23 Mar 8 Tips for Better Indoor Air Quality
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, on average, Americans spend a whopping 90% of their time inside. And yet, the number of pollutants inside can be as much as two to five times more than the concentration of those same pollutants found outdoors.
With so many of us spending the majority of our time indoors, finding ways to have higher quality air inside your home is something that you may want to pay attention to. The good news is that there are steps you can take to improve indoor air quality.
What are some of the ways you can improve the air quality in your home? Check out these eight tips below on ways to make sure you are doing all that you can to boost air quality.
1. Change Your Air Filter
There are many reasons why it is so important to change your air filters regularly. One of the most important reasons is related to your health: better indoor air quality.
When you change your air filter on a regular basis, you are ensuring that the filter is clean enough to effectively remove particles and contaminants in the air, including dust, dirt, and other allergens.
Typically you will want to change the air filter every 30 to 90 days. Check the owner’s manual for your HVAC system for specific recommendations on how frequently you should be changing the air filter. Both your heating and cooling units will have an air filter that will either need to be replaced or cleaned often.
If your filter is dirty and clogged, the air circulating throughout your home is not going to be filtered properly, and you will be breathing in lower quality air. Changing your air filter is inexpensive, easy to do, and can improve the quality of the air you breathe in.
2. Keep Up With HVAC System Maintenance
A clean and well-maintained HVAC system will allow your system to run efficiently and effectively. Some of the ways to maintain your HVAC system include keeping vents and ducts clean, removing any debris, and scheduling service appointments.
3. Use An Air Purifier
Having an air purifier in your home can help improve the indoor air quality by removing particles, contaminants, and allergens in the air that are circulating throughout your home. The higher the clean air delivery rate (CADR), the better the air purifier will be able to filter the air. In order for an air purifier to be effective, you want to make sure the size of the air purifier you purchase is appropriate for the size of the room it will be in.
4. Open Windows and Doors to Let Fresh Air In
Opening your windows and doors to let fresh air in will help to circulate air and incorporate new airflow. Even in winter, opening your windows on occasion can be beneficial by bringing fresh, outdoor air into your home. Be cautious about opening windows when outdoor allergens are at peak levels.
5. Add Plants to Your Space
While some plants worsen allergies, there are quite a few plants that may be beneficial to include in your home and help to improve air quality. There are conflicting reports if there is enough evidence whether or not houseplants can improve air quality. Still, at the very least, plants can increase oxygen levels and enhance the aesthetics of your home. Below is a list of houseplants that may be useful to include in your home:
- Aloe Plant
- Snake Plant
- Rubber Tree Plant
- Bamboo Palm
- English Ivy
6. Run a Dehumidifier
The higher the humidity, the more water vapor that is present in the air. With too much moisture in the air, it can lead to mold growth. The presence of mold can create health problems or cause damage to your home. Putting a dehumidifier in your house will help to keep the humidity in the air within the ideal range to keep your home feeling comfortable and safe. It is usually recommended to keep the humidity level in your home between 45 and 55 percent.
7. Install and Maintain Carbon Monoxide Detectors
A dangerous substance that could be in your home without your knowledge is carbon monoxide. This odorless, colorless gas can be deadly if you do not have the appropriate carbon monoxide detectors installed throughout your home. Keep yourself and your family safe by installing carbon monoxide detectors. If you already have them installed, check on the detectors regularly to make sure they are working properly.
8. Stay On Top of Regular Cleaning Tasks
While keeping your home clean sounds simple enough, life can often get in the way, and you may let certain cleaning tasks fall by the wayside. By sticking to a regular cleaning schedule, you will reduce dust and other allergens in your home. Below are a few of the chores that you shouldn’t skip:
- Cleaning your carpets
- Changing and washing your sheets and bedding every one to two weeks
- As much as your pets may not like bath time, frequently washing your pets will help to reduce pet allergens
Give Yourself Peace of Mind
By following these tips, you can make changes that will have an impact and help improve your indoor air quality. You will feel better about the quality of the indoor air you and your family are breathing in. While some of these tips take a bit more work or may require you to change your habits, it is well worth the effort.