Why an Energy-Efficient Residence Can Influence Air Quality and How to Make It Better 

Residences today are designed with energy efficiency in mind. This involves added insulation and tightly sealed doors and windows to keep energy bills reasonable. While this is positive for your energy expenses, it’s not so fantastic for your indoor air quality.

Because air has decreased chances to escape, chemicals can accumulate and affect your residence’s indoor air quality. In reality, your home’s air can actually be 2–5 times more polluted than the outdoors, according to the EPA. That’s not good for anyone, but it’s specifically detrimental for family members with allergies, asthma, other respiratory disorders or heart disease.

Let’s discuss some of these common substances and how you can improve your home’s indoor air quality.

6 Routine Pollutants that Affect Indoor Air Quality

When you picture pollutants, you may think about smog or tobacco smoke. But many substances that decrease your air quality are everyday items. These things include chemicals referred to as volatile organic compounds, or VOCs.

They involve:

    1. Cleaning products, including aerosol sprays, bleach and window cleaner.
    1. Personal care products, such as hairspray, perfume and nail products.
    1. Candles and air fresheners.
    1. Formaldehyde, which is often used in plastic, foam and particleboard products.
    1. Furniture, window treatments and carpet, particularly when they’re brand new.
    1. Paints and stains.

Other typical pollutants include:

    • Dust
    • Pet dander
    • Pollen
    • Mold

Symptoms of VOC Exposure

Some people are more sensitive to VOCs than others. The EPA says symptoms of VOC exposure include:

    • Irritated eyes, nose or throat
    • Headaches
    • Dizziness
    • Fatigue

In bad situations, the EPA says VOCs can lead to respiratory and heart diseases.

4 Ways to Boost Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

It isn’t complicated to enhance your residence’s air quality. Here are several ideas from Harvard Medical School:

1. Clean Your Residence Regularly

Regularly cleaning and washing surfaces that attract allergens, such as furniture, carpet and bedding, will help reduce on dust, dust mites and pet dander in your house.

2. Regularly Replace Your Air Filter

This critical filter keeps your house cozy and air healthy. How often you should change your air filter depends on the model of filter you use. Flat filters should be swapped every month, while pleated filters should be replaced every three months. If you’re unsure if your filter should be changed, pull it out and angle it to the light. Install a new one if you can’t see light through it.

If someone in your household suffers from allergies or asthma, we recommend having a filter with a greater MERV rating. The higher the number this is, the better your filter is at eliminating contaminants.

3. Improve Natural Ventilation

Keep fresh air moving by opening windows whenever the temperature allows. We also recommend using exhaust fans in your bathroom and kitchen frequently to eliminate pollutants and draw in more fresh air.

4. Call Our Indoor Air Quality Pros

From whole-home air purifiers, Stevenson Service Experts has a resolution to help your family breathe better. We’ll help you choose the right option during your free home comfort assessment. Give us a call at 614-334-3192 to book yours today!

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