Where Is Asbestos In The Home?

Friday, 10 October 2014 by
asbestos in the home

Where is Asbestos in the home?  Asbestos, a naturally occurring silicate mineral, was once called the “miracle” fiber, because of its fire-resistant, thermal insulating, non-conductive, flexible, strong, and wear resistant properties. The ancient Greeks and Romans both used asbestos for tablecloths, napkins, towels, and linings for suits of armor. It is rumored that early Roman Emperors

Chemical Hazards and the TSCA

Friday, 18 July 2014 by
TSCA Chemical Hazards

How safe are the man-made chemicals that surround us?   Chemical Hazards are a concern for everyone. The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) was passed in 1976 and is the country’s main chemical safety law. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is responsible for enforcing TSCA, but significant weaknesses in TSCA have left the EPA unable

Understanding LEED IAQ Testing Requirements LEED 2009 and LEEDv4 both have credits that require building flush-outs or building air quality testing prior to occupancy. The credit requires that after construction ends, the GC must install new filtration media and flush-out the building by supplying a total air volume of 14,000 cubic feet of outdoor air per square

We decided to lighten the mood at Healthy Building Science by creating a funny building science video about what we do. What started off as a standard informational video soon turned into something very different. We hope you enjoy the results of this building science video. In October 2013, we assembled a team consisting of

The Materials and Human Health Summit provided a good explanation of the approach that LEED v4 is taking with regard to materials transparency in LEEDv4. (See my previous post, Tension at the Materials and Human Health Summit? for more on the event). In place of the controversial LEED Pilot Credit 54 that ignited some of the animosity between

What is in that New Car Smell?

Friday, 15 November 2013 by

Testing a new car for VOC’s and Formaldehyde Healthy Building Science recently leased a brand new 2013 Volkswagen Jetta TDI Clean Diesel for use by the inspection department.  While the car is very nice, low emissions and great mileage, it definitely has that New Car Smell.  Being the science geeks we are at HBS, I

building a healthy home

When most people build or remodel their homes, they pay close attention to indoor air quality, comfort and aesthetics. The task of building to survive natural disasters like earthquakes (as the San Francisco Bay region is prone to) is left to building codes and local code enforcement. And the task of ensuring the home maintains livable

Smog and Particulates

Tuesday, 01 October 2013 by

Smog and Particulates How Fine Particulates Affect Exterior and Interior Air Quality No matter how well our “Green and Healthy” homes are designed and built, our interior air quality can only be as good as our exterior air quality (our “source air”), unless we add active air filtration into our building design.  But how do

How to Clean Up Mold?

Tuesday, 10 September 2013 by
Mold Clean Up - When to Call in Professional Remediators

Most of this blog on how to clean up mold is from the “Help Yourself to a Healthy Home” guide from HUD. We generally suggest hiring an established remediation company with professionals certified by the IICRC… but many cannot afford to pay for that service or don’t feel it’s necessary. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for

Blown-in-Cellulose Insulation

Wednesday, 21 August 2013 by
blown-in-cellulose insulation

Blown-in-Cellulose Insulation Test Results On a recent project, we recommended a homeowner try Blown-in-Cellulose insulation as a healthy alternative to other insulation choices. Blown-in-cellulose is known in the healthy materials world as a pretty safe insulation choice. But just to be sure the product was safe, we sent a wet sample to a lab for