Consumer Alert...

Beware of Product Claims of Multi-Gard "Liquid Siding"

Dealers of Multi-Gard "liquid siding" have agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that ads claiming their product provided consumers with an insulation value of R-20 were unsubstantiated and violated federal law.

According to the Commission, Kryton Coatings International and its distributor Procraft, both headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee, claimed that their "Multi-Gard" liquid coating not only worked as well as fiberglass insulation, but could save consumers up to 40 percent on their energy bills. The Commission alleged that Kryton and Procraft did not substantiate adequately the performance claims for the product, which is also advertised under the names "Liquid Siding," "Liquid Vinyl," and "Multi-Gard R-20."

Under the terms of the consent order approved unanimously by the Commission on June 18, 2002, the companies are barred from making similar unsubstantiated claims in the future, including comparisons of their coating products to any type of insulation or other material.

"Companies have a responsibility to provide accurate information about their products and must be able to back up their claims with solid verifiable evidence," said J. Howard Beales, III, Director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection. "Whether it's an ad for instant oatmeal or 'insulating' paint, consumers should not be left guessing as to the accuracy of the claims presented."

The Commission's Complaint

In its complaint, the Commssion alleged that the companies' advertising represented that the residential coating product:

  1. provides insulation equivalent to seven inches of fiberglass batting;
  2. provides an insulation value of R-20;
  3. reduces energy loss, energy costs or utility bills up to 40 percent; and
  4. performs the same insulation functions as the ultra-thin ceramic technology on the space shuttle.

The Federal Trade Commission alleged that the companies did not have a reasonable basis for making the claims. More information about the Commission actions can be found at FTC Actions.