Lowe’s has pulled its line of Tecsun laminate flooring off the market over concerns about excessive levels of formaldehyde, a cancer-causing chemical.
What is Tecsun Flooring?
Tecsun Building Products is a flooring retailer based in the City of Industry, California. The company sells a variety of flooring products, including hardwood and laminated wood floors imported from China.
Tecsun Laminate Flooring Recall
In May 2015, Bloomberg reported that Lowe’s would no longer offer Tecsun laminate flooring. The products were only available online, not in stores.
What is the problem?
May 2015 — A report published in Seeking Alpha claims that Lowe’s is selling Chinese-made laminate wood with unacceptable levels of formaldehyde.
Earlier this year, 60 Minutes made similar allegations against Lumber Liquidators.
The analysis includes transcripts of recorded conversations with Tecsun representatives who said their products exceed regulations limiting formaldehyde emissions from flooring.
Investigators tested samples of “FH/L 3603 Chocolate Cherry Hickory” laminate flooring from Lowe’s and found 10X the limit of formaldehyde:
“To put Lowe’s results in context, “60 Minutes” tested 31 samples from Lumber Liquidators and Lowe’s Chocolate Cherry Hickory would have been the third worst of all 31 samples had it been included by “60 Minutes.”
Formaldehyde in Laminate Wood Flooring
China is a major global supplier of laminated wood flooring. These products typically consist of a “core” of medium density fiberboard (MDF), which is an engineered product made of sawdust particles held together with a formaldehyde-based glue. Over time, formaldehyde vaporizes and escapes into the air (called “off-gassing”), where it can cause health problems for people in the home.
Health Problems from Formaldehyde
- Eye, nose, and throat irritation
- Skin allergies
- Neurological problems
- And more