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Volatile organic compounds

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Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are a wide range of carbon-based molecules (organic compounds) used in many products that find their way into our homes. Under normal conditions, they vaporize, effectively leaving their host and entering the air where they combine with other airborne compounds to form ozone. VOCs are most well-known for the harm they can cause indoors, where they can be introduced via paint, carpets, furnishings, and cleaning agents.

VOCs include a variety of chemicals, some of which may have short- and long-term adverse health effects. Concentrations of many VOCs are consistently higher indoors (up to ten times higher) than outdoors. Formaldehyde, used in many glues and adhesives, is one of the best known VOCs, and associated with cancer. The most common volatile organic compound is metha