hour Emergency Service
Health Concerns of Toxic Chinese Drywall
There have been
a number of news articles recently reporting cases of Toxic Chinese
Drywall. "Toxic" may be a bit of a media overstatement, but
several independent laboratories have confirmed the presence of harmful
fumes emanating from Chinese-made drywall. In the right environment,
these fumes can damage property and may cause health problems.
Studies show that
Chinese drywall has the potential to off-gas various fumes and vapors
- at least some of which are sulfur-based. In a closed environment,
which many homes have today, these gases accumulate and concentrate
in the indoor atmosphere. When these fumes come in contact with moisture
on sweating plumbing pipes or air conditioning coils, a sulfur compound
is formed that includes sulfuric acid. This compound corrodes the coils,
turning them black, and eventually causing damage. It also attacks the
solder joints of copper plumbing, copper wiring, and other metal in
the home. Many homes have had air conditioning systems repaired or replaced
because of accumulated corrosive damage to those systems.
In addition, the
potential for harm to people and animals is also a real concern. Homeowners
have reported symptoms, such as nosebleeds, itchy eyes, and respiratory
problems. Health concerns increase for those who may be particularly
susceptible, such as the very young, the very old, those already ill,
and persons using immunosuppressant drugs.
that Toxic Chinese Drywall is a wide-scale problem. Importation dates
are between 2000 and 2007, but installation of these materials could
have occurred after that time. Chinese drywall has been used throughout
the states of California, Florida, Georgia, the Gulf States region,
the Northeast, the Southwest, and many other areas of the United States.
Hundreds of thousands of homes may be affected.
Indications of the
presence of Chinese drywall in a home include:
usually associated with a rotten
Metal in the
home that is turning black or being
pitted, with no other obvious cause, such as
pipes, wiring, light fixtures, belt buckles,
jewelry, mirrors, picture frames, etc.
If a home was built
or remodeled after 2000 and the above indicators are present, then there
is likelihood Chinese drywall is in the home. A homeowner should contact
a qualified professional with indoor air quality or air testing credentials.
Referral lists are available online at sites such as www.iaqa.org. Certified
professionals have the expertise and the equipment to collect and analyze
samples to measure the presence and the concentration level of toxic
compounds. Proper identification is a key factor to determine potential
property damage and health concerns
If someone has health
questions or problems related to Toxic Chinese Drywall, they should
contact their healthcare provider for evaluation and assistance.
If restoration work
is required, it is important to call a professional mitigation/restoration
company such as PuroClean. PuroClean professionals are certified and
fully trained. They will adhere to all safety requirements when working
around contaminated materials. They will ensure that there is no cross-contamination
of these toxic materials or fumes inside of the structure, and that
all removed materials and cleaning solutions are disposed of in the
proper manner, as required by regulations.
Regardless of the
circumstances - dealing with Toxic Chinese Drywall, responding to water
damage, fire/smoke damage, or mold damage - call PuroClean Home Rescue,
the Paramedics of Property Damage. For all property damage situations,
these professionals are standing by. They will mitigate the loss to
prevent further damage and will then provide restoration services to
return the property to a pre-loss condition as quickly as possible.
All PuroClean offices have well-trained professional technicians who
provide the latest state-of-the-science services to all property damaged
from water, fire, smoke, mold, and other disasters.