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Causes of household formaldehyde

Jun 01,2023 | SEEYE

Formaldehyde, a colorless and pungent-smelling gas, is commonly found in various furniture products. It is a volatile organic compound (VOC) that can be released from materials such as plywood, particleboard, and adhesives used in furniture manufacturing. The presence of formaldehyde in indoor environments can pose health risks, including eye and respiratory irritation, allergies, and even potential carcinogenic effects.

In this blog, we will explore the reasons behind formaldehyde emission in furniture and discuss four effective methods to remove it.



Causes of Formaldehyde Emission in Furniture:

  • Material Composition: One of the primary reasons for formaldehyde emission is the composition of materials used in furniture production. Many wood-based materials, such as plywood and particleboard, contain adhesives that contain formaldehyde. Over time, these materials can release formaldehyde gas into the surrounding environment.

  • Production Processes: The manufacturing processes used to construct furniture can also contribute to formaldehyde emissions. Certain production techniques, such as hot-pressing, can cause the breakdown of formaldehyde-containing compounds and release the gas into the air. Additionally, improper storage or ventilation during production can exacerbate formaldehyde emission.

  • Age and Degradation: Formaldehyde emission from furniture can increase with age and degradation. As furniture ages, the materials used in its construction may start to break down, leading to increased release of formaldehyde. High humidity or temperature fluctuations can accelerate this process.

  • Poor Ventilation: Inadequate ventilation within indoor spaces can trap formaldehyde, leading to higher concentrations in the air. Without proper airflow, the gas accumulates, increasing the potential health risks for occupants.


Effective Removal Methods:

  • Increase Ventilation: Improving the ventilation in your living space is essential for reducing formaldehyde levels. Open windows and doors to allow fresh air to circulate, and consider using fans or air purifiers to enhance air circulation. Ventilation helps to disperse formaldehyde and promote its gradual dissipation.

  • Activated Charcoal: Activated charcoal, also known as activated carbon, is a highly porous material that can effectively absorb formaldehyde. Place activated charcoal filters or sachets near furniture items or use air purifiers with activated charcoal filters to help capture formaldehyde molecules from the air.

  • Indoor Plants: Certain indoor plants, such as spider plants, aloe vera, and peace lilies, have been found to absorb formaldehyde and other VOCs. Introducing these plants into your living space can help mitigate formaldehyde levels. However, note that the effectiveness of plants in removing formaldehyde may vary depending on factors such as plant species and room size.

  • Formaldehyde Absorbers: There are commercially available formaldehyde absorbers specifically designed to reduce formaldehyde levels in indoor environments. These products usually contain substances that react with formaldehyde, converting it into a non-volatile compound. Follow the instructions provided with these products to effectively utilize them for formaldehyde removal.



Understanding the causes of formaldehyde emission in furniture is crucial for taking appropriate measures to reduce its presence in indoor environments. By addressing material composition, production processes, ventilation, and utilizing effective removal methods like increased ventilation, activated charcoal, indoor plants, and formaldehyde absorbers, we can create safer and healthier living spaces. Prioritizing formaldehyde removal not only enhances our well-being but also promotes sustainable and eco-friendly furniture choices.