Indoor air quality can easily go unchecked. The harmful, irritating particles in the air are invisible and frequently odor-free, so many homeowners don’t give the air quality of their Frederick, Maryland, homes much thought. However, managing the quality of air in our homes is important since airborne particles can cause health problems and respiratory discomfort. Here are seven ways to maintain optimal indoor air quality to keep your home and family healthy.
Maintaining a proper level of humidity in your home is essential to air quality. Dry air can cause sinus problems and make breathing more difficult for those who suffer from asthma and allergies. A whole-home humidifier keeps the air moist and can connect to a smart thermostat to allow for easy management.
During colder months, moist air not only helps alleviate cold and flu symptoms, but also retains heat better, so your heater doesn’t have to work as hard to keep the house warm.
Air filters placed in your heating and cooling systems keep airborne particles from being blown throughout the house. As the system pulls air in from your home to warm or cool it, the filter blocks out dust, mold, and more. When the affected air is pushed back through the ducts and vents, it will be cleaner than it was when it was pulled in.
This form of air filtration improves indoor air quality, and it keeps your systems running efficiently as they’re not bogged down with unwanted particles.
A whole-home air purifier is set up similarly to a filter, but it works to rid the air of even more harmful substances. While filters can miss the smaller airborne particles, many purifiers use UV lamps to eradicate mold, VOCs (volatile organic compounds), pet dander, and more.
Avoid Dangerous Chemicals
One of the easiest ways to improve indoor air quality is to avoid bringing certain chemicals into your home. If you have a pest problem, use eradication methods other than pesticides. Many professional pest control services offer safer methods that avoid dangerous chemicals.
Hair products, cleaning supplies, nail polishes, and acetone can all contain VOCs. Take a close look at labels before purchasing these types of products and opt for those marked "low VOCs." Adding some new color around the house? Household paints are known for high VOC levels, but many brands offer low-VOC options.
Formaldehyde can be found in certain cleaning products and even particle board. This chemical has been linked to increasing the risks of asthma and allergies in children. Look for more natural cleaning products that avoid such dangerous chemicals.
If you own a home built during or before the 1970s, you might have some lead paint on the walls. When this paint peels or chips, it sends lead into the air, leading to the risk of lead poisoning.
Carpeting can be cozier than hardwood floors, but it can also hold more dust and dander. Hardwood flooring is easy to clean and doesn’t trap particles, making it easier to rid your home of allergens and the like. Even regularly vacuuming carpets poses a problem to indoor air quality as the suction process sends particles into the air. People with allergies and asthma will benefit from less carpeting in their homes.
Mold loves to grow in damp environments. Keeping your bathroom well-ventilated will help prevent the growth and spreading of mold and mildew.
Kitchens with gas or wood-burning stoves also pose a threat to indoor air quality as flames introduce unhealthy particles into the air. Be sure to use proper ventilation while cooking.
Old systems, messy ductwork, and dirty vents will always lower the quality of the air in your home. Regular maintenance will keep your HVAC system running efficiently and your air clean. Air filters should be replaced and ductwork and vents should be cleaned. We will be happy to help you keep a maintenance schedule to help keep track of these services. Homes with multiple pets or asthma or allergy sufferers should schedule regular maintenance to help alleviate sinus problems.
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