Ways to Prevent Indoor Air Pollution
Indoor air quality, also known as IAQ, is far more important than people may think. This is the air you breathe in day after day; this air is yesterday, tomorrow, and right now. It’s the air you take into your lungs at work all day, it’s what you breathe in when you have a lazy day and decide to stay home and rest, and it’s the air that your loved ones breathe. Air quality, wherever you may be at any given time, is a potential hazard for your lungs and overall health. This is why it is important to understand how to prevent indoor air pollution.
Indoor air pollution is classified as particles in the air that can be potentially harmful to our bodies. These particles can manifest into potential temporary and/or permanent illness(es). Unfortunately, what many people don’t realize is how much is floating around into the air around them and what’s being drawn into their bodies
We’re not trying to scare you and this isn’t a Bubble Boy scenario; you can’t place yourself in a plastic bubble and consume only purified filtered air.
But, there is good news for you!
There are steps and actions you can take to make sure what you breathe in is safe, and not harmful.
Preventive Measures to Combat Indoor Air Pollution
Many variables can bring pollutants into your household. Significant factors vary and can include things like that marvelous painting you recently picked up at an art exhibit, or the new carpet you installed a few days ago, or it can even be that crazy relative who continuously smokes in the house with the window open, insisting, “The breeze will carry out the smoke! It’ll be fine!” It can also include pet dander, especially if you tend to all of a sudden have wild allergies after adopting your new cat, Fluffy.
Below we will share different, easy ways to prevent indoor air pollution in your home and keep everyone breathing comfortably and staying healthy. We will also share factors that contribute to indoor air pollution in the first place.
Factors to Consider Preventing Indoor Air Pollution
Prevent Indoor Air Pollution with Proper Ventilation
There are just some things you cannot avoid bringing into your house. Cleaning, cooking, arts and crafts projects, or the dark, damp basement are all ways to create floating hazardous particles that stay stagnant in the air. But proper ventilation will help prevent many of these indoor air pollutants.
Get an exhaust hood or fan for the kitchen or even the bathroom. This is a great, quick, and easy way to clear the air after you spent the day making sure everything is nice and clean. The kitchen counters are clean, the floor is sparkling, and the bathtub is ready for you to enjoy before the kids muddy it all up.
Open the window to get a natural cross-breeze through your house, if it’s not high allergy season, and turn on the exhaust hood in the kitchen and the fan in the bathroom.
Artificial pine might smell nice, but nothing beats the real thing when it comes to a fresh, clean breeze.
Don’t have a ventilation system in your home? The Laury Heating Cooling & Plumbing Team would be happy to help you with a home ventilation installation.
It’s a double whammy of hazardous potential here!
No one likes pests. This includes those times when you find mouse droppings in your kitchen or the roach that decides your basement is a perfect place to live.
Pests can excrete some very unsanitary things into your household and the air your family breathes. This can be anything from animal dander to fumes from urine or droppings left undiscovered. Pests can contaminate your food, and it’s enough to make your skin crawl!
However, we are often so concerned about what the pests can do to our home, we don’t even think about what we use to get rid of them. Many in-home pesticides and chemicals are great for getting rid of the vermin hiding in your home, but they can be harmful to our families.
What destroys the pests in your home can also hurt you just as much, and also can do lasting damage. Consult a professional about pest removal. They can do it for you, or they can offer advice on how to safely remove pests without causing damage to you and the quality of your air.
If you decide to manage home pest control yourself, please always read the entire label on the pesticide before starting your project. It’s not only very important to read the label for your safety, but it is also a federal law so you use it in the manner it is intended.
Indoor Air Pollution Can Be Prevented Through Proper Storage of VOCs
Proper storage is another quick and easy way to make sure your air stays cleaner. The everyday, day-to-day cleaners in a household can be very harmful to the lungs, causing invisible air pollution in your home, if not handled properly.
Chemical cleaners emit gases from both solid and liquid states, and these are known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs). It isn’t just household cleaners that do this, though; it’s paint, paint thinners, wax, a new carpet, or construction going on within your home that will leave chemicals floating around in the air you breathe.
A study from the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) found that over a dozen chemical pollutants reside 2 to 5 times higher inside homes than outside.
But proper storage of these chemical compounds will help eliminate and prevent indoor air pollution. Make sure that a lid, if one is provided for the household cleaner, is proper and securely on the container. Place these products in a cool-tempered space that has a secured door and/or lock so those that shouldn’t get to them, like a toddler or small child, cannot easily access them.
Maintenance is also Important to Prevent Indoor Air Pollution
Preventative measures are great. They keep things lasting long-term and running efficiently. Maintaining clean, healthy air is far easier than trying to clean air that has already been grossly contaminated.
Check to make sure all the appliances that you use, such as things that can emit harmful gases or liquids, are running efficiently. An example might be your gas stove. Make sure the batteries in your carbon monoxide detector still have juice in them and make sure the detectors work properly (the same goes for the fire alarm).
Have a specialist, like a Laury Heating Cooling & Plumbing HVAC Technician, come in and check to make sure your heater and furnace are running smoothly and at optimal capacity. They’ll be able to give you better advice and ideas on making sure the heater in your home is helping you through the winter months instead of potentially making you sick.
Cleaner Air Leads to a Healthier You
Cleaning the air in your household gives way to a healthier home and, more importantly, healthier life for yourself and your family. Many don’t realize what airborne pollutants can do to the human body – both short-term and long-term effects. But keeping your air clean by utilizing these few, simple tips will make a world of a difference.