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Tuesday, May 21, 2024
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Paint It Green

By Chad Hays

Looking to liven up faded white walls or splash some bright new colors in your home this spring?  Whether you are painting the exterior or interior of your home, we recommend using no-VOC paints.

Volatile organic compounds or “VOCs” are compounds emitted as gases from certain solids and liquids.  According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), effects of VOCs include eye, nose, and throat irritation, headaches, loss of coordination, and nausea.

There are a number of companies on the market touting their no-VOC paints. With so many products on the market, local architect Jeff Frost, sustainability coordinator for SmithGroup, helps separate the fact from fiction when it comes to no-VOC paints.

Frost recommends the following when purchasing no-VOC paints:

• Look for paint with a high percentage of solids by volume for better durability and better coverage.
• Before you buy, ask if they use Zero-VOC pigments.  No-VOC paints are measured for VOCs before pigments are added, but pigments contain a high amount of VOCs.  Once added to the paint, if tested, you would find this paint exceeded regulations.
• Check the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) to verify if there are any hazardous air pollutants (HAPs). HAPs are known human carcinogens often found in traditional paints.
• Look for “GREENGUARD for Children and Schools” certification.  The GREENGUARD Environmental Institute certifies products and materials for low chemical emissions and provides a resource for choosing healthier products and materials for indoor environments, according to their website.

Frost recommends these no-VOC paints:

DuraSoy One Ultra Premium Bio-Based Multi-Purpose Paint: Bio-based, non-toxic, with high solids content for maximum life and durability with only one coat.  Paint is available locally at Natural Territory in Scottsdale and at www.ecosafetyproducts.com.

American Pride paints: Green Wise® certified, always no-VOC, and never contains chemicals that are suspected carcinogens.  Purchasing information available at americanpridepaint.com.

For more information on no-VOC paints, visit Frost’s blog at http://deepershadeofgreen.wordpress.com/


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