More and more environmentally friendly polyurea products are emerging all the time with a variety of colors and uses. They are durable and possess other amazing benefits. As far as the actual painting is concerned, using ‘green’ paint products that are environmentally friendly is no different than using the usual kind of paint. There are no special techniques or tools that will be required. All the differences are because of the ingredients of the paint itself.
Painting commercial buildings is now regulated by LEED which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. The U.S. Green Building Council now regulates the paint used by declaring specific parameters on the paint use. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) levels of latex paints must be fulfilled. Owners of buildings can get credits on their taxes for transforming their buildings into green structures.
When it comes to painting a residential dwelling there are no governing regulations except when it comes to the manufacturer of the paint itself. The levels of VOC is gradually becoming more and more strict which means that manufacturers of paint products are spending more and more effort to produce a wider variety of ‘green’ paint products.
Paints that have been around for years are wonderful but do give off a high volume of Volatile Organic Compounds. Most people spend large amounts of time indoors so the levels of pollution to the air you breathe indoors become extremely important to your health. The paint on the interior walls gives off vapors that are hugely responsible for polluting of the interior air supply. To help decrease this problem, using low VOC paints can be a way to clean up your interior air.
Because Air pollution causes problems with health, especially respiratory issues, choosing zero or low VOC eco friendly or green paints will do a lot to correct this situation. When it comes time to apply new paint to your interior walls, making the decision to use environmentally safe paint products will make a big difference in the air you breathe for years to come. Even after paint has been on walls for five years it continues to give off a gas that is harmful and pollutes your interior environment.
Paints that are considered ‘green’ paints or eco friendly paints are made with a water base instead of oil. By using water instead of oil these paints become immediately healthier. The low VOC paints are much better for your health and the air you breathe but they still have harmful ingredients like formaldehyde and heavy metals. They are much safer than regular paints but how much better they are will depend on the different manufacturers.
When you are looking to purchase a low VOC level paint, the VOC concentration should be printed on the product much like the nutritional value of food products is printed on their labels. The label on paint marked low VOC should say it has 50 g/L of VOCs or less. The amount of VOC depends on the brand of paint with some having less than 25 g/L. A paint that is zero VOC is the best choice. The biggest manufactures and dealers do offer these paints in a variety of colors. They will be more expensive but how can you put a price on your health?
No matter which type of paint that you do decide to use it is very important to keep the space well ventilated while the paint is wet and wearing a mask is always a good idea. Even though zero VOC paints will not have an odor it is still necessary to keep the space well ventilated when the paint it wet.
This article was written by Rick Hayden who works for two great Durham Region companies whose goal is to make Durham Region Ontario a Better place to live: