Formaldehyde is a naturally occurring chemical compound that is frequently used to treat wood and laminate flooring, as well as other building materials. However, it can be dangerous in high concentrations. Therefore, it is important to have your home or commercial building tested to be sure that the formaldehyde levels are within acceptable limits.
What Is Formaldehyde?
Formaldehyde is composed of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. Naturally-occurring formaldehyde is present all around us, and carries no health risks. However, you might also recognize it as one of the key components of embalming fluid. Clearly, high concentrations of formaldehyde can pose a real problem to the living.
Yet formaldehyde is also a highly useful material with unique properties that are difficult to replicate. It is an important part of the manufacturing process for everything from adhesives to particle board, and plywood to permanent press fabrics.
The main problem with formaldehyde in the home or office is its tendency to off-gas. This process occurs when the previously trapped formaldehyde enters a gaseous phase and leaches out into the air. Other common compounds also off-gas, raising the levels of airborne VOCs (volatile organic compounds) in your home or office, but formaldehyde is particularly notable because it is classified as a known carcinogen (cancer-causing agent).
What Are the Risks of Formaldehyde Off-Gassing?
In older homes, which tended to be much draftier and less airtight than modern homes, off-gassing was not much of an issue, since the indoor air was constantly being replaced. Today, however, we attempt to seal up our homes to improve energy efficiency, making it tough for airborne pollutants to escape.
High levels of formaldehyde carry a number of acute health risks, including but not limited to:
- burning or watery eyes
- coughing or wheezing
- nasal irritation
- sore throat
- skin rash
- nausea and gastrointestinal distress
- worsening of asthma or other respiratory disorders
Repeated, long-term exposure to high levels of formaldehyde increase the risk for cancer.
Why Should I Choose Professional Formaldehyde Testing?
Home formaldehyde testing kits are readily available, but professional testing is generally a better choice. Professional testers use high-end, professional equipment that is not available to the general public, and have the experience to help you accurately interpret the results. In addition, your testing professional can get instant results, backed up by lab results a few days later.
Why Should I Choose Same Day Inspection?
At Same Day Inspection, we are proud of our A rating with the Better Business Bureau. We are an established Florida company with a singular mission: to be the industry leader in property inspection while maintaining our top-quality customer service and on-time reputation. We offer a comprehensive suite of inspection services across the state of Florida.
If you are ready to have your home inspected by a local company that you can trust, we invite you to call Same Day Inspection at 877-216-3949 or schedule your inspection online today.