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Informed™ Product Explorer

Use the search bar below or click on a division to explore. Then do an assessment to share with clients and certification programs using the Assessment Form.

We are testing the Product Guidance in a new format. The Informed Product Explorer includes a subset of the products found in the Product Guidance pages. New product types may be added in future updates.

Step up from red — a critical first move. Next, prefer product types ranked yellow and green.

Green
Best in Class
Light green
Better
Yellow
Good
Orange
Reduce
Light red
Eliminate
Red
Worst in Class

Did you know that some composite wood materials require much more binder (and emit more formaldehyde) than others? You can reduce the amount of binder in your cabinetry and help protect building occupants. By reducing the amount of hazardous chemicals used in the manufacturing process you can help protect communities near manufacturing sites.

When it comes to casework, we've outlined a few things you should know regarding wood substrates.

Quick Tips:

  • Binders in composite wood are often formaldehyde-based
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • Use No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) composite woods when possible
  • Plywood has the least amount of binder of composite woods, 3.5% by weight
  • MDF is 10% binder by weight and particleboard is 12% binder by weight
  • Use solid wood components when available
  • Use cabinets made with a hardwood plywood box
  • Opt for hardwood plywood shelving instead of particleboard
  • Use solid wood veneer facings over laminate
  • Use solid wood veneer over thermofoil
  • Specify casework that is pre-finished to avoid painting or staining on-site

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Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 06 40 00 Architectural Woodwork

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 06 40 00 Architectural Woodwork

Did you know that some composite wood materials require much more binder (and emit more formaldehyde) than others? You can reduce the amount of binder in your cabinetry and help protect building occupants. By reducing the amount of hazardous chemicals used in the manufacturing process you can help protect communities near manufacturing sites.

When it comes to casework, we've outlined a few things you should know regarding wood substrates.

Quick Tips:

  • Binders in composite wood are often formaldehyde-based
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • Use No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) composite woods when possible
  • Plywood has the least amount of binder of composite woods, 3.5% by weight
  • MDF is 10% binder by weight
  • Use solid wood components when available
  • Use cabinets made with a hardwood plywood box
  • Opt for hardwood plywood shelving instead of particleboard
  • Use solid wood veneer facings over laminate
  • Use solid wood veneer over thermofoil
  • Specify casework that is pre-finished to avoid painting or staining on-site

Back to 06 40 00 Architectural Woodwork

Congrats! You're in the green!

By choosing solid wood components, you can reduce the amount of binder in your cabinetry and reduce the amount of hazardous chemicals used in the manufacturing process which can help protect communities near manufacturing sites.

Solid wood components are a great choice from a health perspective and can have additional benefits.

Quick Tips:

  • Solid wood components reduces the amount of binder
  • Binders are often formaldehyde-based
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • Solid wood cabinet doors may have a higher up-front cost, bit they are more durable than composites

Back to 06 41 00 Architectural Wood Casework

Did you know that wood veneer faced cabinets are preferable to plastic laminate clad cabinets because laminates are made with resins that can emit formaldehyde over time? Some cabinets may offer polyvinyl chloride (PVC) edge-banding to treat unfinished edges as well. Be aware that PVC edge-banding is a Chlorinated plastic, and is NEVER a healthy material, especially in its manufacturing and disposal.

Quick Tips:

  • Wood veneer faced cabinets are preferable to plastic laminate clad cabinets
  • Use solid wood where possible, such as door and drawer fronts
  • If you are using composite wood for any part of the construction use plywood
  • Use No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) composite wood
  • Specify casework arrive pre-finished to avoid painting or staining on-site
  • Avoid thermofoil finishes, which are vinyl (PVC)
  • Avoid PVC edge-banding

Back to 06 41 00 Architectural Wood Casework

Did you know that HDF uses more binder than plywood? More binder means more formaldehyde. Reducing binders helps protect building occupants from emissions and reduces the amount of hazardous chemicals used in manufacturing which helps protect communities near manufacturing sites.

Quick Tips:

  • Revise your project to use plywood or solid wood
  • Use solid wood components when possible, such as for door and drawer fronts
  • Avoid HDF
  • Plywood is preferred over HDF
  • Use composite wood that confirms No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 13 Wood-Veneer-Faced Architectural Cabinets

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods have different formaldehyde emission limits? California Air Resources Board (CARB) Phase II / TSCA Title VI regulations sets different limits; plywood products having the strictest formaldehyde emission limit of the standard. The limits are: 0.05 ppm for hardwood plywood, 0.09 ppm for particleboard, 0.11 ppm for MDF, and 0.13 ppm for thin MDF.

Quick Tips:

  • No need to memorize CARB limits, just prefer plywood when possible
  • Plywood products meet the strictest formaldehyde emission limit
  • Plywood uses less binder which keeps formaldehyde emissions low
  • Use composite wood with No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 13.xx High Density Fiberboard (HDF) Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Did you know that No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) binders are typically soy- or isocyanate-based? Soy-based binders come from soy flour and petrochemicals and use some hazardous chemicals in their lifecycle. So, while these impacts can't be ignored, NAF binders help avoid the use of resins based on formaldehyde - a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time and have impacts on fenceline communities during manufacturing.

When it comes to composite wood, NAF binders are worth preferring.

Quick Tips:

  • NAF stands for No Added Formaldehyde
  • NAF composite wood with this designation means binders do not contain formaldehyde
  • NAF binders aren't perfect, but they help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Formaldehyde use impacts fenceline communities during manufacturing
  • NAF binder are typically soy- or isocyanate-based
  • Isocyanate-based binders can be hazardous to workers; isocyanates have been identified as a leading cause of work-related asthma

Back to 06 41 13.xx High Density Fiberboard (HDF) Substrate

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods labeled No Added Urea Formaldehyde (NAUF) can still contain phenol formaldehyde (PF)? While PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than Urea Formaldehyde (UF), they are not free of those emissions.

Quick Tips:

  • NAUF stands for No Added Urea Formaldehyde
  • A NAUF composite wood can still contain formaldehyde compounds
  • PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than UF, but still emit
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Revise your project to use a yellow ranked composite wood or a solid wood component

Back to 06 41 13.xx High Density Fiberboard (HDF) Substrate

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that in addition to containing small amounts of unreacted formaldehyde, urea formaldehyde resins can degrade over time generating and emitting even more formaldehyde?

Quick Tips:

  • Standard urea formaldehyde resins should no longer be used
  • Hardwood plywood, medium density fiberboard (MDF), and particleboard must meet national requirements limiting formaldehyde emissions according to TSCA Title VI
  • Urea formaldehyde degrades and can release formaldehyde into interior spaces long after installation
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • Revise your project to use a yellow ranked composite wood or a solid wood component

Back to 06 41 13.xx High Density Fiberboard (HDF) Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Do you know what a scavenger additive is? These are chemicals that react with formaldehyde, released over time from urea formaldehyde resins, to lower emissions. This means urea formaldehyde can still be in the product, but it passes regulation. It is worth understanding that the effectiveness of these scavenger additives may be diminished by hot temperatures or high humidity.

