The Importance of Indoor Air Quality
Most Americans spend far more time indoors than they do outside. While outdoor air pollution from factories, oil refineries, congested vehicle traffic, and other common sources receives most of the media attention, indoor air quality is just as important.
Exposure to indoor air pollutants can cause a lot of different health impacts. Some, such as headaches, dizziness, fatigue, and eye, nose, or throat irritation, show up immediately. The immediate health impacts of exposure to air pollution tend to be both short-term and treatable.
The long-term effects of exposure to air pollutants can be more serious. If you and your family are breathing in contaminated air every day, you’ll all be at an increased risk of developing serious health problems such as heart disease, respiratory disease, and even cancer. Because of that heightened risk, it’s very important to remove indoor air pollutants even if no one in the home shows signs of immediate health problems.
Thankfully, it’s much easier to control the quality of the air you and your family are breathing every day in the home than it is to put a stop to pollution single-handedly. By learning about the importance of indoor air quality and what you can do to improve it, you’ve already taken the first step.
Common Sources of Indoor Air Pollution
- Wood, coal, gas, kerosene, and other home heating fuels
- Tobacco products
- Building materials that contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or asbestos
- Household cleaning products
- Personal care products
- Outdoor air pollutants
- Algae and mildew
Signs Your Home Has Poor Indoor Air Quality
Wondering if it’s worth scheduling an air quality assessment? Keep an eye out for the following signs that your home has poor quality indoor air:
- Your home’s indoor air seems stale.
- Some rooms are noticeably warmer or colder than others.
- You can smell odors like car exhaust from inside.
- Residents or guests are struggling to manage allergy or asthma symptoms.
- Your home is very drafty.
- You’ve noticed dust building up around the vents.
- Unpleasant odors are coming from your air ducts.
- You smell algae or mildew or notice humidity issues.
If you’ve noticed any of these signs of poor indoor air quality, give us a call. We can help you identify appropriate air quality solutions that will work for your household without breaking the budget.
How to Improve Air Quality in Home Settings
HVAC experts offer a range of indoor air quality solutions. Some indoor air cleaners and purifiers operate independently, while others integrate into homes’ existing HVAC systems. Popular options for improving indoor air quality include:
If the air in your home feels stagnant and stale, improving indoor ventilation may be a good first step towards resolving the problem. Residential ventilation systems come in many shapes and sizes, but most experts recommend starting with attics. You should also vent the fumes from furnaces, dryers, and other appliances that produce carbon monoxide and other potentially dangerous gases.
Your furnace and air conditioner should already have a home air filtration system in the form of inline filters. However, not all filters are equal. If one or more of the residents in your home struggle with indoor allergies, upgrading to a more advanced filtration system is always a good idea. HEPA filters are the gold standard for indoor air filtration, but we’ll go over all your options when you schedule an air quality assessment and consultation with AC TEX, LLC.
Installing Air Purifiers
Sometimes, air filter upgrades alone are not enough to improve indoor air quality. If you want to keep your family as safe as possible, an indoor air purifier that features both mechanical filters and UV light is the best way to go. UV light deactivates viruses, bacteria, and algae, helping to prevent dangerous biological contaminants from building up in your HVAC ducts.
The ideal relative humidity level for residential environments is between 30 and 50 percent. Relative humidity varies based on factors like the season, air conditioning use, ventilation, and even what type of furnace you have. The best way to keep relative humidity levels balanced is to install an integrated humidity control system that offers both humidification in the winters and dehumidification in the summer months.
Scheduling Routine HVAC Maintenance
If you don’t change the filters on your furnace and AC unit and keep your ducts clean, maintaining healthy indoor air will be an uphill battle. Experts recommend having HVAC systems inspected and professionally maintained twice a year: once in the spring, and again in the fall. You may also want to schedule routine duct cleaning services.
Get Help Now
Are you ready to improve your home’s indoor air quality to protect your family’s health? The first step is easy. Just give AC TEX, LLC a call to schedule an air quality assessment. We’ll identify contaminants and their sources, then make recommendations about how you can improve your ventilation and HVAC systems, so they offer better protection against airborne pollutants.