Concerns about outdoor pollution have been commonplace since our awareness of smog and industrial waste. As a result, we have turned a blind eye to indoor pollution. A recent study by Johns Hopkins University concluded that indoor pollution has become twice as bad as outside pollution. The good news: there are plenty of things you can do to improve your home’s air quality and the experts at Action Air are here to share them!
Leave Your Shoes at the Door
With what we know about outdoor pollutants this rule should be a given. Make it a new house rule to remove your shoes upon entering your home. This will keep outdoor chemicals, pollen, dirt, and dust from entering your home.
Keep Your Pets Clean and Groomed
Dander from your pets’ fur can lead to irritating allergies. Furthermore, cats and dogs that spend time outdoors can bring in materials that are harmful to breathe. With this in mind, keep your pets well-groomed and clean to keep these pollutants out.
Ditch the Aerosols
Aerosol sprays are hazardous to your health, because they can release harmful chemicals into the air and into your lungs. Consequently, inhaling these chemicals can cause skin reactions, aggravate allergies, and trigger heart problems. Use non-aerosol versions of hair sprays, deodorants, and cleaning products to reduce aerosol pollutants.
Invest in Some House Plants
This is a simple and aesthetically pleasing way to improve your air quality. Plants absorb gases through pores on their leaves to facilitate photosynthesis. In addition to the carbon dioxide absorbed during this process, they can also absorb harmful gases. These gases include benzene (found in plastics, fabrics, pesticides, and cigarette smoke), and formaldehyde (found in some cosmetics, dish detergent, fabric softener, and carpet cleaner).
Keep Your Furniture Clean
The fabric on your furniture can hold onto toxins introduced from outside. Cleaning your sofas, chairs and other furniture can help keep lingering toxins out of your home.
Professionally Clean Your Carpet
You can hire a professional carpet cleaning service to deep clean carpeted areas of your home. Pollutants and toxins can live and rest in the fibers of your carpets. Even if you keep your home clean and ventilated, carpets are a major source of lingering toxins.
Monitor Your Humidity
Ideally, a humidity level of 30% – 50% will prevent the build-up of mold and mildew in your home. You can purchase a hygrometer or indoor humidity monitor to measure the levels in your home. Use a dehumidifier to reduce those levels if they become too high.
Maintain Your Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Ensure that your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working properly. These are vital, because they detect smoke and harmful gases, as well as heat and fire.
Invest in an Air Cleaner
There are many different air cleaner options on the market that can remove your home’s air of harmful pollutants. These range from relatively inexpensive table-top models to sophisticated whole-house systems. That being said, air cleaners are not designed to remove gaseous pollutants.
Improve Your Ventilation
Natural ventilation can be a good way to reduce indoor pollutants in your home. However, considering the outdoor pollutants you will be inviting into your home, natural ventilation should be done in moderation. Opening your windows and doors can help decrease build-ups of ultra-fine particles and carbon dioxide.
Use Air Purifiers
These small electrical devices are a sound investment to help improve your home’s air quality. Just plug one into the wall socket and clean the air in the surrounding area. Air purifiers can help remove the particulate matter from inside your home or pollen that can be brought from the outdoors.
*Pro Tip: As previously mentioned, opening windows and doors for ventilation can let in unwanted outdoor pollutants. Therefore, you should keep your air purifier running during natural ventilation to keep these unwelcome toxins at bay.
Upgrade Your Filtration System
Most homes have standard paper furnace filters that only catch about 7% of the contaminates in your home. A high efficiency filtration system can catch much more. Some offer a 90% efficiency level. Most heating specialists can design a complete indoor quality package to help improve your home’s air quality.
Test Your Home for Radon
Radon is a colorless, odorless gas that can significantly raise the risk of lung cancer. Because radon is one of the most dangerous gases commonly found in homes, it is important to make sure your air is clean of it. Coming from the natural decay of uranium found in nearly all soils, radon typically seeps through the ground and into your home through cracks and holes in the foundation. Even granite counter tops have been linked to the harmful gas. Testing for radon is simple and inexpensive.
One of the most common causes of poor indoor air quality is contamination of your air ducts. In many homes, the duct system can contain up to 4 inches of dust, pet dander, pollen, and even mold and mildew. Make sure your ducts are clean by removing the source of air pollution. This will greatly improve your home’s air quality.
At Action Air we are fully committed to improving the quality of life to the residents of Indianapolis, which begins with the quality of your air. If you are ready to improve your home’s air quality, give us a call today at (317) 585-8981 or fill out our contact form online to schedule an appointment with one of our knowledgeable HVAC experts!