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How do I Choose the Best Low VOC Materials?

Article Details
  • Written By: Harriette Halepis
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 15 May 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2018
    Conjecture Corporation
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Finding materials and products that contain a low VOC level used to be impossible. Today, many different manufacturers are beginning to create products that do not contain a large amount of VOCs. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) are toxic gasses that can be found inside a number of different household products, building materials, and everyday items such as furniture.

As consumers become more and more aware of the harmful effects of VOCs, manufacturers have begun creating products to meet this consumer demand. While larger companies have fabricated some low VOC products, most of these products are produced by mid-sized companies. Therefore, consumers seeking to purchase products that are low in VOC should look to medium sized companies.

Even though paint products have gained media attention in regards to VOC, there are many other products that contain these harmful chemicals as well. In fact, an astronomical number of building materials are high in VOC. To purchase building materials that are have low VOC levels, contractors and consumers must do a bit of careful research. Generally, those building material manufacturers that create low VOC products are independently rated by "green" review companies.

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Thus, those manufacturers that have been found to create green products will display this rating clearly. Building suppliers that only stock green building materials can be found on the Internet, and contractors that only use green building materials can be found by conducting a quick Internet search. As a consumer, you can be sure that your home or office will be built with non-VOC materials if you take the time to purchase green building materials.

As far as consumer products go, attempting to avoid products containing high levels of VOC is easier than it ever has been. Simply take the time to read the label of each household product carefully. Those products that do not contain VOC, or contain a small amount of VOC, will have a "Zero VOC" rating; paint and paint thinners that do not contain VOC can be found in the same manner.

Many researchers around the globe are attempting to link volatile organic compounds with certain illnesses including various forms of cancer. While these hypotheses have not been completely proven, consumers are advised to steer clear of products containing high VOC levels. Further, as a result of unknown VOC harm, green building programs have set out to create new structures that are entirely free of harmful compounds. Search for low VOC products and building materials in stores and online in order to create a breathable space that's free of toxins.

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