During the energy crises of the 1970s, new home construction leaned toward building more energy-efficient houses. These houses were sealed and insulated much better than before, so that homeowners could save electricity, along with enjoying lower heating and cooling bills. Unfortunately, by sealing houses tight as a drum, indoor air pollution is now often worse than outdoor air pollution.
Managing indoor air quality can be quite a daunting challenge – not only because of well-sealed and better-insulated homes, but also because contaminants are found everywhere. In the air offenders include secondhand smoke and radon; on impervious surfaces like shower doors or curtains you can find mold and mildew growth; in unvacuumed carpet there is an accumulation of dust, pet dander and tracked-in pollen; and dust mites can even live in your pillows and bed sheets.
Fortunately, you can have a healthier home environment by managing your indoor air quality with these three steps:
Control the sources of indoor air pollution. Indoor air quality is often greatly improved by consistent housekeeping. Frequent dusting and vacuuming will remove imbedded dust, pet dander and pollen. Make sure that your vacuum cleaner is not leaking dust, a leaky vacuum cleaner will just stir the dust up in the air and make things worse. The best type of vacuum system is the central vac system, though most people do not have this system installed in their home. Washing bed linens in hot water can kill dust mites. And did you know that turning off home laser printers when not in use can reduce the amounts of ozone emission?
Improve your home’s ventilation. Corpus Christi area residents are very familiar with high humidity that’s common in the U.S. South and Southeast. Using bathroom and kitchen exhaust fans will remove excessive humidity, preventing or impeding mold growth. Consider installing a fresh air whole-house dehumidifier, which will not only manage the humidity in your home but also provide fresh air for improved ventilation.
Install an air cleaner. Air cleaners range from small tabletop models to larger whole-house systems. Their success rates with pollution removal can vary widely, depending on model, size and levels of your home’s contaminants. Consult a licensed, experienced HVAC professional who can help you diagnose problems with your indoor air quality and offer sound air-cleaning solutions.
The team of experts at CCAC, Inc. can help you improve your indoor air quality. Please contact usfor a comprehensive evaluation and real solutions.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about indoor air quality and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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