Signs Your House Has Poor Indoor Air Quality and How to Repair It

May 22, 2020

We spend a lot of time indoors. In fact, the EPA has found many people spend 90% of their lives within a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times more polluted than outside.

Bad indoor air quality can have an adverse effect on your wellness. That’s why it’s important to identify the warnings of bad air quality in your house, what triggers it and how to fix it.

If you want to know how you can tell if your Genoa home’s air quality is bad, our team of heating and cooling pros at Assured Appliance and Heating & Air can assist you. We’ll review the issues you’re running into and offer plans to make your house’s air healthier.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you picture pollution, you generally think of smog. But common items in your house can create pollution by the gases or particles they let into the air.

These origins include:

  • Carbon monoxide
  • Cleaning, personal care and hobby items
  • Combustion appliances, for example a furnace or stove that uses gas
  • Dust, animal dander and pollen
  • Excessive moisture
  • HVAC units
  • Recently installed flooring or carpeting
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Synthetic building materials, like furniture constructed from pressed wood

Indoor air pollution can be intensified by insufficient ventilation in your residence, as well as warm temperatures and humidity. Modern houses are firmly sealed for energy savings, which is good for your heating and cooling costs but not so good when you require additional fresh air indoors.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

Because people react differently to indoor air pollutants, you may develop symptoms immediately or later on. Your symptoms could alleviate when you leave home but come back when you return.

Some of the most common immediate issues involve:

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

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

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

Other Signs of Low Indoor Air Quality and How to Improve It

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

  1. Your house is extremely dusty, notably by the vents. It’s common for your house to get dusty in a week’s time, but accumulation close to your air registers should be cause for concern. There are other things within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can affect your health, especially if you struggle with allergies or asthma. A better-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help cut down on dust and other annoying pollutants.
  2. Your residence has hot and cold spots. Your home comfort unit could be having difficulty maintaining correct temperature and humidity levels. Or there could be air distribution issues as a result of your heating and cooling unit or ductwork. Our Assured Appliance and Heating & Air specialists can pinpoint the problem and recommend repairs or replacement.
  3. Your home’s air appears too dry or too wet. We advise keeping your house’s humidity percentage between 30–40% for optimal comfort. If your home isn’t humid enough during cold weather, your skin and throat might feel dry. You might also experience colds and other respiratory illnesses more often. If your home is too humid during hot temperatures, you may have higher mold and mildew growth, both of which are harmful to your health. You can manage these troubles with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which works with your home comfort unit to provide balanced humidity around your house.
  4. Your home has lingering odors. You might notice a stuffy smell when you get home. Or a cooking scent that just won’t disperse. Since it’s not practical to open your windows 24/7, a whole-home ventilation system can get your home smelling good again. It substitutes musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other steps the EPA recommends doing include keeping your house smoke-free, adding carbon monoxide alarms and servicing your HVAC system. Annual furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your systems clean and efficient and might even help them work for a longer amount of time.

We Can Help Enhance Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

If you suspect your residence has an air quality issue, give our Assured Appliance and Heating & Air HVAC professionals a call at 847-306-8990 or contact us online. We’re here to chat with you about options and give you a free estimate.