People typically think of pollution from cars but fail to remember that indoor air quality is just as important.
With the WHO estimating four million people dying from indoor air pollution, it must be monitored regularly.
Keep reading to learn more about why you should care and actions you can implement to improve your home air quality today.
Pollutants AKA Silent Killers
While pollutants don’t discriminate, they cause more harm to anyone with existing health problems, the elderly, and children. The symptoms can vary wildly from mild to severe. It can include anything from sore eyes to long-term conditions like heart disease and even death.
The first indoor air pollutant that most people aren’t aware of is radon. It’s a radioactive gas that seeps in through cracks that contact the ground. It’s an especially harmful pollutant because it’s the leading cause of lung cancer for nonsmokers!
So even if you don’t smoke, you may be exposed if you don’t check your indoor air quality.
Combustion pollutants from gas stoves, water heaters, and even dryers can emit carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide. Both of these gases are undetectable by color or odor and indeed are silent killers.
Exposure to carbon monoxide creeps upon its victims. People will typically get dizzy and feel weak but not suspect that it’s because of carbon monoxide exposure.
The EPA also notes volatile organic compounds as a top indoor pollutant. These compounds can originate from a variety of sources, including:
- Air fresheners
- Moth repellents
- Paint and paint strippers
- Home office equipment
Other than the obvious symptoms such as irritation of the eyes and nose, these compounds can also cause lasting damage to the central nervous system, kidneys, and liver!
Actions to Take Today
The first step is to purchase an indoor air quality monitor. This device is constantly running to test and report on all pollution levels it can detect.
Depending on the model you purchase, it will likely test for any of the pollutants discussed above. If you opt for the pricier models, you can track humidity levels, temperature, and carbon monoxide.
Most models can help monitor the levels for radon detection, but when it gets to four pCi/L, there’s no home remedy. You’ll need to call in a specialist.
Another quickly remedied pollutant is mold. If the air inside your home starts to smell musty, then you’ve likely got some mold.
Follow your nose to the source and use cleaning techniques to remove it. You can prevent future mold growth by using a dehumidifier, fixing any water leaks, and airing out your home.
It’s also good to remember to clean out your humidifier if you use one. Dirty humidifiers can cause problems in children and for anyone that suffers from allergies or asthma. Even if you’re healthy, the dirty mist can potentially cause lung infections.
It’s always better to be safe than sorry, and if in doubt, you can always call on specialists in your area to take a look.
Improving Your Indoor Air Quality
Milano Mechanical employs expert indoor air quality technicians with over a combined 45 years of experience in the San Francisco, Marin County, and Sonoma areas to identify any problems and provide a solution.
Other than inspecting your HVAC units, these experts will help improve your indoor air quality with any necessary air cleaners, air purifiers, and humidifiers!
Wherever you are in the North Bay Area, get in contact with our Petaluma or Roseville location to start breathing clean air in your home!