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High Levels of Formaldehyde Cause Major IAQ Problems across Chicago and Northern Illinois


The building consulting experts at EC2 supply decades of environmental and indoor air quality (IAQ) experience to identify formaldehyde and other volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that endanger building occupants.

Formaldehyde is a commonly used chemical found in many consumer products and building materials. It can be found in such products as plywood, carpeting, paint and insulation to name a few items. Formaldehyde is also a by-product of combustion and other industrial processes.

In new construction, and in recently remodeled buildings, the new building materials, coatings and furnishing often off-gas high levels of formaldehyde and other VOCs. The World Health Organization’s (WHO) International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified formaldehyde as a known human carcinogen. The health effects associated with elevated levels of formaldehyde exposure have been closely studied in recent years and have brought to light the dangers from prolonged and repeated exposure.

Exposure to elevated levels of formaldehyde can also trigger asthma attacks, nausea, watery eyes, headaches and difficulty breathing as well as other health problems. The current “permissible exposure limits” (PELs) for formaldehyde in the workplace are 0.75 parts per million (ppm) as an 8 hour time-weighted average (TWA). This means that exposures for an 8 hour work day should not exceed 0.75 ppm PEL.

“The length of exposure to formaldehyde, or to other VOCs, and the overall health of those being exposed are all factors that determine how building occupants will react when exposed,” reported Ed Chambers, President of EC2, Inc. (ec2). “Residential and commercial property owners in the greater Chicago area and Northern Illinois call on ec2 as the experts when problems with indoor air quality, formaldehyde or other VOCs occur.”

EC2, with over 4,000 IAQ investigations successfully resolved to date, has the experience and knowledge to quickly solve clients’ IAQ problems. People interested in learning more about environmental, IAQ and building science issues can follow ec2 on Twitter at To learn more about ec2 please visit, email or call (815) 703-9000.

About EC2, Inc.
EC2 is a leading provider of environmental consulting and inspection services for clients across the United States. Based in the Chicago area, the company provides their services to clients ranging from local companies and institutions to international Fortune 500 corporations.


 Indoor Air Quality
 Volatile Organic Compound

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