o-Xylene, along with m- and p-xylene, is one of three isomers of xylene. Xylenes are used in the production of ethylbenzene, as solvents in paints and coatings, and as a gasoline additive.
Appearance: Colorless liquid or gas.
Odor: Sweet. Odorless at health effects levels.
Stationary: Industrial sources, volatilization of solvents.
Indoors: Synthetic fragrances and paints.
Short-term (acute): Light exposure: Irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat, gastrointestinal effects, neurological effects.
Medium to high exposure: Central nervous system toxicity, pulmonary effects, and effects on the liver and kidneys.
Long-term (chronic): Central nervous system effects such as headache, dizziness, fatigue, tremors, and lack of coordination; respiratory, cardiovascular, and kidney effects. Carcinogenicity is unknown.
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality Effects Screening Level:
Short term (1 hour): 1,700 parts per billion (ppb).
Long term (1 year): 140 ppb.
Odor: 380 ppb.