If we asked people randomly on the street what their favorite part about interior painting is, they probably would give us answers like this: fresh style, fun way to personalize, allows you to update, looks clean and bright, and so on…
If we asked what their least favorite thing about interior painting is, there likely would be one aspect in particular that raises some concern: the smell. In the past interior paint could leave an unmistakable, and sometimes strong, odor.
Thankfully for home and business owners everywhere, along with everything from potato chip flavors to laptops, painting products are always being improved and updated. Today, this formula advancement means that we have options called low or zero-VOC. While that may look great on the label, however, you could just be wondering what that really means and how it directly benefits you.
What Does “VOC” Stand For?
VOC stands for volatile organic compounds. In short, these find a home in the solvent portion of your paint’s ingredient list, helping to keep the product in a liquid state. After you roll your fresh color into place, the VOCs evaporate and leave just the pigments and binders behind for the curing process.
These evaporating VOCs are what can cause that chemical, fume-like smell.
Levels of volatile organic compounds have decreased recently, but there are now a number of manufacturers who have taken it a step or two further by offering paint with levels ranging from very little to zero.
Does Low-VOC Paint Perform as Well?
In short, yes! There were questions originally about whether the absence of VOCs would negatively impact the ease of application and overall durability of the paint, but they have been put to rest as the formulas just keeping better.
For more information and product ideas, below are just a few examples of the quality options that are out there: