The health of your loved ones is the most important thing. For those living in your household, it all begins with the air they breathe. There are a number of ways for you to improve indoor air quality (IAQ). We’ve compiled five of our favorite ways to improve IAQ for your convenience:
Keep Your Home Clean
Dust floating in the air can irritate a person’s respiratory system, especially for those who already suffer from respiratory problems such as allergies and asthma. While it may be impossible to completely eliminate dust from your home, keeping areas clean is an effective way to lower its accumulation.
- You can start off by dusting each room on a regular basis. This should be done with the use of a microfiber cloth, which will attract and collect dust rather than spread it around inadvertently.
- If possible, replace home carpeting with hardwood flooring, laminate flooring or tile. Since carpet is notorious for holding dust, pet dander, pollen and other harmful pollutants, getting rid of it can do wonders to your indoor air quality.
- If you must have carpet in your home, do yourself a favor and use a vacuum equipped with a high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter, which will filter out almost 100 percent of pollutants.
Use Fewer Sources of Pollutants
This seems like an easy thing to do, but the fact remains that nearly every household uses sources of pollutants on a daily basis. Many of these are in the form of cleaners, pesticides and other such synthetic products. Even air fresheners, which are intended to make your air more pleasant, release certain types of chemicals into the air that endanger the health of your family.
The solution is simple — cut down on the use of these toxic products or switch to natural products. Also avoid the use of paint and paint thinners with a high concentration of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and only purchase new furniture, flooring and other such items that are made from green building materials.
Purchase an Air Cleaner or UV Lights
If you want to seriously tackle the pollutants that are in your home, the use of an air cleaner or ultraviolet (UV) lights can be extremely effective. Air cleaners come in all shapes and sizes, and you’ll need to choose between a whole-house system or table-top versions that clean a particular room.
UV lights, which must be installed by a professional technician, have become increasingly popular in recent years. These high intensity lights can be installed to work with your home’s HVAC system to filter the air as it passes through the ductwork.
As an added bonus, UV lights can also be positioned to focus on areas within your system where mold and mildew occur, which will prolong the system’s operating life span.
Control Moisture in Your Home
When left unchecked, mold and mildew growth caused by an accumulation of moisture can severely endanger your household’s health. As these pollutants are released into the air, they’re inhaled into the lungs and cause respiratory problems. Moisture is especially common in bathrooms and kitchens, so make sure you thoroughly dry these areas after each use.
The basement is another hotspot to be mindful of. You can also tackle the humidity in your home by using a dehumidifier. The goal when employing this type of device is to achieve and maintain a humidity level between 30 and 60 percent, which will cut down the amount of mold, mildew and dust mites.
Increase Home Ventilation
When fresh air is cycled into your home from outdoors, your home will see improved indoor air quality. Unfortunately, most heating and cooling systems aren’t designed to do this, so you must find other techniques. In warmer weather, opening windows is a great way to increase ventilation, especially when you’re conducting summertime projects such as painting the interior of your home.
When the weather turns cold, this can be done by using window and attic fans, and kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans. If your home is new, it may have come equipped with an air-to-air heat exchanger, which can also be quite effective.
For more expert advice to help you achieve cleaner air and improve IAQ, or if you have any other home comfort questions, contact the professionals at Weather Makers Heating & Air Conditioning. We’ve been serving the heating and air conditioning needs of Chesapeake and the surrounding area since 1971.
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