We spend a lot of time indoors. In fact, the EPA has found many people spend 90% of their lives inside a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times poorer than outside.
Decreased indoor air quality can have an unfavorable effect on your health. That’s why it’s essential to be able to spot the warnings of inferior air quality in your home, what causes it and how to take care of it.
If you want to know how you can tell if your Phoenix home’s air quality is bad, our team of home comfort pros at Dial One Mears Air Conditioning & Heating Inc can help. We’ll go over the problems you’re having and offer suggestions to make your home’s air cleaner.
What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?
When you think of pollution, you generally think of smog. But ordinary products inside your house can produce pollution by the gases or particles they release into the air.
These starting points include:
- Carbon monoxide
- Cleaning, personal care and hobby items
- Combustion appliances, such as a furnace or stove that runs on gas
- Dust, animal dander and pollen
- Excessive moisture
- HVAC equipment
- Recently placed flooring or carpeting
- Secondhand smoke
- Synthetic building materials, such as furniture manufactured from pressed wood
Indoor air pollution can be worsened by not enough ventilation in your residence, as well as hot temperatures and humidity. Modern residences are tightly sealed for energy efficiency, which is great for your energy bill but not so great when you need additional fresh air inside.
Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?
Because people are affected differently by indoor air pollutants, you might have symptoms right away or later. Your symptoms can lessen when you leave home but get worse when you return.
Some of the most regular immediate issues involve:
- Scratchy eyes, nose or throat
If someone in your household has allergies or asthma, their symptoms can be more severe.
Constant or extended exposure may result in respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.
Other Signs of Low Indoor Air Quality and How to Fix It
Your residence will also indicate that its air isn’t as healthy as it could be.
- Your home is excessively dusty, notably around the vents. It’s expected for your house to get dusty over the week, but accumulation close to your air registers should be concerning. There are other substances within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can affect your health, especially if you struggle with allergies or asthma. A better-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help lower the concentration of dust and other annoying pollutants.
- Your residence has hot and cold spots. Your heating and cooling system might be having difficulty maintaining correct temperature and humidity amounts. Or there may be air distribution problems as a result of your heating and cooling equipment or ductwork. Our Dial One Mears Air Conditioning & Heating Inc pros can pinpoint the trouble and suggest repairs or replacement.
- Your home’s air feels too dry or too wet. We recommend having your home’s humidity range around 30–40% for optimum comfort. If your residence isn’t humid enough during cold temperatures, your skin and throat can feel scratchy. You might also have colds and other respiratory illnesses more regularly. If your house is too humid during warm weather, you could have more mold and mildew growth, both of which are bad for your wellness. You can combat these troubles with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which works with your HVAC unit to deliver even humidity around your home.
- Your house has odors that stick around. You may catch a musty scent when you get home. Or a cooking odor that just won’t dissipate. Since it’s not practical to have your windows open all day, a whole-home ventilation system can get your residence smelling good again. It replaces musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.
Other strategies the EPA suggests taking include keeping your residence smoke-free, getting carbon monoxide alarms and maintaining your HVAC equipment. Regular furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your units clean and efficient and may even help them last for a longer amount of time.
We Can Help Improve Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality
If you believe your residence has air quality trouble, give our Dial One Mears Air Conditioning & Heating Inc HVAC experts a call at 602-832-7808 or contact us online. We’re available to discuss options and give you a free estimate.