How Can I Tell if My Homes Air Quality is Bad?

April 27, 2020

If you’re questioning whether your Logan residence has bad indoor air quality (IAQ), it likely does.

We spend much of our time indoors. As a matter of fact, we’re in a building up to 90% of the time, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. And the air inside homes may be 2–5 times worse than outdoors, which can lead to long-term health concerns.

Most Common Origins of Poor IAQ

We’ve compiled a list of the most frequent origins of bad IAQ, the problems they make and how you can remedy these indoor air pollutants. If you’re troubled by the air inside your residence, we recommend talking with a professional like Western Mechanical, Inc. about which solutions are best for your home.

Volatile Organic Compounds

Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, are fumes leaked by regular household items.

They’re found in paint and stains in addition to:

  • Furniture
  • Carpet
  • Building materials
  • Cleaning products
  • Cosmetics
  • Air fresheners
  • Candles

When these fumes accumulate inside, they can irritate your eyes, nose and throat. They may also result in headaches and nausea. Regardless of whether your home is in a rural or industrial space, an EPA study found indoor levels of these pollutants can be 2–5 times higher than the air outside.

Always use the manufacturer’s directions when using paint or cleaning supplies. Opening a window can help fumes disperse more quickly.

Air purification systems can also make it better. This equipment partners with your heating and cooling unit to freshen indoor air. When seeking a model, ensure it’s specifically made to wipe out VOCs.

Dust and Pet Dander

Dust and pet dander can aggravate health problems like asthma and allergies, especially when it continuously gets recirculated by your home’s comfort system. While you can vacuum more regularly and install an enhanced air filter, an air filtration system may be a better fit.

This equipment works with your HVAC equipment to provide powerful filtration. Some models have hospital-level filtration for getting rid of particles and bioaerosols.

Lingering Odors

Modern houses are closely sealed to increase energy efficiency. While this is great for your energy expenses, it’s not very good for your IAQ.

Stuffy odors can stick around longer as your house is drawing in less fresh air. Since keeping your windows open throughout the year isn’t a possibility, here are two methods you can make your indoor air smell cleaner.

An air purification system is put in your ductwork to wipe out odors before they are redistributed. Search for one with a carbon filter and the power to wipe out harmful VOCs. These units can also help keep your household healthy by getting rid of most bacteria and normal allergy triggers like pollen and mold spores.

A ventilation system removes musty indoor air and exchanges it with crisp outdoor air. There are two types of equipment (heat recovery and energy recovery), so check with our techs for more info on which type is ideal for your home.

Unbalanced Humidity

It’s essential your home’s humidity keeps balanced. Air that has too much moisture can lead to mold, while dry air can lead to respiratory symptoms.

Our experts advise 40–50% for top comfort. To keep yours in balance, think about getting a whole-home humidifier or whole-home dehumidifier with your HVAC system.

In place of having to drag a humidifier from room to room, this solution delivers even humidity throughout your home.

Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is clear gas you can’t smell. It’s caused by incomplete combustion in fuel-burning appliances, like gas heating systems, water heaters or fireplaces.

It causes a severe health risk. In low amounts, it can cause flu-like ailments like headaches and nausea. It may be lethal in large concentrations.

We recommend yearly furnace maintenance to make sure your system is operating smoothly. This work allows our techs to discover problems before they get bigger, including malfunctions that can create carbon monoxide leaks.

The best way to keep your residence free of carbon monoxide is to put in detectors. These alarms must be on each floor near bedrooms and living areas.

Improve Your Home’s Air Quality with the Western Mechanical, Inc. Experts

Aware that your house has inferior air quality but not sure how to improve it? Or unsure which solution is right for you? Give our kind HVAC professionals a call at 435-753-5515 or contact us online now. With free estimates and professional support, we’ll help you choose the best option for your needs and budget.