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it's your choice

I was at a Sydney apartment the other day where the do-it-yourself owner had painted her entire home with a brush. That's right, a simple, single brush.

I couldn't believe that anyone could be so patient to work their way across every wall in every room with a brush; brushing, and brushing and brushing... but then I realised something that perhaps we should all be aware of when we paint our homes. Our tools affect how much paint we use, which in turn has an effect on how much waste is generated and then absorbed into our natural environment.

Using a roller to apply paint is so much quicker and easier when we're working on our homes. But, what we do with the roller cover at the end of our project is important because of the environmental impact. If you have a roller cover cleaner (a plastic sleeve that attaches to a hose) you'll use about eight to ten litres of fresh water cleaning your roller cover. Is it okay in the middle of such a terrible drought to use that volume of water to clean a piece of painting equipment? I don't know. That's your decision and choice. However, you can minimise water use and paint waste by sealing your cover inside an air tight container (this is ideal if you're using the same colour again, and again). Another temporary but effective technique is to wrap the cover in cling-wrap. Like the especially designed air-tight container, the paint is kept wet, meaning you can stop and start when you need to.

Ultimately, the choices we make about any of our activities have an impact on our limited and fragile natural resources.

Send me an email if you have any questions.


You can easily clean your used roller covers and recycle them again and again. A quality cover will last for ages if it's looked after properly. There are simple tools that will allow you to use the minimum amount of water to achieve this (paint scraper, airtight container and a roller cleaner). The choice is yours.

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