Chemicals emitted from certain building materials can be a potential source of health problems if they are not properly addressed. Certain paints, floor finishes, and carpet can contain chemicals that are not healthy to breathe, especially for small children. Fortunately, the building industry is responding to these concerns and developing safer products. Green building encourages a wide range of products such as low-VOC paints, solvent-free adhesives, and water based wood finishes that not only eliminate many suspected chemicals but also perform better than traditional products.
Adequate ventilation is a key to indoor air quality. Practices such as well-sealed duct systems, heat recovery and sealed combustion HVAC units, kitchen and bathroom exhausts vented to the outside, and balanced or slightly high positive pressure ventilation systems are especially important to building a healthy home.