Getting alergies from paint


Old 11-14-07, 06:40 AM
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Getting alergies from paint

Hello All,

I recently moved in to a new condo apartment and getting allergic reactions from the paint, but only in the rooms that are relatively small and not well ventilated. I seem to have easier time breathing in the bathroom - where the paint is different - feels smooth to the touch, as opposed to dry and rough in the other rooms.

Can anyone tell me the difference between these paints? How do I eliminate this problem? Would it help to repaint the smaller rooms with the kind of paint used for the bathroom?

Appreciate your help
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Old 11-14-07, 07:55 AM
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Some people are moe sensitive than others to the offgassing of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from paint. Opening up windows and running fans to expedite offgassing is usually recommended. I've never tried it, but some recommend placing bowls of vinegar in rooms to eliminate paint odors.

The rougher feeling paint is likely flat latex, and the smoother paint is likely semi-gloss. It is doubtful that painting all the walls with semi-gloss would alleviate odor. Adding new paint, unless it is a no VOC paint, would likely not help.
Old 11-14-07, 09:18 AM
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If the problem is with the paint itself, fresh air circulation is the remedy. If the problem is allergy to something other than the paint there is a slight chance using enamel on the walls painted with flat might help.

An enamel wall is easier to keep clean and dust is less likely to attach itself to the enamel paint.
Old 11-14-07, 11:05 AM
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As stated above, its the VOC's that are your issue. Plenty of ventilation. It can take up to 30 days for latex to fully "cure" so a couple of hours with the window open isn't gonna fix it.

Putting vinegar in the room will only make it smell like vinegar, but do nothing for the VOC's. Thats like suggesting you put vanilla in your gas can because the gas vapor irritates you.

In the future, use a "LOW VOC" paint. Not just Latex, but one specifically formulated with low/no VOC's.

Good luck!
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