HealthyStuff.org Exposes toxic New Car Smell
Many people enjoy the “smell” of a new car interior. In fact there are products
to spray I your older car to make it smell like new. But those smells are actually toxic and potentially dangerous to your health.
HealthyStuff.org tests new cars for what chemicals are being released inside the cab. They also rate cars as to their healthy potential with less chemicals released.
The #1 toxic chemical in car interiors is off gassing of the plastic PVC used. During production the manufacturing workers get exposed to the vinyl chloride monomer and/or dioxin, both probable carcinogens. This chemical is continually given off even after it winds up in a landfill somewhere. PVC also can off gass plasticizers or “softeners” otherwise known as toxic phthalates.
The car occupant is also exposed to brominated flame retardants (BFR) such as polybrominated diphenyl ethers, hexabromocyclodecane and tetrabromobisphenol. In 2012 , 40% of vehicles contained these chemicals in their interior.
The manufacturers are aware of the problem and things may be slowly improving. In 2006 only 2% of vehicle interiors were free of PVC and BFR. In 2012, 8% and now free of both these chemicals.
Which car interior is safest?
- The lowest use of PVC’s is Honda, Suzuki and Mazda. (As of 2012 Honda has eliminated PVC in 83% of their vehicles). The highest use is Daimler AG, Saab and Volvo.
- The Honda Civic is the overall best rated car for all chemicals.
- Toyota Prius is second best, followed by the Honda CR-Z, Nissan Cube and Acura RDX and ZDX.
- The Mitsubishi Outlander Sport was the worst-rated vehicle. Next worst was Chrysler 200SC, Kia Soul and Nissan Versa.