volatile organic compound

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are chemical compounds that have high enough vapour pressures under normal conditions to significantly vaporise and enter the air. VOCs that escape into the air contribute to air pollution outdoors and inside our homes.

There are a wide range of carbon-based molecules (hence ‘organic’) that are considered VOCs such as aldehydes, ketones, and hydrocarbons, but there is no universally accepted definition or comprehensive list of VOCs.

VOCs are emitted from numerous household products such as cleaning agents, paints, finishes, paint thinners and strippers, carpet backing, adhesives, cosmetics and aerosols.

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