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Installing new carpeting can upgrade a room's appearance instantly. But that plush new carpet smell isn't just from fresh dyes and fibers. Carpet off-gassing refers to the initial release of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that create indoor air quality concerns. Learn whether carpet off-gassing is harmful and ways to speed safe indoor air quality after installations or carpet cleaning.

What Causes Carpet Off-Gassing?

Carpets contain various chemicals that break down over time and release gaseous byproducts into surrounding air after initial unrolling or steam cleaning procedures. These may include formaldehyde binders, flame retardants, stain protectants, antimicrobials, latex back coatings, adhesives and more. New carpet odors result from VOCs evaporating as gases from these production ingredients.

Is the Carpet Smell Harmful?

Inhaling VOCs can potentially cause eye, nose and throat irritations, headaches, nausea, and breathing issues in those sensitive to air impurities. Babies, young children, pregnant mothers, the elderly, and those with respiratory conditions remain most vulnerable.

While a strong chemical carpet odor isn't ideal for indoor air, most new carpet VOC emissions don't reach dangerous exposure levels except perhaps in tightly enclosed spaces. Still, it makes sense to off-gas carpets fully before letting loved ones linger long on new flooring.

How Long Does Off-Gassing Last?

Carpets release the highest concentrations of VOCs immediately after unrolling from plastic packaging. Emissions taper down over the next few days to weeks as gases slowly escape from carpet backing and fibers out into room air. Generally, about 80-90% of carpet off-gassing completes within 72 hours once unwrapped, assuming reasonable ventilation.

What Speeds Safe Off-Gassing?

Here are some tips to help carpets finish off-gassing faster after installation or cleaning to restore healthy indoor air quality:

Once that strong initial smell dispels, carpets typically maintain negligible emissions unless soiled and steam cleaned again later allowing embedded production chemicals to be released. Practicing good indoor air circulation while finishing the off-gassing process ensures carpets become safe, healthy additions providing years of enjoyment.

Replacing Your Carpets

When you are struggling with carpet off-gassing, replacing the carpets would be a good option to consider. But you may not be in a position to spend a lot of money and buy new carpets. That’s where our pay weekly flooring solutions can help. We provide you with the opportunity to buy new carpets with no down payment. You will get an instant credit of £600 from us. You can use it to buy new carpets. Then you can pay £10 per week and keep on using the carpets. Visit our website and learn more about how we do it today.