When most people think about air quality, they think about outdoor pollution from vehicles and industrial activities. While outdoor air quality is a concern, the air inside your home tends to be even less clean. Air quality is impacted by the cleanliness of your environment, volatile organic compounds, mold, and other factors. You can improve indoor air quality by taking these steps.
Understanding Why You Need to Improve Indoor Air Quality
Some people assume that a well-sealed home has good air quality because outdoor pollution can’t enter the home. However, an airtight home recirculates indoor air with contaminants that contribute to poor air quality. While a tightly sealed home is good for energy efficiency, it can be bad for air quality if it lacks ventilation.
1. Schedule Annual HVAC Maintenance Service
HVAC maintenance service includes air filter replacement, checking the system controls, adjusting the blower, and more. You may also request air duct cleaning service at this time. Your ducts gather dust and debris, yet are responsible for circulating air throughout the home. The ducts must be cleaned and well-maintained in order to improve indoor air quality.
2. Open the Windows Periodically
Many homes today are so well-sealed for energy efficiency purposes that pollutants generated inside the home cannot escape. Contaminants from pets, cooking activities, and VOCs build up over time and become trapped indoors.
Opening the windows periodically is a smart idea, but only do so when low humidity and minimal wind gusts are present. Humidity and strong winds can be detrimental to your home’s air quality. High humidity in the home may lead to mold issues and gusty winds may bring outdoor allergens and pollutants into the home.
3. Make Deep Cleaning a Priority
In order to improve indoor air quality, cleaning should be a priority. Some people diligently clean their home from top to bottom on a weekly basis and others spot clean as needed. Your home’s cleanliness directly impacts air quality.
Changing the sheets, washing bed comforters, vacuuming, and dusting remove many pollutants from the home. If you do not have the time available to deep clean the home regularly, consider hiring a cleaning service to do the job for you. On that note, be aware of what kind of cleaning products you or your cleaning service are using.
4. Stay Away From VOCs
VOCs, or volatile organic compounds, are emitted as vapors or gases from certain materials and chemicals. Cleaning spray, disinfectants, paint, air fresheners, furniture, carpet, and synthetic candles can all be the source of VOCs. Avoiding these products altogether is the best plan to improve indoor air quality. You can generally find cleaning products, paint, and building materials with no or low VOCs.
When you improve indoor air quality, you may notice that your home smells cleaner and that you can breathe more easily. Indoor air quality can grow worse unless you make a focused effort to improve it, so try out these four tips.