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The pros of paint finishes on windows and doors

Paint coating satisfies needs for green, efficient window finishing.

October 19, 2017  By Maria Jasminez AquaSurTech

The function of organic solvents in paint relates to certain properties. They facilitate the paint’s application, it’s drying and the formation of a regular paint film. During application and drying, the solvent evaporates. Ideally a dry paint film no longer contains solvent. However when they evaporate, these solvents release Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) into the atmosphere with a negative, toxic impact on health and safety and the environment. 

Spearheaded by (but not limited to) regulatory developments in the European Union, we continue to see stricter paint VOC regulations across the United States and Canada with the implementation of the Global Harmonization System. In terms of total VOC’s, 300 grams-per-liter paints are very common today. Presently, there is only one company within the industry with a product that has less than 30 grams per liter of total VOC’S.

In response to recent federal, state and municipal regulations limiting the amount of VOCs, top-quality environmentally advanced paints have been introduced with increasingly lower levels of volatiles that still deliver the durability, beauty and performance of traditional coatings. Water -based environmentally advanced paints are safer to use. Clean-up is quick with warm water and because these paints incorporate innovative hybrid polymers, they are highly durable. Top-quality environmentally advanced paints are available for indoor and outdoor application and come in different gloss levels and finishes.

Now let’s talk about some of the health risks associated with a solvent. The most dangerous element in paint is pyrrolidone. N-Methylpyrrolidone, also known as NMP, acts as an adhesion promoter for PVC since it softens the vinyl and can affect the quality of the vinyl when the coat is too hard. NMP is a solvent (a liquid that dissolves solids). NMP has been proven to cause irritation to the skin, eyes and respiratory system. It may also damage fertility and unborn children. NEP (N-Ethyl-Pyrrolidone) also contains pyrrolidone. NEP is slightly less toxic than NMP, although its toxicity level is still high.


By law, employers must provide a safe and healthy workplace using ventilation and other controls, with work practices to minimize exposure to harmful chemicals such as NMP. The best way to reduce exposure is to switch to a product that simply does not contain NMP. Some water-based paint will still contain a certain level of NMP and NEP. Both are excellent additives. Both pose a serious harm to human health. Legislation continues to move towards restricted use of these. Companies increasingly want to move away from these chemicals or ingredients as a duty of care to their customers. Increasingly, companies have adopted a policy of eliminating the use of pyrrolidone their products. When in doubt, ask to see the SDS sheet and look for the VOC content.

In order to keep up with the demand for more colours, woodgrain textures and other design options you need a product that offers a broader pallet to enhance your curb appeal without compromising paint hardness. The product should offer versatility in the ability to coat multiple substrates such as PVC and cellular PVC, fiberglass and pultruded fiberglass, aluminum, windows, doors, trim boards, siding, fencing and decking. With this capability you can eliminate the need to carry excess inventory of pre-painted components and the unnecessary hassle of colour matching. Essentially, you’re able to coat your products with the same paint.

Fifty years ago, virtually all paint was solvent-based. Today, advances in paint technology mean that modern, water-based paints are increasingly replacing organic solvents across a broad range of paint applications and surface areas. Legislation pressure has led to increasing pressure on formulators to eliminate pyrrolidone solvents from their coatings. The move away from pyrrolidone solvents can be made successfully without compromising performance (adhesion, cross-linking properties) by increasing VOC’s.

Paint has become so versatile. There are environmentally safe solutions for all areas of your coating requirements from an infield manual spray to in house applications to high volume automation.

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