thanks for asking!
Is there any benefit to using low-VOC paint, other than it being good for the environment?
I had a client ask me a good question the other day. He was wondering if there was a good reason to use low or zero-VOC paint, other than it being good for the environment. I found a link on the EPA website that describes some tests that were done to monitor the VOC levels in a room after painting. If you are interested, please follow this link: http://www.epa.gov/appcdwww/iemb/abstracts/source.htm. The results show that standard drywall (or gypsum wallboard) and other materials absorb VOC emissions while you are painting. Up to one year after the painting has been completed, VOCs slowly, but continuously, are re-emitted from the surfaces that absorbed the VOCs (ie gypsum wall board) exposing the inhabitants to low levels of toxins via indoor air. I think that this is a pretty good reason for us all to reconsider what type of paint we purchase before painting a room. Most standard paint companies now carry a line of low and/or zero-VOC paint.
In addition, low and zero-VOC stains can also be purchased from a variety of dealers (i.e. Ecohaus. Benjamin Moore, Sherwin Williams, etc)