Healthy air is essential for everyone, but especially if your family includes children, seniors, or anyone with a low immune system or allergies, as poor air quality can be a huge risk factor when it comes to those conditions. Here’s how to know if you have unhealthy air in your home and what you can do about it.
Causes of Unhealthy Air
Winter is one of the worst times for your indoor air quality. Your home is sealed tight to keep the cold air out and the warm air in. That means the same, stale air is circulating through your HVAC system again and again, picking up more contaminants with every cycle. Your furnace also dehumidifies the already-dry winter air, which can drive your humidity levels out of the Goldilocks zone, fostering viruses, dust, and other contaminants.
Other major causes of contaminants in your air include smoking, cooking (particularly with a gas stove), and cleaning products with harsh chemicals. Additionally, if you have pets, their fur and dander can clog your air filter more quickly, resulting in poor air quality.
Turning Unhealthy Air Into Healthy Air
The most effective way to improve your IAQ is by replacing the old, stale air with clean, fresh air from outdoors. This is difficult in the Indiana winter, but even opening the window for a few minutes a day can be effective. Using ceiling fans helps air circulation as well.
You should also invest in an air-purification system with a HEPA filter. The high-efficiency filters aren’t designed for your regular HVAC system, but in an air purifier, they can remove up to 99.98% of contaminants, from dust mites to mold and mildew to viruses and bacteria.
Finally, invest in a whole-house humidifier. It will replace the moisture that your HVAC system takes out of the air, allowing you to keep the humidity in the sweet spot between 30% and 50%, where unhealthy contaminants can’t thrive.
If you’re worried your home has unhealthy air, contact us at Mowery Heating, Cooling and Plumbing. We make sure Indianapolis homes are efficient and breathable all year.