We are indoors a lot. In fact, the EPA has determined the majority of people spend 90% of their time within a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times worse than outside.
Decreased indoor air quality can have an unfavorable influence on your well-being. That’s why it’s essential to be able to spot the signs of bad air quality in your residence, what leads to it and how to repair it.
If you want to know how you can tell if your Los Angeles home’s air quality is bad, our team of home comfort professionals at AZ Air Conditioning and Heating can provide assistance. We’ll go over the troubles you’re running into and offer strategies to make your residence’s air cleaner.
What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?
When you envision pollution, you typically think of smog. But everyday items within your residence can make pollution by the gases or particles they let into the air.
These starting points include:
- Carbon monoxide
- Cleaning, personal care and hobby goods
- Combustion appliances, such as a furnace or stove that consumes gas
- Dust, animal dander and pollen
- Too much moisture
- HVAC equipment
- Recently installed flooring or carpeting
- Secondhand smoke
- Synthetic building materials, such as furniture constructed from pressed wood
Indoor air pollution can be worsened by not enough ventilation in your home, as well as high temperatures and humidity. Today’s residences are tightly sealed for energy savings, which is great for your heating and cooling expenses but not so great when you require extra fresh air indoors.
Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?
Because people respond differently to indoor air pollutants, you may experience symptoms immediately or later on. Your symptoms could go away when you leave your house but come back when you return.
Some of the most usual immediate problems deal with:
- Irritated eyes, nose or throat
If someone in your household has allergies or asthma, their symptoms might be more severe.
Continuous or extended exposure could cause respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.
Other Signs of Bad Indoor Air Quality and How to Fix It
Your house will also signal that its air isn’t as healthy as it should be.
- Your residence is very dusty, particularly close to the vents. It’s normal for your home to get dusty during the week, but buildup near your air registers should be cause for concern. There are other particles within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can affect your health, especially if you struggle with allergies or asthma. A higher-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help reduce dust and other annoying pollutants.
- Your house has hot and cold areas. Your heating and cooling equipment may be failing to maintain appropriate temperature and humidity percentages. Or there could be air distribution issues as a result of your heating and cooling equipment or ductwork. Our AZ Air Conditioning and Heating pros can find the problem and recommend repairs or replacement.
- Your house’s air appears too dry or too wet. We recommend maintaining your residence’s humidity range near 30–40% for optimum comfort. If your house isn’t humid enough during cold temperatures, your skin and throat could feel scratchy. You might also experience colds and other respiratory illnesses more frequently. If your residence is too humid during warm weather, you may have more mold and mildew growth, both of which are detrimental to your wellness. You can take care of these troubles with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which works with your heating and cooling system to deliver balanced humidity across your residence.
- Your residence has odors that won’t go away. You might notice a stuffy scent when you come home. Or a cooking scent that just won’t disperse. Since it’s not possible to keep your windows open 24/7, a whole-home ventilation system can get your residence smelling pleasant again. It exchanges musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.
Other steps the EPA recommends taking include keeping your house smoke-free, getting carbon monoxide alarms and servicing your heating and cooling equipment. Regular furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your equipment clean and efficient and may even help them run for an extended period of time.
We Can Help Enhance Your House’s Indoor Air Quality
If you believe your residence has an air quality problem, give our AZ Air Conditioning and Heating HVAC professionals a call at 800-296-5088 or contact us online. We’re here to chat with you about options and give you a free estimate.