Indoor air quality often takes a back seat to energy efficiency, but it is equally important if you want your space heating, air conditioning and ventilation to perform at their best. Improving air quality makes your home more comfortable, and breathing less air pollutants saves you plenty of medical expenses in the long run. The following are some surprising ways to improve your air quality, which are also easy to implement.
1) Let More Outdoor Air In
This might seem counter-intuitive if you live in a highly populated area, but outdoor air is actually cleaner most of the time, and this applies even for cities. On average, indoor air is 2 to 5 times more polluted than outdoor air.
Make sure your home is properly ventilated, so that air pollutant concentrations are unable to build up. Of course, there are cases where you will want to shut the windows:
- Some plants emit large amounts of pollen during their flowering season, and pollen is an air pollutant when found indoors, causing irritation and allergic reactions in some people. Shut your windows if there is plenty of pollen outside.
- Even though outdoor air is less polluted on average, there are periods of peak pollution, especially during high-traffic hours in hot summer days.
2) Avoid Using Ozone Filters in Your Home
We tend to see ozone as good for humans, since it protects us from the sun’s ultraviolet radiation. However, this only applies for ozone in the upper atmosphere, and it is actually considered a harmful pollutant at ground level. Ozone irritates the respiratory system, and can cause severe pain when its concentration is high.
Avoid using ozone-based filters in your home, since they remove some pollutants but replace it with another one.
3) Avoid Artificial Fragrances
Volatile organic compounds can be deceiving. They have negative effects on your health, but some have a pleasant smell, and for that reason they are used in many cleaning products and artificial fragrances. Aromatic candles are even worse for air quality, since they emit not only VOCs, but also particulate matter. In general, anything with an open flame and without dedicated ventilation is detrimental for air quality.
A better option is to use natural aromatic plants, which also have the ability to capture and filter out many types of air pollutants. Discover the top 10 plants that aid in the removal of pollutants such as formaldehyde, benzene, trichloroethylene and carbon monoxide.
4) Leave Dry-Cleaned Clothes Outside and Wash New Clothes
Dry-cleaning is very convenient, but many of the substances used in the process are filled with VOCs. When you bring dry-cleaned clothes back home, leave them outside for a few hours to minimize the amount of VOCs released indoors.
New clothes also come impregnated with harmful chemicals from their manufacturing process, and should be washed before being used for the first time. Otherwise, you will be inhaling a large amount of these noxious compounds the first time you use them. Wash new clothes even if they will not be used right way, to prevent them from releasing VOCs indoors.
5) Check for a Wet Basement
Over 40% of the air you breathe on the 1st floor of your home comes from your basement or crawl space through a natural occurrence called stack-effect. If your basement or crawl space is not healthy, then your home is not healthy.
Toledo Basement Repair‘s air filtration systems will help improve the air quality by combating the natural “stack effect” (the law of physics that says warm air rises) in the home thereby allowing your homes existing heating and air conditioning system to address the basement as well. Our air filtration system creates a much needed path of escape for the dirty basement air and introduces the existing clean, dry air from upstairs to replace that damp, polluted air. No additional heating or cooling ducts are necessary, this will assist the air in circulating throughout the entire home.The entire home will benefit from the increased air exchanges, creating a cleaner, healthier living environment you can see and feel!
Are you concerned about the air quality in your home? Toledo Basement Repair can diagnose the problem and offer solutions in Toledo and all surrounding areas; Bowling Green, Perrysburg, Maumee, Sylvania, Oregon, Holland, Temperance, Bedford and Monclova. REQUEST A QUOTE NOW!