Chemical Off Gassing & Indoor Air Quality Testing Services Toronto

Chemical Off Gassing pollutants – like Formaldehyde – cause asthma in children aged six months to three years

(Source: Health Canada)

What is Chemical Off-Gassing?

Chemical off-gassing is the release of a gas or vapor, including formaldehyde, into the air during the process of aging, evaporating and decomposing.  Formaldehyde exists in most homes and can pollute the air we breathe, resulting in poor indoor air quality.

The concentration of Formaldehyde in these environments depends on 2 factors:

  1. The age of the environment (i.e. home, school, workplace)
  2. The quantity of formaldehyde

Sources that contain and produce chemical off-gassing include:

  • Building materials
  • Certain types of flooring
  • Plastics
  • Furnishings
  • Paints, varnishes, stains
  • Drapes
  • Curtains
  • Clothing
  • Carpets

All of these materials off-gas potentially hazardous chemicals and odors called volatile organic compounds (VOC’s).  Daily examples of chemical off-gassing  and VOC’s include the familiar smell of a “new rug” or a “new car”.  Inhaling VOC’s – or absorbing them through the skin and mucus membranes – can affect indoor air quality and result in serious health risks.

What are the Hazards and Health Risks of Chemical Off-Gassing?

While some people are not affected by off-gassing, others may experience short term and long term health risks including:

  • Drowsiness
  • Respiratory problems*
  • Temporary eye irritation
  • Organ damage

*A 2005 Health Canada study reported that certain “formaldehyde levels were significantly associated with hospitalization for asthma in children aged six months to three years.”

How can you Reduce and Prevent Chemical Off-Gassing?

Off-gassing will abate over time, but can be reduced by doing the following:

  • Buying products marked no-VOC or low-VOC
  • Airing out newly painted or carpeted rooms
  • Testing for and accelerating the off gassing process
  • Testing indoor air quality for VOC’s

If you need – or suspect you need – chemical-off gassing or indoor air quality testing services, Contact in Toronto to book an appointment today.

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