How Your Home’s Air Quality Can Impact Your Health

indoor air quality

A hundred years ago, people spent a good portion of their day outdoors or living in buildings that tended to be drafty, providing frequent air exchange. Today, most people spend their time indoors, in a tightly-sealed environment we call the building envelope. The combination of time and lack of air exchange can lead to health issues caused by exposure to chemicals and pollutants, including particles, chemicals, mold, allergens, radon, combustion gasses, tobacco smoke and pesticides from lawn and insect treatments. These exposures can cause a laundry-list of symptoms and conditions including allergies, asthma, cancers and many other conditions that can permanently affect your health. How do you escape these health hazards?

Making Indoor Air Healthier

Though eliminating the source of the pollutants is the most highly-recommended suggestion from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), this can be easier said than done. It’s expensive to rip out your flooring and walls, time-consuming to find alternatives to cleaning products and pesticides and heartbreaking to have to re-home a loveable family pet to whom you’ve become allergic. So how else can you deal with the problem? Here are some hints:

  • Keep your home clean. It sounds easy, but when’s the last time you gave your home a white-glove inspection? Dust mites love to hide in places that are notoriously hard-to-clean, such as mattresses, carpet and draperies. By encasing mattresses with allergy covers, deep-cleaning or removing carpet and regularly cleaning window treatments, you’re minimizing the chance for allergens to build up.
  • Have regular service and maintenance performed on your HVAC system. A forgotten filter that has grown moldy or a leak in the system that provides a place for mold and mildew to grow are two common ways an ill-maintained HVAC system can wreak havoc on your health.
  • Put out a doormat. But not just any doormat, preferably one that has some texture to it to grab the dirt off your shoes, helping prevent chemicals, mold spores or pollen from being dragged into your home.
  • Consider upgrading your HVAC system or filters to provide better filtration of your indoor air. Don’t just grab a better filter off the shelf at the home improvement store, take a look at your manual or talk to a repair technician to see whether you can change just the filter or if the entire system needs to be upgraded. Using the wrong filter in your HVAC system can shorten the system’s life as it works harder to blow the air through your home.

Now that you know the effect poor indoor air quality can have on your health, it’s time to take action. By following the tips above, you’ll be enjoying your home again in no time. Contact the professionals at Gembecki to schedule an appointment to improve your indoor air quality.

Image Source: Pixabay

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