Quick Tips:

  • ULEF stands for Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde
  • ULEF requires demonstrating emission levels are consistently well below legal limits
  • Products that meet ULEF requirements may use urea formaldehyde binders (UF) with scavenger additives
  • Products with UF binders may release formaldehyde above limits in hot and/or humid spaces
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen

Back to 06 41 13.xx High Density Fiberboard (HDF) Substrate

Did you know that MDF is 10% binder by weight? That's far more than plywood which is 3.5% by weight. More binders mean more formaldehyde. Reducing binders helps protect building occupants from emissions and reduces the amount of hazardous chemicals used in manufacturing which helps protect communities near manufacturing sites.

Quick Tips:

  • Binders in composite wood are often formaldehyde-based
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • MDF is 10% binder by weight
  • Revise your project to use plywood or solid wood
  • Use solid wood components when possible for door and drawer fronts
  • Plywood is preferred option over MDF
  • Use composite wood that confirms No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 13 Wood-Veneer-Faced Architectural Cabinets

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods have different formaldehyde emission limits? California Air Resources Board (CARB) Phase II / TSCA Title VI regulations sets different limits; plywood products having the strictest formaldehyde emission limit of the standard. The limits are: 0.05 ppm for hardwood plywood, 0.09 ppm for particleboard, 0.11 ppm for MDF, and 0.13 ppm for thin MDF.

Quick Tips:

  • No need to memorize CARB limits, just prefer plywood when possible
  • Plywood products meet the strictest formaldehyde emission limit
  • Plywood uses less binder which keeps formaldehyde emissions low
  • Use composite wood with No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 13.xx Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Did you know that No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) binders are typically soy- or isocyanate-based? Soy-based binders come from soy flour and petrochemicals and use some hazardous chemicals in their lifecycle. So, while these impacts can't be ignored, NAF binders help avoid the use of resins based on formaldehyde - a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time and have impacts on fenceline communities during manufacturing.

When it comes to composite wood, NAF binders are worth preferring.

Quick Tips:

  • NAF stands for No Added Formaldehyde
  • NAF composite wood with this designation means binders do not contain formaldehyde
  • NAF binders aren't perfect, but they help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Formaldehyde use impacts fenceline communities during manufacturing
  • NAF binder are typically soy- or isocyanate-based
  • Isocyanate-based binders can be hazardous to workers; isocyanates have been identified as a leading cause of work-related asthma

Back to 06 41 13.xx Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) Substrate

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods labeled No Added Urea Formaldehyde (NAUF) can still contain phenol formaldehyde (PF)? While PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than Urea Formaldehyde (UF), they are not free of those emissions.

Quick Tips:

  • NAUF stands for No Added Urea Formaldehyde
  • A NAUF composite wood can still contain formaldehyde compounds
  • PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than UF, but still emit
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Revise your project to use a yellow ranked composite wood or a solid wood component

Back to 06 41 13.xx Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) Substrate

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that in addition to containing small amounts of unreacted formaldehyde, urea formaldehyde resins can degrade over time generating and emitting even more formaldehyde?

Quick Tips:

  • Standard urea formaldehyde resins should no longer be used
  • Hardwood plywood, medium density fiberboard (MDF), and particleboard must meet national requirements limiting formaldehyde emissions according to TSCA Title VI
  • Urea formaldehyde degrades and can release formaldehyde into interior spaces long after installation
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • Revise your project to use a yellow ranked composite wood or a solid wood component

Back to 06 41 13.xx Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Do you know what a scavenger additive is? These are chemicals that react with formaldehyde, released over time from urea formaldehyde resins, to lower emissions. This means urea formaldehyde can still be in the product, but it passes regulation. It is worth understanding that the effectiveness of these scavenger additives may be diminished by hot temperatures or high humidity.

Quick Tips:

  • ULEF stands for Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde
  • ULEF requires demonstrating emission levels are consistently well below legal limits
  • Products that meet ULEF requirements may use urea formaldehyde binders (UF) with scavenger additives
  • Products with UF binders may release formaldehyde above limits in hot and/or humid spaces
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen

Back to 06 41 13.xx Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) Substrate

Did you know that particleboard uses more binder than any other composite wood - 12% binder by weight? More binders meand more formaldehyde. Reducing binders helps protect building occupants from emissions and reduces the amount of hazardous chemicals used in manufacturing which helps protect communities near manufacturing sites.

Quick Tips:

  • Particleboard uses more binder than any other composite wood - 12% binder by weight
  • Revise your project to use plywood or solid wood
  • Plywood is preferred over particleboard
  • Use composite wood that confirms No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 13 Wood-Veneer-Faced Architectural Cabinets

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods have different formaldehyde emission limits? California Air Resources Board (CARB) Phase II / TSCA Title VI regulations sets different limits; plywood products having the strictest formaldehyde emission limit of the standard. The limits are: 0.05 ppm for hardwood plywood, 0.09 ppm for particleboard, 0.11 ppm for MDF, and 0.13 ppm for thin MDF.

Quick Tips:

  • No need to memorize CARB limits, just prefer plywood when possible
  • Plywood products meet the strictest formaldehyde emission limit
  • Plywood uses less binder which keeps formaldehyde emissions low
  • Use composite wood with No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 13.xx Particleboard Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Did you know that No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) binders are typically soy- or isocyanate-based? Soy-based binders come from soy flour and petrochemicals and use some hazardous chemicals in their lifecycle. So, while these impacts can't be ignored, NAF binders help avoid the use of resins based on formaldehyde - a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time and have impacts on fenceline communities during manufacturing.

When it comes to composite wood, NAF binders are worth preferring.

Quick Tips:

  • NAF stands for No Added Formaldehyde
  • NAF composite wood with this designation means binders do not contain formaldehyde
  • NAF binders aren't perfect, but they help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Formaldehyde use impacts fenceline communities during manufacturing
  • NAF binder are typically soy- or isocyanate-based
  • Isocyanate-based binders can be hazardous to workers; isocyanates have been identified as a leading cause of work-related asthma

Back to 06 41 13.xx Particleboard Substrate

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods labeled No Added Urea Formaldehyde (NAUF) can still contain phenol formaldehyde (PF)? While PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than Urea Formaldehyde (UF), they are not free of those emissions.

Quick Tips:

  • NAUF stands for No Added Urea Formaldehyde
  • A NAUF composite wood can still contain formaldehyde compounds
  • PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than UF, but still emit
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Revise your project to use a yellow ranked composite wood or a solid wood component

Back to 06 41 13.xx Particleboard Substrate

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that in addition to containing small amounts of unreacted formaldehyde, urea formaldehyde resins can degrade over time generating and emitting even more formaldehyde?

Quick Tips:

  • Standard urea formaldehyde resins should no longer be used
  • Hardwood plywood, medium density fiberboard (MDF), and particleboard must meet national requirements limiting formaldehyde emissions according to TSCA Title VI
  • Urea formaldehyde degrades and can release formaldehyde into interior spaces long after installation
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • Revise your project to use a yellow ranked composite wood or a solid wood component

Back to 06 41 13.xx Particleboard Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Do you know what a scavenger additive is? These are chemicals that react with formaldehyde, released over time from urea formaldehyde resins, to lower emissions. This means urea formaldehyde can still be in the product, but it passes regulation. It is worth understanding that the effectiveness of these scavenger additives may be diminished by hot temperatures or high humidity.

