Certain Sofas May Pose Mortal Dangers. Here’s Why

An Environment International study found that some older couches may be emitting a potentially carcinogenic dust.

For homeowners who also happen to be pet lovers, few things are more frustrating than the constant war between a sofa’s well-kept appearance and the furry friends who shed on it. But as it turns out, we may have more to fear from what our couches themselves are emitting—especially for fans of ’70s vintage design.
That revelation comes courtesy of newly published research in Environment International, which analyzed in-home dust samples to determine that sofas made between 1975 and at least 2013 have a tendency to disperse what can amount to carcinogenic dust. The culprit? Flame retardant (or “F.R.”) chemicals, which the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences says may cause cancer in addition to posing other adverse health effects. In a handful of the dust samples collected across more than 20 households available for all four measurement periods of the study, multiple flame retardants were found in concentrations greater than 1,000 parts per million.

Somewhat surprisingly—given the state’s now stringent use of carcinogen warning labels—California is responsible for the widespread popularity of these flame-retardant chemicals. Back in 1975, the state passed a law mandating that the cushioning inside upholstered furniture must withstand 12 seconds of contact with an open flame. Hitting that benchmark required a significant use of chemical flame retardants.
Because California was such a sizable market, which also happened to import a hefty share of America’s furniture products, manufacturers essentially treated California’s flammability requirements (otherwise known as Technical Bulletin 117) as the de facto nationwide standard. Over the years, design breakthroughs to block oxygen and smother fires before they start made it so that such F.R. chemicals were no longer necessary, leading California to overturn its mandate in late 2013. Starting the following year, non-F.R.-laden upholstered furniture was much more readily available. However, all F.R.s have not been banned nationwide.

The good news is that reducing the amounts of carcinogenic F.R.s is simply a matter of redecorating. The study’s methodology centered on Northern California households with plans to replace an older couch. Its findings indicate that simply swapping out the offending sofa—or even just its upholstered cushions—is all it takes to breathe a little easier. The presence of flame retardants decreased significantly in samples collected six months after the old couches hit the curb. What is more, these positive changes in household dust persisted in samples taken both a year and 18 months later. The study’s discussion section also postulates that vacuuming (ideally using a HEPA filter) may have helped lower F.R. concentration upon couch replacement.

So what should you look out for in order to determine whether a sofa is F.R. free? As the research notes, furniture bearing a “TB117-2013” tag, which describes furniture manufactured after California changed its standards, is associated with lower flame retardant levels. Californians may find a second tag that explicitly requires the furniture to state if its material contains flame retardants, though it’s not required outside the state. It’s worth noting that the study drew from a relatively small sample size outside of a controlled laboratory environment. But if you or your client have been looking for one more reason to swap out that old sofa for something new, then well, nothing is more important than your health.

Credit: This article is by TIM NELSON and originally from AD. And here is the link: https://apple.news/AWGj2NabiRQ23wC-dwBAuVQ

Plan to refresh your home in 2021:

Click here to explore Our Store

Click here to check out our Design Download Options

Need a Good HEPA Certified air-filter:

Kaiterra Laser Egg+ Chemical: Indoor Air Quality Monitor (Tracks PM2.5, Fine Dust, Chemicals (TVOCs), Temperature, and Humidity)

Indoor Air Quality Monitor

Coway AP-1512HH White HEPA Air Purifier, 16.8 x 18.3 x 9.6

Coway Airmega 200M

Coway AP-1512HH Mighty Air Purifier with True HEPA and Eco Mode

Coway AP-1512HH Mighty Air Purifier with True HEPA and Eco Mode
Coway AP-1512HH Mighty Air Purifier with True HEPA and Eco Mode

Winix 5500-2

Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier with True HEPA, PlasmaWave and Odor Reducing Washable AOC Carbon Filter

Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier with True HEPA, PlasmaWave and Odor Reducing Washable AOC Carbon Filter
Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier with True HEPA, PlasmaWave and Odor Reducing Washable AOC Carbon Filter

Winix AM90 or AM80HomePod Mini

Winix AM90 Wi-Fi Air Purifier, 360sq ft Room Capacity, Amazon Alexa and Dash Replenishment Enabled

Winix AM90 Wi-Fi Air Purifier, 360sq ft Room Capacity, Amazon Alexa and Dash Replenishment Enabled
Winix AM90 Wi-Fi Air Purifier, 360sq ft Room Capacity, Amazon Alexa and Dash Replenishment Enabled

Or please feel free to email us for our design service.

Happy Tuesday

http://www.khkdesignsinteriors.com

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.