Chinese Poison Train Brings Dangerous Drywall To Gulf Coast The CPSC and state authorities are fielding hundreds of complaints about Chinese drywall used in home construction in areas devastated by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Residents are reporting sulfur smells and corrosion on metal fixtures. [Consumer Reports Safety]

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  1. FatLynn says:

    Sadly, this is one more negative consequence of the housing boom. It is not cheaper to bring drywall in from China, it was only done because we were building more houses in this country than domestic production could support.

    • Sudonum says:

      @FatLynn:
      No, it was done due to the fact that 5 (6?) major hurricanes wiped out large swaths of FL and LA in consecutive years and the domestic drywall industry couldn’t keep up with the demand. Same thing happens to shingles when hurricanes and tornados start popping up. You’ll note that all of the reported cases to-date are in these 2 states.

  2. dohtem says:

    Hopefully we will soon reach a breaking point with shoddy imported Chinese goods that we start looking for “Made in America” again.

    • Saisu Mimen says:

      @dohtem:

      We’ll likely never go back to the way things were in terms of US manufacturing. In fact, things are only getting worse right now.

  3. Mr_Human says:

    There’s actually a whole site devoted to bad Chinese imports:

    http://www.chinacrapwatch.com

    Scary reading

    • S-Meow P-Meow says:

      @Mr_Human: Outstanding, thanks for sharing. We already ban products made in the Poisoned Republic of China thanks to the sheer volume of Chinese death by the CPSC; this site is another great resource.

  4. Claytons says:

    I imagine this could lead to potential fire hazards if it corroded wire insulation.

    • HunterZ says:

      @Claytons: Wire insulation is made out of plastic, not metal.

    • Rachacha says:

      @Claytons: Yeah, what HunterZ said. But if the chemicals are corroding bare metal, it could cause an increase in resistance where the wiring connects to switches and outlets, or where wires are tied together in junction boxes and could cause overheating at those locations. In theory, your fuse/circuit breaker should trip before any significant damage was done, but it is theoretically possible.

      • Sudonum says:

        I’ve read in a lot of construction journals that it’s doing more of a number on HVAC components than wiring. Did a major commercial renovation recently in STL and our suppliers had to certify none of the drywall came from China

    • Claytons says:

      @Claytons, @Rachacha Sulfur + Oxygen + moisture = sulfuric acid, which will, in time, corrode many plastics just as it’s currently corroding metal.

  5. Shoelace says:

    Is this just noise or does someone in this country have enough interest and clout to do something about it?

    • econobiker says:

      @Shoelace: Depends- is it affecting any politicians’ Florida homes?

      • Anonymous says:

        @econobiker: Actually, I think Fla’s Lt. Governor had to move his family out of a newly built home because of this nonsense. I would be concerned about buying any home built in Florida after the 04-05 hurricane season until about last year.

  6. yagisencho says:

    “The agency is on the ground in Florida in a fact-finding mode,” says CPSC spokesman Joe Martyak. “Our goal is to determine if, and to what extent, there is any safety risk involved with imported Chinese drywall.”

    I understand that he needs to say IF/WHAT in order to appear impartial, but…holy ____. Just might be a problem here if your electronics are shorting out and a home’s residents can’t breathe:

    * The home may have a slight or strong, sulfur, rotten egg or even acid type smell.
    * Air conditioning coils, stove top and oven elements, and refrigerators may be failing at an unusually high rate-often within a year or less.
    * Silver jewelry or silver wedding plates or flatware may be tarnishing within months or even weeks. Mirrors might turn black.
    * Since moving into the house, a homeowner or family member may have experienced symptoms of severe allergies, nose bleeds, or upper respiratory problems.
    * Richard Kampf says he is worried the corroded wiring poses a fire hazard.

    • Rachacha says:

      @yagisencho: “I understand that he needs to say IF/WHAT in order to appear impartial…” impartial, but more importantly, there has been no CONFIRMED evidence linking the odor and corroding metals directly to the drywall. A lot of circumstantial evidence that points to the drywall, but nothing to directly link the two together…yet.

  7. badgeman46 says:

    Strontium? Someone better get some geiger counters out. Thats scary!