Quick Tips:

  • ULEF stands for Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde
  • ULEF requires demonstrating emission levels are consistently well below legal limits
  • Products that meet ULEF requirements may use urea formaldehyde binders (UF) with scavenger additives
  • Products with UF binders may release formaldehyde above limits in hot and/or humid spaces
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen

Back to 06 41 13.xx Particleboard Substrate

Did you know that plywood uses less binder (and emits less formaldehyde) than other composite wood material? Plywood is a great choice for components or substrates used in constructing cabinets. By using plywood over other composite wood you can reduce chemical impacts for building occupants, workers at manufacturing facilities, and fenceline communities.

Quick Tips:

  • Plywood uses less binder (and emits less formaldehyde) than other composite wood material
  • Plywood is 3.5% binder by weight
  • MDF is 10% binder by weight
  • Particleboard is 12% binder by weight
  • Use plywood that confirms No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 13 Wood-Veneer-Faced Architectural Cabinets

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods have different formaldehyde emission limits? California Air Resources Board (CARB) Phase II / TSCA Title VI regulations sets different limits; plywood products having the strictest formaldehyde emission limit of the standard. The limits are: 0.05 ppm for hardwood plywood, 0.09 ppm for particleboard, 0.11 ppm for MDF, and 0.13 ppm for thin MDF.

Quick Tips:

  • No need to memorize CARB limits, just prefer plywood when possible
  • Plywood products meet the strictest formaldehyde emission limit
  • Plywood uses less binder which keeps formaldehyde emissions low
  • Use composite wood with No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 13.xx Plywood Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Did you know that No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) binders are typically soy- or isocyanate-based? Soy-based binders come from soy flour and petrochemicals and use some hazardous chemicals in their lifecycle. So, while these impacts can't be ignored, NAF binders help avoid the use of resins based on formaldehyde - a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time and have impacts on fenceline communities during manufacturing.

When it comes to composite wood, NAF binders are worth preferring.

Quick Tips:

  • NAF stands for No Added Formaldehyde
  • NAF composite wood with this designation means binders do not contain formaldehyde
  • NAF binders aren't perfect, but they help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Formaldehyde use impacts fenceline communities during manufacturing
  • NAF binder are typically soy- or isocyanate-based
  • Isocyanate-based binders can be hazardous to workers; isocyanates have been identified as a leading cause of work-related asthma

Back to 06 41 13.xx Plywood Substrate

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods labeled No Added Urea Formaldehyde (NAUF) can still contain phenol formaldehyde (PF)? While PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than Urea Formaldehyde (UF), they are not free of those emissions.

Quick Tips:

  • NAUF stands for No Added Urea Formaldehyde
  • A NAUF composite wood can still contain formaldehyde compounds
  • PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than UF, but still emit
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Revise your project to use a yellow ranked composite wood or a solid wood component

Back to 06 41 13.xx Plywood Substrate

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that in addition to containing small amounts of unreacted formaldehyde, urea formaldehyde resins can degrade over time generating and emitting even more formaldehyde?

Quick Tips:

  • Standard urea formaldehyde resins should no longer be used
  • Hardwood plywood, medium density fiberboard (MDF), and particleboard must meet national requirements limiting formaldehyde emissions according to TSCA Title VI
  • Urea formaldehyde degrades and can release formaldehyde into interior spaces long after installation
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • Revise your project to use a yellow ranked composite wood or a solid wood component

Back to 06 41 13.xx Plywood Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Do you know what a scavenger additive is? These are chemicals that react with formaldehyde, released over time from urea formaldehyde resins, to lower emissions. This means urea formaldehyde can still be in the product, but it passes regulation. It is worth understanding that the effectiveness of these scavenger additives may be diminished by hot temperatures or high humidity.

Quick Tips:

  • ULEF stands for Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde
  • ULEF requires demonstrating emission levels are consistently well below legal limits
  • Products that meet ULEF requirements may use urea formaldehyde binders (UF) with scavenger additives
  • Products with UF binders may release formaldehyde above limits in hot and/or humid spaces
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen

Back to 06 41 13.xx Plywood Substrate

Did you know that plastic laminates are made with resins that can emit formaldehyde over time? Casework often requires edge-banding to treat unfinished edges and is typically made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) . Be aware that PVC edge-banding is a Chlorinated plastic, and is NEVER a healthy material, especially in its manufacturing and disposal.

Quick Tips:

  • Revise your design to use wood veneer faced cabinets
  • Use solid wood where possible, such as door and drawer fronts
  • If you are using composite wood for any part of the construction use plywood
  • Use No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) composite wood
  • Specify casework arrive pre-finished to avoid painting or staining on-site
  • Avoid thermofoil finishes, which are vinyl (PVC)
  • Avoid PVC edge-banding

Back to 06 41 00 Architectural Wood Casework

Did you know that HDF uses more binder than plywood? More binder means more formaldehyde. Reducing binders helps protect building occupants from emissions and reduces the amount of hazardous chemicals used in manufacturing which helps protect communities near manufacturing sites.

Quick Tips:

  • Revise your project to use plywood or solid wood
  • Use solid wood components when possible, such as for door and drawer fronts
  • Avoid HDF
  • Plywood is preferred over HDF
  • Use composite wood that confirms No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 16 Plastic-Laminate-Clad Architectural Cabinets

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods have different formaldehyde emission limits? California Air Resources Board (CARB) Phase II / TSCA Title VI regulations sets different limits; plywood products having the strictest formaldehyde emission limit of the standard. The limits are: 0.05 ppm for hardwood plywood, 0.09 ppm for particleboard, 0.11 ppm for MDF, and 0.13 ppm for thin MDF.

Quick Tips:

  • No need to memorize CARB limits, just prefer plywood when possible
  • Plywood products meet the strictest formaldehyde emission limit
  • Plywood uses less binder which keeps formaldehyde emissions low
  • Use composite wood with No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 16.xx High Density Fiberboard (HDF) Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Did you know that No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) binders are typically soy- or isocyanate-based? Soy-based binders come from soy flour and petrochemicals and use some hazardous chemicals in their lifecycle. So, while these impacts can't be ignored, NAF binders help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins - a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time and have impacts on fenceline communities during manufacturing.

When it comes to composite wood, NAF binders are worth preferring.

Quick Tips:

  • NAF stands for No Added Formaldehyde
  • NAF composite wood with this designation means binders do not contain formaldehyde
  • NAF binders aren't perfect, but they help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Formaldehyde production impacts fenceline communities during manufacturing
  • NAF binder are typically soy- or isocyanate-based
  • Isocyanate-based binders can be hazardous to workers and have been identified as a leading cause of work-related asthma

Back to 06 41 16.xx High Density Fiberboard (HDF) Substrate

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods labeled No Added Urea Formaldehyde (NAUF) can still contain phenol formaldehyde (PF)? Whilte PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than Urea Formaldehyde (UF), they are not free of those emissions.

