What is a VOC Rating and does my bamboo floor contain Formaldehyde?

You may have seen or heard the words “No VOC” or “Low VOC” when referring to bamboo flooring and adhesives.

VOC (volatile organic compounds) are chemicals or solvents that vaporise under high pressure and it can be extremely hazardous, causing headaches, coughing, asthma, pneumonia and other health problems. For this reason, it’s important that you take every precaution to reduce the amount of VOC’s in your home.

Formaldehyde is a compound chemical made up of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen and it can be found in household products, furniture and flooring. Some people may have no reaction, while others can experience skin rash, wheezing, coughing, headaches or more serious, life threatening symptoms.

Far too often, the bamboo is manufactured quickly and cheaply. The glue that most of the bamboo flooring manufacturers use is a Urea-formaldehyde resin which will emit gas and cause health issues. They also use cheap and toxic coatings of finish. The end product is bamboo flooring which will sell cheap but is detrimental to people’s health and unfortunately it’s giving bamboo a bad name.

Image of chemical test results

The best manufacturers use glues with no added urea-formaldehyde and water-based, solvent-free finishes. If you are considering bamboo flooring make sure you get all the facts before you buy:

  1. Enquire about VOC and formaldehyde emissions from the specific distributor;
  2. Ask for a material safety data sheet;
  3. Compare products;
  4. Stick with reputable brands.

A2Z Group’s bamboo flooring is fully tested and certified, and has one of the lowest formaldehyde emission levels at only 0.02ppm (parts per million), Ec0 Standard, which is below recommended World Health Organisation Levels. A2Z Group uses only European made adhesives that easily meet the strict European standard for indoor air quality. The product is pre-finished with six coats of anti-scratch superior topcoats (German Klumm and Treffert).

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