Eco-Friendly Painting: Everything You Need to Know
If you care about the environment or want to minimize the amount of chemicals in your home, you might think twice before buying regular paint from the home improvement store.
There are now more eco-friendly paint options available than ever before if you care about healthy indoor air quality.
Low- and Zero VOC Paints
Many produced goods include substances known as VOCs (volatile organic compounds). Long-term exposure to volatile organic compounds (VOCs) can have a detrimental effect on your health.
VOCs are a common ingredient in traditional paints because they keep the pigment from separating from the solution. A high-quality paint product is no longer required to include VOCs due to recent improvements in the industry.
When painting your home, look for paints with low or no volatile organic compounds (VOCs) to ensure that the air you breathe is as clean as possible.
In order to be considered low VOC, latex paints must contain less than 250 grams of VOC per liter.
- Oil-based paints with less than 380 grams of VOCs per liter should be considered low-VOC.
VOC content should be less than 5 grams per liter for any latex or oil-based paint designated as zero VOC.
The Milk Paints
Have you ever considered using milk as a paintbrush instead of just a vessel to mix your cereal and coffee with? Instead of hazardous ingredients, milk paint employs a protein called casein to bind the paint solution and pigment together.
To be fair, the range of colors available in milk paint is somewhat limited, but you can greatly expand your palette by experimenting with different combinations of colors. When painting with milk paint, remember that it’s a powder that must be mixed into a solution before it can be used.
Natural Minerals, Plant Dyes, and Resins are used to make paint.
Plant-based materials, essential oils, minerals, and natural dyes make up these natural paints.
As long as you use a water-based natural paint, you won’t likely notice any odors during the painting process. Plant oils used in the solution may leave a scent on oil-based natural paints. As with milk paints, you’ll have to experiment a bit to get the color you want.
Primer with zero emissions of volatile organic compounds
Primer with no volatile organic compounds (VOCs) is as common as nontoxic paint. A solid primer lays the stage for a successful paint job. When painting on a primed surface, you can be sure that the paint will adhere to the wall, and that it will dry evenly and withstand normal wear and tear for years to come.
If you want to guarantee that your painting project is as ecologically friendly as possible, choose a zero-VOC primer and zero-VOC paint.
How to Paint Your Home in an Eco-Friendly Way
The practicality of the project must be considered once you’ve decided on the paint and primer you’ll use. How much paint are you going to use? How will you get rid of it if you have too much? It is not possible to dispose of zero- and low-VOC paints in the trash or flush them down the toilet.
Keep these four guidelines in mind while painting to reduce your environmental impact:
To save money, just buy what you really need.
A gallon of paint may not cover as much surface area as you thought it would since different surfaces absorb paint at different rates, making it difficult to estimate how much paint you’ll need.
A gallon of paint, on average, covers around 350 square feet of surface area.
Taking into account the fact that you may need to apply two coats of paint to cover any imperfections you may have made on the first coat is a good rule of thumb. Paint calculators may be found online and at your local hardware shop.
This information will be included in the estimate provided by a professional painter if you decide to hire one.
- Invest on high-quality materials (or borrow them).
Using high-quality brushes and rollers will make your painting seem better.
If you take care of your painting equipment (don’t allow the paint dry on the brushes or rollers, for example), you won’t have to buy new ones when your adolescent decides that the pink walls she requested as a five-year-old are no longer appropriate.
Preserve the paint you wish to keep in a safe place.
Maintaining a consistent temperature for paint is critical to its long-term viability. Keep the cans off the floor in a cold, dry place, such a closet or a basement that doesn’t have any moisture issues.
Make a plan for waste disposal.
Dispose of any paint that you don’t want to keep, or that has gone bad, in the proper manner. Hazardous waste disposal days and locations can be found in most towns and cities. If you have any usable leftovers, consider asking around to see if anyone knows of any community programs that might be interested in them.
Drying out and discarding small quantities of unused or damaged latex paint is one option.
Are you all set to start painting?
A new coat of paint is one of the most cost-effective and time-efficient home repair projects you can do. As technology improves, there is no need to sacrifice your environmental commitments in order to give your house a fresh new look.
To avoid damaging the environment, choose an eco-friendly paint, and follow the required procedures to complete the work.