When it comes to how to maintain top quality indoor air, information is king. For most people, there is a tendency to think of polluted air as something that happens only outdoors. As a matter of fact, the truth is that the air within buildings, offices and even inside your home can be more polluted than outdoor air. Within your home, the polluted which contains dust can also contain conventional cleaning fragrances, volatile chemicals, radon, fire retardants, formaldehyde, and lead. At times, pollution can be tracked into a house. Others pollutants arrive via a coat of wall paint, carpet cleaners, furniture or even a brand new mattress.
One major allergen is dust mites, which are also microscopic. It goes without saying that dust mites are part of the list of home pollutant. Other kinds of pollution can be pet dander. Even if you don’t own any pets you may get dander, which is considered an allergen of the community. Pet owners shed dander throughout the day and carry it on their clothes. It is simply unavoidable.
In particular, the elderly, people with asthma and children might be particularly sensitive to pollutants indoors. Other health effects may not be immediately noticeable but might make an appearance later on in life when there has been exposure repeatedly.
In recent decades, there has been more importance placed on irritants and indoor allergens. The reason is because more people spend their time outdoors. Since new houses tend to be more air tight, it is not easy for pollution to escape. For the most part, people are exposed more than ever compared to thirty years ago.
Tips to Improve Indoor Air Quality
Double check those air fresheners- you may have become accustomed to spraying air freshener on a daily basis. If you do, you probably associate the smell of pine and lemon with clean air. On the other hand what you may not realize is that strong laundry and air freshener fragrances emit so many chemicals and pollute your indoor air in the process. These potential air pollutants include oils air fresheners, spray air freshener sprays, solid air fresheners, dryer sheets, fabric softeners and conventional laundry detergents. What is the alternative? Use baking soda and slices of lemon to get a great smelling kitchen. Let the fresh air in. Prevent the toxic build-up of chemicals by opening your windows. Switch to naturally fragrant mild cleaners. Laundry products scented naturally or happen to be fragrance-free make a good alternative. Bring in some houseplants. Aloe Vera, spider plants and ferns emit healthy, clean oxygen into your home.
Clean air ducts– so many homeowners wonder about the benefits of air duct cleaning. Should they or shouldn’t they? The main question most people ask is why should they get their air ducts cleaned? The reason is because these get dirty. Aside from dirt and dust accumulating naturally in air ducts, other factors increase the necessity of cleaning your system. When there have been home remodeling projects, damage to the HVAC system in the home, water contamination, cigar smoke, people with asthma and pets in the home, these can clog the airways and you will need to get those air ducts cleaned. Poor quality of indoor air may become improved by simply getting those ducts cleaned once and for all.
No smoking zone in your home– the most important aspect of indoor air pollution is related to second smoke from cigarettes. There are about four thousand chemicals in the smoke of cigarettes. This increases the risk of a child developing cancer, asthma, respiratory infections and ear infections. For smokers, addictions can cause stroke, breathing problems and cancer. Nicotine replacement and support groups will help you stop smoking.
Keep healthy humidity levels- allergens and dust mites love moist areas. Keep a maximum of fifty percent humidity and this will help control the allergens in your home. Dehumidifiers help reduce indoor air moisture and control allergens effectively. Reduce pollen count as well with an air conditioner. Don’t water your houseplants more than they need it. Also, crack a window open when you cook, bathe or run the dishwasher.
Fresh floors are important- allergens and chemicals can take decades to accumulate in household dust. When you use a filter on your vacuum, you can reduce your home’s lead concentration. Other toxins such as PBDEs or brominated fire-retardants can get eliminated as well as other allergen types like dust mites, pet dander and pollen.
Huge floor mats should be outside your front door. This way people won’t track in as much dirt and chemicals with their shoes. A mat reduces pollutants like pesticides and dirt from entering your house. Find a large mat that will trap the most dirt.
A mop picks up all dust that is left behind by a vacuum cleaner. Skip cleaners and soaps. Instead, use plain water to capture all lingering allergens. New mops are made of microfiber and capture more dirt compared to other traditional types.
A strong suction on a vacuum cleaner makes all the difference. Find one that has brushes which rotate. HEPA filters ensure that dirt and dust won’t blow back into the exhaust. In areas where there is high traffic, just keep vacuuming the same spot more than a few times. For maximum results, vacuum twice a week and regularly wash out filters.
Houses are not made the same as they used to be. These days, there are more chances for dirty air to be trapped within a home than ever before. Protect yourself by knowing exactly what to do to get top quality air indoors. After all, with all the stressors of modern living that every person has to face these days, the least of your worries should really be the quality of the indoor air you breathe.