Some people find the scent of a brand new carpet is a pleasant memory of a recent home renovation. For others, however it’s a noxious smell that could render a space virtually impossible to use. Whatever your feelings about it, the new carpet smells aren’t the best air you breathe and it’s logical to eliminate it from your home as quickly as you can. If you follow the correct method you’ll be able to rid yourself of the smell in two or three weeks or less, if not earlier.
What’s It That Smell?
The smell of new carpeting is caused by chemical compounds called volatile organic compounds (VOCs). This broad class of chemicals comprises a variety which are commonly used in the production of household goods like vinyl flooring, paint and furniture made from pressed wood.
In this instance, volatile is the term used to describe their ability to evaporate at temperatures of room temperature. When a carpet is being installed, it gradually releases or off-gasses chemical residues, these chemicals are released into the air, where they are able to be detected. In a matter of days or some weeks, the gasses dissipate and the carpet ceases to smell.
The VOCs responsible for the new carpet smells is the 4-phenylcyclohexene (4-PCH) and less frequently and in a lesser degree, Styrene. They are typically derived from the synthetic latex that is in the carpet’s backing and also from carpet padding as well as adhesives that are used to fix the carpet in place during installation. Water repellents, dyes, anti-static substances, and various chemical auxiliary substances could also introduce VOCs in your residence, if they weren’t completely removed during the manufacturing process.
Being Secure Around New Carpet
Carpets come with some of the most low VOC emitting substances of any material used in the home There are carpets with low VOC levels and even without VOC for those who don’t want to be confronted with the smell of new carpets even. The padding and adhesives emit slightly higher levels of emissions, but because carpet covers large areas and is often one of the major sources of VOCs inside the house.
But, the amount of VOCs the carpet releases isn’t likely to affect a person’s health, and there’s no evidence of a connection between the 4-PCH compound and any negative health consequences. It’s safe in the event that you adhere to the instructions of the carpet manufacturer which typically recommend venting the newly-installed carpeted space for three days but not using the space during that duration.
Particularly sensitive individuals or those suffering from health issues like asthma, VOCs can cause headaches, nausea dizziness, headaches nose and throat irritation. If you experience any of these signs or do not like the chemical smell, you should consider making the more effort to remove the smell from your air.
Cleansing Your Air of the New Carpet Smell
The first step to reduce the VOCs that a new carpet introduces to the home of yours is to select carpets that are low-VOC or no-VOC. Choose carpets that have those with the Green Label and Green Label Plus labels from the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI). This indicates that the carpet has extremely low emissions. Selecting carpets made of natural dyes and materials such as wool dyed with natural or plant-dyed shades can also help.
Ask your installer to use an installation technique that isn’t adhesive like floating installation. If this isn’t an option you can ask them to use low-VOC adhesives. When the carpet is laid remove it from a dry, well-ventilated space for a couple of days prior to. If possible, you should tack it down so that it stays flat. This allows the carpet to release all of its chemical vapors out of the house.
If your carpet will be part of the larger remodeling task, be patient as you can until you are able to have the carpet installed. So that your carpet doesn’t take in VOCs from other substances and materials, like paint.
After the carpet has been installed Then, you should ventilate the space to the max until you don’t have a smell or odor, or at least for 72 hours. The windows should be opened and the ventilators inside the space set at their maximum settings. Make sure that the door shut to the room.
Then, providing your carpet with a thorough vacuum might suffice to get rid of any smells that are still around. If not the case, apply baking soda to the carpet and let it sit for at least 24 hours, and then vacuum once more. Baking soda absorbs some of chemical fumes that are released into the air.
If the odor is really strong steam cleaning may help by cleaning any chemical residues that could remain in the carpet’s fibers. Utilizing a basic steamer available at a home improvement shop can be a good starting point however, an expert carpet cleaning service is even more efficient.
To eliminate the new carpet smells that are lingering in air, you can use a portable air purifier equipped with activated carbon filters which is able to filter out gaseous air contaminants. It is also possible to find activated carbon filters that are specifically designed to be used in your air conditioning system. When you have one installed you will be able to run the A/C system to help ventilate your newly carpeted area more quickly. Air filters for fiber media, HEPA filters, and electronic air cleaners aren’t effective against airborne VOCs, therefore select your air purifier wisely.
Some plants, like Boston fern as well as bamboo palm and English Ivy, help to break down some VOCs within the air, making them an excellent addition to your home and can help to reduce odors that leak out from your freshly carpeted space.
If your carpet emits a stench it’s likely that you have no reason to be concerned. The tiny amount of chemical present in the odor are unlikely to make you sick The odor will disappear within one or two weeks as it is ventilated properly the space. If the new carpet smell makes you sick or is just unpleasant to live with, then steam cleaning, vacuuming and using an activated carbon air purifier can help make your air more clean.