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Chinese Drywall Problems Turn up in Miami-Dade

Jan 23, 2009 | Parker Waichman LLP Problems with foul-smelling Chinese drywall are now being reported in South Florida's Miami-Dade County.  According to a report in the South Florida Business Journal, at least one developer in the county has said it did buy drywall from Knauf Plasterboard Tianjin Co. Ltd. of China.  That company  supplied  tainted drywall to builders in southwest Florida, where the drywall complaints originated.

According to the Business Journal article, the first Miami-Dade drywall reports came from Homestead’s Keys Gate development.  A representative of South Kendall Construction, the developer of Keys Gate, told the Business Journal that the company did buy drywall from Knauf that was used in the development.  Like other developers, South Kendall purchased the Chinese drywall because of a shortage of U.S.-made material that occurred between 2004 and 2006.

According to the Business Journal,  problems with drywall have been reported in the Augusta Greens and Pine Isles areas of Keys Gate.  Drywall may be pulled out of three homes the, but the developer does not know how many homes might ultimately be affected, the report said.

In addition to the putrid smell, many Florida homeowners have reported problems with air conditioning and other systems that are likely related to the defective Chinese drywall.  Reports indicate that the drywall emits a sulfur compound that corrodes wiring, air conditioning coils and other metals.

Knauf has issued a statement insisting that the sulfur-like smell coming out of its drywall poses no dangers.  The company maintains  that the damage done to air conditioning and electrical wiring is the result of drywall made by some other company - though it has been unable to name which one.

According to, the Florida Health Department has received 39 such complaints, many from homeowners in Manatee, Sarasota, Pinellas, St. Lucie, Collier and Lee counties.

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