Improvements in residential building as well as advancements in windows, doors, and ductwork have made our homes pretty air tight. That’s a good thing when it comes to conserving energy, but how does that impact your need for clean healthy indoor air?
Air that is recirculated over and over again will deteriorate in quality. Considering people spend 90 percent of their time indoors, this means unhealthy air can surround us all day. Fortunately, there are small, smart things to do to improve your indoor air quality.
Smart Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality
Get more houseplants. You’d be surprised at how effective houseplants are at neutralizing contaminants such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in indoor air. Especially effective are English ivy, spider plants, peace lily and Boston fern, though many other varieties are effective as well.
Attack dirty air at the source. Remove chemical-laced air fresheners, cleaning agents and pesticides from your home, and find natural replacements.
Upgrade your air filter. Throw away that cheap flat-panel fiberglass filter and replace it with a pleated filter. The folds in these filters provide more surface area to capture airborne particulates. For a more comprehensive approach, consider an electrostatic filter or a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter. UV light systems are effective at removing organic contaminants such as bacteria, mold and viruses. Just make sure the filtration system you choose doesn’t impede system airflow. Your professional HVAC technician can help you choose the right one.
Improve ventilation. In addition to the standard exhaust fans in your bathrooms and kitchen, consider other mechanical ventilation systems such as attic fans and HRV/ERV systems. At the very least, don’t be afraid to open your windows and doors when the outside weather allows.
Air cleaners. Air cleaners or purifiers use a variety of filtration strategies to clean the air in a room. They come in a range of sizes, from models that purify the air in a single room to whole-house models. Similarly, humidifiers and dehumidifiers can improve indoor air quality substantially.
For more information on cleaning the air in your Houston area home, please contact us at Conditioned Air.