Zero VOC Paint + Low VOC Primers By AFM Safecoat ® = FUN Painting

The task was to prime and paint seven areas of a large Family home in Ontario, Canada.

Knowing about how AFM Safecoat manufactures the least toxic coatings there was no doubt that this would be the brand to be used.  This feature was especially important since the Family, which included two young children would be living in the home while the painting was to be done.  With the homeowner being a champion of environmental concerns, before I could proceed with the painting I had to share with her the facts that the coatings I would be using would indeed be no odour or very low odour – she did not want to subject the Family to the toxins of regular paint.

Choosing The Paint Colours

Once the decision was made to proceed with this interior house painting project the colours were selected for each room or area.  I assured the Family that our supplier for the coatings was a colour tinting specialist and that since they have been colour tinting their low VOC Broda coatings, which they have manufactured for many year, that, as the leading distributor in Canada for the AFM Safecoat and Safechoice product-line, they were most adept to colour-match the paints to their choosing.  CBR would also ensure zero VOC pigments be used to maintain the non toxic integrity of the zero VOC paints.  Once the colours were identified having the knowledge about the Ayurveda Essence colours I presented paint colours that were similar and yet would take advantage of the Ayurvedic science of selecting colours )colour-matching systems) that AFM had invested in developing.

Apart from the Daisy yellow coloured paint for the kitchen and mud room areas the Ayurveda Essence colours were preferred: The Vata – Fertility (brown colour) was selected for the Living Room, Upper Hallway and Recreational Room; and the Vata – Leaf (green colour) for the Master Bedroom and the Dining Room.  For the latter area a local supplier was selected to add a bit of white pigment to slightly lighten the dark green colour.

For the white ceilings CBR astutely recommended using the New Wallboard Primer.  This primer had a thick and rich fluidity to it’s composition and applied beautifully, especially on the stucco textured ceilings.

The Prime Coat and Painting Process

The priming & painting tips by Jay Watts of AFM Safecoat (posted in an earlier CBR Blog ) were helpful. The no odour / very low odour feature of the primers and paints made the tasks enjoyable – much like meditation.

The most memorable moment came one morning.  The two youngest children were ready for school well before the departure time and came to me while I was painting the dining room.  They and the youngest teenager always wanted to help paint.  I had previously let the teenager help and this morning I let the youngest ones go at it.  It was a joy to see the passionof  them applying the zero VOC paint to the wall – in fact as I write this it is a “smile in my pocket” that I treasure: They were having so much fun learning to paint without getting intoxicated by paint fumes.  It reminded me of the banner on the CBR home page where a young child is smiling while painting with a roller.  It was so funny when as we were getting the children’s seat belts fastened in the van when the youngest proudly holds up his little finger and as he shows me a tiny green paint dot says: “This is my tattoo.”  While I suggested he quickly wash it off with soap and water he insisted on keeping it as though it was the badge of merit he had earned.  Having read the MSDS Information that AFM makes readily available for each of their building products, I had confidence that allowing him to keep it would not be harmful.

The children helped paint the green wall to the right - nice paint job!

It should be noted that had this been a “regular paint” there is no way I would have let the children paint with me and nor would I have recommended painting while the Family was living there.  The children’s immune systems especially are so delicate and fragile and to have subjected them to the toxic fumes would not be correct.

It was comforting that every day of the painting project the children would come home from school and no paint smell permeated the house: not once during my stay was there any mention of paint smell which is a great testimonial for AFM Safecoat Paints and Primers

Door & Cabinet Trim Enamel Paint

Owing to that painting the home with the flat latex paint was a large project in itself plus the fact that the trim was still in good condition this task, it was decided, would be done –  perhaps next year.  I would have had the confidence that should it have been included as the AFM Door and Cabinet Trim Enamel paints would have met the low odour requirements.  I had had used this product when I painted the trim in a Toronto condo in Ontario Canada that we were selling in 2009: This experience is worth noting as it gives testimony that the low odour feature is also with the AFM Safecoat enamel paints:  What I found so incredible is that in preparing for the real estate open house I would paint the trim with the AFM enamel paint in the morning and in the afternoon we would host the open house and there was no odour of paint fumes.

Also of note is that while AFM Safecoat products might cost a bit more, the reason is that they are not mass-produced such as the regular paint and as so called mass=produced “green building products” are PLUS with this least toxic paint a different retail infrastructure is required to maintain the integrity of the “least toxic feature” and as such the distribution is not as expansive.  Personally I find these factors not an impediment and it is for this reason (as a cost-savings specialist) why AFM Safecoat paints are the only paint I recommend: When you think of the total cost – especially that of protecting personal health – and calculate the cost by years that the painting project will last, it really is a very marginal increase.  On top of this research has shown that it is a great feature when selling real estate and can add to a property’s resale value.  In a way choosing AFM Safecoat paint prevents me from falling into the trap of “being penny wise and pound foolish”.

The Finish

These water-based paints (and primers) did the job well.  Two coats of paint were applied and one coat of the primer.  The result was a nice, clean  and even finish.  As we didn’t have a five gallon pail to do the recommended boxing tactic, the consistency of the paint colours from gallon to gallon was 100% accurate.

A special note of thanks to CBR Products for facilitating all the requests:  The process was fast and seamless.  Your Team’s quick response with an overnight delivery to compensate for a one box within the shipment that was delayed by the courier company was indeed spectacular: one that kept us on track to meet the tight timeline of this painting project.  Thank you CBR for helping to make the painting adventure a success.

Wishing you all happy painting (with AFM Safecoat and CBR Products), I am,


Mark Mueller

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