Can New Carpet Cause Headaches?

Every time, a new study comes up with a different potential of carpet and its side effects. Even though a carpet is the most glamorous flooring option, it still has some serious point of issues, such as easy staining, shedding, tripping, and wicking. Next up: the headache caused by your wall-to-wall carpeting, but can new carpet cause headaches?

This question is vital because a new carpet is most likely to have a volatile organic compound (VOC) that emits as soon as you unroll the rug on your floor. This is what we call off-gassing! But is it possible that this off-gassing can cause some serious health problems like headaches? And how does this new carpet smell last?

Let’s find out!

Can New Carpet Cause Headaches

What Is VOC?

What Is VOC

VOC or volatile organic compounds are small chemical particles with high vapor pressure and low water solubility. It is composed of several chemicals, such as benzene, ethylene glycol, formaldehyde, methylene chloride, and tetrachloroethylene, which are used and produced during the manufacture of rugs.

All these chemical compounds are suspended from their source instantly after you lay out your carpet and, ultimately, spread in the air.

Like this, it contributes to the formation of ground-level ozone after reacting with nitrogen oxide, and this is when you end up breathing this harmful release.

Do All Carpets Have VOC?

Do All Carpets Have VOC

VOC is most likely to be set out from a synthetic carpet, such as nylon, polyester, or polypropylene. And if we go a little further with elaboration, it is the latex backing of carpet that is majorly responsible for this harmful emission.

Approximately 95% of new carpet has VOC, so while buying a carpet, keep 7 points in your mind:

  1. Look for a Green Label Certificate and inspect the quality before making a purchase.
  2. Clean your home thoroughly and dry it before laying the carpet.
  3. Open doors and windows to provide ventilation and to allow off-gassing.
  4. Vacuum the carpet just after positioning it and apply an air purifier to eliminate the smell.
  5. Use allergen-impermeable covers on carpets, especially those regions that are prone to high allergen exposure.
  6. Also, vacuum the rug from time to time to lessen the chances of allergens in the future.
  7. If the smell is way too musky, then deep clean it with a carpet cleaner and dry it for 6 to 10 hours. By this, the bad odor and germs will evaporate with moisture.

 By this, you can reduce VOC emissions and save your carpet for use!  You can also use home carpet cleaners get rid of the smell while not damaging it.

Can New Carpets Cause Headaches?

Can New Carpets Cause Headaches

The answer is Yes! In fact, it can cause a lot more that you are unaware of, such as eye, nose, or throat irritation, nausea, kidney or liver damage, and effect on the central nervous system.

All of these symptoms sound like allergies, right?

Well, yes! A newly installed carpet can emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and this can trigger allergic reactions called new carpet allergy or carpet off-gassing.

If you have any of these problems, then you can blame your carpet for it!

For How Long Does Carpet Allergens Or Off-Gassing Last?

For How Long Does Carpet Allergens Or Off-Gassing Last

Normally, carpet allergens last for a few days or a few weeks. This time period may vary depending on the place where you live and the climate. How? Suppose you are living in a polar region with high albedo where a large amount of sun is reflected back from the above atmosphere. In a case like this, the carpet will not lose its musky smell for a month or more.

The same goes with the case of climate! If you have unrolled your carpet in rainy, cloudy, or moist weather, then the airborne odor will last longer than your expectation. And in case of dry or hot weather, this smell can fade even before 5 days.

Whether for a week or a month, the smell of VOC is enough to make you sick. Hence, it’s better to treat it as soon as you find out its existence.

How To Minimize The Headache Cause By Carpet Allergens?

How To Minimize The Headache Cause By Carpet Allergens

If your house has a constant lingering smell and you are suffering from headache or fatigue, then it’s high time for you to take some action because this headache can get worse and convert to migraines in the future.

Consult your doctor and take the prescribed medication from time to time. Other than this, take adequate rest and use the VOC eradication method that we have already discussed in the above section.

Can New Carpet Cause Headaches? | Conclusion:

A new carpet can lead to severe health issues, and in this regard, if your question is: Can New Carpet Cause Headaches? Then, you should immediately consult a doctor and take adequate measures to eradicate allergens and VOC from the rug.


How do I know if my carpet is making me sick or not?

Just after carpet installation, if your carpet continuously produces a musky smell and you constantly suffer from headaches, then you can suspect that your carpet is making you sick.

How to detox a new carpet?

You can put vinegar near the rug or sprinkle baking soda to detox your carpet. If you want these natural ingredients to give their best results, then leave them overnight on your rug.

How long does carpet cleaning smell last?

Normally, the smell of freshly deep-cleaned carpet lasts for 1 or 2 days, but if it smells for more than the usual time, then maybe some moisture is still there on the rug. To evaporate the remaining moisture, hang your carpet under the sun or ventilate your room well to let air and sunrays fall on your rug.

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