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Drywall From China

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Evidently it's in a lot of homes now and is making people sick. (This drywall was also imported to Vancouver so Canada's not immune.)

The problem is enormous. It’s estimated that as many as 100,000 homes across the country, built between 2004 and 2008, could have defective and potentially dangerous Chinese drywall.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/33622643/


From US Consumer Product Safety Commission:

Residents reported premature failures of central air conditioning system evaporator coils located indoors in the air handling unit and intermittent failure of appliances and/or electronic devices. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CSPC) staff inspections have noted corrosion of bare copper electrical wiring and the presence of sooty material on electrical wires (CPSC, 2009). Tarnishing and pitting of other metallic surfaces have also been observed in the affected homes in Florida and Louisiana by state and federal investigators.

Consumers in affected homes have reported various health-related symptoms including persistent coughs, bloody and runny noses, headaches, difficulty in breathing and irritated itchy eyes and skin. The most common symptoms reported among children (< 18 years of age) were respiratory infection, headache, dry cough, nosebleeds and eye irritation/redness. For both adults and children the most common“other” symptom reported was allergies/sinus/congestion. Many of these residents reported that the symptoms lessen or go away entirely when they leave their homes and return when they re-enter their homes (CPSC, 2009). In an informal survey of more than 400 callers to LADHH, the most common complaint reported was the presence of sulfur-like or other unusual odors.


http://www.cpsc.gov/info/drywall/TabC.pdf


I can see that USCPSC would test for sulfur and chemicals that could be causing the problems, but no one seems to realize that the problems might be from a chemical or additive nobody's thought to test the drywall for!
post #2 of 8
That is really scary! We had our house built in 2006 and we have had many of the problems listed on the site including health problems (kids breaking out in hives no one could explain what caused them, my daughter was diagnosed with asthma) I wonder how you can find out if the drywall was used to build your home?
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
I read that you should try to check the back of the drywall for the name of the manufacturer, maybe pulling back some insulation in the attic. Also, electrical wall plates will be scorched behind the wall, you could unscrew some (don't touch the wires!) and check if it's blackened or scorched.

More ways, maybe this helps:
http://www.ehow.com/how_5613388_iden...all-china.html
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by proudmamiof4 View Post
That is really scary! We had our house built in 2006 and we have had many of the problems listed on the site including health problems (kids breaking out in hives no one could explain what caused them, my daughter was diagnosed with asthma) I wonder how you can find out if the drywall was used to build your home?
Do you know the name of the building contractor? If so, contact him. If you are the original owner, the warranty should be for 10 years. Chances are the general conractor subbed out the drywall, but the general contractor should have that information. There should be a way to find out by either testing the board or through records. Once you have a pretty good idea that you have the suspect board in your house, contact an attorney. There are product liability issues for which the general and the sub contractors are liable.
post #6 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by proudmamiof4 View Post
That is really scary! We had our house built in 2006 and we have had many of the problems listed on the site including health problems (kids breaking out in hives no one could explain what caused them, my daughter was diagnosed with asthma) I wonder how you can find out if the drywall was used to build your home?
Find out who your Builder is first. Going to have to be sneaky as I am sure no builders are going to admit to this. I smell BIG lawsuits.
post #7 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by ckblv View Post
Find out who your Builder is first. Going to have to be sneaky as I am sure no builders are going to admit to this. I smell BIG lawsuits.
I'm in no position to build my own house, but if I were blessed to have that financial standing, I would definitely request the builder to sign statements stating that all drywall for my house is guaranteed American. I'd ask a lawyer to write the lingo so that my documents hold up in court, if it comes to that. This is a good thread.
post #8 of 8
It's all well and good to insist that the drywall be "American" but that was not possible back in the period when this happened.
The extremely high demand for building materials caused by the booms in Florida, the need to rebuild in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina couldn't be met by domestic suppliers of gypsum. When a German company stepped in and was able to fill the need people jumped on it. And gypsum normally contains sulfur anyway so testing for sulfur would have been pointless. There are other sulfur compounds in the material from China that no one realized were there or would cause problems so of course there are no codes in place that say that the drywall must be free of these chemicals. Also they only become apparent after the drywall is exposed to heat and humidity for a long period.
I almost got involved with this as an expert witness so I might have more info on my computer at work if anyone is interested. There are already a lot of class action lawsuits but IMO it's not the contractors' fault. As far as I am concerned it's Knauf that is to blame and is morally if not legally liable but they say there is nothing wrong with the drywall. Some contractors have already replaced the drywall and put the homeowners up at a hotel at their own expense, many have gone bankrupt. The only people who will really profit from this are the lawyers since there are about 10-12 class action lawsuits going.
You can ask your state health department to come in and check the air quality, although frankly it would be easier for them to verify it in July or August, when more of the sulfide compounds are being released.
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