[Indoor volatile organic compounds: concentrations, sources, variation factors]

Rev Mal Respir. 2008 Jun;25(6):725-30. doi: 10.1016/s0761-8425(08)73801-4.
[Article in French]


Introduction: Volatile organic compounds (V.O.C.) are part of urban air pollution and are also generated indoors from cleaning and maintenance products.

Background: VOC measurements are, on average, 10 times higher within homes than outside. Results of the national survey led by the Observatoire National de la Qualité de l'Air Intérieur demonstrated that up to 25% of French homes have very high or high concentrations of VOC. Indoor levels depend mainly on indoor sources. Aldehydes are included in many everyday life products. VOC originate from various household decorating and cleaning products. Some products are less detrimental to the environment and health and have special labelling. Indoor VOC levels also depend on the rate of air exchange and on household characteristics such as indoor temperature and humidity, age of the building, presence of smokers, and communication with a garage.

Viewpoints: The public may participate in maintaining good indoor air quality and the authorities should also improve regulations.

Conclusion: VOC are part of everyday air pollution. Their sources and concentrations should be better monitored.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Air Pollutants / analysis*
  • Air Pollution, Indoor*
  • France
  • Household Products
  • Humans
  • Organic Chemicals / analysis*
  • Reference Values
  • Risk Factors
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution
  • Volatilization


  • Air Pollutants
  • Organic Chemicals
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution