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What is PURE GENIUS?

R: PURE GENIUS is a natural purifying agent made of titanium dioxide (TiO2) integrated into Lauzon’s TITANIUM floor finish. Activated by natural or artificial light, it breaks down toxic contaminants on contact (formaldehydes and other pollutants present throughout the home) and transforms them into harmless molecules. Its constant and consistent action is so effective that over time, it makes indoor air up to 85% cleaner.

Is PURE GENIUS safe?

R : PURE GENIUS is completely inert and safe. The main agent used in PURE GENIUS, TiO2, has been used as a white pigment from ancient times, and is at present used in everyday products such as paint and toothpaste, and thus, its safety to humans and the environment is virtually guaranteed by history.

Why is indoor air quality important?

R : Because we spend so much of our time indoors (up to 90% according to Building Efficiency / Green Building) it is important that indoor air be free of harmful toxins. EPA - United States Environmental Protection Agency - found levels of about a dozen common organic pollutants to be 5 to 10 times higher inside homes than outside, regardless of whether the homes were located in rural or highly industrial areas. Their studies indicated that while people are using products containing organic chemicals, they can expose themselves and others to very high pollutant levels, and elevated concentrations can persist in the air long after product usage or activity is completed (for example: varnishing furniture, using paint strippers, installing carpet or resilient flooring, etc).

Why is flooring with PURE GENIUS different from other floors on the market claiming to be good for Indoor Air Quality (IAQ)?

R : Other flooring manufacturers of laminate, resilient flooring, carpet, and even engineered hardwood, presently only take measures to reduce VOC emissions of their product; this is not treating the core problem. Floors with PURE GENIUS remove VOCs and toxins from the air that may be present from any number of common household sources such as pressed wood (in your cabinets), exhaust fumes from a connecting garage, paint, adhesives and varnishes, and tobacco smoke or smoke from fireplaces and wood-burning stoves. For a complete listing, consult the Health Canada or EPA websites:
–  http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ewh-semt/air/in/index-eng.php
–  http://www.epa.gov/iaq/homes/index.html

Who invented the technology behind PURE GENIUS?

R : PURE GENIUS employs patented photocatalytic technology — the result of advanced research in nanotechnology by a joint venture between the Swedish firm Välinge and the Danish firm Photocat AB. Always striving to innovate, Lauzon is the first manufacturer in the world to incorporate this technology into hardwood flooring.

How is having a floor with PURE GENIUS like having 3 trees in my home?

R : All plants, including trees, have the ability to absorb and break down harmful airborne toxins such as NOx (Nitrous oxides coming from car exhausts) and formaldehyde (emitted by many household items as stated above) among others. Third-party, scientific laboratory tests have proven that under normal lighting conditions, 10,000 square feet of flooring with PURE GENIUS has the equivalent purifying effect of 22 deciduous trees! This translates to about 1 full-grown mature tree for every 454 square feet of flooring. Average house size being 1,377 square feet, it translates into 3 trees.

Why Active Flooring?

R : Around the world, and particularly in Europe, there has been an increase in the number of manufacturers that are launching ‘active’ surfaces. For example, several products are commercially available that feature light-activated agents including ceramic, luxury vinyl, exterior cladding, paint, glass and more.

If PURE GENIUS transforms toxic chemicals into water and carbon dioxide, will water droplets appear on the floor? Isn’t CO2 a greenhouse gas?

R : There are negligible amounts of water that result from the process and this small amount of water will be absorbed into the surrounding air. The amount of carbon dioxide generated by PURE GENIUS is less than the amount of CO2 released by the average person per day. CO2 (exhaled from human respiration) is also sometimes misinterpreted as CO (carbon monoxide: emitted by car exhausts, among other sources, and very toxic, even in small quantities). PURE GENIUS’ process will degrade CO into H2O and CO2 to create a healthier environment.

How long does it take for PURE GENIUS to start working? And how long will it last?

R : Under normal lighting conditions (either artificial or sunlight), it takes approximately 30 to 60 days for hardwood floors with PURE GENIUS to degrade contaminants and establish inside your home an air purification equilibrium resulting in an air purity level that is the same as or better than outdoor air. Hardwood floors enhanced with PURE GENIUS effectively purify the air for as long as the surface finish lasts. Sanding, on-site refinishing, or staining will nullify the air purifying effects; however, local normal usage and wear and tear will only slightly affect the process, leaving it efficient for as long as the original floor surface is intact. And because it is a Lauzon floor, your hardwood’s original appearance will remain intact and beautiful for many years of enjoyment.

