Finishing wood floors and pregnancy

I tried a Google search but found no information so I turned here.

We are in the process of getting our kitchen redone. Beginning May 13th, the new maple floors are going to be sanded and finshed with “one coat sealer and four coats semigloss urethane”.

My wife is pregnant. On May 13th, she will be 9 weeks, 5 days pregnant.

These two things together concern me.

Does anybody know what the risks for the urethane fumes and pregnancy? Should we spend some nights in a hotel?


Water based poly or oil based? I would reccomend the water based Verithane. I used it myself, and the odor is a lot less than my experience with oil based polys. And it dries quicker between coats, so the whole ordeal ends sooner. Since human testing isn’t really allowed these days, I doubt much information could be found. The first tri is a pretty important time in the development, so I don’t think a night in a hotel would be such a bad idea.

The number one rule of pregnancy can be applied here- when in doubt, get out!

The first trimester is WAY too important developmentally to take the chance. Besides, the smell will probably make her puke.

A word of warning- the more wood floors you have, the louder sounds become (carpet absorbs sound). Just a thought for when the baby is angry… :smiley:

Thanks for your posts.

I called the floor place and they said they are using a non-toxic water-based urethane. He said that is was virtully odorless. I told him about the pregnancy and he said it was safe.

We have a doctor’s appointment a few days before the floors are finished and I’m going to ask the doctor.

Right now, the plan is to try the first night and see how that goes. If it is good, we try another night. If not, we’re out of there.

I wouldn’t risk it. My wife didn’t even go in the room I was painting with latex paint until I was done (well, a few minutes at a time on a few occasions). I kept the room sealed off and windows opened until I was done. I’m glad to have done all the work my self than to have increased the risk of having a child with any abnormalities. It would be worth the money for a hotel room compared to the potential of a life time of difficulties for your child.