The federal government recently advised homeowners with tainted drywall to remove it. (The problem material is easily detected — copper wiring and other metals start corroding, a condition that’s not hard to spot.) The Consumer Product Safety Commission has set up a drywall information center on its website, and reports that 123 Virginia homeowners have been affected so far.

The CPSC has released Interim Remediation Guidance for homes with confirmed problem drywall. It calls for the replacement of:

  • all possible problem drywall;
  • all fire safety alarm devices (including smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms);
  • all electrical components and wiring (including outlets, switches and circuit breakers); and
  • all gas service piping and fire suppression sprinkler systems.

According to the CPSC, homeowners who think they have problem drywall should:

  • Consult a physician about any physical ailments that may be connected to the tainted drywall.
  • If there are electrical or fire safety concerns, consult with utility companies and a licensed electrician or building inspector.
  • Contact State and local authorities to report the potential case. Ask for information about help or resources available in the local area.
  • Report their concerns, using the form on the CPSC website.
  • Consider contacting their insurance company and homebuilder.