Furniture Testing to BIFMA Standards for VOC Emissions

Testing Services for Furniture

Berkeley Analytical tests office furniture products to demonstrate compliance to ANSI/BIFMA furniture VOC emission and sustainability standards and for regulatory requirements:

  • Testing of seating, workstations, collaborative furniture and components by ANSI/BIFMA M7.1, Standard Test Method for Determining VOC Emissions from Office Furniture Systems, Components and Seating using small-scale and mid-scale chambers
  • Assessment of VOC emissions according to:
  • ANSI/BIFMA X7.1, Standard for Formaldehyde and TVOC Emissions of Low-emitting Office Furniture and Seating
  • ANSI/BIFMA e3, Furniture Sustainability Standard, Sections 7.6.1, 7.6.2 and 7.6.3
  • Quality control and odor evaluation testing by ASTM D5116 and ASTM D6670
  • Small-scale chamber testing of composite woods for formaldehyde emissions by ASTM D6007
  • Testing furniture and components for content of phthalate esters and flame retardants for:
  • Compliance with the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) for children’s products
  • Assessment of labeling requirements for California Proposition 65
  • ANSI/BIFMA e3, Section 7.5, Reduction/Elimination of Chemicals of Concern

USGBC LEED EQ Credit: Low-Emitting Materials

Office furniture and seating products may be eligible for USGBC LEED 2009 Credit EQ4.5, Low-Emitting Materials: Systems Furniture and Seating under the Option 2 pathway. Testing is performed according to ANSI/BIFMA M7.1 and compliance is determined using ANSI/BIFMA X7.1.

The LEED v4 Low-Emitting Materials credit for furniture has been substantially revised. Compliance is determined based on Sections 7.6.1 and 7.6.2 of ANSI/BIFMA e3. Section 7.6.1 is identical to the requirements in the X7.1 standard. Section 7.6.2 has acceptance criteria for individual VOCs that mostly follow the criteria in CDPH Standard Method V1.1. For LEED v4, Option 1 Product Category Calculations, 90% by cost of the furniture in the project must be compliant to earn credit for the furniture category. For Option 2, Budget Calculation Method, furniture contributes to the total percent of interior products that are compliant. In both options, the percentage of compliant furniture is equal to the sum of 0.5 times the cost compliant with Section 7.6.1 and the cost compliant with Section 7.6.2, and this sum is divided by the total cost with the result expressed as a percentage. The sum is truncated not to exceed 100%.

BIFMA level™ Certification

BIFMA operates the level™ certification program based on the ANSI/BIFMA e3, Furniture Sustainability Standard. Manufacturers can earn valuable product related points by testing their products for VOC emissions by M7.1 and demonstrating compliance to e3 Sections 7.6.1, 7.6.2 and 7.6.3. BIFMA authorizes third-party certifiers (TPCs) for level™. Berkeley Analytical provides testing services for manufacturers seeking level™ certification with the SCS Global Services TPC program.

CARB ATCM Formaldehyde Regulation

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) composite wood ATCM establishes mandatory formaldehyde emission limits and labeling requirements for composite wood products sold, supplied, or used in California. The regulation applies to furniture goods containing hardwood plywood, particleboard, and medium density fiberboard. Every member of the supply chain is legally accountable.

BkA assists furniture manufacturers, importers, distributors, and retailers with concerns about compliance with the CARB ATCM Phase 2 limits for formaldehyde emissions. Guidance for creating cost-effective quality control testing programs is provided. Chamber tests are conducted using the CARB-designated secondary method, ASTM D6007. Finished goods are deconstructed using the CARB SOP to evaluate compliance of core materials.

View our product sampling guide for furniture and contact us to discuss your testing needs and to request a quotation.