Breathing Easy Inside Your HomeIndoor Air Quality
Since 1970, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) set forth to clean up air pollution in the United States by limiting cars and industrial sources in the Clean Air Act. This Act has changed over the years to expand regulations on standard emissions, hazardous air pollutants, and ozone layer depletion. The Clean Air Act of 1970/1977/1990 amendments applied to the air and outdoors, but what about indoors?
According to the EPA, indoor air pollutants can be 2-5 times higher than outdoor because of the closed space and more time spent indoors. As a result, Radon, asbestos, carbon monoxide, tobacco smoke, pet dander, fuel-burning appliances, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) seep their way into your living environment and cause short and long term health problems such as asthma, cancer allergies, respiratory and heart disease, pneumonia, even Legionnaires Disease.
Sound scary? It is. You want your home to be clean and healthy. Here are a few suggestions on what you can do to clean up your indoor air quality.
- Run Your Air Conditioner: If you have central heating and air, you have an air cleaner and filtration system already in place. Check the manufacturer for more information on how it cleans the air. Change the filter frequently-that filter keeps your indoor air clean and healthy. Make sure you get seasonal HVAC maintenance so your unit cleans your air efficiently all year round.
According to the EPA, indoor air pollutants can be 2-5 times higher than outdoor because of the closed space and more time spent indoors.
- Check Your Ventilation: Leaks in your ventilation system can allow outdoor air pollutants into your home, contributing to unhealthy air quality. On the other hand, if the ventilation system doesn’t allow the indoor air pollution out, those indoor pollutants can grow to dangerous levels and create a “sick building.” By regularly checking your ductwork and insulation, you can find and seal any potential leaks that allow harmful air quality to exist in your home.
- Find the Source: There are some gasses and chemicals that you just can’t see or smell, like radon, mold, and carbon monoxide. You can buy test kits that give you a good idea of what levels are in your home. You can also buy a test kit for asbestos and then remove it as it is a leading cause of lung cancer, next to tobacco use indoors. After testing, you can get radon abatement services to install a fan to reduce radon levels. Running and maintaining your air conditioner also reduces carbon monoxide and other pollutants. If you have older ductwork, replace it with up-to-date insulation to remove asbestos. If you have a fireplace, make sure the ventilation system works properly and install a carbon monoxide detector as well.
Change the filter frequently-that filter keeps your indoor air clean and healthy.
- Cleanse the Air: Your HVAC system filters the air but, you can take your air cleanliness to the next level with a media air cleaner. A media air cleaner is more than just a filter for your HVAC. It’s 4-5 inches thick, flexible, and can fit in several areas of your HVAC system: plenums, return air ducts, and furnace air handlers. These cleaners reduce allergens, indoor and outdoor pollutants, significantly reducing asthma and allergy problems. Media air cleaners can also reduce your energy costs by lowering air resistance and not straining the air handlers.
We spend almost 90% of our time indoors, breathing in unknown pollutants, pathogens, and particles. Sure, a house plant will help with oxygen levels, but a complete air cleaning system and your HVAC will decontaminate and eliminate so much more in today’s environment. With regular maintenance and adding a media air cleaner to your home comfort system, wouldn’t that help you breathe a little easier?
Call Climate Control today to help you breathe easier: 859-469-4182
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