Journalism in the Public Interest

Tainted Drywall

ProPublica and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune began examining in May 2010 what was -- or wasn’t -- being done to help people whose homes had been built with contaminated drywall. The problematic drywall, much of it imported from China, emitted foul odors and frequently caused mysterious failures of new appliances and electronics. Worse yet, some residents complained of serious respiratory problems, bloody noses, and migraines. More »

Another baby has died in military housing at Fort Bragg. Now investigators are examining the house for tainted drywall and other possible contaminants. More »

A leading East Coast homebuilder, WCI Communities, learned four years ago that the Chinese-manufactured drywall it had installed in several Florida homes was emitting foul odors, according to documents obtained by ProPublica and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune. More »

ProPublica and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune compiled a list of around 6,900 addresses with tainted drywall. More »

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Home Builders Lobby Weakens Drywall Legislation

A bill heralded by lawmakers as a victory for thousands of homeowners harmed by contaminated drywall was weakened after input from the homebuilding industry.

Drywall Manufacturer Agrees to Settlement

Knauf Plasterboard Tianjin is the first manufacturer to agree to settle defective drywall cases lodged in federal court. The settlement could pay to repair more than 5,000 homes, plaintiffs’ attorneys say.

Senate Subcommittee Grills CPSC on Drywall

Lawmakers questioned CPSC and CDC officials about the progress of a years-long federal investigation into contaminated drywall at a Senate hearing.

Insurers for Drywall Supplier Settle Lawsuit

CID Concludes Infant Death Investigation at Fort Bragg

The Army Criminal Investigation Command has completed its investigation into the deaths of 10 infants who died of undetermined causes at Fort Bragg, N.C., but questions still linger.

CPSC Report on U.S.-Made Drywall Raises More Questions Than Answers

The CPSC's new report on American-made drywall says 'agency resource constraints' limited the investigation into whether American-made drywall is causing problems like those associated with Chinese-made drywall.

One Drywall Lawsuit Against National Gypsum Dismissed; Other Claims Pending

A lawsuit filed by an Arizona homeowner against one of the nation’s largest drywall manufacturers has been voluntarily dismissed.

Senators Call on CPSC to Allow Public Comment on New Drywall Fix

Senators say homeowners suffering through "the nightmare of problem drywall" deserve more information about how the homes can best be repaired.

Federal Agency Changes Guidelines for Repairing Homes With Defective Drywall

Wiring doesn't necessarily need to be removed from homes built with defective drywall, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Expert: Builder’s New Guidelines for Chinese Drywall “Feel Like a Whitewash”

New National Association of Home Builders guidelines for testing and fixing homes built with suspect Chinese drywall conflict with Consumer Product Safety Commission recommendations.

Fort Bragg Infant Death Toll May Climb to Twelve

Another baby has died in military housing at Fort Bragg. Now investigators are examining the house for tainted drywall and other possible contaminants.

Habitat for Humanity Buys Back House Built with Chinese Drywall

Habitat for Humanity has become the first builder to buy back a house built with Chinese drywall.

Experts Skeptical of New Report on Infant Deaths at Fort Bragg

Experts say tests used to eliminate drywall as a problem were unreliable and incomplete—and that more tests should have been done to determine the cause of recent infant deaths at the base.

Drywall Woes Continue—Seeking Redress in Court Could Provide Little Relief

Homeowners affected by problems with defective drywall have been forced to fend for themselves and many have turned to the courts for help. Thousands of lawsuits have been consolidated and are being tried in federal court. But the homeowners’ chances of getting quick relief are slim.

Five Things You Can Do With Our Interactive Feature on Tainted Drywall

American-Made Drywall Emerges as Potential Danger

Thousands of Americans have houses contaminated by defective Chinese drywall; now a new group of homeowners say they are experiencing similar problems -- but their homes are built with drywall made in the United States.

Find Homes With Tainted Drywall

ProPublica and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune compiled a list of around 6,900 addresses with tainted drywall.

Federal Probe of Chinese Drywall Falls Short

For thousands of U.S. homeowners who are grappling with the trauma caused by defective Chinese drywall, one thing is now clear: The federal government is woefully unequipped to help them with a product defect as expensive and widespread as this one.

Methodology: Chinese Drywall

Lowe’s Amends Settlement to Get Drywall Victims More Money

Lowe’s Companies Inc. is offering $100,000 in cash to customers who can prove their health or their homes have been substantially damaged by defective drywall they bought from Lowe’s.

Habitat for Humanity’s Chinese Drywall Problem Surfaces in Florida

U.S. Regulator Investigating Defective Drywall Demands China’s Cooperation

U.S. regulators met with Chinese officials to request cooperation in investigation of shoddy drywall manufacture.

China Plays Tug-of-War With U.S. Inspectors Over Drywall

Chinese government officials tried to prevent federal investigators from getting answers to key questions about defective drywall on a trip to China last year.

More Details Emerge about Drywall Settlement

Details of the settlement involving a major Chinese drywall manufacturer and several defendants emerged on Thursday in New Orleans federal court.

IRS Offers Tax Break for Homeowners With Defective Drywall

The IRS will allow homeowners to take a deduction for costly replacement of harmful drywall.

Habitat Changes Its Tune on Defective Drywall; Must Gut at Least 70 New Orleans Homes

In an about-face, Habitat for Humanity now says at least 70 houses that it built in New Orleans have tainted drywall that must be replaced.

Documents Tie German Company to Chinese Subsidiary That Produced Defective Drywall

Documents tie a German company to a Chinese subsidiary that produced defective drywall, but family-owned Knauf Gips says it’s not legally responsible for the problem

Lowe’s Drywall Settlement Continues to Be Scrutinized; Attorneys Defend Fees

Consumer advocates say the victims of tainted drywall are getting the short end of a class action settlement with Lowe’s.

Proposed Lowe’s Drywall Settlement Offers Small Payouts to Victims, Big Fees for Attorneys

A class-action agreement over tainted drywall could pay off plaintiffs with Lowe's gift cards

Habitat for Humanity to Look at Drywall

Habitat for Humanity International has developed a task force to look at Chinese drywall, following a ProPublica and Sarasota Herald-Tribune investigation.

Is Chinese Drywall Making Habitat for Humanity’s Houses Uninhabitable?

Some of the homes Habitat for Humanity believed to have built with American-made drywall actually contain Chinese Drywall.

Freddie Mac Offers Relief to Homeowners Dealing With Chinese Drywall

More Companies Knew About Tainted Drywall but Stayed Quiet—and Kept Selling It

Some Florida homebuilders, installers and environmental consultants knew as early as 2006 that foul smells were coming from drywall imported from China – but they didn’t tell anyone.

Documents Unsealed in Chinese Drywall Lawsuit

A major Chinese drywall manufacturer, urged one of its main U.S. customers, Banner Supply, to sell thousands of sheets of foul-smelling drywall "overseas" after Banner complained about the tainted product, according to court documents.

Tainted Chinese Drywall Concerns Went Unreported for Two Years

Homebuilder WCI Communities knew about problems with tainted Chinese drywall but kept silent for two years while the problem spread.

Do You Have Tainted Drywall?

Thousands of American homeowners are living with defective drywall. With your help, we'll be able to finally measure the scope and severity of this crisis.

Do You Have Defective Drywall?

Are you dealing with defective drywall? Is it causing health problems, or damage to your home? If so, we at ProPublica want to hear your story.

Our Partner

Stories in this series are co-published with Sarasota Herald Tribune.

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