It sounds like something futuristic in the realm of flying cars, but its not. Air-cleaning paint is available and among other things – It’s an ecologically friendly product.
by Peter Bjerregaard
|A local paint shop does not only sell eco-friendly products. It also aims at becoming the most sustainable paint shop in Copenhagen. Photo by Peter Bjerregaard.|
Usually when I venture out to buy paint for my apartment, I go for the cheapest bucket I can find. However, this time was different. Last week, when I went down to my nearby paint-store they had air-cleaning paint on sale. Air-cleaning paint! I had never seen anything like it so I decided to give it a try.
The secret behind the air-cleaning element is a process called photocatalytic activity. Through this process, the paint breaks down substances from car exhaustion, smog, fungus, mildew etc. These contaminants are transformed into non-toxic molecules and reduced to harmless small quantities.
In other words, the new generation of paint will not only give your walls a face-lift, it will also clean the air that you breathe.
|Painting with air-cleaning paint doesn't smell as bad as normal paints. Photo by Peter Bjerregaard.|
The intelligent home
In recent years, the move to smart houses has made everything possible, from adjusting the lights throughout the day to seeing our energy usage in real-time. These new air-cleaning paints are the next step in this line.
Regular paint contains volatile organic compounds (VOCs) – chemicals that evaporate as the paint dries and gives drying paint a chemical smell. Thus, the lower the better. Usually after the paint has dried, small amounts of VOCs continue to be released for years. These chemicals are known to exacerbate respiratory allergies and are harmful if released to the environment.
The good news is that this new generation of air-cleaning paint does not include any petrochemicals. In fact, the paint has anti-microbial, de-odorizing, anti-pollution properties and a low-VOC formula – translation: fresh air. When painting the room, I was also surprised that I wasn’t accosted by the noxious fumes that usually accompany the task.
According to the World Health Organisation, 30% of all new buildings show symptoms of “sick building syndrome” causing headaches and asthma attacks, which is especially common in air-conditioned buildings. Air-cleaning paint helps restore better indoor environments.
I finished painting my room a couple of days ago. The only drawback is that it is a tad whiter than I originally thought. But I guess that is a small price to pay for a better indoor environment.