How Can I Tell if My Homes Air Quality is Bad?

April 27, 2020

If you’re questioning whether your Cedar Rapids home has poor indoor air quality (IAQ), it possibly does.

We spend much of our time indoors. In reality, we’re indoors up to 90% of the time, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. And the air inside houses may be 2–5 times worse than outdoors, which may lead to long-term health problems.

Most Common Origins of Unsatisfactory IAQ

We’ve made a list of the most frequent origins of bad IAQ, the troubles they make and how you can take care of these indoor air pollutants. If you’re worried about the air inside your residence, we suggest talking with a pro like Ilten's Incorporated about which options are ideal for your family.

Volatile Organic Compounds

Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, are vapors released by regular household items.

They’re found in paint and stains in addition to:

  • Furniture
  • Carpet
  • Building materials
  • Cleaning products
  • Cosmetics
  • Air fresheners
  • Candles

When these vapors collect indoors, they might irritate your eyes, nose and throat. They might also lead to headaches and nausea. Regardless of whether your residence is in a rural or industrial area, an EPA study found indoor levels of these fumes can be 2–5 times worse than the air outside.

Always adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions when using paint or cleaning supplies. Unlatching a window can help vapors disperse more rapidly.

Air purification systems can also improve your air. This equipment collaborates with your heating and cooling system to clean indoor air. When hunting for one, check that it’s specifically created to wipe out VOCs.

Dust and Pet Dander

Dust and pet dander can trigger health problems like asthma and allergies, especially when it continually gets recirculated by your residence’s comfort unit. While you can vacuum more routinely and buy an enhanced air filter, an air filtration system might be a better fit.

This equipment works with your comfort equipment to give mighty filtration. Some kinds have hospital-grade filtration for getting rid of particles and bioaerosols.

Lingering Odors

Modern residences are closely sealed to boost energy efficiency. While this is good for your utility costs, it’s not ideal for your IAQ.

Musty odors can stick around longer as your residence is drawing in reduced fresh air. Because keeping your windows open all the time isn’t doable, here are two methods you can make your indoor air smell better.

An air purification system is installed in your ductwork to neutralize odors before they get released again. Find one with a carbon filter and the capability to eliminate damaging VOCs. These units can also help keep your loved ones healthy by eliminating most bacteria and normal allergy triggers like pollen and mold spores.

A ventilation system pulls out stale indoor air and replaces it with fresh outdoor air. There are two models of equipment (heat recovery and energy recovery), so call our technicians for more information on which type is best for your house.

Unbalanced Humidity

It’s critical your home’s humidity keeps even. Air that’s too humid can create mold, while dry air can lead to respiratory symptoms.

Our technicians recommend 40–50% for ideal comfort. To keep yours steady, think over getting a whole-home humidifier or whole-home dehumidifier with your heating and cooling equipment.

Rather than having to drag a humidifier from room to room, this product delivers balanced humidity across your home.

Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is colorless gas you can’t smell. It’s caused by incomplete combustion in fuel-burning units, like gas heating systems, water heaters or fireplaces.

It creates an extreme health risk. In low concentrations, it can cause flu-like symptoms like headaches and nausea. It may be deadly in heavy levels.

We recommend regular furnace maintenance to double-check your equipment is operating smoothly. This service allows our pros to spot problems before they begin, including malfunctions that can create carbon monoxide leaks.

The best way to keep your residence free of carbon monoxide is to put in detectors. These alarms should be on all floors by bedrooms and living areas.

Better Your Home’s Air Quality with the Ilten's Incorporated Pros

Aware that your residence has poor air quality but not sure how to improve it? Or unsure which product is a good fit for you? Give our friendly HVAC professionals a call at 319-208-3295 or contact us online today. With free estimates and professional service, we’ll help you locate the right option for your home and budget.