If you want to make sure the inside of your home or office will always be pleasant and full of fresh, breathable air, it pays to think about your indoor air quality. There are several ways to improve the indoor air quality in your building, and we’re going to help you start by identifying eight essential areas on which to focus.
Some of the following tips and tricks are relatively easy to implement, whereas others require more investment of time and resources. However, we recommend applying as many as possible if you want to keep your indoor air quality the best it can be.
Our 8 Tips for Improving Indoor Air Quality in Your Home or Business
When you want to make sure your indoor air quality is up to par, you may want to take the following actions:
- No smoking!
You don’t have to be a doctor to know that smoking is bad for your health, but it can also be terrible for the indoor air quality of your building. Remember: when you smoke, it doesn’t just go into your lungs—it also comes out of them, where it dissipates in the air around you. In fact, according to Reuters, air pollution in smokers’ homes is roughly equal to that found in the world’s dirtiest cities. Reduce your risk of stroke, cancer, and heart disease by making your building a no-smoking zone. Even secondhand marijuana smoke can be detrimental to your health, so don’t risk it.
- Dust on a regular basis
House dust isn’t as high a threat to health and wellness as tobacco smoke, but it can still cause numerous adverse effects. For example, it often irritates the upper respiratory system—which can make allergies flare up, increase the risk of asthma attacks, and even increase a person’s risk of respiratory diseases. Dusting and cleaning hard surfaces in your building on a regular basis is an excellent way to reduce the amount of dust in the air and make your space cleaner.
- Fix leaks and remove mold
Excess moisture in your building allows mold to grow in various places. In turn, mold releases spores into the air that can cause a full range of health problems. Keep your air cleaner and safer by fixing leaks as soon as they occur, so that moisture does not build up in unwanted areas and promote mold growth.
- Wash your bedding every week
Cleaning your bedding on a regular basis should be a regular part of a healthful lifestyle, but it can also go a long way to improving your indoor air quality. After all, a significant portion of dust is made up of dead skin flakes, which tend to collect in the places where you sleep. Make sure that tiny skin flakes don’t contaminate your air by washing your sheets at least once each week.
- Make sure mattresses, and pillowcases are allergen-proof
Your bedding can also be a fertile breeding ground for dust mites, which produce additional allergens when left unchecked. To prevent them from settling where you sleep, consider investing in allergen-proof mattresses and pillowcases that will make it harder for these microscopic menaces to thrive.
- Keep pets out of the bedroom and away from upholstery
Pet dander is another common cause of contaminated air in buildings, so make sure any shedding animals you own are as far away from soft fabrics as possible. Keep pets in areas with hardwood and metal furniture so that their dander won’t cling stubbornly to bedding, sofas and other soft furnishings.
- Keep pests out
Dust mites aren’t the only kind of pest you need to worry about when it comes to maintaining high indoor air quality. You should also take care to keep rats and other vermin from entering your building since they can both shed and contaminate the air with their droppings—especially if they find their way into air ducts.
- Maintain a clean and efficient HVAC system
Speaking of air ducts, have you cleaned yours recently? Duct cleaning is essential for keeping contaminants out of contact with the air that moves through your home. It also allows your HVAC to reduce humidity in the air, which makes your building less habitable for dust mites—and of course, it can be the only way to remove mouse or insect nests from the depths of your ductwork if any have developed there.
Keeping your indoor air quality at satisfactory levels requires you to be aware of several factors and risks. However, it can easily be accomplished with a bit of hard work and (in the case of HVAC maintenance) licensed professional assistance. Take care to use the strategies above when working to improve the indoor air quality of your own home—you’ll be surprised by what a difference they make.