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

May 22, 2020

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

Bad indoor air quality can have an unfavorable impact on your well-being. That’s why it’s important to be able to spot the signs of bad air quality in your house, what causes it and how to take care of it.

If you want to know how you can tell if your Heflin home’s air quality is bad, our team of home comfort experts at Bain Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc can help. We’ll go through the troubles you’re running into and provide plans to make your residence’s air cleaner.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you envision pollution, you usually think of smog. But ordinary products in your house can produce pollution by the gases or particles they release into the air.

These sources involve:

  • Carbon monoxide
  • Cleaning, personal care and hobby goods
  • Combustion appliances, for example a furnace or stove that runs on gas
  • Dust, animal dander and pollen
  • Excess moisture
  • HVAC equipment
  • Recently placed flooring or carpeting
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Man-made building materials, like furniture made from pressed wood

Indoor air pollution can be intensified by not enough ventilation in your house, as well as high temperatures and humidity. Recently built residences are securely sealed for energy conservation, which is a plus for your heating and cooling bill but not so good when you need additional fresh air inside.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

Because people are affected differently by indoor air pollutants, you could develop symptoms immediately or later on. Your symptoms can alleviate when you leave home but come back when you return.

Some of the most common immediate issues include:

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

If someone in your household has allergies or asthma, their symptoms might be heightened.

Continuous or prolonged exposure may result in respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.

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

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

  1. Your house is very dusty, particularly around the vents. It’s normal for your residence to get dusty during the week, but buildup by your air registers should be troubling. There are other substances within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can influence your health, especially if you struggle with allergies or asthma. A premium air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help cut down on dust and other irritating pollutants.
  2. Your house has hot and cold areas. Your home comfort equipment could be failing to maintain correct temperature and humidity amounts. Or there could be air distribution issues due to your heating and cooling unit or ductwork. Our Bain Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc pros can pinpoint the issue and recommend repairs or replacement.
  3. Your residence’s air seems too dry or too wet. We recommend having your home’s humidity range around 30–40% for ideal comfort. If your residence isn’t humid enough during the winter, your skin and throat may feel scratchy. You might also battle colds and other respiratory illnesses more regularly. If your house is too humid during hot temperatures, you might have increased mold and mildew growth, both of which are bad for your health. You can take care of these problems with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which works with your HVAC equipment to provide balanced humidity around your house.
  4. Your house has odors that stick around. You might notice a stuffy odor when you get home. Or a cooking odor that just won’t disperse. Since it’s not practical to keep your windows open 24/7, a whole-home ventilation system can get your house smelling good again. It replaces musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other steps the EPA suggests implementing include keeping your residence smoke-free, adding carbon monoxide alarms and servicing your HVAC system. Routine furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your units clean and efficient and can even help them run for a greater amount of time.

We Can Help Enhance Your Residence’s Indoor Air Quality

If you believe your home has air quality trouble, give our Bain Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc HVAC specialists a call at 256-270-1196 or contact us online. We’re available to chat with you about possibilities and offer a free estimate.