripping and your drafts are history! Now, we’re talking energy-efficiency.
Speedheater™  tools and scrapers
The Speedheater™  tools and scrapers are developed to be used with a Speedheater™ to effectively remove paint without damaging the wood. The blades are easy to re-sharpen and will last much longer than ordinary scrapers and blades. Our window tools are unique and anyone can achieve professional results when doing a window restoration.

How to Safely Remove Varnish From Your Boat

Boats take a lot of work to keep in good condition. Over time, varnish on boats can begin to warp and wear away. When this happens, the varnish needs to be properly removed so that a fresh coat can be applied. When it comes to replacing varnish, it’s important to keep in mind that the better the preparation, the better the end result.

Boat varnish experiences accelerated wear and tear

Varnish is used for the preservation and protection of wood. Varnish on boats is more subject to damage from environmental factors such as oxidation and water penetration. Oxidation causes varnish to become brittle and more prone to cracking and crazing. Water penetration causes cracking and de-lamination. When varnish is allowed to stay constantly wet, it blisters and separates from wood.

There are many methods of removing varnish

There are several methods of removing varnish including sanding, scraping, chemical stripping, traditional heat stripping and infrared heat stripping. Sanding and scraping is time consuming, messy and can damage wood. Chemical strippers should only be used as a last resort. This is by far the messiest and most potentially hazardous method of varnish removal.

One popular method for removing varnish includes the use of a heat gun and hook scraper. The biggest problem with this method is that the high heat can easily burn wood and cause varnish to vaporize, releasing dangerous and toxic fumes. The unique design and lower operating temperature of infrared heat paint strippers makes them the ideal choice for stripping paint and varnish from boats.

Speedheater™ Infrared Paint Remover is the best method for safe and easy varnish removal

Speedheater™ is able to effectively soften all layers of varnish in less than thirty seconds. Since Speedheater™ works at such a low temperature, it is much safer for use on wood. The convex blades that come with the Speedheater™ system make it easy to use on the rounded shape of most boats.

Speedheater™ is the safer, cleaner and gentler solution for stripping varnish from boats. Speedheater™ products reduce the risk of fire, toxic fumes, toxic chemicals, lead exposure and damage to wood. After use, waste can quickly and easily be collected and disposed of.

For more information about Speedheater™ products, please contact Eco-Strip today.

Benefits of Speedheater Infrared Paint Remover

The Only Way To Remove Paint And Varnish

Speedheater is silent, saves time, is inexpensive to operate, and is gentle on the environment. Some of Speedheater’s benefits are outlined below.

  • No environmentally hazardous chemicals
  • Energy Efficient / Low operating temperature
  • Speedheater is silent
  • Gentle on wood
  • No messy dust to clean up
  • Prevents plumbic gasses from being released
  • Easy clean up
  • Paint immediately after paint removal
  • Neutralizes mildew and fungus
  • Low set-up cost
  • Softens paint and putty immediately
  • Fastest paint removal method
  • Scrape and heat at the same time
  • No other paint removal method is able to achieve clean bare wood after paint stripping.

Speedheater System was formed in 1985 with contract work on house exterior renovation as its primary activity. Since 1991, the company has worked on developing, manufacturing and selling technology for the removal of paint from wooden surfaces using infrared heat.

Speedheater System’s business concept is to provide the market, for both building professionals and “do-it-yourselves”, with products and expertise on paint stripping that are cost effective, easy to implement and environmentally friendly and which produce high-quality results. Many years of experience have given the company unique insights into the area, insights that have been turned into new products.

View Our Products