Why an Energy-Efficient Home Can Impact Air Quality and How to Enhance It

Houses today are constructed with energy efficiency in mind. This includes extra insulation and tightly sealed doors and windows to keep heating and cooling bills affordable. While this is good for your utility costs, it’s not so great for your indoor air quality.

Since air has fewer chances to escape, contaminants can build up and decrease your home’s indoor air quality. In actuality, your house’s air can actually be 2–5 times worse than the outdoors, according to the EPA. That’s not good for anyone, but it’s especially detrimental for relatives with allergies, asthma, other respiratory concerns or heart disease.

Let’s discuss some of these common contaminants and how you can boost your home’s indoor air quality.

6 Everyday Pollutants that Impact Indoor Air Quality

When you envision pollutants, you might think about smog or tobacco smoke. But many substances that decrease your air quality are common items. These things contain chemicals known as volatile organic compounds, or VOCs.

They include:

  1. Cleaning products, like aerosol sprays, bleach and window cleaner.
  2. Personal care products, such as hairspray, perfume and nail products.
  3. Candles and air fresheners.
  4. Formaldehyde, which is frequently used in plastic, foam and particleboard products.
  5. Furniture, window treatments and carpet, especially when they’re brand new.
  6. Paints and stains.

Other everyday pollutants include:

  • Dust
  • Pet dander
  • Pollen
  • Mold

Symptoms of VOC Exposure

Some people are more sensitive to VOCs than others. The EPA says symptoms of VOC exposure include:

  • Irritated eyes, nose or throat
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue

In severe cases, the EPA says VOCs are linked to respiratory and heart diseases.

4 Ways to Improve Your Residence’s Indoor Air Quality

It isn’t difficult to enhance your residence’s air quality. Here are a couple of ideas from Harvard Medical School:

1. Clean Your Residence Regularly

Frequently cleaning and washing surfaces that attract allergens, like furniture, carpet and bedding, will help decrease on dust, dust mites and pet dander in your home.

2. Frequently Change Your Air Filter

This crucial filter keeps your house comfy and air clean. How often you should change your air filter depends on the style of filter you use. Flat filters should be changed every month, while pleated filters should be changed every three months. If you’re unsure if your filter should be changed, remove it and angle it to the light. Install a new one if you can’t see light through it.

If someone in your house deals with allergies or asthma, we suggest choosing a filter with a greater MERV rating. The greater the number this is, the better your filter is at eliminating contaminants.

3. Enhance Natural Ventilation

Keep fresh air in your home by opening windows whenever the weather allows. We also recommend using exhaust fans in your bathroom and kitchen often to get rid of pollutants and introduce more fresh air.

4. Chat Our Indoor Air Quality Pros

From whole-home air purifiers, Winnipeg Supply Service Experts has a solution to help your loved ones breathe more easily. We’ll help you choose the ideal option during your free home comfort assessment. Give us a call at 204-800-0613 to schedule yours now!

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