Indoor Air Quality
Indoor air quality describes the quality of the air within and around your home or commercial building. Indoor air quality directly relates to the health and comfort of the inhabitants of the building, making it an essential part of home care. Knowing what affects indoor air quality and how to control the pollutants that threaten your air can help you reduce the risk of illness and allergens.
What Affects Indoor Air Quality?
Many indoor pollutants can negatively affect the quality of your air. However, most homes are fitted with ventilation systems and air filters to help catch and remove pollutants from the air. When your home’s ventilation system is inadequate or not working properly, or the air filter hasn’t been changed in a while, your home’s air can suffer. High temperatures and humidity levels can also increase the concentrations of some pollutants, leaving the inhabitants feeling the restrictive and allergy-inducing effects of the poor air quality.
The most common indoor air pollutants are as follows:
- Fuel-burning combustion appliances
- Tobacco products such as cigarettes
- Deteriorating asbestos-containing insulation
- Upholstery or carpet
- Household cleaning chemicals
- Central heating and cooling systems
- Excess moisture
- Outdoor pesticides or radon coming in through open windows
- Pet dander
It is important to note that each of these indoor air pollutants can be harmful to the inhabitants of the building. Depending on how concentrated a pollutant is, negative health effects, such as asthma, dizziness, and even nausea, can be a result. Prolonged exposure to these conditions can lead to developing severe illnesses. Here is how your health can be affected.
Immediate Effects of Poor Air Quality
Poor indoor air quality can cause irritation to the eyes, nose, and throat. It can also lead to dizziness and fatigue. These effects are typically short-lived and can be treated with relative ease. These effects typically go away once the problem has been resolved, such as changing the air filter or improving your home’s ventilation.
In some cases, indoor air pollutants can result in the worsening of an individual’s asthma. If not handled quickly, the individual could be hospitalized. If someone in your household has asthma or severe allergies, ensure your home’s air filter is replaced at least once a month and the ventilation system is working properly.
Long-Term Effects of Poor Indoor Air Quality
Continued exposure to poor indoor air quality can result in serious health problems developing over time. These negative health effects can include respiratory diseases or illnesses, heart disease, and in the worst cases, cancer. If not treated immediately, these illnesses can progress to be debilitating or in some cases, fatal. Always seek medical attention if you ever notice signs of a tight chest, reduced ability to breathe, or sharp pains in the chest.
How to Improve My Indoor Air Quality
Simple changes to your daily or weekly routine can help encourage cleaner and fresher air within your home and help reduce the risk of allergens and asthma flare-ups. Here are some strategies to help you improve your indoor air quality:
Keeping Your Home Clean
Having a clean home can keep indoor air pollutants at bay and keep indoor pet dander down. This includes things such as dusting, vacuuming, and making sure bedding and pet beds are cleaned weekly. Also, clearing away clutter can help reduce the amount of dust getting caught in your home.
Regularly Change Your Air Filters
As a common rule, your air filter should be changed at least once a month to ensure your home’s air is clean. This can be more frequent, though, depending on how many animals you have, whether someone in your home is prone to severe allergies or asthma.
Along these same lines, invest in annual air duct cleanings to remove trapped dust and debris that may be polluting the air you breathe. During an air duct cleaning, our team will also ensure that your air ducts are free of any leaks and are properly sealed. Doing these things can help greatly reduce allergies.
Invest In an Air Purifier
If you are constantly battling indoor allergies, an air purifier may be a good solution for you. Air purifiers help capture and destroy indoor air pollutants and provide you with relief. An air purifier combined with a dehumidifier in areas such as your basement can help remove excess moisture and reduce the risk of mold or mildew growth.
Upgrade Your HVAC System to a 4” Filter System
Upgrading your HVAC system to a 4” filter system can help reduce air pollutants by 99% and keep your home’s air cleaner for longer. These systems are highly recommended for homeowners who are or have individuals suffering from allergies, asthma, or other respiratory issues. An experienced HVAC technician can help you upgrade your system from a 1” filter system to a 4” system.
Install an Air Scrubber
An air scrubber is an air cleaning technology that has been specially designed to remove up to 99.9% of air contaminants, leaving the remaining air healthier and fresher. These systems are installed within your air conditioning system and turns on when the unit does. It forces the air through the titanium dioxide-coated honeycomb matrix to trap pollutants and let clean air through. The pollutants are destroyed by a strong UV germicidal light which breaks down the pollutant on a DNA level, basically rendering them harmless.
Need an Air Duct Cleaning or HVAC Maintenance?
The dedicated team at Comfort Masters Heating & Air Conditioning is committed to the health and safety of our clients. That is why we offer timely HVAC maintenance, repairs, replacement, and air duct cleaning services. We also offer emergency services for more pressing concerns, such as gas leaks. Your team at Comfort Masters knows what it takes to ensure that your indoor air quality is good. Contact our team today for more information on our services or to schedule your HVAC service or air duct cleaning.