Factors That Affect Indoor Air Quality

Person changing air filter

Much of the population believes that the air inside their home is clean and healthy enough for their entire family to breath comfortably. Many feel a sense of security because, at home, you can shut the doors to the outside world and block out its many pollutants. Are you in that majority?

Well, unfortunately your indoor air may not be as safe as you think. In fact, studies have shown that indoor air quality is often two to five times worse than the air we breathe outside. This high concentration of pollutants can lead to respiratory issues and illnesses – even if you or your family do not suffer from chronic conditions like asthma and COPD.

Don’t worry though! There are easy and effective ways to improve your indoor air quality and Advance Mechanical Heating & Air Conditioning is here to help! The first step is to identify the factors in your home that could be affecting your air quality.

1. Temperature

The temperature inside your home plays a big role in the quality of the air. If indoor temperatures are too high, it allows chemicals around your home to leak inside more rapidly. It is important to keep your home at an ideal temperature between 70°F and 78°F.

2. Humidity Levels

Keeping the humidity inside your home at optimal levels is key to clean air. Too much humidity can be a breeding ground for mildew and dust mites, while lack of humidity can cause rashes, sore throat, dry skin and eye irritation. The ideal relative humidity range inside is between 30 and 50 percent.

TIP! If you’re having problems maintaining proper humidity levels in your home, there is a simple solution! If levels are too low, invest in a humidifier to add moisture to the air. For humidity levels that are too high, look into purchasing a dehumidifier.

3. Ventilation

Improper home ventilation can trap polluted air in your home. This leads to dust, pollen and bacteria buildup. Remember to introduce fresh air into your home by occasionally opening doors and windows and taking advantage of exhaust fans.

4. Pets (and Pests!)

We love our pets! And while they improve our lives, they can damage the quality of the air in our homes. Between shedding fur, hair and dander, pets can contribute to allergies, headaches and even some skin conditions. Pets can also bring unwanted pests in your home too, like fleas and mites. It is important to care for your pet and change your air filters every month to diminish the affect they have on your indoor air quality.

5. Mildew and Bacteria

The presence of mildew, bacteria and fungi will negatively impact your home’s air quality. These microbes can spread viruses, worsen allergies and cause asthma.

6. Dust and Allergens

Did you know that dust is the most common allergen in the world? Dust mites feed on dead flakes of human skin and thrive in temperatures ranging from 68°F to 77°F. In large quantities, people with dust sensitivities or allergies can experience shortness of breath, chest tightness and other respiratory issues. Even for those without allergies, dust can cause itchy eyes, sneezing, coughing and headaches.

TIP! Get High-Efficiency Particulate Air Filters (HEPA), they come with a guarantee to trap 99.97 percent of airborne particles. Air purifiers with HEPA filters circulate the air inside a room through a fine mesh, and trap dust particles.

7. Chemicals

Each and every home has some level of chemicals floating around in the air. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) are pretty much unavoidable in homes. VOCs can come from new paint, flooring, other furnishings and cleaning products. While having some amount of VOCs in your home’s air is inevitable, a large concentration of these chemicals can lead to serious health problems, and unfortunately, many homes have higher levels than you may think!

TIP! Investing in a high-quality air purifier can ensure that the air you breathe indoors is free of VOCs. Also choose non-toxic products and cleaners to use in your home.

Having fresh, clean air to breathe inside your home is vital for the comfort and health of you and your family. Aside from providing heating and air conditioning services, Advance Mechanical also offers many solutions to improve indoor air quality. We offer a wide range of products to reduce particles, germs and many other toxins from the air you breathe every day. We also offer monitoring systems so you will know exactly what is in the air you breathe. We suggest starting with the little fixes and then undertaking the more complex remedies as needed. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to improve the air you breathe.

Contact Advance Mechanical Heating & Air Conditioning today! And, click here to learn more about the products and services we offer!