Paint / Guides

An attic with 'insulating paint' which doesn't insulate
Insulation and soundproofing

Does 'insulating paint' work?

...paints containing [insulating additives] are making claims that defy the laws of physics. " - Alex Wilson "There is poetic justice to a story in which a distributor of “insulating” paint ends up shivering during the winter and sweating during the summer because of the ineffectiveness of his worthless paint." - Martin...

Repainting and refinishing brick facades
Exterior cladding

All about painting brick, is it a good idea and what paint to use?

...paint peeling and chipping in the near future. What kind of paint do you use for brick? Let's start with what NOT to use - never paint bricks with standard oil or latex paint , it will trap moisture inside and cause the paint to peel and chip. The problem lies in the fact that bricks are porous, and they need to re...

DIY Natural Earth Pigment Paint, Making it at Home is Easy
Healthy indoor air quality

DIY recipe for natural healthy paint

...painted with a natural clay paint that's easy to make, economical, and gives a beautiful, soft, adobe-like look. I get compliments from all my guests! Shop for non toxic natural pigment paints here Aside from the aesthetics of natural paint, the health benefits are huge. Most people don’t realize the amount or dura...

Vapor retarder latex primer instead of polyethylene sheet
Air and vapour barriers

Replacing polyethylene vapour barriers with latex paint vapor control

...paint on primer and a properly sealed air barrier. There are hard cost savings to be had doing this, and an improvement in both performance and durability. The one glitch in the system, is that building inspectors can also be subject to the same conditioning that a lot of builders are, and do not realize that in many...

Painting with zero VOC paint from Benjamin Moore
Paints, finishes and natural coatings

Choosing safe paints

...paints, replacing them with solvent-free or water-based paints. The move towards safe paint has led to a noticeable improvement in indoor air quality since the mid-seventies, and better even in the last decade. But paints based on petrochemical solvents still represent over half the paints on the market. Using natura...

Lifestyle and environment

Resources and getting started

...paint in the walls so if you’re gutting it at all wear a good respirator. Lead paint by the way, once painted over with lead-free paint , is generally harmless. It’s only in renovating that you need to be concerned. By this point older homes with lead paint have likely had a few coats on them, so it is relatively wel...

Green cleaning products
Healthy indoor air quality

6 easy steps to detoxify your home

...paint. It can be hard to let go of leftover matching colours, but if you have a bunch of cans you are pretty sure you won't use again, get rid of them. It is near impossible to get an airtight seal on a paint can that has already been opened and used. Paints often contains toluene, a potent reproductive toxin; as wel...

Interior solid pine door
Doors and trim

Interior finishing

...paint removal. Be sure to use a proper mask because older painted doors will almost certainly contain lead paint. You can often find them on used material websites, as well as at reclaimed material building supply stores. Jointed pine doors Jointed wood refers to smaller pieces that are machine grooved and gl...

Beautiful LEED home in Mulmur, Ontario.
LEED Homes

A beautiful lakeside LEED Platinum home

...paint finish. A soy-based sealer was used for the concrete floors and counters, and untreated silk and hemp fabric was used for the curtains. The client was equally interested in environmentally responsible design. Achieving a healthy house for both client and environment meant extensive research into a wide range of...

How to plan and budget for home renovations and new builds
Concept and design

Important tips for a successful build or renovation

...painting – sure, we can all use a paint roller, but can you do it as well or as quickly as a professional? Now apply that thought to something you plan to learn along the way, be it plumbing, drywalling or installing kitchen cabinets. Unless you plan to make a career of it afterwards, there are learning curves that wil...

wood ceiling in Reclaimed sunken lumber
Walls and ceilings - interior surfaces

Wood Ceilings or drywall - how to choose your ceiling material & what's the difference in cost?

...Painted ceilings are typically light in color, which can make a room feel larger than if the ceiling were painted a darker colour. Due to its typically darker shade, there is the potential for a wood ceiling to make a room feel slightly smaller than average, so the appeal may be reduced in smaller rooms. But that impac...