Why an Energy-Efficient House Can Impact Air Quality and How to Make It Better

Houses today are constructed with energy efficiency in mind. This involves more insulation and tightly sealed doors and windows to keep utility bills affordable. While this is good for your energy bill, it’s not so fantastic for your indoor air quality.

Because air has reduced chances to escape, contaminants can increase and decrease your home’s indoor air quality. In reality, your house’s air can actually be 2–5 times more unhealthy 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 disorders or heart disease.

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

6 Routine Pollutants that Affect Indoor Air Quality

When you envision pollutants, you could think about smog or tobacco smoke. But many substances that affect your air quality are normal substances. These things contain chemicals called volatile organic compounds, or VOCs.

They entail:

  1. Cleaning products, including 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 commonly used in plastic, foam and particleboard products.
  5. Furniture, window treatments and carpet, particularly 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 affected by VOCs than others. The EPA says symptoms of VOC exposure involve:

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

In extreme situations, the EPA says VOCs can lead to respiratory and heart diseases.

4 Ways to Enhance Your House’s Indoor Air Quality

It isn’t complicated to boost your house’s air quality. Here are a few recommendations from Harvard Medical School:

1. Clean Your Home Often

Routinely cleaning and washing surfaces that attract allergens, including furniture, carpet and bedding, will help decrease on dust, dust mites and pet dander in your residence.

2. Regularly Change Your Air Filter

This critical filter keeps your home comfy and air fresh. How often you should change your air filter depends on the style of filter you install. Flat filters should be changed every month, while pleated filters should be changed every three months. If you’re not sure if your filter should be replaced, pull it out and hold it up to the light. Install a new one if you can’t see light through it.

If someone in your family deals with allergies or asthma, we recommend using a filter with a higher MERV rating. The higher the number this is, the better your filter is at removing contaminants.

3. Enhance Natural Ventilation

Keep fresh air circulating by opening windows whenever the temperature allows. We also advise turning on exhaust fans in your bathroom and kitchen often to get rid of pollutants and bring in more fresh air.

4. Chat Our Indoor Air Quality Pros

From whole-home air purifiers, Pardee Service Experts has a fix to help your household breathe better. We’ll help you select the ideal option during your free home comfort assessment. Reach us at 843-410-6103 to book yours right away!

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