We are indoors a lot. In fact, the EPA has determined many people spend 90% of their lives inside a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times poorer than outside.
Bad indoor air quality can have an unfavorable effect on your wellness. That’s why it’s essential to be able to spot the symptoms of inferior air quality in your home, what triggers it and how to repair it.
If you’re looking for ways to tell if your Phoenix home’s air quality is bad, our team of HVAC pros at Integrity AC & Heating LLC can assist you. We’ll go over the problems you’re having and give ideas to make your residence’s air cleaner.
What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?
When you picture pollution, you generally think of smog. But everyday things in your home can make pollution by the gases or particles they leak into the air.
These origins include:
- Carbon monoxide
- Cleaning, personal care and hobby items
- Combustion appliances, such as a furnace or stove that consumes gas
- Dust, animal dander and pollen
- Excessive moisture
- HVAC units
- New flooring or carpeting
- Secondhand smoke
- Synthetic building materials, such as furniture constructed from pressed wood
Indoor air pollution can be exacerbated by a lack of ventilation in your residence, as well as hot temperatures and humidity. Today’s residences are tightly sealed for energy savings, which is good for your heating and cooling bill but not so great when you have to have extra fresh air in your home.
Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?
Because people are affected differently by indoor air pollutants, you might develop symptoms right away or later on. Your symptoms may alleviate when you leave your residence but worsen when you return.
Some of the most common immediate issues involve:
- Scratchy eyes, nose or throat
If someone in your home suffers from allergies or asthma, their symptoms can be heightened.
Repeated or extended exposure can result in respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.
Other Symptoms of Poor Indoor Air Quality and How to Improve It
Your house will also indicate that its air isn’t as fresh as it should be.
- Your residence is excessively dusty, notably close to the vents. It’s normal for your house to get dusty in a week’s time, but accumulation near your air registers should be concerning. There are other substances within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can influence your health, especially if you deal with allergies or asthma. A premium air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help cut down on dust and other aggravating pollutants.
- Your house has hot and cold rooms. Your heating and cooling equipment might be having difficulty maintaining appropriate temperature and humidity levels. Or there might be air distribution problems due to your HVAC unit or ductwork. Our Integrity AC & Heating LLC professionals can find the issue and recommend repairs or replacement.
- Your home’s air appears too dry or too wet. We advise maintaining your home’s humidity range around 30–40% for optimum comfort. If your residence isn’t humid enough during cold weather, your skin and throat can feel scratchy. You might also have colds and other respiratory illnesses more frequently. If your house is too humid during hot temperatures, you might have more mold and mildew growth, both of which are detrimental to your wellness. You can fight these troubles with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which works with your heating and cooling unit to provide even humidity across your home.
- Your home has lingering odors. You might detect a stuffy scent when you get home. Or a cooking scent that just won’t disperse. Since it’s not practical to open your windows 24/7, a whole-home ventilation system can get your home smelling good again. It exchanges musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.
Other approaches the EPA advises taking include keeping your home smoke-free, installing carbon monoxide alarms and maintaining your heating and cooling equipment. Routine furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your units clean and efficient and can even help them run for a greater amount of time.
We Can Help Enhance Your Residence’s Indoor Air Quality
If you suspect your residence has air quality trouble, give our Integrity AC & Heating LLC HVAC specialists a call at 602-971-0567 or contact us online. We’re here to chat with you about possibilities and provide a free estimate.