Signs Your Home Has Low Indoor Air Quality and How to Fix It

May 22, 2020

We are often indoors. In fact, the EPA has calculated many people spend 90% of their time inside a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times poorer than outside.

Decreased indoor air quality can have an adverse influence on your wellness. That’s why it’s important to know the symptoms of inferior air quality in your house, what triggers it and how to fix it.

If you want to know how you can tell if your Marshfield home’s air quality is bad, our team of heating and cooling pros at House of Heating Incorporated can assist you. We’ll go through the issues you’re having and offer strategies to make your residence’s air cleaner.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you think of pollution, you typically think of smog. But everyday items within your house can produce pollution by the gases or particles they let into the air.

These starting points involve:

  • Carbon monoxide
  • Cleaning, personal care and hobby items
  • Combustion appliances, like a furnace or stove that runs on gas
  • Dust, animal dander and pollen
  • Too much moisture
  • HVAC units
  • Recently placed flooring or carpeting
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Synthetic building materials, including furniture constructed from pressed wood

Indoor air pollution can be intensified by insufficient ventilation in your residence, as well as hot temperatures and humidity. Recently built residences are securely sealed for energy efficiency, which is a plus for your heating and cooling expenses but not so fantastic when you require extra fresh air indoors.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

Because people are affected differently by indoor air pollutants, you might experience symptoms now or later. Your symptoms may lessen when you leave your house but get worse when you return.

Some of the most common immediate issues involve:

  • Dry eyes, nose or throat
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue

If someone in your home suffers from allergies or asthma, their symptoms might be heightened.

Repeated or long-term exposure may lead to respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.

Other Signs of Low Indoor Air Quality and How to Improve It

Your residence will also signal that its air isn’t as fresh as it needs to be.

  1. Your home is very dusty, notably near the vents. It’s expected for your home to get dusty over the week, but accumulation near your air registers should be concerning. There are other particles within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can impact your health, very much so if you deal with allergies or asthma. A higher-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help cut down on dust and other annoying pollutants.
  2. Your house has hot and cold areas. Your heating and cooling equipment could be failing to maintain appropriate temperature and humidity percentages. Or there might be air distribution troubles due to your HVAC system or ductwork. Our House of Heating Incorporated pros can diagnose the issue and advise repairs or replacement.
  3. Your residence’s air appears too dry or too wet. We suggest keeping your house’s humidity percentage near 30–40% for optimum comfort. If your home isn’t humid enough during the winter, your skin and throat may feel itchy. You might also experience colds and other respiratory illnesses more frequently. If your residence is too humid during the summer, you could have higher mold and mildew growth, both of which are bad for your well-being. You can take care of these issues with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which works with your home comfort unit to give even humidity around your home.
  4. Your residence has lingering odors. You might catch a stale smell when you get home. Or a cooking smell that just won’t dissipate. Since it’s not practical to have your windows open 24/7, a whole-home ventilation system can get your house smelling good again. It exchanges musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other approaches the EPA advises doing include keeping your home smoke-free, adding carbon monoxide alarms and tuning up your home comfort unit. Regular furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your systems clean and efficient and can even help them run longer.

We Can Help Enhance Your House’s Indoor Air Quality

If you believe your residence has air quality trouble, give our House of Heating Incorporated HVAC specialists a call at 715-384-3163 or contact us online. We’re ready to discuss solutions and give you a free estimate.