How can I be exposed to TCE?

Most TCE that’s released into the atmosphere is from degreasing operations. People who live closer to industries using TCE have higher concentrations of TCE in their air than those who live further away. Workers in factories where TCE is manufactured or used are exposed to higher concentrations than the general public. In the past, open disposal of TCE also released TCE vapors into the air. TCE evaporates into the air when consumer products containing TCE are used in the home. TCE in contaminated soil, or more likely contaminated groundwater, can form a vapor that migrates through the soil into the home. This exposure route is known as vapor intrusion. Vapors can enter the home through cracks in the foundation, the sump pump, or through openings where utility lines enter the home.

Page last reviewed: December 29, 2015