What’s That Smell?

We’ve all smelled it, that fresh coat of paint! For you it might mean a job well done, but for the person living or working there, it’s just the beginning of that “fresh coat” headache. So what’s the cause of all those wonderful smells? VOCs – Volatile Organic Compounds.

Manufacturers use VOCs to keep chemicals separate in the paint. The VOCs must evaporate for the paint to dry correctly and the odor we smell is that evaporation process. The benefits of using paints with no or low VOCs are that there is no risk of fire and there are no odors or paint headaches.

Many paint companies are beginning to offer low VOC paint products. Some are even offering paints or coatings with no VOCs, although it’s still not an easy task to find high performance corrosion resistant coatings with no VOCs (EonCoat industrial coating has no VOCs). Put that mask away and start painting!

We want to hear what you think. Have you ever had someone complain of the fumes when you had just finished a coat? Have you ever gotten headaches from paint fumes? Sound off in the comments.