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How Can I Tell if My Homes Air Quality is Bad?

If you’re questioning whether your Elmhurst home has unhealthy indoor air quality (IAQ), it possibly does.

We spend much of our time indoors. In fact, we’re in a building up to 90% of the time, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. And the air inside houses can be 2–5 times more contaminated than outdoors, which may result in long-term health problems.

Most Common Causes of Poor IAQ

We’ve compiled a list of the most frequent sources of inferior IAQ, the troubles they make and how you can fix these indoor air pollutants. If you’re worried about the air inside your residence, we advise talking with a specialist like Alan Heating Air Conditioning, Inc. about which options are ideal for your family.

Volatile Organic Compounds

Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, are chemicals leaked by regular household items.

They’re found in paint and stains in addition to:

  • Furniture
  • Carpet
  • Building materials
  • Cleaning products
  • Cosmetics
  • Air fresheners
  • Candles

When these fumes build up inside, they may irritate your eyes, nose and throat. They can also lead to headaches and nausea. Regardless of whether your home is in a rural or industrial space, an EPA study found indoor levels of these chemicals can be 2–5 times greater than the air outside.

Always follow the manufacturer’s directions when painting or cleaning. Unlatching a window can help odors disappear faster.

Air purification systems can also improve your air. This equipment partners with your heating and cooling unit to improve indoor air. When looking for a system, check that it’s specifically created to eliminate VOCs.

Dust and Pet Dander

Dust and pet dander can aggravate health problems like asthma and allergies, especially when it continuously gets recirculated by your home’s comfort unit. While you can vacuum more regularly and install an enhanced air filter, an air filtration system could be a better match.

This unit works with your HVAC equipment to give powerful filtration. Some models have hospital-quality filtration for removing particles and bioaerosols.

Lasting Odors

Newer homes are tightly sealed to boost energy efficiency. While this is fantastic for your energy costs, it’s not so good for your IAQ.

Stuffy odors can hang around for a greater amount of time since your home is taking in reduced fresh air. As keeping your windows open all the time isn’t an option, here are two approaches you can make your indoor air smell better.

An air purification system is placed in your ducts to neutralize odors before they are redistributed. Look for one with a carbon filter and the power to eliminate dangerous VOCs. These systems can also help keep your family healthy by getting rid of most bacteria and normal allergy triggers like pollen and mold spores.

A ventilation system pulls out stale indoor air and exchanges it with fresh outdoor air. There are two kinds of systems (heat recovery and energy recovery), so check with our experts for more information on which type is right for your residence.

Unbalanced Humidity

It’s critical your house’s humidity stays even. Air that has too much moisture can create mold, while dry air can cause respiratory concerns.

Our experts advise 40–50% for the best comfort. To keep yours steady, consider buying a whole-home humidifier or whole-home dehumidifier with your heating and cooling equipment.

Instead of having to drag a humidifier from room to room, this product provides consistent humidity throughout your home.

Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is colorless gas you can’t smell. It’s a byproduct of unfinished combustion in fuel-burning appliances, like gas heating systems, water heaters or fireplaces.

It poses a severe health risk. In low concentrations, it can cause flu-like ailments like headaches and nausea. It could be fatal in big concentrations.

We recommend annual furnace maintenance to double-check your system is working properly. This job allows our techs to pinpoint issues before they start, including malfunctions that can create carbon monoxide leaks.

The best approach to keep your home free of carbon monoxide is to get detectors. These alarms should be on every floor close to bedrooms and living areas.

Enhance Your Residence’s Air Quality with the Alan Heating Air Conditioning, Inc. Specialists

Aware that your house has inferior air quality but not sure how to improve it? Or unsure which product is right for you? Give our approachable HVAC specialists a call at 630-833-1100 or contact us online today. With free estimates and expert service, we’ll help you locate the right option for your home and budget.

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