It’s not unusual for a homeowner to think that tight home sealing reduces exposure to indoor air pollution. However, you may be surprised at the materials circulating in your air supply. Allergy symptoms such as sneezing and watery eyes may hint at pollen in your home environment, but there are many gaseous materials that aren’t as easily noticed. Air quality testing is helpful if you are interested in knowing just what lurks in your indoor air.
Common Materials Affecting Indoor Air Quality
Dust and pet dander are some of the most easily identified pollutants in your home’s airstream. A quick look at bookshelves or fans can provide all the proof you need of these materials. However, scheduling air quality testing with your HVAC contractor may also provide evidence of the following:
- Carbon monoxide
- Mold and mildew
You should also be aware that many common products used in your home can produce emissions that can pollute your air. It is estimated that indoor air can be at least five times as polluted as outdoor air, and in some cases, this level can be much higher.
Mitigating Indoor Air Pollution Problems
The type of pollutant identified may determine the approach to removing it from your home. It’s also important to note that some services and equipment solutions are helpful for addressing multiple pollutants. Some examples of IAQ solutions include:
- Air filter – high-MERV filters provide more intensive removal of solid particles from circulation. Although your filter is used mainly to protect your air handling unit, it can enhance your home’s IAQ as well.
- Air purifier – a purification system circulates air more frequently, providing thorough air cleaning. Advanced technologies include the ability to trap and kill germs and other biomaterials, helping those who are sensitive to molds or who are particularly susceptible to cold and flu germs.
- Ventilator – a balanced ventilation system expels indoor pollutants while drawing fresh air into the home, reducing the concentration of irritants in circulation.
- UV lamps – these can be installed in ducts and in the air handler to kill biomaterials on the spot.
- Dehumidifier – too much moisture in your home can promote mold growth, an issue that can be mitigated in part by the optimization of your air conditioner. If humidity continues to be a problem, you may find that a dehumidifier is needed.
- Carbon monoxide alarm – it’s important to monitor your indoor environment for excessive levels of CO to protect your family from the deadly effects of the invisible gas.
Professional IAQ Specialists
The team at Gartner HVAC Heating & Cooling is available to test the air in your home and provide information about the specific materials contaminating your air supply. We offer comprehensive IAQ solutions throughout the year. Contact our Skokie, IL, office to set up an appointment.