Home improvement is not just for Tim Allen. In fact, it’s for everyone, even your teenage son who thinks painting his room will be fun until he realizes he has to put a primer on the walls first.
Either way, even if painting for home improvement can be a bit tedious, it still has to be safe. I’m not just talking about your safety but also your family’s because accidents can happen otherwise.
After seeing my mom accidentally step off a latter two steps too short when I was ten years old, I knew just how being overly
cautious can actually be overly rewarding. I’ll just say that as a ten year old, it was not fun spending the summer plastic-wrapping the metal bar in my mom’s arm before she could take a shower! Am I trying to scare you? Maybe just a little…
If it helps, we did get a ton of lasagnas delivered by family friends! Anyway, I digress.
Here are my best tips for keeping your painting home improvement project safe:
- Hand safety:
Painting exposes you to a lot of chemicals. And, your hand could be the primary point of contact for these harmful chemicals. When absorbed through the skin of your hand, these chemicals can cause a number of medical problems.
Always use a pair of gloves when painting your house. It could be normal latex gloves or those that are chemical resistant. Average latex gloves offer a thin layer of protection to your skin, as they are much lighter in weight. These are handier than the heavier ones, which makes it a better choice to work with when handling the painting tools.
On the other hand, chemical resistant gloves are heavier than the latex ones and can offer more protection to your skin from paint strippers, solvents, acids and caustics. They reduce chances of chemical exposure significantly, but since they are heavier it makes handling painting tools a bit difficult.
- Skin Safety:
When taking up the job of painting in your house you would also need to protect your hair and other body parts from paints, acids and dust. You can get numerous home improvement accessories that offer thorough protection of hair and your other body parts, from top to bottom. You could get spray socks, which would cover your face, neck, hair and face – up to the nose, including your mouth.
You would also need to get overalls for protecting the remaining part of your body. And, finally a pair of shoe covers or boots. Home improvement jobs usually require boots with hard soles as they can protect your feet from stepping on stray nails.
Try and get 100% cotton clothing, one that is neither too loose nor too tight. This will allow you to paint freely. Not only is cotton light but it’s also breathable which means heat won’t trap in your clothing if you’re working in hot conditions.
- Lung safety:
When painting you are exposed to fumes, particulate matters, vapors and spray mist. Any of these can have an adverse effect on the health of your lungs, which should never be ignored. From preparing the paint to applying it on the walls, you would be exposed to a lot of damaging fumes and particulate matters. Always use a mask, or a paint respirator.
Use a face mask when sanding the walls of your house and a solvent respirator while dealing with products that contain organic solvents. Keep all the windows and doors in the room your painting open and open to the outside air. This will help diffuse the chemicals in the air.
As always, keep your pets either outside or at a friend’s house. They can be more sensitive to chemicals than we are.
- Eye safety:
Eye safety is important in any home improvement activity. Painting easily causes little splatters and you never want one of those drops to fall into your eye.
Your eyes are exposed to solvents, spray mist, paint drips and chips and dust. Eyes are delicate organs and any of these can cause injuries ranging from minor to major, and this could even damage your eyesight. It is advisable to use glasses or goggles to protect your eyes. This is true of most home improvements including pressure washing, drilling, and sanding.
- Chemical Safety:
Though the quality of paint has improved significantly over the last few decades, still you need to take a lot of safety precautions while handling paints. It is true that the toxicity levels have substantially reduced and paints now are low on volatile organic compounds or VOCs. But thinners, primers, solvent based paints, and paint remover needs careful handling as they have sufficient quantity of organic solvents.
If you have to keep your pet home, keep them outside but if you’re still worried about paint and your pet, consider an eco-friendly paint company like ECOS. It is so safe, in fact, it can be used to paint dog kennels!
Just a reminder of the history and dangers of lead paint:
It was in 1978 that the Federal government passed the law of banning lead as a constituent in paints. But houses constructed up until this time could have high levels of lead based paints on their walls. If you are living in an old house, the first thing that you should do is buy a kit that is used for lead testing. After conducting the test you would come to know whether lead is present in the paint or not.
If the test confirms that there is lead in your house, it is best to call in experts who deal in the removal of lead paints. Lead is not just hazardous for your health, it is also dangerous for the environment.
Only you know what’s best for your family but I know what’s best for keeping your family safe during a paint home improvement project! If you follow these guidelines then there is no reason why you can’t paint your home safely.
If you are based in Central Florida just call The Paint Manager for residential and commercial patining now for a few more helpful tips that would make painting your house a memorable journey.
If you think painting the house is a job not cut out for you, relax- call us and we would be more than happy to help you paint your house. Because, that is what we do and we do it perfectly.
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