212.540.0005

Scented candles create dangerous black soot!

In Manhattan NY, did you know that scented candles create dangerous black soot?

burning candles cause soot

Scented candles create dangerous black soot and low-quality candles are often to blame. What is Black soot deposition (BSD)?  Black Soot Deposition is just a fancy name used to describe an indoor soot build-up problem. This build-up is produced when fuel isn’t burning properly.

Commercial property management companies and insurance companies have seen an increase in claims due to black spot stains on ceilings, walls, furniture, and HVAC filters from previously unidentified sources. This spotting problem is referred to as “black soot deposition” (BSD) and, as research now indicates, it is frequently caused by scented candles.

There doesn’t appear to be any evidence of a sudden or accidental source for BSD, such as malfunctioning gas water heaters, furnaces, cigarette smoke, or cooking by-products. Through confirmed testing, it has been determined that it’s very possible that decorative scented candles are the primary culprit.

Scented candles create dangerous black soot and Low-quality candles are often to blame.

BSD is often the result of candle manufacturers adding additional fragrance oils to their products. Improper wick trimming by customers can cause black soot deposition. There are many fragrance oils that are not suitable for combustion and do not burn cleanly.  It appears that many amateur candle-makers have entered the expanding market to capitalize on the current popularity of candles without proper training or experience. Now we have an outcome with an abundance of super low-quality candles burning in many homes. With this comes a corresponding increase in the frequency of indoor soot deposits. This can be especially dangerous for those with ongoing lung issues or people who have pets with fragile respiratory symptoms, such as birds.

Potential dangers to structure and health

Each year, there is an increase in the number of aromatic candle manufacturers, professional and amateur. Most introduce candles to their product line without the slightest bit of knowledge necessary to produce a safe and clean-burning product. The chemical testing involved provides conclusive evidence that emissions from some burning candles contain more than twenty volatile organic compounds, leading to a significant amount of carbon.

Because of the soot, burning scented candles inside can present serious health hazards to those living and working there as well as damaging ventilation systems, furnishings, and other content. New evidence suggests that breathing in even one micron of particulate soot can be hazardous. The American Lung Association (ALA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have determined breathing particulate matter 2.5 microns or smaller is detrimental to human health. These particles are so dangerous because they are inhaled deeply into the lungs. This causes irritation and respiratory problems. People with heart or lung disease, children, and the elderly are at greater risk.

Identifying Signs of BSD

A dingy gray look appearing on light-colored upholstery or fabrics is usually the first visible indication of candle soot deposits in a structure. Electronic equipment will show discoloration near vents, plastic items may accumulate a black film, and a thin black residue will develop on television and computer screens.

In buildings with wall-to-wall carpet, connections and door undercuts may begin to show dark spots or discoloration. You will also find soot deposits on draperies, vertical blinds, and bed ruffles.

There have been many tests done for BSD. One of the scariest tests was conducted using 4 candles, burned in a 144 square foot room. In less than 30 minutes, the soot buildup yielded 11 MILLION particles of soot per cubic foot. That is a lot of unhealthy soot to breathe in.

For soot to accumulate, a driving force must be in place to push the particulate matter against a surface. Examples of a driving force include gravity, electrostatic attraction, or a forced-air unit. So, if you have an HVAC system, you would have soot.

Soot particles unite with each other and with dust particles in the air. When black soot is released into the air of any building, it eventually deposits onto surfaces. Once these particles unite and grow in size, they gain enough mass to deposit via gravity.

To stop the spread of BSD, begin by refraining from burning all candles. If you need to burn candles, then purchase high-quality candles and trim wicks properly. To trim a candle wick properly, trim it down to a quarter-inch after each burning. The recommended time to burn candles is no more than an hour at a time. Also, you should allow for a cool-down period before re-lighting. Remember, never burn candles under a draft, like vents or near fans and heaters.

Call In The Experts at Restoration 1

If you need smoke remediation, then contact Restoration 1 of Manhattan in Manhattan NY for an estimate and professional smoke remediation.