In the Charlotte, North Carolina area, many residents think of the outdoors when they hear about pollution. However, pollutants are not just limited to outside. Indoor pollutants can affect HVAC performance, cause poor indoor air quality, and endanger your health. Knowing what indoor air quality threats lurk inside your home or business will help you to take the right course of action.
Common Indoor Air Quality Threats
As you go about your daily life, you will be exposed to a variety of environmental pollutants like pollen and motor vehicle exhaust. While many are aware of these airborne contaminants, the quality of the indoor air rarely comes to mind. However, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, indoor air can contain greater concentrations of pollutants than the outdoor air. Indoor air quality threats include:
- Pet dander
- Tobacco smoke
- Cleaning products and other chemicals
- Fungi and other biological growth
If you start by identifying the indoor air quality threats, you’ll be able to take effective action to elminate them. Protecting the health and well-being of your household is always a priority. For businesses, poor indoor air can reduce employee productivity and also negatively affect customers.
Potential Health Concerns
Exposure to indoor air pollutants can cause short-term health consequences. Over time, serious medical conditions like cancer can result if there is no corrective action. Exposure to indoor pollutants can cause the following symptoms and problems:
- Eye irritation
- Chronic respiratory problems
- Lung disease
In some cases, indoor pollutants can even result in death. Exposure to carbon monoxide, for example, can have fatal consequences in a short period of time. Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to minimize the effects of these pollutants and even eliminate them altogether.
Improving Your Indoor Air Quality
You can identify indoor air quality threats by being observant. Do you notice more dust than usual? Are there lingering unpleasant odors. Do members of your household complain of feeling ill only at home or in certain rooms? You can also find inexpensive air testing products at your local hardware store.
If you suspect a problem but cannot identify the cause or the source, it’s a good idea to call in a professional. After determining what pollutants are affecting your indoor air, air cleaning options include:
- HVAC Maintenance – An annual system inspection and cleaning will prevent the unit from circulating contaminated air.
- Ductwork Repair – Sealing damaged ducts will also prevent contaminants from getting into the indoor air.
- Air Cleaning Systems – Invest in indoor air quality products like ventilators that remove stale air and return fresh, clean air.
- Air Monitoring Products – Install carbon monoxide detectors and test them regularly.
- Good Housekeeping – Cleaning and dusting regularly will help you control bacteria and dust mites.
- DIY Maintenance – Be sure to change or clean your air filter as recommended.
Apart from energy savings and system performance perks, timely system repairs can go a long way toward improving indoor air quality. When your AC system functions properly, it can manage humidity levels to prevent dry air or problems with fungi growth. If your air conditioning system is old, upgrading to a new HVAC system will also help to improve indoor air quality.
Your Indoor Air Quality Experts
Because office buildings and homes are well-sealed, it is difficult for particles that are trapped inside to escape. This can lead to the contaminants and allergens building up indoors and reducing the quality of the air. By managing the quality of your indoor air and taking steps to improve it, you can enjoy a healthier environment.
At Horne Heating and Air Conditioning Inc., our service techs will determine what you need to restore optimum indoor air quality. We take pride in providing honest and reliable service and will never try to sell you products and services you don’t need. If you are concerned about indoor air quality threats, want to learn more about our indoor air quality services, or wish to schedule an appointment, contact us today. Call (704) 393-3273 today to learn about selecting the right air cleaning product for your home or business.
Image provided by Shutterstock