Quick Tips:

  • NAUF stands for No Added Urea Formaldehyde
  • A NAUF composite wood can still contain formaldehyde compounds
  • PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than UF, but still emit
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Revise your project to use a yellow or green ranked composite wood

Back to 06 41 16.xx High Density Fiberboard (HDF) Substrate

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that in addition to containing small amounts of unreacted formaldehyde, urea formaldehyde resins can degrade over time generating and emitting even more formaldehyde?

Quick Tips:

  • Standard urea formaldehyde resins should no longer be used
  • Hardwood plywood, medium density fiberboard (MDF), and particleboard must meet national requirements limiting formaldehyde emissions according to TSCA Title VI
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • Urea formaldehyde can be released into interior spaces long after installation
  • Revise your project to use a yellow or green ranked composite wood

Back to 06 41 16.xx High Density Fiberboard (HDF) Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Do you know what a scavenger additive is? These are chemicals that react with formaldehyde, released over time from urea formaldehyde resins, to lower emissions. This means urea formaldehyde can still be in the product, but it passes regulation. It is worth understanding that the effectiveness of these scavenger additives may be diminished by hot temperatures or high humidity.

Quick Tips:

  • ULEF stands for Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde
  • ULEF requires demonstrating emission levels are consistently well below legal limits
  • Products that meet ULEF requirements could release formaldehyde above limits in hot and/or humid spaces
  • There is no level of formaldehyde that is known to be safe
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen

Back to 06 41 16.xx High Density Fiberboard (HDF) Substrate

Did you know that MDF is 10% binder by weight? That's far more than plywood which is 3.5% by weight. More binders mean more formaldehyde. Reducing binders helps protect building occupants from emissions and reduces the amount of hazardous chemicals used in manufacturing which helps protect communities near manufacturing sites.

Quick Tips:

  • Binders in composite wood are often formaldehyde-based
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • MDF is 10% binder by weight
  • Revise your project to use plywood or solid wood
  • Use solid wood components when possible for door and drawer fronts
  • Plywood is preferred option over MDF
  • Use composite wood that confirms No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 16 Plastic-Laminate-Clad Architectural Cabinets

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods have different formaldehyde emission limits? California Air Resources Board (CARB) Phase II / TSCA Title VI regulations sets different limits; plywood products having the strictest formaldehyde emission limit of the standard. The limits are: 0.05 ppm for hardwood plywood, 0.09 ppm for particleboard, 0.11 ppm for MDF, and 0.13 ppm for thin MDF.

Quick Tips:

  • No need to memorize CARB limits, just prefer plywood when possible
  • Plywood products meet the strictest formaldehyde emission limit
  • Plywood uses less binder which keeps formaldehyde emissions low
  • Use composite wood with No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 16.xx Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Did you know that No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) binders are typically soy- or isocyanate-based? Soy-based binders come from soy flour and petrochemicals and use some hazardous chemicals in their lifecycle. So, while these impacts can't be ignored, NAF binders help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins - a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time and have impacts on fenceline communities during manufacturing.

When it comes to composite wood, NAF binders are worth preferring.

Quick Tips:

  • NAF stands for No Added Formaldehyde
  • NAF composite wood with this designation means binders do not contain formaldehyde
  • NAF binders aren't perfect, but they help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Formaldehyde production impacts fenceline communities during manufacturing
  • NAF binder are typically soy- or isocyanate-based
  • Isocyanate-based binders can be hazardous to workers and have been identified as a leading cause of work-related asthma

Back to 06 41 16.xx Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) Substrate

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods labeled No Added Urea Formaldehyde (NAUF) can still contain phenol formaldehyde (PF)? Whilte PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than Urea Formaldehyde (UF), they are not free of those emissions.

Quick Tips:

  • NAUF stands for No Added Urea Formaldehyde
  • A NAUF composite wood can still contain formaldehyde compounds
  • PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than UF, but still emit
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Revise your project to use a yellow or green ranked composite wood

Back to 06 41 16.xx Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) Substrate

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that in addition to containing small amounts of unreacted formaldehyde, urea formaldehyde resins can degrade over time generating and emitting even more formaldehyde?

Quick Tips:

  • Standard urea formaldehyde resins should no longer be used
  • Hardwood plywood, medium density fiberboard (MDF), and particleboard must meet national requirements limiting formaldehyde emissions according to TSCA Title VI
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • Urea formaldehyde can be released into interior spaces long after installation
  • Revise your project to use a yellow or green ranked composite wood

Back to 06 41 16.xx Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Do you know what a scavenger additive is? These are chemicals that react with formaldehyde, released over time from urea formaldehyde resins, to lower emissions. This means urea formaldehyde can still be in the product, but it passes regulation. It is worth understanding that the effectiveness of these scavenger additives may be diminished by hot temperatures or high humidity.

Quick Tips:

  • ULEF stands for Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde
  • ULEF requires demonstrating emission levels are consistently well below legal limits
  • Products that meet ULEF requirements could release formaldehyde above limits in hot and/or humid spaces
  • There is no level of formaldehyde that is known to be safe
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen

Back to 06 41 16.xx Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) Substrate

Did you know that particleboard uses more binder than any other composite wood - 12% binder by weight? More binders meand more formaldehyde. Reducing binders helps protect building occupants from emissions and reduces the amount of hazardous chemicals used in manufacturing which helps protect communities near manufacturing sites.

Quick Tips:

  • Particleboard uses more binder than any other composite wood - 12% binder by weight
  • Revise your project to use plywood or solid wood
  • Plywood is preferred over particleboard
  • Use composite wood that confirms No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 16 Plastic-Laminate-Clad Architectural Cabinets

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods have different formaldehyde emission limits? California Air Resources Board (CARB) Phase II / TSCA Title VI regulations sets different limits; plywood products having the strictest formaldehyde emission limit of the standard. The limits are: 0.05 ppm for hardwood plywood, 0.09 ppm for particleboard, 0.11 ppm for MDF, and 0.13 ppm for thin MDF.

Quick Tips:

  • No need to memorize CARB limits, just prefer plywood when possible
  • Plywood products meet the strictest formaldehyde emission limit
  • Plywood uses less binder which keeps formaldehyde emissions low
  • Use composite wood with No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 16.xx Particleboard Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Did you know that No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) binders are typically soy- or isocyanate-based? Soy-based binders come from soy flour and petrochemicals and use some hazardous chemicals in their lifecycle. So, while these impacts can't be ignored, NAF binders help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins - a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time and have impacts on fenceline communities during manufacturing.

When it comes to composite wood, NAF binders are worth preferring.

Quick Tips:

  • NAF stands for No Added Formaldehyde
  • NAF composite wood with this designation means binders do not contain formaldehyde
  • NAF binders aren't perfect, but they help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Formaldehyde production impacts fenceline communities during manufacturing
  • NAF binder are typically soy- or isocyanate-based
  • Isocyanate-based binders can be hazardous to workers and have been identified as a leading cause of work-related asthma

Back to 06 41 16.xx Particleboard Substrate

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods labeled No Added Urea Formaldehyde (NAUF) can still contain phenol formaldehyde (PF)? Whilte PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than Urea Formaldehyde (UF), they are not free of those emissions.

