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5 Ways To Improve Air Quality In Your Home

Posted in Air Quality, on May 11, 2015

How comfortable and clean is the air in your home? Is it too hot, too dry, or too dusty?

Although we spend up to 90% of our time indoors at work, home, and school, you could easily think that the air outside is cleaner. However, this is untrue. In fact, the concentration of indoor air pollution is 2-5 times higher than outdoor air. Moreover, numerous possible pollutants exist around our homes. If you wish to improve your home's air quality, here's how.

Factors that Contribute to Poor Indoor Air Quality

  • Particulates

The particles released from products for instance building materials, furnishings, and other household products are a source of indoor pollution. Airborne particulates can also originate from dust and dirt that's tracked in from outdoors. Particulates can also trigger allergies and other respiratory issues in numerous people.

  • Mold

This is another common source of indoor pollution, which can lead to health issues. Mold can compromise air quality, resulting in negative health effects. Since it's impossible to eradicate mold spores, the best way to decrease the impact on indoor air quality is to prevent or quickly repair the moisture issues that enable growth.

  • Poor Ventilation

The majority of buildings in which we spend most of our time have tight sealing and insulation to prevent unconditioned outdoor air. Moreover, the design of most ventilation systems aims to generate little outdoor air and instead re-circulate the internal air that's already been cooled or heated. Although this strategy is efficient for decreasing energy expenses, it can affect IAQ negatively.

  • Chemicals

The major sources of internal exposure to airborne chemicals are products used in internal settings including building materials, furnishings, and other household products that can release thousands of VOCs and air particles. Of all the factors that could affect IAQ, chemical discharges are the most dangerous because they can contribute to various health effects.  

How to Improve Air Quality

1. Improve Ventilation

One of the most efficient ways of enhancing air quality involves the circulation of fresh air. While you can achieve this by opening a window, this isn't always an option. This is because not all rooms have windows in your home. Furthermore, opening a window may not be the most energy effective option for you. These days, homes are becoming more airtight. While this is great for decreasing energy usage, an airtight home lacks adequate ventilation. Numerous homes also fail to use healthy building materials, resulting in the accumulation of contaminants emitted in the air. The concentrations of these contaminants could cause irritant or toxic effects.

2. Regular Assessment of the HVAC System

Parts of this system are usually damp or wet. Consequently, the lack of proper cleaning could produce mold growth, resulting in IAQ problems. Ensure the system undergoes regular cleaning and inspection as necessary. Proper cleaning will prevent the accumulation of debris on the coils and other surfaces. However, bear in mind that filters that are more effective may limit airflow if they lack proper engineering. This can hinder energy efficiency and the system's ability to regulate humidity properly.

4. Consider Eco-friendly Cleaning Products

Although it may sound counterproductive, the cleaning products you use to kill germs and bacteria may be contributing to indoor air pollution. Consider producing all or some of your cleaning supplies. Alternatively, purchase eco-friendly supplies.

5. Indoor Plants

Including indoor plants in your home is an affordable way to enhance your home's air quality. If you lack an air purifier or simply wish to take additional precautions, adding some of these houseplants will prove invaluable.

  • Aloe Vera

Numerous people have this plant in their homes because of its healing nature. However, the plant is also great for improving indoor air quality. It's easy to grow and helps keep your home free from benzene, which is commonly present in paint and some chemical cleaners.

  • Peace Lily

This beautiful plant needs low maintenance and helps decrease the concentrations of mold spores that grow in your home through the absorption of the spores through the leaves.

6. Professional Testing

Testing by an IAQ expert can find issues if present and offer recommendations for employing the relevant ideas.

Are you struggling to improve your home's air quality? Perhaps you should consider implementing these invaluable strategies. If you suspect your home is experiencing air quality issues, please contact us for assistance: (416) 414-5690

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