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Painter's Guide

Steps For a Conscientious  Painter

  • Use Super-Compliant paints whenever possible.

  • If you canít use Super-Compliant VOC paint, avoid painting during peak smog season: July, August, and September.

  • If you canít find Super-Compliant paint, use any of the readily available Low-VOC paints designed to do the job.

  • Buy only the paint you need.

  • Recycle leftover paint. Take any left over paint to a household hazardous waste center sponsored by your city or county. Do not mix leftover water-based and oil-based paints. To locate a household hazardous waste center in your area call 1-800-CLEANUP or click on the following hyperlink: 

  • Keep lids closed on all paint containers when not in use to prevent VOC emissions and excessive odors.

  • For water-based paints, clean up with water only, but whenever possible, do not rinse the clean-up water down the drain or pour it directly into the ground or the storm drain. Set aside the can of clean-up water and take it to a hazardous waste center (

  • Recycle the empty paint can.

  • Look for non-solvent containing stripping products.

  • Use Compliant Low-VOC cleaning solvents to clean paint application equipment. Click on the following hyperlink for a list of: Clean Air Solvents.

  • Keep all paint and solvent laden rags in sealed containers to prevent VOC emissions.

  • Use according to manufacturer's directions

  • Make sure you provide plenty of ventilation when using paint or solvent products.

This page updated: September 07, 2011