Quick Tips:

  • NAUF stands for No Added Urea Formaldehyde
  • A NAUF composite wood can still contain formaldehyde compounds
  • PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than UF, but still emit
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Revise your project to use a yellow or green ranked composite wood

Back to 06 41 16.xx Particleboard Substrate

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that in addition to containing small amounts of unreacted formaldehyde, urea formaldehyde resins can degrade over time generating and emitting even more formaldehyde?

Quick Tips:

  • Standard urea formaldehyde resins should no longer be used
  • Hardwood plywood, medium density fiberboard (MDF), and particleboard must meet national requirements limiting formaldehyde emissions according to TSCA Title VI
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • Urea formaldehyde can be released into interior spaces long after installation
  • Revise your project to use a yellow or green ranked composite wood

Back to 06 41 16.xx Particleboard Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Do you know what a scavenger additive is? These are chemicals that react with formaldehyde, released over time from urea formaldehyde resins, to lower emissions. This means urea formaldehyde can still be in the product, but it passes regulation. It is worth understanding that the effectiveness of these scavenger additives may be diminished by hot temperatures or high humidity.

Quick Tips:

  • ULEF stands for Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde
  • ULEF requires demonstrating emission levels are consistently well below legal limits
  • Products that meet ULEF requirements could release formaldehyde above limits in hot and/or humid spaces
  • There is no level of formaldehyde that is known to be safe
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen

Back to 06 41 16.xx Particleboard Substrate

Did you know that plywood uses less binder (and emits less formaldehyde) than other composite wood material? Plywood is a great choice for components or substrates used in constructing cabinets. By using plywood over other composite wood you can reduce chemical impacts for building occupants, workers at manufacturing facilities, and fenceline communities.

Quick Tips:

  • Plywood uses less binder (and emits less formaldehyde) than other composite wood material
  • Plywood is 3.5% binder by weight
  • MDF is 10% binder by weight
  • Particleboard is 12% binder by weight
  • Use plywood that confirms No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 16 Plastic-Laminate-Clad Architectural Cabinets

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods have different formaldehyde emission limits? California Air Resources Board (CARB) Phase II / TSCA Title VI regulations sets different limits; plywood products having the strictest formaldehyde emission limit of the standard. The limits are: 0.05 ppm for hardwood plywood, 0.09 ppm for particleboard, 0.11 ppm for MDF, and 0.13 ppm for thin MDF.

Quick Tips:

  • No need to memorize CARB limits, just prefer plywood when possible
  • Plywood products meet the strictest formaldehyde emission limit
  • Plywood uses less binder which keeps formaldehyde emissions low
  • Use composite wood with No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) or Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde (ULEF) binders

Back to 06 41 16.xx Plywood Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Did you know that No Added Formaldehyde (NAF) binders are typically soy- or isocyanate-based? Soy-based binders come from soy flour and petrochemicals and use some hazardous chemicals in their lifecycle. So, while these impacts can't be ignored, NAF binders help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins - a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time and have impacts on fenceline communities during manufacturing.

When it comes to composite wood, NAF binders are worth preferring.

Quick Tips:

  • NAF stands for No Added Formaldehyde
  • NAF composite wood with this designation means binders do not contain formaldehyde
  • NAF binders aren't perfect, but they help avoid the use of formaldehyde-based resins
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Formaldehyde production impacts fenceline communities during manufacturing
  • NAF binder are typically soy- or isocyanate-based
  • Isocyanate-based binders can be hazardous to workers and have been identified as a leading cause of work-related asthma

Back to 06 41 16.xx Plywood Substrate

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that composite woods labeled No Added Urea Formaldehyde (NAUF) can still contain phenol formaldehyde (PF)? Whilte PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than Urea Formaldehyde (UF), they are not free of those emissions.

Quick Tips:

  • NAUF stands for No Added Urea Formaldehyde
  • A NAUF composite wood can still contain formaldehyde compounds
  • PF binders generally emit formaldehyde at lower rates than UF, but still emit
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen that can emit into buildings over time
  • Revise your project to use a yellow or green ranked composite wood

Back to 06 41 16.xx Plywood Substrate

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that in addition to containing small amounts of unreacted formaldehyde, urea formaldehyde resins can degrade over time generating and emitting even more formaldehyde?

Quick Tips:

  • Standard urea formaldehyde resins should no longer be used
  • Hardwood plywood, medium density fiberboard (MDF), and particleboard must meet national requirements limiting formaldehyde emissions according to TSCA Title VI
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen
  • Urea formaldehyde can be released into interior spaces long after installation
  • Revise your project to use a yellow or green ranked composite wood

Back to 06 41 16.xx Plywood Substrate

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Do you know what a scavenger additive is? These are chemicals that react with formaldehyde, released over time from urea formaldehyde resins, to lower emissions. This means urea formaldehyde can still be in the product, but it passes regulation. It is worth understanding that the effectiveness of these scavenger additives may be diminished by hot temperatures or high humidity.

Quick Tips:

  • ULEF stands for Ultra Low Emitting Formaldehyde
  • ULEF requires demonstrating emission levels are consistently well below legal limits
  • Products that meet ULEF requirements could release formaldehyde above limits in hot and/or humid spaces
  • There is no level of formaldehyde that is known to be safe
  • Formaldehyde is a carcinogen and asthmagen

Back to 06 41 16.xx Plywood Substrate

Did you know that antimicrobial additives are regulated as pesticides? There is evidence that shows that antimicrobial additives can leach out of their products and find their way into living spaces and the greater environment. While it may seem like a good idea to treat frequently touched surfaces such as hinges, knobs, handles, with antimicrobial additives, the reality is that there is no evidence that these products improve our health. The choice is clear, skip antimicrobial hardware whenever possible, especially when you consider that these products are often sold at a price premium!

Avoid hardware that contains antimicrobial treatments.

Back to 06 41 00 Architectural Wood Casework

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 06 40 00 Architectural Woodwork

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Back to 06 42 00 Wood Paneling

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Back to 06 42 00 Wood Paneling

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 06 42 00 Wood Paneling

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Back to 06 42 00 Wood Paneling

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Back to 06 40 00 Architectural Woodwork

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Back to 06 43 00 Wood Stairs and Railings

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Back to 06 43 00 Wood Stairs and Railings

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Back to 06 40 00 Architectural Woodwork

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Back to 06 44 00 Ornamental Woodwork

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Back to 06 44 00 Ornamental Woodwork

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Back to 06 44 00 Ornamental Woodwork

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 06 44 00 Ornamental Woodwork

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Back to 06 44 00 Ornamental Woodwork

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 06 44 00 Ornamental Woodwork

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Back to 06 44 00 Ornamental Woodwork

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Back to 06 44 00 Ornamental Woodwork

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 06 44 00 Ornamental Woodwork

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Back to 06 40 00 Architectural Woodwork

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Back to 06 46 00 Wood Trim

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Back to 06 46 00 Wood Trim

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Back to 06 46 00 Wood Trim

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Back to 06 46 00 Wood Trim

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Back to 06 46 00 Wood Trim

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Back to 06 46 00 Wood Trim

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Back to 06 46 00 Wood Trim

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Back to 06 46 00 Wood Trim

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Back to 06 40 00 Architectural Woodwork

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Back to 06 48 00 Wood Frames

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Back to 06 48 00 Wood Frames

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Back to 06 48 00 Wood Frames

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Back to 06 48 00 Wood Frames

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Back to 06 48 00 Wood Frames

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Back to 06 40 00 Architectural Woodwork

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Back to 06 49 00 Wood Screens and Shutters

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Back to 06 49 00 Wood Screens and Shutters

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Back to 06 49 00 Wood Screens and Shutters

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that asphalt-based products contain carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), among other hazardous compounds? By choosing a non-asphalt based product you can avoid these hazardous releases during product manufacture.

