Discovery Home Inspectors provides a full range of home inspections including Chinese Drywall Inspections. If you have any concerns about potential harmful drywall installed in your home, call us at (832) 435-0062 as soon as possible. 

DISCOVERY HOME INSPECTORS

Houston's Professional House Detectives

  

What is Chinese Drywall?

Chinese drywall is a defective product from China that contains potentially harmful substances.

The material imported internationally, during the surge in construction directly related to relentless hurricane seasons and recent new home construction, primarily between 2002 and 2006, and has been used in tens of thousands of U.S. homes is known to contain many harmful compounds.      Massive storms created an overwhelming demand for drywall; more than the the United States could supply. This tremendous need to repair damaged homes and keep up with new construction required The United States to import large amounts of foreign drywall.

 

How Did This Happen?

The defective drywall, (also known as wallboard, gypsum board, or plasterboard), arrived at nearly 2-dozen ports around the country with 7 of them in Florida, but including New York, Texas, New Orleans, and California. During the housing boom after Hurricane Katrina, among other storms, from 2002 through 2006, the strain on the supply of domestic drywall building material required many builders to resort to international suppliers to fill the demand. 

Many imported drywall from a German-based company, Knauf, with subsidiaries in China (such as Knauf Tianjin). Reports are showing that millions of pounds of Chinese drywall entered the US during this time frame and this material was used across the country in thousands of homes, condos, and office buildings. Most foreign manufacturers stopped shipping drywall to the US in 2007, after the building boom was over. However, it has been discovered that another manufacturer, Taian Taishan (based in Taian, China), continued to ship large quantities of drywall to New York and Port Everglades into the summer of 2007. It appears that at least 550 million pounds of Chinese drywall have arrived at US ports since 2006. That is enough to construct over 60,000 average-sized homes. 

Home owners throughout the United States have been, and will be affected. It wasn't long before the Chinese drywall utilized in homes all over Texas began producing problems. The Texas Department of Health began receiving reports of noxious odors which seemed to get worse during the heat of summer. Further investigation revealed that the Chinese drywall was most likely emitting toxic gaseous emissions, and the imported materials were most likely contaminated.  

Hydrogen sulfide, the compound that causes a noxious rotten egg smell, was not found in the air quality reports. However, tests administered directly from the Chinese drywall material itself, revealed that higher concentrations of hydrogen sulfides were indeed present. Knauf Tianjin, a Chinese drywall manufacturer who has had reports of problems with their drywall, reported that test administered on the drywall in 2006 also found high concentrations of hydrogen sulfides. 

The strontium sulfide found in the drywall has been reported as harmful. When the chemical is exposed to humidity, it releases corrosive gases. The compounds found in the tainted Chinese drywall have the ability to corrode plumbing and wiring in a home, destroying appliances and the electrical system as well as air conditioning coils. On top of this, the gases released have also been known to have adverse health effects as well. Many reports have been made of Chinese drywall causing respiratory and skin problems. Those with asthma may experience worsened symptoms and long exposure to the chemicals found in the material is not advised, as worse problems may occur.

 If you have any concerns about potential harmful drywall installed in your home please call (832) 435-0062

DISCOVERY HOME INSPECTORS 

 

Top Ten Chinese Drywall Samples with Highest Hydrogen Sulfide Emission levels

The CPSC Drywall Information Center has recently released a list of drywall manufacturers whose drywall produced high levels of hydrogen sulfide during testing.  After testing they were able to determine the top ten samples, which released the highest levels of hydrogen sulfide gases.  The top ten were all drywall samples made in China.  

1.        Knauf Plasterboard (Tianjin) Co. Ltd.: (year of manufacture 2005) China

2.        Taian Taishan Plasterboard Co. Ltd.: (2006) China

3.        Shandong Taihe Dongxin Co.: (2005) China

4.        Knauf Plasterboard (Tianjin) Co. Ltd.: (2006) China

5.        Taian Taishan Plasterboard Co. Ltd.: (2006) China

6.        Taian Taishan Plasterboard Co. Ltd.: (2006) China

7.        Shandong Chenxiang GBM Co. Ltd. (C&K Gypsum Board): (2006) China

8.        Beijing New Building Materials (BNBM): (2009) China

9.        Taian Taishan Plasterboard Co. Ltd.: (2009) China

10.     Shandong Taihe Dongxin Co.: (2009) China


Since the Consumer Product Safety Commission began receiving complaints from many homeowners across the United States they have continued to investigate these homes that have been tested and confirmed to have Chinese drywall. 

More information & monthly updates on the progress the CPSC have made can be followed on line at www.CPSC.gov/info/drywall. "CPSC has received about 3,482 reports from residents in 37 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico who believe their health symptoms or the corrosion of certain metal components in their homes are related to the presence of drywall imported from China.  


 

 

 

 

 


Elemental and chemical, chamber, in-home indoor air sampling, and electrical and fire safety tests are being conducted results are expected to be released starting late October 2009. 

Homeowners across the country are worried about declining home value from the housing crisis. Homeowners with defective Chinese drywall have twice as much to worry about. Realtors across the country are lining up to make homeowners disclose on a mandatory basis any history of defective drywall contamination. 

 

Does my home contain Chinese drywall? 

We can look for the signs that the defective product may be present in any home, but many times only a portion of a remodeled home will contain Chinese Drywall, so detection can be quite difficult. Aside from the obvious rotten egg smell this material may produce, our trained home inspectors attempt to identify Chinese drywall from other indicators as well. By examining the drywall along with other building materials that could be a result of Chinese drywall used in the home. Short of extremely invasive procedures we can only make our assumptions based on what our normal inspection techniques allow. 

 

If you have any concerns about potential harmful drywall being used in your home, call us at (832)435-0062 as soon as possible.

 DISCOVERY HOME INSPECTORS 

Houston's Professional House Detectives 


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