Chemicals in Carpets
Most carpet is made with synthetic (human-made) materials. However, carpets can also be made of wool or other natural materials. Most carpet has at least two parts: the cushion or pad for support and noise reduction, and the carpet itself.
There are several types of carpet construction. Most synthetic carpet is “tufted.” Tufted carpet is made by machines that stitch and cut or loop yarn and then attach the yarn to a backing. The yarn is made of a nylon, acrylic, or polyester. This backed yarn is often attached to another backing with a latex rubber product. This second backing helps to make the carpet more stable.
If you have installed new carpet in your home and believe that you are experiencing health effects, do not attempt to “bake out” the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and odors by closing off air movement into and out of the room or by raising the temperature. At one time, this was thought to be helpful, but it has been shown to make the situation worse.