Your home should be a pleasant place for you and your family members, but if you're constantly feeling ill at home, you may not enjoy being there. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that most people spend 90 percent of their time indoors, and sometimes, the air inside the house can be worse than the air outside. If you spend the majority of your time inside, you may be feeling the effects of poor indoor air. Some symptoms of poor indoor air quality include:
- Persistent upper respiratory problems
- Allergy symptoms that worsen or are only felt at home
- A lingering musty smell and the presence of mold and mildew
The use of tobacco products, scented candles, fireplaces, and many cleaning products can all contribute to indoor air pollution. Painting your home and having new carpeting installed can also affect the air inside your home. Fortunately, it usually isn't difficult to treat pollution inside your home. Here are some steps you can take to improve your interior air quality and make your home a healthier place to live.
To conserve energy and prevent pollutants from entering your home, it's important to make sure that your home is well sealed. However, an air-tight home without proper ventilation leads to unhealthy indoor air. Contaminants are constantly being recirculated throughout your home, leading to an excessive amount of pollution. On days when the weather is nice, you can open some windows to let fresh air circulate through your home. You should also check to make sure that the vents in your laundry room, kitchen and bathrooms are working properly.
If your home continually smells musty, or if you are constantly finding mold around your windows or in your bathroom, your home isn't drying out properly. An excessive amount of moisture in your home may be caused by several things, including a water leak, improperly fitted windows, cracks in the walls and poor ventilation. Because mold can cause severe health issues, you will need to determine the cause of the problem and have it corrected.
To help purify the air in your home, look for plants that clean air. Generally, all plants are beneficial because they release oxygen into the air, but certain plants work better at purifying the air. If you are doing home-improvement projects or buying certain kinds of furniture, you can make your home healthier with select plants. According to a study by scientists at NASA, the best plants that clean air include:
- The Snake Plant – This long-leafed plant is excellent for a bedroom because it emits oxygen at night.
- The Dragon Tree – Because it can grow quite tall, this plant works best in larger rooms, and it removes benzene, toluene, xylene and formaldehyde from the air.
- The Spider Plant – This plant grows quickly and removes formaldehyde and benzene from the air.
- Golden Pothos – This vine grows rapidly, and it efficiently removes formaldehyde, carbon monoxide and benzene from your home.
- The Boston Fern – This leafy plant has been popular since Victorian times, and it is especially good at removing formaldehyde from the air. It also adds humidity, but it requires a moist environment and may not do well when the air is too dry.
One of the best ways to keep indoor air clean is to eliminate the use of tobacco products in your home. This is especially important if anyone in your household suffers from allergies, asthma or other respiratory problems.
Maintain a Clean Environment
In general, keeping your home clean will also help maintain good air quality. Make sure that you dust your rooms frequently, but be careful with the cleaning products that you use. Many cleaning products contain harmful chemicals that can pollute the air and affect your health, so it's advisable to pay close attention to the ingredients. As an alternative, you can also research natural cleaning products. Additionally, you should vacuum your carpets and sweep non-carpeted areas frequently.
Change Indoor Air filters Regularly
The air filters on your HVAC system are designed to trap dust, debris and other airborne pollutants, but in order to work properly, they must be changed frequently. You may also want to use either a HEPA filter or one designed to reduce allergens.
Use Air Purifiers
Air purifiers eliminate airborne pollutants from your home, allowing you to breathe easier and experience better health. Freestanding units are available, but you can also use an air purification system along with your HVAC system.
If you're concerned about your home's indoor air quality, Comfort24-7 is here to help. For your convenience, we provide service to Chicagoland, Northwest Indiana and Southwest Michigan. All of our contractors are NATE certified and factory authorized by Bryant and Carrier. Being a factory authorized dealer means that a contractor has undergone rigorous training in order to fully understand the equipment manufactured by Carrier or Bryant. Additionally, each contractor must provide exceptional customer service and maintain good business practices. By using a factory authorized dealer, you can feel comfortable about the service you receive.
We can help you find a contractor in your area who will thoroughly inspect your HVAC system and recommend additional steps you can take to improve your home's indoor air quality. Whether you reside in Chicago, Northwest Indiana or Southwest Michigan, you can trust us with all of your HVAC needs.