Green Interior Finishes

Greenhouse - Green Home - Green Interior Finishes

Many conventional materials like adhesives, paint, sealants, and particleboard give off many toxins and chemicals that people may not be aware of. It is easy to actually see the benefits of a well-insulated, tightly sealed home in your energy bill savings. However, having green interior finishes is equally important to run a sustainable home. Choosing finishes with a low environmental impact as well as doesn't cause illness or allergies is very important in green building and living.

A green interior is one that is made from sustainably harvested materials that have a low embodied energy and contribute to a clean, healthy indoor air quality. Less toxic materials should always be used in place of toxic ones. This may go as a given to some, however there are plenty that don't, but should, pay attention to the toxicity of certain materials. You will be surprised about what is in your home!

Paints and Adhesives - When choosing your paint products you will want to look for low-VAC or no-VAC paints. Volatile organic compounds are substances that easily convert to gas at room temperatures which can trigger asthmatic or allergic reactions as well as pollute your air quality. The EPA requires paint manufacturers to list VOC content on all products. The best selection of paint products will be those with a VOC level less than 50 grams per liter.

When choosing your paint you will want to not only consider VOC levels but the tints that are added as well. Choose the color you desire and then find out if the tints you like add to the VOC levels. The darker the color, the more VOC's. Benjamin Moore EcoSpec or Sherwin Williams' GreenSure are wonderful options. Oil-based paints are the worst option because they contain more toxic and hazardous solvents. Always remember proper ventilation when using any paint products as well.

Ingredients you will want to look for to stay away from to be green certified are methylene chloride, benzene, vinyl chloride, phthalates, and ketones.

Choosing finishes is a huge part in interior design nd completes the look of your home. The first step in going green is doing the research and the second step is making the effort. If you are going to put all the work in insulating your home for sustainable living, and making sure your home is sealed just right for energy efficiency and air flow, than why not carry the efforts across the finishes. Remember it's the little things that add up when going green!