Why an Energy-Efficient Residence Can Influence Air Quality and How to Make It Better

Residences today are built with energy efficiency in mind. This includes added insulation and tightly sealed doors and windows to keep energy bills reasonable. While this is positive for your energy expenses, it’s not so great for your indoor air quality.

Because air has decreased chances to escape, pollutants can accumulate and impact your residence’s indoor air quality. In fact, your home’s air can actually be 2–5 times more unhealthy than the outdoors, according to the EPA. That’s not good for anyone, but it’s especially detrimental for loved ones with allergies, asthma, other respiratory disorders or heart disease.

Let’s discuss some of these routine substances and how you can improve your residence’s indoor air quality.

6 Routine Pollutants that Affect Indoor Air Quality

When you picture pollutants, you may think about smog or tobacco smoke. But a lot of substances that decrease your air quality are common items. These things contain chemicals called volatile organic compounds, or VOCs.

They involve:

  1. Cleaning products, including aerosol sprays, bleach and window cleaner.
  2. Personal care products, like hairspray, perfume and nail products.
  3. Candles and air fresheners.
  4. Formaldehyde, which is frequently used in plastic, foam and particleboard products.
  5. Furniture, window treatments and carpet, particularly when they’re brand new.
  6. Paints and stains.

Other common pollutants include:

  • Dust
  • Pet dander
  • Pollen
  • Mold

Symptoms of VOC Exposure

Some people are more affected by VOCs than others. The EPA says symptoms of VOC exposure entail:

  • Irritated eyes, nose or throat
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue

In bad cases, the EPA says VOCs can lead to respiratory and heart diseases.

4 Ways to Enhance Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

It isn’t hard to improve your house’s air quality. Here are several suggestions from Harvard Medical School:

1. Clean Your Residence Regularly

Routinely cleaning and washing surfaces that attract allergens, like furniture, carpet and bedding, will help reduce on dust, dust mites and pet dander in your home.

2. Routinely Switch Your Air Filter

This essential filter keeps your house comfy and air clean. How often you should change your air filter depends on the style of filter you have. Flat filters should be swapped each month, while pleated filters should be swapped every three months. If you’re unsure if your filter should be replaced, pull it out and angle it to the light. Install a new one if you can’t see light through it.

If someone in your home has allergies or asthma, we recommend having a filter with a higher MERV rating. The greater the number this is, the better your filter is at eliminating contaminants.

3. Enhance Natural Ventilation

Keep fresh air in your home by opening windows whenever the weather allows. We also suggest running exhaust fans in your bathroom and kitchen often to remove pollutants and draw in more fresh air.

4. Chat Our Indoor Air Quality Pros

From whole-home air purifiers, Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning has a fix to help your loved ones breathe more freely. We’ll help you choose the ideal option during your free home comfort assessment. Contact us at 954-736-4314 to book yours today!

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