Yournew gaming chairhas finally been delivered.But when you open the package,the first thing you notice is that the chair smells of chemicals!
A whole range of chemicals is used in the manufacture of chairs and furniture.Residues of these chemicals can mainly be hidden in the upholstery material and in the foam padding.These can outgas in the first few weeks after manufacture and give the chair a real unpleasant smell.
The long journey in the shipping container,from the country of manufacture to the retailer,can also be the cause of a new gaming chair smelling of chemicals.Containers are often fumigated with insecticides and/or fungicides so that insects are killed off or no mold can form because of the stuffy,stagnant air inside the container.These fumes penetrate everything that is not packed airtight and adhere to porous surfaces and materials.
How to remove the smell from a gaming chair?
To get rid of the bad smell try the following:
- Let the chair air out,preferably outdoors on the porch,the garage,or in a storage shed,just not in the apartment or in the office.
- If the chair is still in the package,put apound of ground coffeein a cloth bag,place it in the package and seal the box tightly.Coffee can help absorb bad smells from its ambient air,(this trick might help too to remove tobacco stink from a car).
- Instead of coffee,you could also put a packet ofactivated charcoal in the box.After a few days,open the box and check the chair.
- If nothing helps and the smell is still there after a few weeks,consider sending the chair back for replacement(pay attention to return deadlines).Unfortunately,only if manufacturers get too many complaints and returns will they improve something.
Is the smell dangerous?
New furniture often emits a strong chemical odor.Most of the time the smell is harmless.However,if the cause is toxic chemicals then the smell can also be dangerous.How do you now?
If a chair or piece of furniture smells persistent,it can lead to milder symptoms such as headache,eye irritation,or allergic reactions.In the long term,pollutant emissions could lead to chronic issues.So if you find that symptoms like this are happening in your office or home but wear off as soon as you leave,it is time to act.
Either you have to remove all possible pieces of furniture one by one to try to find the source,or you have to call professionals to conduct a thorough chemical analysis.The range of possible home toxins is large and the cause can be difficult to identify.In serious cases,it makes perfect sense to call in experts to look for the cause on-site and then take targeted samples.But such chemical analyzes are usually expensive.
How to find safe furniture or a non-toxic gaming chair?
You are on the safe side if you buy high-quality gaming chairs from reputable brands and pay attention to eco-labels or seals that show that thefurniture is environmentally friendly.
Possible sources of hazardous emissions from gaming chairs and office furniture
Many harmful and frequently unnecessary substances,such as toxic flame retardant chemicals,organic compounds with high volatility(including formaldehyde),fluorinated chemicals,antimicrobials,and toxic polymers like polyvinyl chloride,find their way into modern furniture.
This group is referred to as the“Hazardous”and is further discussed below.
Flame retardants:Despite the fact that flame retardants have been related to cancer and other major disorders,government tests show that they do not give further fire safety benefits in furniture.Flame retardants leak from furniture and end up in our air,dust,the environment,and even our bodies.
Formaldehyde:It is an example of a toxic volatile organic compound(VOC)that has been linked to cancer but is still widely employed in wood furniture adhesives.
Fluorinated chemicals:These chemicals are used to stain furniture and provide water-resistant treatments.They have been connected to major health issues and can build up in our bodies and the environment,where they can remain poisonous for thousands of years without degrading.
Fluorinated substances:They have been discovered migrating from items into our air,dust,water,and bodies.
Antimicrobials:The presence of antimicrobials in furniture have not been proved to minimize the transmission of infection,can pose health and environmental risks,and may contribute to antimicrobial resistance.
PVC(polyvinyl chloride):It is a plastic material used in furniture and,on occasion,textiles.PVC is frequently treated with hazardous chemicals such as lead,flame retardants,and phthalates.
Hazardous emissions from gaming chairs and office furniture
Many modern furniture companies,unlike the furniture our parents bought for their homes and offices,are designed to be disposable.In today’s throwaway mentality,it is considered as a big benefit when the stuff is cheap so that you can throw it away when you move and buy something new.There is also less effort spent tomaintain and repair thingsif something is broken.However,the convenience of disposable furniture comes at a high cost.We are unaware,but we’re tossing out more of it than ever before.Consequently,it has a stunningly large yet largely unseen environmental impact.
According to some estimates,Americans toss away 110 million pieces of furniture each year.On the other hand,furniture is the least likely item in a home to be recycled.Only a tenth of one percent of wasted furniture made it to a recycling facility in 2008.Even well-known household furniture firms have been chastised in recent years for their unsustainable production techniques.It has prompted behemoths like IKEA to create new sustainability policies.
Effect of synthetic leather on human and environmental health
Leather’s influence on the environment is significantly greater than most people realize.We can assess how much greenhouse gas is associated with your leather products using data provided by the leather industry,and the results will not be promising.Leather manufacturing uses recyclable materials is one of the largest ambitions asserted in leather promotions.
Leather’s marketing as a sustainable by-product that outperforms leather alternatives has led to widespread misunderstandings among fashion professionals and customers.Some organizations like Leather Naturally use terms like“recycling”and focus on shifting the focus away from things like enormous climate and biodiversity impacts to items like plastic,exacerbating this type of misinformation.
Most of the plastics are taken from recycled materials from the waste of crude oil refineries,but leather is not made from recycled materials.
It is a wake-up call for those who feel leather is merely a by-product of the meat and dairy sectors.So,do not dismiss any environmental impact of leather because you are not aware of leather processing and tanning.
For example,the polyester production process is an energy-intensive process.So,it needs large amounts of water for cooling.This can have negative consequences where water is scarce.It is because it can reduce the availability of safe drinking water.Not to mention that the wastewater from the manufacturing process contains chemical dyes that can harm plants,animals,and humans.
Conclusion and recommendations
Furniture may have a particularly negative influence on the environment.Office furniture has traditionally been made to a higher standard than home furniture.However,we have seen a surge of low-cost,short-life-span commodities that share the same destiny as their domestic counterparts.
Furniture is a common source of harmful compounds that are harmful to human health.Several types of harmful and synthetic substancesleak out of furniture and end up in our air,dust,and bodies.Given the long lifespan of furniture and the fact that we spend 90%of our time indoors,everything should be done to improve indoor air quality and protect health.The easiest way to achieve this is to make purchasing decisions for furniture based on environmental compatibility through appropriate certification.