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"If All the Greedy People that Pollute can get Together & Show Strength in Unity – then Honest, Environmentalists Must Do the Same. You See – It’s as Simple As That.” George C. Keefe - ENCASEMENT Guy

Wednesday, July 03, 2024

Listen and Learn: Dive into the Audio Version of Our Blog

The world of paints and coatings is far more complex than most people realize.

When it comes to protecting and beautifying our buildings, homes, and infrastructure, the true cost of paint goes far beyond the price tag on a can.

In this episode I take a deep dive and uncover the hidden expenses, long-term implications, and environmental impact of choosing between quality, long-lasting green coatings and typical weak paints.

By the end, you'll have a newfound appreciation for the importance of making informed decisions about the products we use to protect our surroundings.

The Price Tag Illusion

At first glance, it's tempting to base our paint choices solely on the cost per gallon or liter.

However, this surface-level approach fails to account for the large number of factors that contribute to the true cost of a coating over its lifetime.

Let's break down the direct and indirect costs that paint consumers often overlook:

Direct Costs:

• Price per gallon/liter
• Labor costs for application
• Equipment and materials needed for proper application

Indirect Costs:

1. Building downtime during painting projects
2. Relocation expenses for occupants
3. Waste generation, transportation, and storage
4. Potential hazardous material handling
(e.g., lead-based paint, asbestos, PCBs)

The Time Factor: A Hidden Expense

One of the most significant yet often overlooked aspects of paint costs is time.
This encompasses two crucial elements:

1. Application Time: The labor hours required to properly apply the coating.
2. Service Life Cycle: The duration the paint will last before requiring reapplication.

Typical weak paints may seem cost-effective initially, but their short service life cycle of just 3-7 years means more frequent repainting projects.

This translates to higher labor costs, more frequent disruptions, and increased waste generation over time.

This along with the fact that weak paints are not made or designed for defensive protection of a structure.

Their only true purpose is to increase the looks of something, making it has esthetically pleasing.

They are deliberately engineered to fail quickly so repaints are needed more frequently.
Sustainability: The Long-Term Value Proposition

When we consider the true cost of paint, sustainability becomes a critical factor.

High-quality, green coatings offer several advantages that contribute to long-term savings and reduced environmental impact:

1. Extended Service Life: The right, high quality green coatings can last 20 years or more, even in harsh conditions.
2. Reduced Waste: Longer-lasting coatings mean less frequent repainting and less waste generation.
3. Simple Reapplication: Many green coatings can be reapplied without removing the previous layer, further reducing waste and labor costs.
4. Weather Resistance: Superior protection against wind, rain, and UV rays helps prevent damage to underlying structures.

The Hidden Power of Seamless Protection

One often-overlooked benefit of the right high-quality green coatings is their ability to create a seamless, monolithic membrane over surfaces. This is particularly crucial for:

1. Roofing: Sealing all seams and joints prevents wind from getting underneath and causing damage during severe weather events.
2. Building Exteriors: A continuous protective layer enhances overall weather resistance and longevity.

By investing in a coating that provides this level of protection, building owners can potentially save thousands in repair and replacement costs over time.

The Environmental Impact: A Cost We All Bear

When assessing the true cost of paint, we must consider its environmental footprint:

1. Waste Generation: Frequent repainting with weak paints leads to more waste in landfills, contributing to CO2 emissions and climate change.
2. Energy Efficiency: Some green coatings offer solar reflective properties, reducing cooling costs and energy consumption.
3. VOC Emissions: Many eco-friendly coatings have lower volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions, improving air quality.

The Right Green Coatings: A Smart Investment

While the initial cost may be higher, the right quality green coatings offer numerous benefits that translate to long-term savings and reduced environmental impact:

1. 20+ Year Lifespan: Dramatically reduces the frequency of repainting projects.
2. Versatile Application: Can be applied with brush, roller, or conventional airless spray.
3. No Removal Required: Often can be applied over existing coatings, reducing waste and labor.
4. Weather Resistance: Superior protection against UV rays and harsh weather conditions.
5. Potential Health Benefits: Water-resistant properties can help prevent building-related illnesses (BRI) caused by moisture intrusion.

The Hidden Costs of Weak Paints

In contrast, typical weak paints come with a host of hidden costs and drawbacks:

1. Frequent Reapplication: Shorter lifespan means more frequent painting projects.
2. Potential Structural Damage: Inadequate protection can lead to deterioration of underlying surfaces.
3. Increased Waste: More frequent repainting generates more waste for landfills.
4. Higher Long-Term Costs: While cheaper upfront, weak paints often cost more over time due to frequent reapplication and potential damage repair.

The Environmental Connection

As we face the growing challenges of climate change, the choice of coatings takes on added significance.

By opting for long-lasting, eco-friendly green coatings, we can:

1. Reduce Waste: Less frequent repainting means less waste in landfills, lowering greenhouse gas emissions.
2. Conserve Resources: Fewer raw materials are needed over time for manufacturing and application.
3. Improve Energy Efficiency: Reflective coatings can reduce cooling costs and overall energy consumption.
4. Protect Structures: Enhanced weather resistance helps buildings withstand the increasing frequency and severity of extreme weather events.

To Sum IT Up:

The true cost of paint extends far beyond the price per gallon/liter.

By considering factors such as longevity, application costs, waste generation, and environmental impact, we can make more informed decisions that benefit our wallets and the planet.

Investing in high-quality, long-lasting green coatings may seem more expensive initially, but the long-term savings and reduced environmental impact make them a smart choice for conscientious consumers and businesses alike.

As we strive to create a more sustainable future, the paints and coatings we choose play a crucial role in protecting our buildings, our health, and our environment.

"People can live in carbon zero homes right now. The technology is here. Allowing it to happen is the problem. Our rules and regulations won't let us do it." - Michael Reynolds - American Architect, Founder of Biotect at Earthship Biotecture

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