While we don't have research on all types of dampproofing, asphalt-based dampproofing products are not preferred. See if you can use a product that is yellow or above. If you must use asphalt-based dampproofing, make sure to choose cold-applied emulsified asphalt dampproofing products over solvent-based damproofing products.

Back to 07 10 00 Dampproofing and Waterproofing

Wait! These products are not preferred!

Did you know that stoddard solvent, a carcinogen and mutagen, is commonly used in solvent-based asphalt dampproofing?

If you must use products in this category, choose cold-applied emulsified asphalt damproofing products over solvent-based damproofing products, which contain hazardous solvents.

Back to 07 11 00 Dampproofing

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that cold-applied asphalt emulsions generally use less asphalt than other asphalt-based products and typically do not contain solvents? They can, however, contain potassium dichromate, a hexavalent chromium compound, which is a known carcinogen and has many other associated health hazards.

While this is a better choice than solvent-based asphalt dampproofing, you could do even better by revising your product to one ranked yellow or green.

Back to 07 11 13 Bituminous Dampproofing

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that Stoddard solvent, a carcinogen and mutagen, is commonly used in solvent-based asphalt dampproofing?

This is not a preferred product. If you must use bituminous dampproofing, cold-applied emulsified asphalt is the better choice, but even that type of product contains chemicals of concern. We recommend revisiting your design to see if you can use something other than bituminous dampproofing altogether.

Back to 07 11 13 Bituminous Dampproofing

Is this a product you use often? Let us know and we will dive into the research. Please help us by advocating to manufacturers to register their products using the HPDC's Open Standard. In the meantime, see if you can use a product that is ranked yellow or green.

Back to 07 11 00 Dampproofing

Is this a product you use often? Let us know and we will dive into the research. Please help us by advocating to manufacturers to register their products using the HPDC's Open Standard. In the meantime, see if you can use a product that is ranked yellow or green.

Back to 07 11 00 Dampproofing

Hmm. This doesn't look like the best choice.

Did you know that hot-applied asphalt waterproofing uses the largest amount of asphalt per square foot relative to other asphalt-based waterproofing products? These products have the potential for greater impacts on workers and nearby communities through releases of chemicals such as carcinogenic PAHs during manufacturing.

Built-up bituminous waterproofing is not the best choice. See if you can use a product that is yellow or above.

Back to 07 10 00 Dampproofing and Waterproofing

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that asphalt-based products contain carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), among other hazardous compounds? By choosing a non-asphalt-based product you can avoid these hazardous releases both during manufacture of the product and application on site.

This is not a preferred product. If possible, choose a product ranked yellow or green.

Back to 07 12 00 Built-Up Bituminous Waterproofing

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that hot-applied asphalt waterproofing uses the largest amount of asphalt per square foot relative to other asphalt-based waterproofing products? These products have the potential for greater impacts on workers and nearby communities through releases of chemicals such as carcinogenic PAHs during manufacturing.

This is not a preferred product. If possible, choose a product ranked yellow or green such as sheet and cementitious waterproofing.

Back to 07 12 13 Built-Up Asphalt Waterproofing

Did you know that asphalt-based products contain carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), among other hazardous compounds? By choosing a non-asphalt-based product you can avoid these hazardous releases both during manufacture of the product and application on site.

While we don't have research on this particular type of waterproofing, built-up bituminous waterproofing, including built-up coal tar waterproofing, is not likely to be the best choice. See if you can use a product that is ranked yellow or green.

Back to 07 12 00 Built-Up Bituminous Waterproofing

Did you know that PVC-free thermoplastic sheet waterproofing contains less hazardous content than products made with PVC?

Quick Tips:

  • Pay attention to accessory products
  • Avoid or reduce site-applied adhesives
  • If site-applied adhesives are needed, use acrylic adhesives
  • Avoid solvent-based adhesives, urethanes, and epoxies
  • Use a mechanical bond
  • For self-adhering scenarios, use a non-bituminous/non-asphaltic adhesive

Back to 07 10 00 Dampproofing and Waterproofing

Asphalt-based products contain carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), among other hazardous compounds. By choosing a non-asphalt-based product you can avoid these hazardous releases both during manufacture of the product and application on site.

While we don't have research on this particular type of waterproofing, bituminous sheet waterproofing is not likely to be the best choice. See if you can use a product that is ranked yellow or green. Hint, elastomeric and thermoplastic sheet waterproofing products are likely better choices.

Back to 07 13 00 Sheet Waterproofing

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that asphalt-based products contain carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), among other hazardous compounds?

Quick Tips:

  • Avoid asphalt-based products
  • Avoid asphalt-based adhesives
  • Use elastomeric or thermoplastic sheet waterproofing
  • Revise your project to use a product ranked yellow or green

Back to 07 13 00 Sheet Waterproofing

Asphalt-based products contain carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), among other hazardous compounds. By choosing a non-asphalt-based product you can avoid these hazardous releases both during manufacture of the product and application on site.

While we don't have research on this particular type of waterproofing, modified bituminous sheet waterproofing is not likely to be the best choice. Hint, elastomeric and thermoplastic sheet waterproofing products are likely better choices.

Back to 07 13 00 Sheet Waterproofing

By choosing elastomeric over asphalt-based products, you avoid large volumes of carcinogenic PAH compounds released into the air during installation that can be inhaled by workers and expose nearby communities.

While we don't have research on this particular type of waterproofing, elastomeric products tend to be preferred. Proceed with caution. Prefer products with content disclosure documentation such as HPDs or ask the manufacturer to disclose their ingredients and any hazard information.

Back to 07 13 00 Sheet Waterproofing

Did you know that thermoplastic sheet waterproofing made without polyvinyl chloride (PVC) typically requires fewer hazardous chemicals to manufacture, and contains less hazardous content than products made with PVC?

Quick Tips:

  • Prefer non-PVC thermoplastic sheet waterproofing.
  • Pay attention to accessory products
  • Prefer self-adhering products that use mechanical bonds
  • If using products utilizing an adhesive bond, prefer non-bituminous/non-asphaltic adhesives
  • Prefer acrylic adhesives whenever adhesives must be used
  • Avoid solvent-based adhesives, urethanes, and epoxies

Back to 07 13 00 Sheet Waterproofing

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Did you know that PVC production uses and releases other hazardous chemicals including mercury, asbestos, and/or PFAS? We recommend revising your project to see if you can use a product ranked yellow or green.

