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Improving indoor air quality has been one of the newer issues in the green movement. To help deal with this issue there are several low or no VOC paints that have been introduced to help people remodel their homes without damaging their air quality. VOCs, or volatile organic compounds, are what put chemicals from paint into the air, and consequently gives paints their odors. As VOCs are reduced, the odor levels drop, and fewer and fewer chemicals are put into the air.

The down fall for low and no VOC paints has always been tinting. Tinting the paint adds 150 grams of VOCs into the paint. This is true for all paints. That means that even if you buy a boutique, all natural paint, as soon as you tint it to the color you desire, you just defeated all the work you put into locating and purchasing the paint.

ICI Paints has solved the problem with their new Freshaire Choice line of paint.

This new line of no VOC paint also has a unique tinting system that allows Freshaire to be tinted to 65 colors with out adding any VOCs to the paint! The tinting system uses pre measured packets of dry tint that color the paint without adding any VOCs to the paint. This VOC-less system is an industry first. No other tint system for paint can make this claim. Another innovation is that the tint comes in a packet that dissolves into the paint completely. No mess. No fuss. No wondering if you will be able to get the same color mixed again if you make a second trip later for more paint. Until now, you had to hope that your paint store's liquid dispenser calibration would not change before you need more. Don't even think of going to a different store and expecting the exact same color unless you have them custom match it to make sure. By using pre measured, standardized packets, Freshaire ensures consistent colors no matter when you buy more paint. The only drawback to the system is that you can ONLY use the 65 colors that are currently available. No custom matching. I can imagine that if this paint line takes off more colors will follow, and possibly a dry tint dispenser, but that is just me guessing. For now you can choose from 65 colors and that's it.

Another "innovation" for a no VOC paint is that Freshaire is going to be sold through a mass merchandise retailer. The paint is going to be sold exclusively at The Home Depot. The largest home improvement retailer in the world is the only place you will be able to buy this paint. The retailer is currently rolling the paint out to its retail stores. The Freshaire web site even allows you to look for the closest Home Depot that has the paint in store for you to go purchase. This move allows the paint to be in over 1,000 retail locations across the U.S. It also potentially allows the paint to be sold in Home Depot's stores in Canada, Mexico, and China. Over 2,000 possible retail locations with a home improvement juggernaut backing you is truly an industry first for no VOC paints.

The green take on this paint doesn't end with eliminating VOCs and creating a unique no VOC tint system. Freshaire uses 100% recycled materials for the can, the can is recyclable when you are done, 75% recycled fiber material is used for the can's label, the label is printed with soy ink, and another innovation is that the paint chips are also completely recyclable as well being made from recycled materials. Any other paint chip that actually has paint on it cannot be recycled. As far as I know, only Freshaire allows you to recycle actual sample paint chips.

All these no VOC claims made by Freshaire have been certified by GREENGUARD Environmental Institute (GEI). GEI supports both the claims for the paint AND for the tint materials.

In order to allow you to do a whole job completely without adding any VOCs to the air, Freshaire makes drywall primer and ceiling paint as well. This 3 part system allows you to do whatever you need to do indoors whenever you want without compromising your air quality. So even if you have persons in your home that are medically sensitive to air quality or VOCs, you can paint with no fears for them.

They even provide a link for professional painters so that they can get an idea of what their advantages will be using this paint. Those professionals that deal with painting in environments that requires stringent environmental controls (like schools, nursing homes, hospitals, etc.) will definitely appreciate the advantages that Freshaire will provide over other paints in these situations. There is even links to MSDS, material safety data sheets, so that they can immediately provide them to their potential clients for review. Very smooth approach to try to get the professional to think green!

Freshaire is an innovative new product that looks to help the DIYer and the pro do things right while doing the right thing.

  • D-Bo

    Miller Paint has had a 0 VOC product available for the last few decades. Glad to see others following suit.

  • Mike Johnson

    Yes there have been previous no VOC paints, but where they have all fallen down is with tinting. Until this new dry tint system that was developed for Freashaire Choice, VOCs were put right back into the paint as soon as the liquid tints hit it. This rendered the paint a low VOC paint as sooon as you had color added. Tha other leap forward is that this is not a boutique paint in a few mom and pop shops, this is mass produced and marketed in a huge international retailer.

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