1. What is formaldehyde?
Formaldehyde is a colourless, reactive, strong-smelling gas at room temperature. It is one chemical in a large family of chemical compounds called volatile organic compounds. It can manufacture as a liquid (formalin) or a solid (paraformaldehyde). Formaldehyde is an important industrial chemical used to make other chemicals and different types of products, such as home furnishings, household cleaners, paints, and so on. Formaldehyde is the main compound of adhesives used in particleboard, plywood, MDF.
Formaldehyde can be released into the air (off-gas) from materials and products made with it.
Formaldehyde is the main compound of adhesives used in particleboard, plywood, MDF
2. Why Should You Be Concerned?
Caution of Formaldehyde
Formaldehyde exposure may potentially cause a variety of symptoms and adverse health effects, such as eye, nose, throat, and skin irritation, coughing, wheezing, and allergic reactions. Long-term exposure to high levels of formaldehyde has associated with cancer in humans and laboratory animals.
Formaldehyde is just one of several gases present indoors that may cause adverse health effects and illnesses. Many other gases, as well as respiratory illnesses (e.g., colds and the flu), can cause similar symptoms to those caused by formaldehyde.
3. The standard for formaldehyde emission
Each country has different regulation, and Germany issued the first one, later cited as a European standard. It regulates the allowed concentration of formaldehyde in the product. Standard E0, E1, E2 are representative of the level of Formaldehyde Emissions.
E0 formaldehyde release is less than 0.5mg/L.
E1 formaldehyde release is less than 1.5mg/L.
E2 formaldehyde release is less than 5.0mg/L.
Two widespread regulation about formaldehyde emission:
CARB2 – California Air Resources Board’s (CARB) Phase 2. CARB2 stands for the California Air Resources Board’s (CARB) Phase 2 implement in United State, it a stringent standard for formaldehyde emissions from composite wood products, including hardwood plywood (HWPW), particleboard (PB), and medium-density fiberboard (MDF)
Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) Regulations. Manufacturers exporting to the European Union (EU), or operating within the EU should be aware of the REACH regulation. Effective June 1, 2007, it is regarded as the strictest in the world about chemicals (e.g., glues, resins, etc.) used in the manufacture of a wide variety of products.