People spend most of their time in their homes but they may not realize that they are breathing in low quality air. Stale indoor air and heating systems that are not functioning at peak capacity increase the amount of allergens in the air such as dust mites, pet dander, mold spores and other harmful substances. There are several relatively simple and cost effective solutions that can make the indoor air quality in your home healthier and make you feel better.
1. Crack the Windows and Clean Your Floors
Probably the easiest and cheapest way to increase the indoor air quality of your home is letting fresh air into your home by opening a few windows and letting the stale air circulate out of your home. Despite what you may think, you can even do this for brief periods of time in the cold winter months. Also, cleaning your floors and other places where dust and allergens might settle will avoid it from being kicked back up into the air. There is no way to avoid dust completely but cleaning regularly will remove many of the particles that end up in the air.
2. Bring Nature Indoors
Houseplants are not just a visually pleasing addition to your home, but they also do a lot to clean the air. Just like humans, plants breathe by taking in carbon dioxide and letting out oxygen. These plants work to produce cleaner and fresher air for your home and require very little effort or upkeep. Some of the best plants to bring into your home include:
- Aloe Plant
- English Ivy
- Rubber Tree
- Snake Plant
- Bamboo Palm
- Mass Cane / Corn Plant
On the other hand, some plants that look nice may not be the best choice for a healthy home. They can collect dust and foster the growth of mold, so before you bring nature indoors, make sure to do some extra research to make sure you’re bringing home the right indoor plant..
Also, some plants trigger allergies in certain people, so be mindful of this when finding plants for your home.
3. Clean Your Ceiling and Floor Fans
Just like dust tends to settle on the floors, tables, and desks, the fans in your home also collect dust and can easily be overlooked. You should take extra care to clean your ceiling and floor fans because when not being used they will collect dust and other substances, but when turned on will disperse all those toxins into the air.
4. Change Your Air Filters
The air filters in your HVAC system are one of the main defenses against poor air quality in your home. A clean filter working as intended will remove dirt and debris from the air. However, a dirty filter can actually make the air quality worse by acting as a reservoir for harmful contaminants and dispersing them back into the air you breathe. Whether you’re in the middle or heating or cooling season, it is always a good idea to change the filters on a monthly basis. If your system is building up contaminants much faster than that, you may want to have an HVAC professional come take a look at your system.
5. Use Non-Toxic Cleaning Products
Lots of common household cleaning products are filled with toxic chemicals. Many of these chemicals are used to create synthetic fragrances that are not necessary to actually get your home and clothing clean. These harmful chemicals end up in the air and can be harmful to you and your family. Unscented and fragrance-free products for laundry and cleaning purposes are the brands you should be looking for.
6. Groom Your Pets
When pets shed their fur it can become airborne and cause a clog in your air filter which will hinder the system’s efficiency. Worse than pet hair though is the pet dander that accompanies it. Pet dander, according to the American Lung Association, is “composed of tiny, even microscopic, flecks of skin shed by cats, dogs, rodents, birds and other animals with fur or feathers. These bits of skin can cause reactions in people who are specifically allergic to these triggers.” These microscopic flakes are attracted to metal ducts which will cause a mixture of dander and pet hair to end up in the air your and your family are breathing. Frequent grooming of your pets can help mitigate the effects.
7. Don’t Wear Your Shoes in Your Home
In many countries, wearing shoes into the house is considered a big no-no and there is a good reason for this. Shoes carry bacteria into your home which if breathed in can cause infections and illnesses. Carpets and doormats do some work at cleaning bacteria off your shoes but nothing is more effective than a policy of no shoes in the house.
8. Use a Dehumidifier
Monitoring the humidity in your home is a good way to avoid or prevent mold build up. Areas that tend to have a high humidity are breeding grounds for mold which will damage the quality of the air in your home and can lead to serious health problems if left unchecked. Use a dehumidifier to keep the humidity levels in check around your home.
9. Reach Out to an Indoor Air Quality Professional
If you have serious concerns about the quality of the air in your home, it may be time to reach out to an experienced HVAC contractor. Indoor air quality service experts have likely seen it all, and will be able to pinpoint exactly what is causing the poor air quality. If you are serious about keeping the air quality high, having a professional take a look at your system once a year is always a good idea.
Many of these solutions can do wonders for the overall quality of the air in your home and ultimately require very little effort on your part. Following these tips and integrating them into your life will not only make your home a more pleasant place to spend your time, it will also improve the health of you and your family.
Contact Coastal Refrigeration to Discuss Improving Indoor Air Quality
At Coastal Refrigeration Corp, we install and maintain RGF’s REME HALO Air Purification System and PremiereOne Air Purifiers for residential and commercial customers in Monmouth, Ocean, and Middlesex County, NJ. Contact us today and one of our expert technicians will be able to help you find the best purifier for your home.