Indoor Air Quality
Specializing in Air Purification
Indoor Air Quality
You and your family rely on your home to provide a safe and secure haven from risk and danger. Spending a lot of time indoors is part of modern life. However, the same home that should protect your family, may cause ongoing health problems. Your home’s indoor air quality may cause short-term and chronic disorders if it contains contaminants.
A properly maintained HVAC system should improve your quality of life and your family’s health. When protecting your health from ventilation related conditions, an indoor air quality professional is not only your best defender but often is your only defense. Educate yourself about indoor air quality, your heating and furnace ducts, and how to avoid problems associated with them.
How Does Bad Air Stay in A Clean House?
You may think to yourself that maintaining a clean house should support only healthy bacteria. Undoubtedly, your home is spotlessly clean. Unfortunately, the quality of air inside your house is not a condition you can scrub away with a mop or sponge.
Poor ventilation causes innumerable problems. Modern homes are built with energy efficiency in mind. In most cases, that means an airtight house with no drafty spots. The downside is a buildup of stuffy air with few ways available to leave your house. A balanced ventilation system allows fresh air to move into your home, and unhealthy air to move out. Furthermore, it remains the most energy-efficient and cost-effective method to cool your house. Germs and allergens prefer an airtight, stuffy house, but good ventilation removes that airtight, stuffy problem.
How Do Contaminants Break into Your House?
Think of your air conditioner as the heart of your home. Ductwork provides the arteries to pump warm or cool air throughout your home’s body. Cool air leaves your air conditioner and sends it to ducts to circulate through the house and into rooms to replace the hot air with cooler air. Ducts are essential to maintaining a comfortable temperature throughout the house.
When it is hot or cold outside, the sheet metal ductwork constantly expands and contracts. As your air conditioner sends cool air into warm ductwork condensation forms, especially when the air around it is humid. Heat and humidity create conditions that prevent condensation from drying out. That causes moisture to form and remain in joints, crevices, and corners within your ducts.
Dust and debris can gather quickly in your ductwork. It settles into those crevices and corners found in the ducts, especially when there’s a bit of moisture there. So, what happens when you add more moisture to that sediment? Your ducts become the ideal environment for bacteria. Many types of bacteria thrive where it’s dark, warm and damp. Mold, mildew and other air contaminants are the results. When air rushes into your ducts, it can expel the mold and mildew spores throughout every room in your home.
How Can Ducts, Poor Ventilation, and Stuffy Air Affect Your Health?
When ducts continue to circulate air throughout your house, you and your family enjoy the cool relief from outside heat and humidity. You also breathe that cool air, inhaling mold and mildew spores, dirt and other contaminants. At the very least, you develop a cough trying to get that junk out of your lungs. When contaminant levels are too high, or allergies are present, most people commonly develop coughing, wheezing and upper respiratory tract infections.
There is a clear association between mold and developing or worsening symptoms related to asthma, allergies and respiratory illness and disease. The American Lung Association, as well as the National Institute of Health, the EPA, CDC, and other leading health agencies, agree that the quality of your indoor air at home can have a major impact on your health. Mold and asthma are a particular concern. Some folks develop it right away after mold exposure, others take years to show signs of the illness.
What Measures Can You Take to Reduce Mold and Allergens
The Centers for Disease Control indicates that molds usually enter your home through windows, doors, vents, and your heating/air conditioning system. They suggest a few mold prevention tips that include:
- Keeping humidity inside your home no higher than 50 percent
- Fix leaks in the roof, walls, and plumbing so no moisture form to allow mold to grow
- Clean bathrooms with mold-killing product
- Before painting, add mold inhibitors to your paint
- Remove any soaked upholstery and carpets that cannot dry quickly
- Keep your home well-ventilated
- If you change your air filters once a month, you can reduce the contaminants that get recirculated throughout your system.
Clean Your Ductwork To Protect Your Home
One way to keep your humidity no higher than 50 percent is by using your air conditioner. If a qualified technician uses state-of-the-art technology to clean your ductwork, your AC and ducts go from being villains to being heroes. A system designed to brush dust, dirt, and debris lose inside your air ducts while simultaneously vacuuming up disease-causing bacteria is the ideal method. Your technician may have other methods that are equally effective.
Without knowledge, there is no way to make good choices. This affects the way your air quality stays maintained. Armed with the right information, you have a way to make responsible, informed choices and decisions about the air quality that directly impacts your family’s health. Those decisions include knowing when to enlist professional help to improve the integrity of your home’s air quality.