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The “Ins” and “Outs” of IAQ: What is Healthy for My Home?

July 23, 2018

If you live in Raleigh, North Carolina, or any areas nearby, you’re probably aware of the rampant pollen that fills the air in the springtime. What some people aren’t aware of is that this pollen is not only outside — it can get inside of your home if you’re not careful about keeping your air clean. Luckily, there are solutions for keeping the air in your home clean. Cape Fear Air Conditioning, Heating & Electrical Company, Inc. offers several air cleaners and air purifiers that you can install in your home to help keep your IAQ at a healthy level.

What is IAQ?

IAQ stands for indoor air quality. Having poor indoor air quality means that the air in your home is filled with contaminants and pollutants. These particles and contaminants accumulate in your home and pollute your air if your home is not ventilated well. You need outdoor air to circulate through your home to dilute the air inside and carry out pollutants and contaminants. This might seem counterproductive because the air outside can be polluted, but this circulation of air can do wonders for your home’s IAQ.

Air quality can be tested by taking air samples, monitoring people’s exposure to the air, taking samples of the collection of particles on hard surfaces, and diagramming the airflow inside your home through computer modeling. Experts can look at these findings and figure out the quality of your IAQ. If you think that the air inside your home may be contaminated or polluted in any way, Cape Fear can evaluate your IAQ and give you recommendations on how to improve it.

Types of Contaminants

One of the biggest problems that add to poor IAQ is the different contaminants that are released into homes at either constant or intermittent intervals. These include things like oil, gas, tobacco, and wood that are burned in a home, as well as household cleaning products that release chemicals into the air. Some of these pollutants are unavoidable, but an excessive amount of them can affect your IAQ in a bad way. They can stay in your air for a long time and negatively affect your health if nothing is done to keep your air clean.

Ventilation

As problematic as the pollutants in your air may be, a bigger problem that affects your home’s IAQ is the ventilation system in your home. If you’re not getting enough outside air into your home, the pollutants and contaminants in your home can accumulate and cause serious health problems, as well as comfort problems for you and your family. When homes are built with little filtration, natural ventilation, or mechanical ventilation, the rate at which air is exchanged is very slow. Therefore, the levels of pollutants and contaminants can increase to dangerous levels.

Air Cleaners

It’s clear that the air quality of your home can drop to low levels and put your health at risk, so how do you make the air in your home cleaner? One way is by investing in an air cleaner. There are many types of cleaners that range in style and price, from small cleaners that sit on a table and clean the surrounding air to entire system cleaners that can be installed in your existing HVAC system. These systems can help clean your air by pulling in the air inside your home and sending it through a filter.

Natural Ventilation

Another way you can improve the air quality in your home is by using methods of natural ventilation. Opening windows, turning on fans, and using window air conditioners can all help increase the airflow into your home, which helps to dilute any pollutants or contaminants that have been stuck in your home. Using these methods is also very important when you’re participating in activities that use high levels of pollutants, such as painting, sanding, or even cooking with kerosene. Since these activities can generate a lot of dangerous pollutants at fast rates, it’s important to implement natural ventilation.

Having good IAQ in your home is important for you and your family’s health. If you would like your home’s air tested or would like to purchase an air cleaner for your home, call Cape Fear Air Conditioning, Heating & Electrical Company, Inc. in Raleigh at 919-246-5801 today.

Image provided by Bigstock

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