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5 Most Common Toxins Found in the Office

October 19, 2021

Seeking out office air testing can often seem like a big challenge. However, it’s important to realize that any work environment, from expensive offices to blue collar warehouses, can harbor harmful chemicals and pollutants. In order to help mitigate the eventual health impact of this, it’s important to seek out a commercial air tester that looks for a variety of common issues that may affect you and your employees. Below are just some common airborne contaminants that may cause some serious health issues to anyone exposed to them over a long enough period of time without proper protection.   


Toxic mold infestations come from anywhere that can retain moisture for a significant amount of time. Inside insulation, behind appliances like dishwashers and fridges, and bathrooms are all common areas for mold to accumulate.

For instance, if you neglect office air testing, this can cause severe respiratory distress for many of your employees. 

Volatile Organic Compounds

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) derive from materials that emit vapors in room temperature. Also, these compounds are toxic and carcinogenic. And should be taken into consideration in any indoor environment, but especially offices. In addition, a commercial air tester will be able to identify which VOCs are in the air, and what risk they bring.

Some common sources of VOCs include: 

  • Formaldehyde 
  • Paint thinner 
  • Cleaners
  • Air fresheners 
  • Dry cleaning chemicals
  • Aerosol sprays

If you believe that you come in regular contact or are nearby materials that produce VOCs, make sure you securely and properly store everything. Additionally, make sure that any place that stores these chemicals has proper ventilation.


Organophosphates are a classification of chemical (typically human derived) that serves as a poison for animals. These chemicals are extremely toxic and carcinogenic when inhaled or exposed to for an extended period of time. So, if you work around these various insecticides, herbicides, and gasses, please ensure that you take precautions. You can do that by covering up with recommended PPE and keeping your environment well ventilated.

Certain Heavy Metals

Certain metals such as cadmium, mercury, and lead are all toxic metals that are present in the air in small quantities. However, certain work environments, such as shipyards and warehouses are conducive to have a high level of these compounds in the air. 

Repair Debris

If your office/workspace has recently been under any sort of extensive repairs or renovations, there may be remnants of certain things that were worked with. These can include drywall, fiberglass, and other insulation. Therefore, remember to always get proper office air testing after any renovations. Also, make sure that you follow proper ventilation procedures during and after. 

Looking For an Experienced Commercial Air Tester? Call IndoorDoctor Today

Getting your office air quality checked out by a professional inspector can ensure that your employees remain happy, safe, and know that they’re looked after by their place of employment. Every workplace is different, and different environments result in exposure to a variety of possible toxins and pollutants in the air. 

To ask about a certified inspection or equipment, contact us through our online form or call 800.466.1522. We are happy to answer any questions you may have.

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