The Truth About Formaldehyde
To start off, formaldehyde is in many types of daily house hold products, foods that we eat, and even in the “fresh air” that we breathe. All people are exposed to naturally occurring formaldehyde daily. In fact, the average person processes about 1.5 ounces of formaldehyde each day as part of normal human metabolism. Formaldehyde is normally present in human blood at a low steady-state concentration of approximately 1 to 2 parts-per-million. Other specific common products formaldehyde is used to create are hard capsules that are used to deliver drugs in the form of pills to millions of people worldwide. The formaldehyde-based pill coatings slow the dissolution of the capsule and promote maximum absorption of the medicine. Topical creams, cosmetics and personal hygiene products contain active ingredients that prevent the growth of potentially harmful bacteria. Some of these ingredients are derivatives of formaldehyde.
Polymaster has been the industry leader in providing safe and healthy foam insulation for decades. With our RetroFoam and R501 products we have set a new and better standard when it comes to formaldehyde content in foam insulation. Polymaster has succeeded in not just meeting federal standards but having products that have surpassed all the federal standards in the US, Canada, and Europe.
To understand why concerns are raised in respects to formaldehyde is important in making any decision about building products you will be putting in your home or any other product you would buy. The first and main thing to know about formaldehyde is that it is naturally occurring in almost all the products that we use and what makes it a health concern are the levels which are released from those products. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have standards for workplace exposures to formaldehyde. These comprehensive health standards include limits on permissible exposures, requirements for monitoring employee exposures in the workplace, protective measures – including engineering controls, medical surveillance and communication – and training about hazards. Three agencies – U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) – have addressed indoor air exposure to formaldehyde that come from building products such as wood in furniture and construction. These levels are measured in parts per million or ppm.
OSHA has set permissible levels so that the employer shall assure that no employee is exposed to an airborne concentration of formaldehyde which exceeds 0.75 parts formaldehyde per million parts of air (0.75 ppm) in an 8-hour work day and short-term exposure levels at 2 ppm. RetroFoam has official ASTM D 5116 testing listing both the empty chamber background air levels before the test begins and the foam sample air levels after the test with formaldehyde at less than 0.016 ppm for both. This means the test results show no change in formaldehyde air levels when foam sample is put into test chamber. To give you further perspective, second-hand cigarette smoke has .23 ppm and a directly smoking a cigarette contains 40 ppm of formaldehyde. Other foods that contain naturally occurring formaldehyde are apples, milk, and salmon which has a .1 ppm formaldehyde level.
As you can see Polymaster’s products fall well under federal standards and are even lower than many common day products which is why we are the leader in succeeding our industry standards. We are able to do this through our patented formulations and resin drying processes which nearly remove all the formaldehyde in our resins before the foam is actually made and installed into your home. So when it comes to choosing injection foam, RetroFoam and R501 are to be the easy choice.