Welcome All! I'm a dreamer, I hope you are too! A Posse ad Esse, or From possibility to reality, is a general state of mind. I hope you'll share your possibilities with me as I will with you. Namaste~

August 19, 2007

SLC Green Building Center

Saturday we went down to Salt Lake city to go to "The Green Building Center" our local supply center for environmentally friendly and more natural building products. We came to look for alternatives to polyurethane finish for the hard wood flooring that we are preparing to put in.
In addition to replacing the carpeting in our home with hardwood flooring, we are painting all of the common areas. This is something that we had planned already, and since we are doing it primarily to improve the health of our living environment, we have taken time to research some alternative products to the standard ones available at Lowes/Home Depot.

The main product that I wanted to look into was OSMO's Polyx oil.

"Ingredients 50-60 % solids (High Solid) Base: natural vegetables oils and waxes (sunflower oil, soy- bean oil, thistle oil, - carnauba and candellila wax), paraffines. Additives: siccatives (drying agents) and water-repellent additives. Solvents: disaromatized white spirit (benzenefree - in compliance with purity demands of the European pharmacopoeia)."

This product from what I gather is sort of the cadillac of the natural penetrating sealers. It is a German product and passes the very rigorous German standards for water repelling and saliva fastness. (This last bit was an unusual one for me, but essentially it means that little ones drooling or biting on the product won't degrade it or harm the child. ) I like what I have read about the product but have a couple of issues. One is that it's a foreign product; I'd like to keep my dollars here if at all possible. The other is that it has a longer drying time. 18-24 hrs between coats, and is a little funky smelling. We will be living in the home while we area finishing the floors, this is one reason that we want to keep away from the high odor treatments also, and it will be hard to avoid our stair for 24 hours while it drys.

Another product that I was shown was one called "Tried and True".

"Tried & True Original Wood Finish is made from highly refined, highly Polymerized Linseed Oil and pure Beeswax. This product is 100% solids, and has no solvents or heavy metal driers. The recipe for this finish is adapted from a Shaker finish and an English Arts and Crafts technique."

This was the product that I came away likeing the most. I initally thought that it was not meant for wood flooring, after later looking into it further I found that their website had a complete separate section describing it's use and benefits as related to hardwood flooring. I liked this product for the simplicity of it's ingredients. Lindseed oil and beeswax. Also because one of the other things I have found was a recipe to make a DIY foor polish based on beeswax and I think they would be more compatible. It also takes about 24 hours to cure, but smells much more pleasant. This is also a USA product and is manufactured in NY. It covers about the same amount of space, but also costs considerably less ($59.00/gal compared to $94.00/2.5 L)

On another note. An added benefit to using this type of oil/wax sealants is that when the floor or even just the heavy traffic areas need refinishing, you don't need to strip and sand the entire floor to do it because otherwise the old and new wouldn't match. This type of finish allows you to merely burnish and clean the worn area, and apply locally a new coat of finish. Much less trouble and much less cost.

We also purchased our interior paint here; a product called American Pride.
This is a ZERO VOC paint. Yep, no chemical nasties here. Not low VOC. ZERO. We think we are going to be very happy with this product; not only is it much healthier (it has a slightly yeasty smell rather that the typical plastic bag smell of paint.) but we spot tested it when we got home to check the color and it covers very well. Oh yeah, and at $29.00/gal it's about the same or less than many conventional products out there.

I hope I've been able to give you a better idea of some options that are out there. I'll be doing some more research and possible calling some of the companies. When I know for sure I'll let you know and give a review of the performance.

Tried & True Wood Finishes

OSMO Polyx

American Pride zero VOC paint

No comments: