May 1, 2015 — Does flooring from Lowe’s have the same toxic formaldehyde problem as Chinese-made laminate flooring from Lumber Liquidators?
Seeking Alpha has published results of an analysis of Lowe’s laminate wood flooring made in China.
Testing of the company’s “FH/L 3603 Chocolate Cherry Hickory” had formaldehyde emissions approximately 10X higher than what the California Air Resource Board (CARB) allows, but was marked as CARB-compliant.
The analysis was published by Xuhua Zhou, the same short-seller who first raised those same allegations against Lumber Liquidators back in June 2013, when he was just 25 years old.
According to Zhou, Lowe’s flooring may also be toxic:
“Independent tests show that one of Lowe’s floors scores 10x the allowed formaldehyde threshold. To put that in context, 60 Minutes tested 31 samples from Lumber Liquidators; Lowe’s Chocolate Cherry Hickory would have been the third worst of all 31 samples.”
Zhou’s original analysis went largely unnoticed two years ago. Allegations against Lumber Liquidators went mainstream back in March, after a report by 60 Minutes. The company was accused of boosting profits by increasing the amount of cheap formaldehyde in the glue that binds together sawdust particles in the core of the board.
Unfortunately, formaldehyde becomes a gas at room temperature and slowly escapes from the flooring. Formaldehyde is a known carcinogen, and even short-term exposure can cause respiratory problems, flu-like symptoms, headaches, and more.