The sole purpose of this case definition is to help identify homes that are affected by corrosion associated with drywall emissions. The case definition is NOT intended to evaluate the health risks for occupants or to evaluate occupant exposures to corrosive emissions. This case definition is NOT regulatory in nature or required to be used by those inspecting homes. This case definition is provided to the public for informational purposes only and its use is strictly voluntary. Adoption of this case definition for purposes beyond its intended use is at the risk of the user. Criteria to demonstrate that a home is not affected by corrosive drywall emissions may require a different approach and inspection criteria that are not described in this document.
This version of the case definition enables the user to rank homes as a possible, probable, or confirmed case. Homes that exhibit the sentinel indicators of drywall associated corrosion are defined as possible cases. All three sentinel indicators of Criteria 1 must be met for the home to be considered as a possible case.
Sentinel Indicators of Drywall Associated Corrosion (Possible Case = all 3)
- The home was constructed or renovated with new drywall since 2001.
- Observed corrosion of air conditioner evaporator coil exemplified by black corrosion on copper tubing components. The corrosion can result in refrigerant leakage making it impossible to cool the home requiring coil replacement. Coil failures indicative of this problem typically occur every 6-14 months
- Observed metal corrosion, indicated by blackening of one or more of the following:
- copper wires, ground wires, and electrical connectors
- un-insulated and un-coated copper pipes and fittings
- chrome-plated bathroom fixtures
- silver and copper jewelry
- mirror backing in bathrooms
If you have answered yes to all three of the above indicators, the home meets the criteria for “possible case”. Continue to Criteria 2 or 3 only if home meets the criteria for “possible case”. Trained professionals performing home assessments based upon this case definition should use their experience, training, and professional judgment to establish their inspection procedures and sampling strategies. Professional judgment is necessary to determine the number of samples and weight of evidence needed to meet each set of criteria. A trained professional, not the homeowner, should conduct inspections and testing described in Criteria 2 and 3.
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