Paints & Coatings Resource Center

Ask the Expert Question-and-Answer Archive

by Ron Joseph

October, 2004

Do Paints Contain PCBs?

Q. Do paints contain PCBs?

Several years ago I was asked if PCBs are present in paints, and I replied that to the best of my knoweledge PCBs were never used for such purposes. Ted Benson of the Washington State Department of Ecology recently sent me an email informing me that PCBs were routinely added to paint used by the Navy to increase weatherability and fire resistance. Ted kindly sent me several references, from which it appears that PCBs were used in many different paints during the 1950s and perhaps even beyond.

If this topic is of interest to you, Ted has kindly provided the following source:

I'm grateful to Ted for bringing this to my attention.

Best wishes,

Ron Joseph

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