There are several ways you might notice that you have poor indoor air quality. From causing an unpleasant odor to harming your respiratory health, substandard air quality can affect you more than you might realize. If you want to improve the quality of the air in your home, there are many steps you can take.
Change Your HVAC Air Filter
Make it a practice to check the air filters on your furnace and air conditioner once a month. Depending on your system, both heating and cooling may use the same filter. In either case, keeping clean filters will improve airflow and reduce energy waste. It will also keep allergens and contaminants from being passed through to your ducts.
Check Your Ducts
Over time, dust and debris can get caught up inside your HVAC system’s ducts. As air flows through the ducts, it will pick up that debris and carry it out into your home. Scheduling SERVPRO’s air duct cleaning service once per year can help remove dust and debris from your ducts. This will keep the airflow in your living space cleaner.
Open Your Windows
If you have a stale or unpleasant odor in your home, try keeping the windows open whenever possible. This will improve ventilation and prevent cooking steam and tobacco odors from lingering. If there still seems to be a persistent smell, look into odor removal services.
Use Your Stove’s Cooking Vent
When you cook food, the steam will carry oil, grease, and food particles with it. As the steam makes contact with the walls in your kitchen, it will leave these particles behind and cause a sticky or greasy film to form. Prevent this problem by turning on the vents in your range hood every time you cook something.
If you do notice an unwanted film on your walls, a mixture of detergent and warm water can help you wash particles from the walls. For tougher stains, SERVPRO offers specialty cleaning services that will leave you with a professional quality of cleanliness.
Control Humidity in Your Home
When the air is damp and humid, it can cause chemicals to leak from the paint on your walls and from other sources throughout your home. In this situation, mold growth might also affect your indoor air quality.
Install a whole-house dehumidifier or buy a smaller dehumidifier to treat specific areas in your home. Using your AC system can also alleviate indoor humidity.
Ditch the Chemical-Based Air Fresheners
Each time you spray an air freshener in your home, it leaves a mixture of chemicals in the air along with a fresh scent. Even if you don’t suffer from a respiratory condition, those chemicals will accumulate and leave you with poor indoor air quality.
Instead, keep fresh flowers in your home or get an essential oil diffuser. You can also look for recipes to make your own natural air freshener.
Regularly Clean Carpets, Upholstery, and Fabric Curtains
Along with the carpets and rugs in your home, your furniture’s upholstery and cloth curtains have fibers that can trap pollen, pet dander, and other contaminants. You can easily clean curtains and small rugs in your laundry machines. Use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter to vacuum carpets and upholstery.
You can occasionally shampoo or steam clean your carpets and upholstery. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to determine how frequently you can safely wash these materials.
Get an Air Purifier
An air purifier will also help you keep the air cleaner and free from many pollutants. In fact, a purifier with a HEPA filter will remove 99% of the harmful particles in the air. Look for a unit with the Energy Star logo to make sure your device will treat the air while using less energy.
Bathe Your Pets
Most dog and cat breeds can receive baths twice per month. Try to keep up with this routine to reduce pet odor. If your pet still develops a strong odor, talk to your vet about other steps you can take.
Consider Making More Lifestyle Changes
You can have a permanent and positive effect on your home’s air quality by making a few lifestyle changes. For example, ban cigarette smoking inside your home. Adopt a healthier diet that involves less pan frying to reduce the contaminant particles in the air. Ask your doctor about more ways to adopt healthier practices that can boost your indoor air quality.