Eric Murray

6 tips on how to minimise your renovation’s environmental impact

Here’s how to paint your home green – whatever colour’s in the paint can

Whether you’re painting your roof white to combat climate change, trying to reduce the paint smells that trigger your kid’s asthma or wondering how best to wash your paintbrush, there are a lot of reasons to think about the environmental impact of your home renovation. Luckily, Resene has a sustainable solution for all your decorating dilemmas.

How to minimise your renovation’s environmental impact

1. Prolong the life of your home
Paint’s biggest job is to protect what’s underneath it, so painting or staining the surface from the start is a great way of reducing your home’s environmental footprint over time. For example, unstained timber decking will deteriorate more quickly than if it has been stained, and replacing the timber is more resource-intensive than re-staining it every now and then. If you don’t want to add colour, Resene has a range of wood stain finishes that look natural while providing a layer of protection between the wood and the sun.

2. Get the right product for the right job
It’s a false economy to use the wrong paint or a cheaper paint to save money. Chances are you’ll end up having to redo the job sooner, at greater expense to the environment and your pocket. For example, Resene’s CoolColour technology is designed to make dark colours last longer by reflecting the heat of the sun, so it’s a great choice for exteriors in high-sun areas, or as an alternative to white paint on your roof. Visit the Resene website for loads of advice on getting the right paint and applying it properly so it will last the distance, or check out the videos on the MasterStroke by Resene. If you’re still not sure, use the free Ask a Paint Expert service, visit your local Resene ColorShop or call 0800 RESENE (737 363).

3. Choose eco-friendly paint options
Resene has been a leader in sustainable paint technology since the 1950s, when the Kiwi company introduced waterborne paint to the local market. In the 1960s, it was among the first to remove lead from its decorative paint products, and now offers a wide range of environmentally friendly, low-odour, low-allergy and even plant-based paints that have been approved by Eco Choice, New Zealand’s official ecolabel. Look for the Eco Choice and Sensitive Choice logos on the tin.

4. Clean up with care
The easiest option is to wrap your paintbrush or roller in a reusable plastic bag while you take breaks and overnight to save washing up. Once your project is finished, use the Resene two-bucket method to clean up your rollers and brushes. If you look after them well, they can last for many paint jobs. The Resene website has all the tips and advice you need to ace your renovation clean-up with minimal impact on the environment.

5. Leave it to the professionals
If you don’t have the time or skills to do the job yourself, Resene’s Eco.Decorator service can put you in touch with a sustainably minded painter who is committed to working in a responsible and sustainable manner.

6. Don’t just dump the empties
Once you’re finished, drop off any empty paint cans or surplus paint to the Resene PaintWise recycling service at most Resene ColorShops. It will donate salvageable paint to community groups to cover graffiti or use for projects and recycle the solventborne paint, steel and plastic.

For all the advice you need for choosing and using Resene paints, visit your local Resene ColorShop, and

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