Quick Tips:

  • PVC is not a preferred option.
  • There is little disclosure on plasticizers, but similar products used in roofing contain orthophthalates, which are endocrine disruptors
  • Revise your design to use non-PVC thermoplastic sheet waterproofing
  • Adhesives introduce additional chemicals of concern into your project
  • Prefer acrylic adhesives over solvent-based adhesives, urethanes, and epoxies

Back to 07 13 54 Thermoplastic Sheet Waterproofing

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that thermoplastic sheet waterproofing made without polyvinyl chloride (PVC) typically requires fewer hazardous chemicals to manufacture, and contains less hazardous content than products made with PVC?

Quick Tips:

  • Pay attention to accessory products
  • Prefer self-adhering products that use mechanical bonds
  • If using products utilizing an adhesive bond, prefer non-bituminous/non-asphaltic adhesives
  • Prefer acrylic adhesives whenever adhesives must be used
  • Avoid solvent-based adhesives, urethanes, and epoxies

Back to 07 13 54 Thermoplastic Sheet Waterproofing

Hmm. This doesn't look like the best choice.

Did you know that hot-applied asphalt waterproofing uses the largest amount of asphalt per square foot relative to other asphalt-based waterproofing products? These products have the potential for greater impacts on workers and nearby communities through releases of chemicals such as carcinogenic PAHs during manufacturing.

While we have not reviewed all products within this category, those we have assessed are not preferred! See if you can use a product that is ranked yellow or above.

Back to 07 10 00 Dampproofing and Waterproofing

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that hot-applied asphalt waterproofing uses the largest amount of asphalt per square foot relative to other asphalt-based waterproofing products? These products have the potential for greater impacts on workers and nearby communities through releases of chemicals such as carcinogenic PAHs during manufacturing.

This is not a preferred product. If possible, choose a product ranked yellow or green such as those in sheet and cementitious waterproofing.

Back to 07 14 00 Fluid-Applied Waterproofing

While we don't have research on this particular type of waterproofing, hot fluid-applied polyurea waterproofing is likely not preferred. If possible, choose a product ranked yellow or green such as those in sheet and cementitious waterproofing.

Back to 07 14 00 Fluid-Applied Waterproofing

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that cold fluid-applied PMMA waterproofing is made up of respiratory sensitizers, including methyl methacrylate and other acrylates? It may also contain orthophthalate plasticizers that are known developmental and reproductive toxicants and endocrine disruptors.

Fluid-applied waterproofing products are not preferred. If possible, choose a product ranked yellow or green such as those in sheet and cementitious waterproofing.

Back to 07 14 00 Fluid-Applied Waterproofing

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that cold fluid-applied PMMA waterproofing is made up of respiratory sensitizers, including methyl methacrylate and other acrylates? It may also contain orthophthalate plasticizers that are known developmental and reproductive toxicants and endocrine disruptors.

Fluid-applied waterproofing products are not preferred. Try to choose a waterproofing product that is ranked yellow or green. If you must use PMMA waterproofing, confirm with manufacturers that product does not contain orthophthalate plasticizers.

Back to 07 14 16 Cold Fluid-Applied Waterproofing

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that single-component polyurethane waterproofing is based on isocyanates, which are potent respiratory sensitizers? Other hazardous content in polyurethane waterproofing can include solvents, organotin catalysts, and chlorinated paraffins.

Fluid-applied waterproofing products are not preferred. Try to choose a waterproofing product that is ranked yellow or green. If you must use PU waterproofing, confirm with manufacturers the product does not contain organotin compounds or chlorinated paraffins and choose a lower VOC option.

Back to 07 14 16 Cold Fluid-Applied Waterproofing

Is this a product you use often? Let us know and we will dive into the research. Please help us by advocating to manufacturers to register their products using the HPDC's Open Standard. In the meantime, see if you can use a product that is ranked yellow or green.

Back to 07 10 00 Dampproofing and Waterproofing

Is this a product you use often? Let us know and we will dive into the research. Please help us by advocating to manufacturers to register their products using the HPDC's Open Standard. In the meantime, see if you can use a product that is ranked yellow or green.

Back to 07 15 00 Sheet Metal Waterproofing

Well, this looks promising.

Did you know that by not using an asphalt-based waterproofing product, you avoid carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and other hazardous compounds? Cementitious waterproofing is an improvement but does have concerns you should know about. The manufacture of Portland cement, a main component of cementitious waterproofing, can expose fenceline communities to toxic chemicals, including mercury. Fenceline communities are disproportionately low income communities and/or communities of color. The world needs better waterproofing products!

Crystalline concrete waterproofing is a good choice. While it doesn't get a green ranking due to chemical emissions related to cement manufacture, it does have fewer chemicals of concern during use than many other product options.

Back to 07 10 00 Dampproofing and Waterproofing

Is this a product you use often? Let us know and we'll dive into the research. Please help us by advocating to manufacturers to register their products using the HPDC's Open Standard. In the meantime, see if you can use a product that is ranked yellow or green.

Back to 07 16 00 Cementitious and Reactive Waterproofing

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Did you know that by not using asphalt-based waterproofing you avoid carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and other hazardous compounds? But, you should know, that while crystalline silica waterproofing contains little content expected to be a concern during use, there are some issues with this product. Crystalline silica waterproofing has both fuel-related and process-related emissions stemming from Portland cement manufacture. These emissions can expose fenceline communities to toxic chemicals, including mercury. The world needs better waterproofing products!

Crystalline waterproofing is a preferred product.

Back to 07 16 00 Cementitious and Reactive Waterproofing

Nice! You're in the yellow!

Did you know that while crystalline silica waterproofing contains little content expected to be of concern during use, there are still some issues with this product that you should be aware of. Fuel and process related emissions caused by Portland cement manufacture that is necessary to manufacture this product, can expose fenceline communities to toxic chemicals, including mercury. The world needs better waterproofing products!

Crystalline waterproofing is a preferred product.

Back to 07 16 16 Crystalline Waterproofing

Is this a product you use often? Let us know and we will dive into the research. Please help us by advocating to manufacturers to register their products using the HPDC's Open Standard. In the meantime, see if you can use a product that is ranked yellow or green.

Back to 07 16 00 Cementitious and Reactive Waterproofing

Well, this looks promising.

Did you know that by not using an asphalt based waterproofing you avoid carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), among other hazardous compounds? Bentonite sheet waterproofing membranes typically do not contain chemicals likely to be a concern during the products’ use. It is worth noting however, that they are not free of chemical concerns. Bentonite strip mining can expose miners to carciongenic silica dust. The world needs better waterproofing products!

Bentonite sheet waterproofing is a great choice.

Back to 07 10 00 Dampproofing and Waterproofing

While we don't have research on this particular type of waterproofing, bentonite products tend to be a preferred product. But proceed with caution. Prefer products with content disclosure documentation such as HPDs or ask the manufacturer to disclose their ingredients and any hazard information.

Back to 07 17 00 Bentonite Waterproofing

Congrats! You're in the green!

Did you know that by not using an asphalt-based waterproofing product, you avoid carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and other hazardous compounds? Bentonite sheet waterproofing membranes typically do not contain chemicals likely to be of concern during the products’ use, however, they are not free of chemical concerns. Bentonite strip mining can expose miners to carcinogenic silica dust. The world needs better waterproofing products!

