Getting the Unhealthy VOC Emissions out of Your Indoor AirPoor indoor air quality can cause significant discomfort and health issues for family, friends and household pets. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) may be one of the biggest obstacles to keeping the air in your home fresh and healthy, but few homeowners are aware of just how many materials contain VOCs or, for that matter, how they can impact the health of home occupants.

VOCs can be found in many household or garage substances including paints, varnishes, solvents, carpets, adhesives, fuel and even moth balls. VOC emissions from household materials such as these can severely degrade indoor air quality if left unchecked. However, there are a number of ways to limit or eliminate the amount of VOC emissions in your home.

The first step to removing VOC emissions is to check your forced-air heating or cooling system’s air filter. Get in the habit of inspecting the filter monthly and changing it when it looks dirty (or cleaning if it’s one that can be reused). If you’re going to browse new air filters, check the MERV rating to get the best possible protection from VOCs and other pollutants or particulates. The higher the MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value), the more effectively your filter will capture unwanted particulates from your air, including many VOC emissions.

Next, walk around the premises and see if you can find any chemicals or materials that may be emitting VOCs near your home’s vents. Throw away any wood products, chemicals or flooring materials that may be lying outside or store them in a location that is further from the home, such as a tool shed. When shopping for cleaning products and household solvents, look for brands that don’t contain VOCs. When buying furniture, choose pieces that have had a chance to off-gas VOCs in a warehouse or showroom.

If you’re looking for more information or assistance on reducing VOC emissions in your Indianapolis area home, please contact us at Mowery Heating, Cooling and Plumbing. For over 40 years, Make It Mowery has been providing expert service to customers all over the Indianapolis area. We’ll be more than happy to answer any questions you may have about improving your home’s air quality.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Brownsburg, Indiana and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). 

Image courtesy of Shutterstock