Business Overview

When they’re exposed to harsh conditions, paint and other coatings frequently wear out before the materials they cover. Before reapplying a new paint or coating, all old paint must be removed. This is commonly done by sandblasting it off of the surface to be painted.

Sandblasting businesses efficiently remove paints and coatings from a variety of durable materials, including metal, brick and wood. Some businesses also etch designs into these materials, usually to create signs or gravestone markers.

The term “sandblasting” is still widely used, but it’s becoming slightly archaic. While sand has historically been used, most businesses today use other abrasive substrates. To reflect this shift, sandblasting is sometimes now referred to as “abrasive blasting.”

Who is this business right for?

Anyone who enjoys manual labor and appreciates seeing the effect of their hard work may enjoy running a sandblasting business. Sandblasting equipment can be heavy, and the work requires a certain amount of physical strength. There’s the immediate payoff of seeing paint come off whatever object is being sandblasted, though.

This is a business that can be started part-time, and many business owners continue to operate part-time while working another job. It’s easy to schedule sandblasting appointments around other obligations.

What happens during a typical day at a sandblasting business?

A typical sandblasting begins with the business owner looking over the object that’s being sandblasted and confirming with the customer what work is to be done. This may be done at the sandblasting business’ or the customer’s location.

Once everything is confirmed, the business owner will normally:

  1. Don their safety gear.
  2. Set up the sandblasting equipment.
  3. Complete the actual sandblasting.
  4. Clean up the substrates that were used.

Throughout the entire process, business owners must be attentive to safety so that no one is injured or inhales the substrates. OHSA has some safety-related guidelines.

What is the target market?

The target market for a sandblasting business is determined by the precise services the business offers. Most businesses target commercial customers, but some also serve individuals (e.g. homeowners, vehicle owners or individuals planning funerals).

How does a sandblasting business make money?

There are many sandblasting services that a business might specialize in. Some types of work that businesses charge for include:

  • Large commercial/industrial sandblasting (e.g. metal girders, airplanes, helicopters)
  • Smaller commercial/industrial sandblasting (e.g. buildings, cars, motorcycles)
  • Sandblasting signs (usually made from wood with a stencil)
  • Sandblasting gravestones (sometimes after a blank stone has been installed)

What is the growth potential for a sandblasting business?

A sandblasting business can remain a part-time operation run by a single business owner, or it can grow to be a large company. For example, Dryden Monument Company is a small gravestone company that also provides sandblasting services. Secondary Services is a larger sandblasting company that has a sizable facility.