Also commonly abbreviated as the IAQ, indoor air quality is the quality of the air inside and around a building. The overall air quality of a home affects the wellness and wellbeing of the occupants, especially as it relates to the healthy living of the occupants.
Contaminated indoor air quality is often associated with sick building syndrome, unexplained allergies, discomfort, low productivity, etc. Therefore, a home owner needs to understand and control the rate of common contaminants that can pollute indoor air quality and overall health.
IAQ measures the level of pollutants and thermal changes in a home and how it affects the occupants’ health, comfort, and productivity. These pollutants are usually released from things found in and around the home. These include molds, pets, strong paints, rodents, gas release, new furniture, etc.
It may feel nice to stay indoors during winter and lock yourself in to feel cozy and warm. However, for people who suffer from indoor allergens or respiratory problems, heating the home, coupled with indoor air that is stale from mold, dust, pet dander, and cooking gas smell, can cause major health issues for such individuals.
As a homeowner, you might believe the indoor air quality of your home is clean and healthy. However, you might want to pay attention to the following tips to help improve the IAQ of your home, especially when you suspect unhealthy airflow
Keep The Windows Open
This might seem obvious and simple. You receive fresh air from outside into the home by opening up the windows to release hot stale air out of the house. It is the cheapest way to improve the IAQ in your home.
This is even more important during the winter months when everyone keeps their windows locked to stay warm and save money on the heating system. It is still healthy to open up the windows once in a while, let in oxygen and release carbon dioxide and other nasty stuff out of the home.
A well and properly ventilated room reduces heat and humidity, which molds and dust mites thrive in to survive.
Use An Air Purifier
Dust and air pollutants are usually microscopic, and it is impossible to clean air contaminants because you can most likely only see the source, not the contamination itself. Hence, the introduction of the air purifier.
Air purifying machines are outstanding to clean the air in the home by drawing in the stale air, filtering the dirty air by trapping in the pollutants, and then releasing it back into the occupied space – clean and fresh.
Some air purifiers also come with LED displays that indicate air quality. Some air purifiers also release negative ions that help to neutralize the effect of airborne bacteria or viruses in the environment.
Dry The Home
Mold, dust mites, bacteria, and viruses thrive in heat and moisture, so they only survive in warm and damp places, making them thrive in kitchens, bathrooms, or HVAC systems.
As a homeowner, take precautions always to keep the door to the bathroom shut and leave the windows open. It helps release the hot air from the facility when you’re not using it. Any wet surface should be dried out immediately, and the fan should be your best friend in such situations. Wet clothes don’t have a place indoors. They should be hung outside to dry because the dampness attracts bacteria and corrupts the home’s indoor air quality.
The windows should also be opened regularly to prevent the build-up of heat and condensation. If you cannot control the ventilation and humidity in your house due to unmodifiable closed spaces, a dehumidifier is highly recommended.
Reduce The Use Of Air Fresheners
It might seem intuitive to immediately purchase and use air fresheners when you notice a foul smell in your home. However, air fresheners only contribute to the contaminants that affect air quality. They may help to mask the bad odors, but it does not change the bad air quality, especially as air fresheners are chemical substances rather than natural fragrances.
For a proper air freshening experience, switching the scent of fake fragrance from synthesized chemicals to naturally fragrances products is better. You can get a healthy cup of a houseplant or organic essential oils to give your home a hygienic scent and feeling.
You can neutralize the smell of cooking and gas by using natural substances like white vinegar through the night or sliced lemon in a jar of water. These natural resources help purify the surrounding air in a healthy manner instead of through fragrance chemicals.
Dust The Home Regularly
The build-up of dust and hair is one of the most common air quality contaminants. This is because they float around the house, and occupants breathe them in daily, which can cause infections or allergies.
Explore good vacuum cleaners. They might be expensive, but they are very effective in eradicating dust in the house. Regularly vacuum the rugs, cushions, under the beds, and sofas because dust and hair usually end up getting stuck in dark places you cannot reach, but they still pollute the air regardless.