tesa® Low VOC Tapes: Helping You Meet Increasingly Stringent Global Requirements

Joe Cull· January 7, 2021

Ever sat in a new car and thought, “Gee, it smells so refreshing”?


We haven’t either! (Although we do have some friends who love the “new car smell,” and we don’t hold it against them…)


Turns out anyone who doesn’t like the smell of a car that’s just rolled onto the market is in good company with many Chinese car buyers. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) released by certain plasticizers and adhesives create that “new car smell,” and car buyers in China aren’t really all that fond of it. In previous J.D. Power’s China Initial Quality Studies, unpleasant interior odors topped their list of complaints!


U.S. automobile consumers seem less concerned about it. Unlike Chinese consumers, U.S. car buyers don’t complain about the smell when they mention their top 20 issues. Still, automobile manufacturers around the world are paying attention.


Chinese buyers’ — and their strong opinions about unpleasant car odors — happen to impact the biggest automobile market in the world! They also affect the global automobile industry.


Global VOC Standards Updated


A number of years ago, the Chinese government revised its national standards to lower the threshold of acceptable emission values in automotive interiors — in effect creating healthier vehicles while also reducing the smell that was driving their consumers crazy.


The standards — also known as Guobiao or GB standards — form a regulatory system that’s updated frequently, and because China’s market is so big, you guessed it… Their regulations influence the entire automobile industry worldwide!


As we’ve already said, the new standards lower the acceptable level of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in a vehicle’s cabin. VOCs can come from construction materials, textiles, and adhesives. They’re in a category of organic substances that are volatile at room temperature and have been linked to harmful health effects.


Simply put, car cabins are not a good place for them!


And the new standards are making the reduction of VOCs a top priority for auto manufacturers.


tesa® Low-VOC Adhesives Strengthened


In response, tesa is prioritizing the reduction of VOCs in adhesives made for interior applications in the auto industry. We’re offering two environmentally friendly segments:


-  Low VOC
-  Ultra-Low VOC


­­­­According to the overarching Global Automotive Declarable Substances List (GADSL), there are about 3,000 substances that require declaration in the automotive sector. The new more stringent guidelines for automotive interiors have highlighted between 8 and 13 substances.


Our low-VOC portfolio follows the most stringent guidelines. Our products contain no substances that are prohibited under the newest Chinese GB standards nor those prohibited by Japan’s JAMA standards.


At tesa, we take our commitment to our customers and the environment seriously.


That’s why we follow a clear low-emissions strategy to fulfill the global demand for better air quality inside a vehicle.


Because automotive original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) set clear emission standards according to strict government regulations, our tapes are especially designed to meet these new emission limits – in any country or automotive market.


For more information on low-VOC adhesives for your auto manufacturer, reach out.