With people spending 90% of their time indoors, and indoor air having pollutant concentrations 100 times that of outdoor air, indoor air quality (IAQ) is an important topic for families to think about.
Why Indoor Air Quality Matters
The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) suggests that indoor air quality can cause a series of health concerns ranging from immediate treatable issues to long-term effects that can be debilitating or even fatal.
Pollutants found in indoor air may cause:
- Respiratory disease
- Heart disease
The air we breathe is a critical factor for a healthy life. Without safe air, everything else we do for our health is sort of moot. Everything we do to keep our families healthy is a waste of time without safe air.
….of little or no practical value, meaning, or relevance; purely academic
I don’t know about you, but I just don’t like the idea that the thing that keeps me alive – breathing – can also be dangerous. And when it comes to my family, well, I’m not going down without a fight. I refuse to allow anything I do for my family to be moot.
What Affects Indoor Air Quality
Many of the things we have and use in our homes can affect air quality. Items such as fire retardants on carpeting and furniture, gas from appliances, paint, cleaning products and air fresheners are just a few of the things in your home that can give off chemical vapors that affect your indoor air quality. An attached garage can also allow unsafe fumes into your home.
Add to all of this the microscopic allergens such as dust mites, mold and pet dander, and your indoor air is filled with all kinds of scary things your family is breathing.
Plus, our homes these days are far more air-tight than they used to be. Construction standards and higher quality materials mean less outside air gets in when our homes are closed up and the heat or air conditioning is running. Extreme humidity levels and improper ventilation can cause these chemical vapors to build up in the air and impact your family’s health.
How to Improve Indoor Air Quality
Keep It Clean
Dust and vacuum your home regularly. Keep the potential allergens off of floors and upholstered surfaces. It can go a long way towards improving the air in your home.
Not wearing shoes through your home may help too.
Consider switching your cleaning and household products to natural products. These products are scented with natural ingredients like lemon and essential oils.
Also, avoid aerosol sprays as they emit chemicals into the air.
Open the Windows
In some places (like here in Indiana), it seems like we go right from needing the heat on into needing the air conditioning on. There are very few days of the year where the house is open and fresh air gets in.
But it’s a good idea to open everything up sometimes. Maybe in the mornings before it gets too hot, or midday in the winter when it’s the warmest part of the day.
Opening up the windows can help dilute the bad stuff in the air and make your indoor air fresher and cleaner.
Get Some Plants
House plants can go a long way towards cleaning your indoor air. Plants can absorb contaminants and clean the air of toxins. There are lot of neat, self contained hydroponics systems which you can use for growing plants, herbs for cooking, and more.
Humidity in the air can cause a breeding ground for mold, mildew and mites which are both nasty contributors to poor indoor air quality. It’s important to keep the humidity at balanced levels so keep them from growing and thriving. Depending on your location, a dehumidifier may help remove moisture and more importantly improve the air quality in your home.
Upgrade Your Systems
Your home’s heating and air conditioning system is a key player in the quality of your indoor air. An inefficient, out-of-date system can cause humidity levels to rise and keep bacteria, chemical vapors and small particles trapped in the air of your home.
Lennox has innovative and effective Healthy Climate Solutions™ that improve the quality of your home’s air.
Smart thermostats compatible with Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit and Google. They are easy to use but the models vary depending on your smart setup. Take a look at these and make sure the one you choose is compatible with your smart setup.
The Lennox PureAir system battles all three types of indoor air pollutants throughout your entire home. It eliminates smells and chemical vapors, it traps small particles like dust mites, pollen and pet dander and it traps and destroys airborne mold, fungi and viruses. Its top-rated filtration removes contaminants and leaves your home filled with fresh, comfortable air.
Air Quality is Important (!!)
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