We are indoors a lot. In fact, the EPA has found the majority of people spend 90% of their lives indoors a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times more polluted than outside.
Bad indoor air quality can have an unfavorable impact on your health. That’s why it’s essential to know the warnings of bad air quality in your home, what causes it and how to fix it.
If you’re looking for ways to tell if your Bossier City home’s air quality is bad, our team of HVAC experts at Brooks Heating and Air Conditioning can help. We’ll go through the troubles you’re experiencing and provide strategies to make your house’s air fresher.
What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?
When you envision pollution, you typically think of smog. But everyday products inside your residence can cause pollution by the gases or particles they release into the air.
These starting points involve:
- Carbon monoxide
- Cleaning, personal care and hobby items
- Combustion appliances, like a furnace or stove that consumes gas
- Dust, animal dander and pollen
- Too much moisture
- HVAC units
- Recently installed flooring or carpeting
- Secondhand smoke
- Artificial building materials, including furniture constructed from pressed wood
Indoor air pollution can be exacerbated by not enough ventilation in your home, as well as high temperatures and humidity. Recently built residences are firmly sealed for energy efficiency, which is good for your utility expenses but not so great when you have to have extra fresh air indoors.
Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?
Because people are affected differently by indoor air pollutants, you may experience symptoms right away or later on. Your symptoms may lessen when you leave your house but get worse when you return.
Some of the most usual immediate issues include:
- Irritated eyes, nose or throat
If someone in your household has allergies or asthma, their symptoms can be worse.
Repeated or extended exposure could lead to respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.
Other Symptoms of Bad Indoor Air Quality and How to Improve It
Your home will also signal that its air isn’t as clean as it could be.
- Your home is very dusty, particularly around the vents. It’s expected for your residence to get dusty in a week’s time, but a lot of dust near your air registers should be concerning. There are other substances within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can impact your health, particularly if you struggle with allergies or asthma. A better-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help cut down on dust and other aggravating pollutants.
- Your house has hot and cold areas. Your HVAC unit may be struggling to maintain correct temperature and humidity levels. Or there could be air distribution problems because of your heating and cooling unit or ductwork. Our Brooks Heating and Air Conditioning pros can diagnose the trouble and advise repairs or replacement.
- Your house’s air appears too dry or too wet. We recommend keeping your residence’s humidity range near 30–40% for optimal comfort. If your home isn’t humid enough during cold temperatures, your skin and throat might feel scratchy. You might also have colds and other respiratory illnesses more often. If your home is too humid during warm weather, you may have higher mold and mildew growth, both of which are harmful to your well-being. You can fight these problems with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which works with your heating and cooling system to give even humidity throughout your home.
- Your house has odors that stick around. You may detect a musty odor when you arrive. Or a cooking scent that just won’t dissipate. Since it’s not possible to keep your windows open 24/7, a whole-home ventilation system can get your residence smelling fresh again. It substitutes stale inside air with fresh outdoor air.
Other steps the EPA recommends implementing include keeping your residence smoke-free, getting carbon monoxide alarms and tuning up your HVAC unit. Annual furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your equipment clean and efficient and could even help them run for a greater amount of time.
We Can Help Enhance Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality
If you believe your house has an air quality problem, give our Brooks Heating and Air Conditioning HVAC specialists a call at 800-COOLING or contact us online. We’re ready to talk with you about options and offer a free estimate.