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EN ISO 12460-5: 2015

EN ISO 12460-5:2015

 Wood-based panels – Determination of formaldehyde release – Extraction method (called the perforator method)

EN ISO 12460-5 is used to determine the formaldehyde content of a test board using the perforator method and is applicable to unlaminated and uncoated plywood, OSB and LVL.

This standard along with the three parts of EN 717 form a series which specifies methods for determining the formaldehyde in wood-based panels or its release from wood-based panels. The formaldehyde is extracted from test pieces by means of boiling toluene and then transferred into distilled or demineralised water.  The formaldehyde content of this aqueous solution is determined photometrically by the acetylacetone method.

While EN ISO 12460-5 now supersedes EN 120 (which has been withdrawn) it is still being referenced by EN 13986:2004+A1: 2015 and is therefore retained in the APA listings.

Under EN 13986, EN 120 was used only for OSB panels when determining the formaldehyde classes E1 or E2 while plywood and LVL will continue to use EN 717-1 & -2.

The table below gives the formaldehyde emissions from OSB panels as referenced in the harmonised European standard EN 13986 – Annex B. 

 Formaldehyde Release


 Initial Type


 Factory Production







Content ≤ 8 mg/100 g oven dry board1




Content > 8 to ≤30 mg/100 g oven dry board


Content > 8 to ≤ 30 mg/100 g oven dry board


1 – To ensure compliance with the limits for E1 OSB, the rolling average found from the internal factory production control over a period of 6 months should not exceed 6.5 mg HCHO/100g panel mass.