Resin fumes-

-- Last Updated: Apr-24-11 10:06 PM EST --

The weather has been too crappy for working outside so I am wondering if I dare do some small epoxy resin repairs inside the basement of my house? Would the fumes be manageable if I just do a few square inches at a time?

I can open a window to deal with some fumes, but don't want to contaminate the whole house.

If you’re using one of the best brands
like West, you can do modest projects in the house, and the mild odors won’t go far.

It’s vinylester and polyester resin that can fume up a whole house, because of the styrene that comes out of the resin. These resins actually shrink as they harden, while epoxy does not.

Smelling the fumes
I’ve been using West System. I don’t think it smells much. Does that mean the fumes are not there? Or that the fumes are not harmful?

I usually run fans to draw air through and out of the workshop, but at some point during the cure I end up closing up shop and have always been a little worried that I was killing everybody in the household.

Worrying needlessly?


Epoxy contains no solvents…
…and doesn’t produce strong fumes. While some people develop a sensitivity to it, most people aren’t bothered by epoxy or it’s minimal odor. One should always wear gloves when working with epoxy, but a respirator is optional. With polyester or vinylester resins, a respirator is mandatory, as the styrene fumes are noxious and dangerous.