If you want to improve indoor quality in your home, you are just a minute away from learning six simple ways to do so. But why is indoor quality so important? How does it impact your health and the health of your loved ones?
Why You Should Strive to Improve Air Quality in Your Home
Indoor air quality matters a lot because you spend a large amount of time at home. It is usually where the very young and the very old spend most of their time. Therefore, clean air is important for the health of the most at-risk members of your family.
From sensitivity to mold and mildew to avoiding particle pollution and risks of lung disease, indoor air quality issues can significantly impact your health. As a result, simple measures like reducing the number of pollutants like carbon monoxide through the use of a dedicated air purifier can avoid several health problems in one go.
Furthermore, by purifying the indoors, you avoid pollution from the outdoor environment from sneaking into your home. You cannot avoid it once you step out of your front door, but letting it affect you while you are indoors is a matter of choice.
So let’s learn six different ways to improve the quality in your home.
1. Install an Air Purifier
This might seem like an obvious solution, but it is surprising how often we forget it. HVAC systems are relatively common in modern homes, but they are usually only focused on the temperature. Some conditioning units boast built-in -purifying features, but they are not used beyond the summer months.
Additionally, a standalone purifier can be more sophisticated and more effective against indoor pollution. From dust to pollen and certain gaseous pollutants, modern purifiers can remove up to 100% of unwanted contaminants in the air.
They draw in the ambient indoors and then blow it out much cleaner and fresher. Some units also release negative ions to neutralize airborne pathogens, so you get more than fresh air. This can be particularly helpful during the peak hay fever season between May and July.
Remember to look for High CADR (Clean Delivery Rate) ratings to know which models to choose. Units with fans are better than the cheaper units that don’t have one. This helps them circulate the fresh air in bigger rooms.
So this is one of the best ways to maintain indoor quality throughout the year.
2. Get Some Indoor Plants
Certain species of indoor plants are known for their ability to purify indoor air. Plants do more than just recycle the carbon dioxide we release while breathing. They also absorb contaminants that are harmful to us.
Popular plants for indoor cleaning include Peace Lillies, Devil’s Ivy, Graden Mums, Red-Edged Dracaena, Snake Plants, Bamboo Palms, Aloe-vera, and many others. They release fresh by absorbing many toxins from the ambient air they take in as part of their natural metabolism.
The only caveat here is that you will need to have a small forest indoors to improve quality in your home, especially if it is a large one. On the positive side, if you can pull it off, it will make your home very comfortable to live in.
3. Remove All Pollutants
It is common to leave things like paint and other chemicals lying around the house. Whatever the reason was for bringing them into your home, it is also necessary to take them out as soon as possible.
Things like cleaning supplies and other chemicals will often release hazardous pollutants into the air, which will then be breathed in by you and your family.
Also, try to use non-toxic paints with low or no VOCs that do not release toxins into your air after being applied. The same holds true for new furniture.
Modern manufacturing techniques often use toxic chemicals that can sublimate into the air. Thus, if you consider getting a lot of furniture, try looking for old furniture that has already released all the harmful chemicals. Or go for furniture that is certified against such toxicity.
4. Open the Windows
This might sound counterintuitive after discussing how to prevent outdoor pollution from entering your home. However, opening all the windows and allowing the currents to flow through your home is one of the fastest and easiest ways to clean out the stale indoor air.
If you do not have a sophisticated indoor purifying and circulation system, it can become very stagnant and dead indoors. As a result, allowing fresh air from the outside to circulate within the home will enable you to improve the quality instantly.
This only works when your indoor quality has dropped below the air outside. If you live in a relatively unpolluted area like in the country or up in the mountains, this may be the easiest way to improve indoor air quality.
5. Avoid Synthetic Air Fresheners
Many of us fall in love with using synthetic fresheners, especially the automated ones, to squirt out some fragrance at set intervals. However, they are also spraying many toxic chemicals into the air simultaneously.
Swap them out for natural fragrances like essential oil diffusers. Once you smell the true essence of natural fragrances, you will no longer want to return to those artificial and toxic room fresheners. Fruit-flavored water cannot hold a candle to freshly squeezed fruit juice; synthetic fragrances are nowhere near as pleasing as the real deal.
6. Keep It Smoke-Free
Any smoke is harmful in closed environments like most traditional and modern homes, and few kinds of smoke are as dangerous as cigarette smoke.
Smoking releases over 7,000 chemicals into the air that passive smokers inhale, often at a much greater level than the actual smoker. This is because second-hand smoke is what the smoker has exhaled and thus avoided.
In the same vein are wood-burning stoves. These are now relics of an era that is long gone, and it is about time that you changed over to other, cleaner fuels. Except for certain exceptional circumstances, it is easier to switch to a new type of furnace.
Finally, anything that burns releases carbon monoxide. So if you are in an enclosed space, remember that things like candles and incense sticks are releasing pollutants as they burn. This leads to unhealthy quality indoors.
Taking these simple steps ensures a constant supply of fresh indoors. They also avoid problems like mold, mildew, and dust mites. Using an air purifier makes it even easier to prevent unhealthy quality indoors. Adding plants and opening the windows will improve indoor quality.
Also, remember to remove and avoid chemicals like high VOC paints, cleaners with ammonia, etc. They also lead to the degradation of indoor air quality. Avoid new furniture for the same reason unless it is certified otherwise.
Caring for your family’s health is a process that begins with educating yourself about the various solutions at hand (you can learn more about it here). If it feels like a lot, don’t worry. Just take it one step at a time, starting with the easiest ones.