The importation of Chinese Drywall to the United States started in 2001. In 2009, a huge rave began about the illnesses that it brings. Chinese Drywall is made by mixing sulfurous particles with gypsum and compacted into sheets. It seems that there are higher levels of Pyrite in Chinese than American drywall which is the source of the sulfuric compounds. The U.S. did not know the devastating effects that this drywall will bring upon the American households at the time.
How to Detect Chinese Drywall
The best way to check if you have Chinese Drywall on your property is by retrieving a sample of the drywall and sending it to a laboratory that specializes in testing for harmful chemicals. This process is the most costly but it’s the proper way for accurately testing for Chinese Drywall. You can have a Licensed General Contractor visually inspect the property as well. At most times, he can smell the sulfuric fumes right when he enters the property. Breathing becomes instantly heavy due to the thick air. The color of the drywall is usually pink and the copper wires and pipes on the interior will turn black from corrosion. The A/C will eventually seize to work because the A/C coils will turn black and lose their functionality. The Southeastern part of the country got hit the worst since warm and humid climate seems to encourage the emissions of sulfuric gasses.
The Replacement Process
The replacement process can be costly, uncomfortable, and time consuming. Not only do you have to dispose of this harmful drywall properly but you would most likely have to replace the complete electrical and plumbing infrastructure of your property. Furthermore, you will have to replace the drywall, paint, insulation, and any cabinetry that is installed such as kitchen cabinets and bathroom cabinets. Basically, the whole interior of your house will need to be remodeled. This will be a headache if you hire the wrong person to do the job. Don’t let a bad situation get worse, hire a licensed professional to get the job done right.
The Permit Requirements
It is Imperative that you contract a licensed General Contractor when replacing the Chinese drywall in your property. You will need to obtain the proper building permits required from the city that only a licensed General Contractor can obtain. The GC will need to provide you with permits such as a master permit, an electrical permit, a plumbing Permit, and an HVAC permit. Along with these permits, you will need to pass inspections for all of these trades and the only person that will help you pass all of your inspections is a General Contractor, because that’s his job and his License in on the line.
Damage to Property
The damaged caused by Chinese drywall can be devastating and catastrophic! For example, if you don’t change your electrical wires after it’s been exposed to Chinese drywall it can cause a short circuit and start a fire in your property. Another devastating effect can be made to your plumbing copper pipes if you do not replace them after they have been exposed to Chinese drywall. These pipes can burst causing major floods in your property. So, always be sure to have a licensed professional inspect every part of your property correctly before replacing any drywall. Remember, you don’t want to pay twice for the same job so do it right the first time.
The health related problems of Chinese drywall can be severe and, in many cases, have lead to hospitalization. Not all symptoms are long term but if you prolong the exposure to Chinese drywall the sulfuric gasses can have a detrimental effect on your health, especially on elderly and the very young. Some common side effects include bloody nose, irritated eyes & skin, itchy eyes & skin, difficulty breathing, nasal irritation, recurrent headaches & migraines, Sinus infections, exacerbations of asthma, memory loss, and dizziness. Just like any health problem, the sooner you take action the better chance you have at stopping further damage to your health.
Who Can Help
There are many private companies that say they can inspect for a good price, but what these companies fail to carry is a license. Xtrm Construction has licensed General Contractors with more than 20 years of experience. We have helped dozens of families with this tragic situation of Chinese drywall damaging their homes, affecting their health and stealing the American Dream of owning a property that can grow in value. We know the burden this problem has caused so we always work together with our client to find a solution to the problem. We at Xtrm Construction take pride in helping others in their time of need, because we have families and we know how hard it is to combat this disaster once you find out your property is infected with Chinese drywall. Get informed today if you think you may have Chinese drywall in your home before the damage worsens. Give us a call at 305-467-7050 and one of our licensed professionals will be glad to help.