If PURE GENIUS works so well, then why isn’t there a warranty?

R : Because every living environment is unique, Lauzon cannot put an absolute number on the impact PURE GENIUS will have in your house. The efficiency of PURE GENIUS depends on light, air circulation and the quantity of contaminants present in the home. Each house has its own air exchange rate and contains variable levels of indoor contaminants – such as furniture, the quantity of synthetic floor coverings, whether or not you have smokers in the house and several other factors. You can, however, be sure that your air quality will be significantly improved, as we are demonstrating this via customer testimonials and third-party testing using well established world-renowned scientific methods.

If a floor is covered with furniture and other obstacles, will this reduce the efficacy of PURE GENIUS?

R : PURE GENIUS requires lighting to work optimally, so the more the floor is covered with objects the less surface area there is to work on air purification. And conversely, the greater the surface area per cubic volume in a space covered with PURE GENIUS, the more effective it is at cleaning the air. Be creative – use hardwood enhanced with PURE GENIUS beyond just your floors – use it on walls, ceilings, or make a DIY project like a book shelf, media centre, or headboard. Laboratory testing has demonstrated that hardwood flooring with PURE GENIUS is currently the most effective indoor air–purifying photocatalytic process on the market (all product categories considered). This means that flooring with PURE GENIUS is still highly effective at purifying the air, even if some of the flooring surface is covered or is unexposed to light.

If I already have an air exchanger, what is the benefit of having a floor with PURE GENIUS?

R : Because buildings, particularly in Northern climates, are built so air-tight, air exchangers have become very important in improving indoor air quality. However, the incoming air can only be as pure as the outdoor air and increasingly the outdoor air has higher pollution levels, especially in urban regions. An air exchanger will actually ensure a continuous circulation of air so it will in fact work in tandem with PURE GENIUS to ensure optimal purity levels. In addition, PURE GENIUS presents some other useful consumer benefits such as an easy-to-clean surface and one that will inhibit the growth of mold, mildew, bacteria and viruses. All this plus the inherent value of having a noble wood floor to grace your home make PURE GENIUS a wise investment.

I have read that the EPA is conducting a review of nanomaterials such as TiO2. What are the implications?

R : Nanomaterials are being used in more than 500 consumer products and the number is expected to grow. By 2015, it is estimated that consumer products with nanotechnology applications will value $1 trillion on the world market. Nano-sized particles, such as TiO2, Nano silver, Carbon nanotubes and Micronized iron are currently undergoing a thorough review for possible effects these nanomaterials have on human health and the ecosystem. Specifically, research will determine if there are environmental hazards and how these materials may be modified or managed to avoid potential human health or ecosystem effects.
Source: United States Environmental Protection Agency 2013.

I have read that TiO2 is a potential carcinogen? Is that true?

R : TiO2 has been used as a white pigment dating back centuries. It is readily available, chemically stable and harmless(1). TiO2, is used extensively in many commercial products, including paint, cosmetics, plastics, paper and food, as an anti-caking or whitening agent. It is also used in cosmetic and skin-care products, and it is present in almost every sunblock, where it helps protect the skin from ultraviolet light (2). It is produced and used in the workplace in varying particle-size fractions, including fine and ultrafine sizes. The risk for cancer, particularly lung cancer in mice, is only of a potential concern for ultrafine or nano-sized TiO2. TiO2 used in the making of PURE GENIUS is neither of these particle sizes and it is completely encapsulated in the finish so it is therefore harmless.
(1Source: Japanese Journal of Applied Physics, 2005).
(2Source: Canadian Centre for Occupational Health & Safety)

What about when the home owner decides to re-sand their floor? Can the TiO2 dust pose health risks?

R : Hardwood floor site finishing and resanding is a common practice and the sanding of floors with PURE GENIUS does not pose any additional health risks than a floor without PURE GENIUS. When working with dust, (like when sanding a floor) there are several safety tips one can take to minimize inhalation:
–  http://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/chemicals/lungs_dust.html

What products are available with PURE GENIUS?

R : There are 2 new series, Organik and Authentik; both are made standard with the PURE GENIUS feature. A substantial selection of products in the Designer and Ambiance Collections are also available with PURE GENIUS as an option. The availability is 14 days turnaround time from date of order.

Are the complementary floor moldings enhanced with PURE GENIUS?

R : The stair nosing, reducers and transition strips are designed to match the color and texture of the floor but do not have the PURE GENIUS air purification property. The stains cans do not have the PURE GENIUS property either.