We spend a lot of time indoors. In fact, the EPA has determined most people spend 90% of their time within a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times worse than outside.
Decreased indoor air quality can have a negative effect on your wellness. That’s why it’s important to identify 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 Franklin Lakes home’s air quality is bad, our team of home comfort experts at Total Comfort can assist you. We’ll review the troubles you’re running into and provide ideas to make your home’s air cleaner.
What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?
When you think of pollution, you typically think of smog. But everyday things inside your house can make pollution by the gases or particles they let into the air.
These origins involve:
- Carbon monoxide
- Cleaning, personal care and hobby goods
- Combustion appliances, such as a furnace or stove that uses gas
- Dust, animal dander and pollen
- Too much moisture
- HVAC units
- New flooring or carpeting
- Secondhand smoke
- Man-made building materials, like furniture made from pressed wood
Indoor air pollution can be intensified by a lack of ventilation in your residence, as well as hot temperatures and humidity. Today’s houses are securely sealed for energy savings, which is a plus for your utility expenses but not so fantastic when you need extra fresh air inside.
Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?
Because people respond differently to indoor air pollutants, you may develop symptoms right away or later. Your symptoms could alleviate when you leave home but come back when you return.
Some of the most usual immediate issues deal with:
- Scratchy eyes, nose or throat
If someone in your home deals with allergies or asthma, their symptoms could be more severe.
Continuous or prolonged exposure may lead to respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.
Other Signs of Bad Indoor Air Quality and How to Make It Better
Your home will also indicate that its air isn’t as clean as it needs to be.
- Your home is extremely dusty, notably around the vents. It’s common for your house to get dusty during the week, but buildup near your air registers should be cause for concern. There are other substances 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 lower the concentration of dust and other aggravating pollutants.
- Your house has hot and cold rooms. Your heating and cooling system might be having difficulty maintaining correct temperature and humidity amounts. Or there may be air distribution issues because of your heating and cooling equipment or ductwork. Our Total Comfort professionals can diagnose the problem and advise repairs or replacement.
- Your residence’s air seems too dry or too wet. We advise maintaining your house’s humidity range near 30–40% for optimum comfort. If your house isn’t humid enough during the winter, your skin and throat could feel itchy. You might also battle colds and other respiratory illnesses more regularly. If your home is too humid during warm weather, you could have increased mold and mildew growth, both of which are detrimental to your wellness. You can fight these issues with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which works with your heating and cooling system to give even humidity throughout your house.
- Your house has odors that won’t go away. You could notice a musty scent when you arrive. Or a cooking scent that just won’t go away. Since it’s not feasible to open your windows 24/7, 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 recommends implementing include keeping your residence smoke-free, adding carbon monoxide alarms and tuning up your HVAC system. Annual furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your units clean and efficient and might even help them run for a greater amount of time.
We Can Help Enhance Your Residence’s Indoor Air Quality
If you think your house has air quality trouble, give our Total Comfort HVAC professionals a call at 201-268-5663 or contact us online. We’re ready to talk with you about options and offer a free estimate.