Sealants

Sealant exposures are dependent upon the material’s volatility. Some types of sealants react upon installation, and other are partially reacted before they are installed. Though not reactive, the one-part spray polyurethane foam still brings potential isocyanate exposure. Phthalates are another major hazard in sealants. The base solvent can be riddled with chemicals and foam sealants can be highly flammable during installation. Hazards and recommended protections for sealants are categorized by the type of sealant material.

Spray Polyurethane Foam

Hazards: asthma; sensitization; lung damage; other respiratory and breathing problems; eye and skin irritation; cancer.

Source: isocyanates; chlorinated flame retardants.

Recommended Protection: industrial respirator; eye protection; loose-fitting, long-sleeved and long-legged clothing; gloves; ventilation.

Polyurethane Sealants

Hazards: asthma; reproductive harm; endocrine disruption; gene damage; cancer.
Source: phthalates; isocyanates; solvents.

Recommended Protections: dust mask; eye protection; gloves; ventilation.

MS Polyether Sealants

Hazards: PBT; asthma; reproductive harm; cancer.

Source: phthalates; silica.

Recommended Protection: dust mask; eye protection; gloves; ventilation.

Butyl Caulks

Hazards: cancer; gene damage.

Source: solvents; silica.

Recommended Protection: dust mask; eye protection; gloves; ventilation.

Silicone Sealants

Hazards: PBT; endocrine disruptor; reproductive and developmental harm; cancer.

Source: solvents; silicone components.

Recommended Protection: dust mask; eye protection; gloves; ventilation.

Acrylic Latex Sealant

Hazards: asthma; reproductive harm; gene damage; cancer.

Source: solvents; silica; pH adjuster.

Recommended Protection: dust mask; eye protection; gloves; ventilation.

PBT = Persistent Bioaccumulative Toxic chemical, meaning it won’t break down in the environment and builds up in quantity along the food chain.