Signs Your Home Has Bad Indoor Air Quality and How to Restore It

May 22, 2020

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

Decreased indoor air quality can have an adverse effect on your well-being. That’s why it’s critical to be able to spot the signs of poor air quality in your home, what causes it and how to fix it.

If you want to know how you can tell if your Brandon home’s air quality is bad, our team of heating and cooling experts at Brandon Heating and Plumbing can assist you. We’ll go through the problems you’re running into and offer plans to make your residence’s air healthier.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you envision pollution, you generally think of smog. But ordinary things inside your home can cause pollution by the gases or particles they release into the air.

These starting points involve:

  • Carbon monoxide
  • Cleaning, personal care and hobby items
  • Combustion appliances, such as a furnace or stove that consumes gas
  • Dust, animal dander and pollen
  • Excess moisture
  • HVAC units
  • New flooring or carpeting
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Artificial building materials, like furniture made from pressed wood

Indoor air pollution can be worsened by a lack of ventilation in your home, as well as high temperatures and humidity. Today’s houses are firmly sealed for energy efficiency, which is good for your heating and cooling bill but not so great when you need additional fresh air inside.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

Because people react differently to indoor air pollutants, you might experience symptoms right away or in the future. Your symptoms could go away when you leave your house but get worse when you return.

Some of the most common immediate problems deal with:

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

If someone in your home suffers from allergies or asthma, their symptoms can be worse.

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

Other Indications of Low Indoor Air Quality and How to Make It Better

Your residence will also signal that its air isn’t as clean as it should be.

  1. Your home is excessively dusty, especially by the vents. It’s common for your residence to get dusty during the week, but buildup near your air registers should be troubling. There are other things within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can impact your health, very much so if you have allergies or asthma. A premium air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help lower the concentration of dust and other aggravating pollutants.
  2. Your residence has hot and cold spots. Your home comfort equipment could be struggling to maintain appropriate temperature and humidity levels. Or there might be air distribution problems because of your HVAC equipment or ductwork. Our Brandon Heating and Plumbing pros can locate the trouble and recommend repairs or replacement.
  3. Your house’s air feels too dry or too wet. We advise having your residence’s humidity levels between 30–40% for optimum comfort. If your home isn’t humid enough during cold weather, your skin and throat may feel scratchy. You might also battle colds and other respiratory illnesses more often. If your home is too humid during warm weather, you could have higher mold and mildew growth, both of which are bad for your well-being. You can combat these issues with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which works with your heating and cooling equipment to give appropriate humidity around your residence.
  4. Your house has odors that won’t go away. You could detect a musty odor when you get home. Or a cooking odor that just won’t go away. Since it’s not feasible to open your windows 24/7, a whole-home ventilation system can get your home smelling pleasant again. It substitutes musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other approaches the EPA advises taking include keeping your house smoke-free, getting carbon monoxide alarms and maintaining your heating and cooling unit. Routine furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your equipment clean and efficient and can even help them last longer.

We Can Help Improve Your Residence’s Indoor Air Quality

If you believe your residence has an air quality problem, give our Brandon Heating and Plumbing HVAC experts a call at 204-728-0180 or contact us online. We’re ready to chat with you about solutions and give you a free estimate.