Today, most people recognize the potential health risks of many everyday products and choose to avoid them whenever possible. Flooring is no exception. The potential danger of chemical gases released from many floors can be overlooked. Thankfully, there are certifications in place that ensure flooring products are as clean and safe in style and wear as they are for your family.
What is FloorScore® Certification?
All products bearing FloorScore Certification are in compliance with California’s strict criteria regarding volatile organic compound emissions. Whether or not you live in California, it’s reassuring to know your new flooring won’t be harmful to anyone’s health. Essentially, the certification is important to anyone who cares about maintaining good indoor air quality (IAQ) in their home or business.
FloorScore certification is granted by SCS following unbiased testing and auditing. They are a trusted third-party group dedicated to driving environmentally sound, science-based standards. Certified flooring products contribute to preserving the quality of the air you breathe.
What are Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)?
Volatile organic compounds are released as gases from many materials as they gradually degrade over time. They’re released from carpeting, unsealed wood, paint, caulking, household and industrial cleaning supplies, pesticides and many other common products. While it’s impossible to eliminate VOCs entirely from your environment, you still want to prevent as much exposure to dangerous chemicals as possible.
Flooring is a particular concern simply because it takes up so much space. Paint cans and cleaning supplies can be stored in cabinets or the garage, but your flooring is literally always underfoot. The kids and pets lay on it. Everyone walks on it. Its harmful emissions are constantly being released throughout the home.
One example you may be familiar with is new car smell. Some people love it, others hate it. It’s actually the smell of gases being emitted from the plastic components in the car’s interior. Thankfully, certifications like FloorScore help ease the minds of new flooring buyers.
Reduce Your Family’s Exposure to Dangerous Chemicals
The EPA publishes a list of the health risks associated with many chemicals. Formaldehyde, for example, is often found in flooring that doesn’t qualify for FloorScore Certification. The EPA considers formaldehyde to be a probable human carcinogen and a source of other health risks.
In general, VOCs can cause a wide range of health issues including headaches, respiratory and gastrointestinal problems, liver, kidney and nerve damage and cancer. Many people are or become allergic to one or more of the VOCs releasing gases into the air they breathe at home or work.
Exposure symptoms can be subtle, such as constant fatigue, occasional dizziness or even memory problems. As is often the case, the young, old and those in poor health are most at risk.
While not all VOCs have been thoroughly studied, enough is known about the dangers presented by many of the most common, such as formaldehyde, that it’s worth doing all you can to reduce everyone’s exposure to dangerous chemicals.
FloorScore Certification Benefits Businesses
Contractors, architects and others benefit from green tax credits for qualifying projects by specifying and installing FloorScore certified flooring, underlayments and adhesives. Since FloorScore is the most recognized certification for these products, building projects will qualify for many green building schemes such as WELL, LEED v4, CHPS and BREEAM. Employers benefit by protecting the health of workers and customers when installing FloorScore products.
FloorScore Certification could even help you avoid potential lawsuits. Formaldehyde in laminate wood flooring, especially flooring coming from China, has generated class-action lawsuits against Lumber Liquidators, Floor & Decor, Lowe’s and Armstrong. Lumber Liquidators settled for $36 million.
Flooring with the FloorScore Certification is not only beautiful and durable, but promotes good indoor air quality. It’s safe for families, pets, employees and consumers. You’ll be glad you went the extra step to protect the health of others.
Stone Barn Floors is FloorScore® Certified
If you’re wondering why we told you about the all the harmful effects of certain toxic chemicals being released from flooring, it’s because ours is different. We’re proudly FloorScore certified and we take pride in our ability to provide exceptional quality flooring while keeping your family and pets safe.