What are VOCs?

VOC's, Volatile Organic Compounds, Dangers of VOC's

There’s been a lot of talk recently in the automotive industry with regards to VOCs. We thought we’d shed some light on the debate for you.

What are VOCs?

VOC stands for Volatile Organic Compound.  Basically, these are gases that are emitted from certain solids or liquids. There are many types and variations of VOCs out there. They are not just found in car care products, but in household cleaners, paint, and tobacco products as well.  The wide array of VOCs and their slow onset symptoms and impact have made it difficult to research and thus regulate in many situations.

Regulations are currently set in the places where concentrations are high, like industrial environments. Although the quantities of VOCs are low in one average container, their impact can be substantial in the long run.

The Dangers of VOCs

The effects of VOCs are highest indoors. Which means that detailers who work in cold environments and often move to shelter to work are vulnerable. In fact, their effects are 10 times higher indoors than outdoors.

VOCs can cause ground level ozone to occur, which is the main component of smog. VOCs have also have been known to contribute to lung disease and cancer in those who are constantly exposed to them.

VOCs are not a here one minute, gone the next type of compound. Products can continue to emit VOCs long after application. So for example, a newly painted wall will continue to emit VOCs inside the home for over a year after the paint has dried.

Steps to Reduce VOC Exposure

Whenever coming into contact with VOCs, which in some cases is unavoidable, make sure the environment is well ventilated. You should ensure that windows are open and fans are circulating air. Also, do not store open containers anywhere. Placing the lid back on a container does not stop the emission. Do not buy in excess and make sure you use what you have as soon as you can.

Coming into contact with VOCs has become almost inevitable. In the car care industry low VOC free products are becoming more commonplace, and Dr. Beasley’s has even started to introduce 100% VOC Free detailing products. The need for these types of products are becoming greater and greater, and products like these are the first step towards a safer environment.

Being knowledgeable on VOCs is important to say the least. They may not cause issues immediately, but they are a huge concern down the road.

  • Prentice St. Clair

    great information about VOCs! Also great photo of train by beach here in Southern Cal. I’ve probably been at that very beach!

    • http://www.drbeasleys.com/ Dr. Beasley’s

      Thanks Prentice!
      My name’s Will and I’m glad you enjoyed the article and picture!
      I actually took that picture when I used to live in San Diego. Glad you recognized it!

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