We see the giant wind turbines on the interstate all the time, but why are they all painted all white?

Honestly, the fields of windmills in Iowa are something that nearly puts me to sleep on the interstate during a long drive. The spinning motion with the flat land contributes to the reason I always fly home instead of drive.


There's A Reason They're All White

Obviously white is a reflective color. It's the same reason you wear white clothes when it's sunny and scorching hot outside. And yes, being painted a reflective color can help sustain the life of the mechanics of the wind turbine. But there's more to it than that.

According to interestingengineering.com, a big reason that wind turbines are painted white is because it's aesthetically pleasing. It helps them blend in from a ground point of view, but from air, it helps them stand out to avoid any airplane issues.

Should They Be Painted Purple?

A study in 2010 found that painting wind turbines white really attracts insects but that they seem to have an aversion to, specifically, the color purple. The argument is that the insects "pool" around the turbines, which attracts predators to the turbine, which can kill animals like birds and bats.

Insects were found to be very drawn to both white and light gray color samples that were laid next to a wind turbine. Yellow was a popular color too but probably because of pollination.

Bright purple wind turbines are definitely giving Dr. Seuss vibes but they could happen.

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