Bentonite sheet waterproofing is a preferred product.

Back to 07 17 00 Bentonite Waterproofing

Congrats! You're in the green!

While bentonite sheet waterproofing membranes do not contain any chemicals likely to be a concern during the products’ use they are not free of chemical concerns. Did you know that bentonite strip mining can expose miners to carciongenic silica dust? The world needs better waterproofing products!

Bentonite sheet waterproofing is a preferred product.

Back to 07 17 16 Bentonite Composite Sheet Waterproofing

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 07 10 00 Dampproofing and Waterproofing

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 07 18 00 Traffic Coatings

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 07 18 00 Traffic Coatings

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 07 10 00 Dampproofing and Waterproofing

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 07 19 00 Water Repellents

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 07 19 00 Water Repellents

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 07 19 00 Water Repellents

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 07 19 00 Water Repellents

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 07 19 00 Water Repellents

Is this a type of product that you commonly use and would like included in our guidance? If so, let us know and we’ll consider it for future research.

Back to 07 19 00 Water Repellents

Do you know the chemicals of highest concern associated with insulation? They include persistent and toxic halogenated flame retardants, formaldehyde-based binders, and asthmagenic isocyanates. In general, we recommend avoiding foam insulation. Whether it comes in rigid board, foamed in place or spray-applied form, it isn't a preferred option.

A wide range of insulation is available on the market. You have the power to help reduce impacts on building occupants, workers, and communities located near manufacturing plants by choosing products ranked yellow and above.

Quick Tips:

  • Avoid plastic-based foam insulation (board, foamed in place, or spray foam)
  • Prefer products that are based on natural (bio-based) content such as cork, wood fiber, sheep’s wool, or hemp
  • Prefer mineral-based products (fiberglass or mineral wool) that are formaldehyde-free
  • Prefer recycled cellulose-based (cotton or cellulose) products
  • If you need a rigid/board product, use expanded cork, wood fiber, or unfaced formaldehyde-free fiberglass or mineral wool

Back to 07 20 00 Thermal Protection

Did you know that many board insulation materials are petroleum-based plastic, with a range of impacts on fenceline communities and the environment? Rigid, "board" type products made of plastic foam commonly contain persistent and toxic halogenated flame retardants; "persistent" because they last for long periods of time in the environment. By choosing expanded cork, wood fiber, or unfaced formaldehyde-free fiberglass or mineral wool boards, you can avoid these hazardous flame retardants and other plastic impacts.

You have a wide array of options in front of you. To stay out of the red, avoid plastic board insulation and prefer wood fiber, cork, or unfaced fiberglass or mineral wool boards.

Quick Tips:

  • Avoid plastic-based foam board insulation
  • Plastic foam board insulation can contain halogenated flame retardants (HFRs)
  • HFRs can be persistent, bioaccumulative toxicants (PBTs), and carcinogens
  • Use rigid/board products made from wood fiber, cork, or unfaced fiberglass or mineral wool
  • Or, revise your design to use blanket (batt) or blown insulation
  • Several blanket and blown insulation types have the lowest installed cost per R-value
  • For foam board products, the R-value per inch might be higher, but the R-value per dollar is not

Back to 07 21 00 Thermal Insulation

Congrats! You're in the green!

Did you know that by using cork board insulation, you typically avoid the chemicals of highest concern found in insulation? This includes halogenated flame retardants, formaldehyde, and blowing agents that contribute to global warming.

Quick Tips:

  • Expanded cork is a great choice from a material health perspective
  • This avoids the chemicals of highest concern found in insulation
  • Chemicals avoided include halogenated flame retardants and formaldehyde
  • Expanded cork board also avoids blowing agents that contribute to global warming

Back to 07 21 13 Board Insulation

Chances are you can do better!

Did you know that foam board insulation is typically petroleum-based plastic, with a range of impacts on fenceline communities and the environment? It also commonly contains persistent halogenated flame retardants.

We recommend avoiding foam insulation. Whether it comes in rigid board, foamed-in-place or spray-applied form, it isn't a preferred option.

Quick Tips:

  • Avoid plastic-based foam board insulation
  • Plastic foam board insulation can contain halogenated flame retardants (HFRs)
  • HFRs can be persistent, bioaccumulative toxicants (PBTs) and carcinogens
  • Use rigid/board products made from wood fiber, cork, or unfaced fiberglass or mineral wool
  • Or, revise your design to use blanket (batt) or blown insulation

Back to 07 21 13 Board Insulation

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that despite recent reformulation, expanded polystyrene (EPS) insulation still contains halogenated flame retardants (HFRs)? Halogenated flame retardants are associated with a host of life cycle and health concerns. Plastic foam insulation can contribute to the release of microplastics into the environment.

If you must use a rigid, board insulation, the safest options are expanded cork, wood fiber, or unfaced fiberglass or mineral wool board that is formaldehyde-free.

Quick Tips:

  • Avoid EPS board insulation
  • EPS commonly contains halogenated flame retardants (HFRs)
  • HFRs can be persistent, bioaccumulative toxicants (PBTs)
  • Revise your design to use expanded cork or wood fiber board
  • Revise your design to use mineral wool board that is formaldehyde-free
  • Less preferred options that stay out of the red are standard unfaced fiberglass or mineral wool board, or polyisocyanurate that is free of halogenated flame retardants.

Back to 07 21 13.13 Foam Board Insulation

Wait! You're in the red!

Did you know that despite recent reformulation, extruded polystyrene (XPS) insulation still contains halogenated flame retardants (HFRs) which are associated with a host of life cycle and health concerns. XPS also contains halogenated blowing agents (either HFCs or HFOs). HFCs have a high global warming potential and are released during the product's life cycle, including manufacturing, use, and end of life. HFOs, touted as being low global warming potential alternatives, still use high global warming and/or ozone depleting chemicals in the manufacturing process. In addition, some halogenated blowing agents are members of the class of chemicals called PFAS or “forever chemicals.”

If you must use a rigid, board insulation, the safest options are expanded cork, wood fiber, or unfaced fiberglass or mineral wool board that is formaldehyde-free.

Quick Tips:

  • Avoid XPS board insulation
  • XPS commonly contains halogenated flame retardants (HFRs)
  • HFRs can be persistent, bioaccumulative toxicants (PBTs)
  • XPS contains halogenated blowing agents (HFCs or HFOs)
  • HFCs have a high global warming potential
  • HFOs still use high global warming and/or ozone depleting chemicals in the manufacturing process
  • Revise your design to use expanded cork or wood fiber board
  • Revise your design to use fiberglass or mineral wool board that is formaldehyde-free
  • Less preferred options that stay out of the red are standard unfaced fiberglass or mineral wool board, or polyisocyanurate that is free of halogenated flame retardants.
  • Some halogenated blowing agents are PFAS or “forever chemicals" that should be avoided

Back to 07 21 13.13 Foam Board Insulation

Is this a product you use often? Let us know and we will dive into the research.

Quick Tips:

  • Advocate to the manufacturer to register their product using the HPDC's Open Standard
  • Use Informed to find a product that is ranked yellow or green

Back to 07 21 13.13 Foam Board Insulation