Is ANSI/HPVA EF Certified Flooring CARB 2 Equivalent?

Yes, and then some! The emissions limits and testing requirements for engineered wood flooring in the ANSI/HVPA EF American National Standard for Engineered Wood Flooring are the most stringent emissions standards in the nation and go above and beyond the requirements of CARB.

Traditional CARB compliance in engineered wood flooring is achieved by the manufacturer either certifying the plywood which they manufactured to make the wood flooring, or they purchase certified “platforms” onto which the wood veneers are affixed. If they are not making a plywood or fiberboard component of the core, the CARB fabricator exemption allows them to add more adhesive and veneers, and then subsequently sell the product as CARB 2 compliant, simply passing through their suppliers’ certification document on the platform, without subsequent testing or production controls. The same concept which applies to laminate flooring.

Since the process of adding a face veneer introduces an additional adhesive component, the ANSI/HPVA EF Standard requires compliance testing to verify the formaldehyde emissions are still within the CARB defined emissions limits for hardwood plywood, after the secondary manufacturing. This ensures the final product, which is exposed, still exhibits low emissions below 0.05ppm. This applies to both unfinished and prefinished products.

Additionally, CARB certified manufacturers can achieve exemption status after 3-6 months of quality control testing. After such point, there is little to no oversight on how the product is manufactured for a 2-year period. HPVA Laboratories certification programs and the ANSI/HPVA standards do not allow such exemptions for manufacturers using formaldehyde based resins or platforms. By implementing the required reduced frequency testing program, the manufacturer is then able to ensure that production remains in check. This ongoing testing combined with third party certification and surveillance audits demonstrates that the combination of both their production process and the supplier’s components in that product ultimately result in a low emitting wood flooring product.