We spend a lot of time indoors. In fact, the EPA has calculated most people spend 90% of their lives indoors a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times worse than outside.
Decreased indoor air quality can have a negative influence on your health. That’s why it’s important to recognize the symptoms of inferior air quality in your house, what leads to it and how to repair it.
If you want to know how you can tell if your West Jefferson home’s air quality is bad, our team of heating and cooling professionals at West Jefferson Plumbing and Heating, Inc. can assist you. We’ll go through the problems you’re having and provide strategies to make your home’s air healthier.
What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?
When you picture pollution, you generally think of smog. But everyday products inside your home can lead to pollution by the gases or particles they let into the air.
These starting points involve:
- Carbon monoxide
- Cleaning, personal care and hobby items
- Combustion appliances, such as a furnace or stove that consumes gas
- Dust, animal dander and pollen
- Too much moisture
- HVAC systems
- Recently placed flooring or carpeting
- Secondhand smoke
- Artificial building materials, such as furniture made from pressed wood
Indoor air pollution can be worsened by a lack of ventilation in your residence, as well as warm temperatures and humidity. Modern residences are securely sealed for energy conservation, which is a plus for your utility bill but not so great when you have to have additional fresh air inside.
Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?
Because people respond differently to indoor air pollutants, you could develop symptoms right away or later on. Your symptoms could lessen when you leave your residence but worsen when you return.
Some of the most usual immediate issues include:
- Irritated eyes, nose or throat
If someone in your home suffers from allergies or asthma, their symptoms could be more severe.
Repeated or extended exposure could result in respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.
Other Symptoms of Low Indoor Air Quality and How to Fix It
Your house will also signal that its air isn’t as clean as it needs to be.
- Your residence is extremely dusty, particularly close to the vents. It’s expected for your house to get dusty during the week, but a lot of dust by your air registers should be troubling. There are other particles within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can affect your health, especially if you have allergies or asthma. A premium air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help reduce dust and other irritating pollutants.
- Your home has hot and cold spots. Your HVAC unit may be failing to maintain proper temperature and humidity levels. Or there could be air distribution problems due to your heating and cooling unit or ductwork. Our West Jefferson Plumbing and Heating, Inc. specialists can find the trouble and suggest repairs or replacement.
- Your house’s air feels too dry or too wet. We suggest maintaining your home’s humidity range near 30–40% for optimum comfort. If your home isn’t humid enough during the winter, your skin and throat can feel dry. You might also experience colds and other respiratory illnesses more frequently. If your home is too humid during the summer, you may have higher mold and mildew growth, both of which are detrimental to your wellness. You can take care of these issues with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which pairs your home comfort unit to give balanced humidity around your home.
- Your house has odors that stick around. You may notice a musty odor when you come home. Or a cooking odor that just won’t go away. Since it’s not possible to keep your windows open all day, a whole-home ventilation system can get your house smelling good again. It replaces musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.
Other steps the EPA suggests taking include keeping your residence smoke-free, adding carbon monoxide alarms and servicing your heating and cooling unit. Routine furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your equipment clean and efficient and can even help them run longer.
We Can Help Improve Your Residence’s Indoor Air Quality
If you think your residence has air quality trouble, give our West Jefferson Plumbing and Heating, Inc. HVAC specialists a call at 614-450-1575 or contact us online. We’re ready to chat with you about solutions and give you a free estimate.