How Can I Tell if My Homes Air Quality is Bad?

April 27, 2020

If you’re questioning whether your Des Moines home has bad indoor air quality (IAQ), it possibly does.

We spend much of our time indoors. As a matter of fact, we’re in a building up to 90% of the time, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. And the air inside residences may be 2–5 times more contaminated than outdoors, which can lead to long-term health issues.

Most Common Origins of Bad IAQ

We’ve put together a list of the most ordinary causes of bad IAQ, the issues they make and how you can take care of these indoor air pollutants. If you’re worried about the air inside your home, we suggest consulting with a pro like Heartland Heating & Cooling about which solutions are ideal for your house.

Volatile Organic Compounds

Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, are chemicals emitted from regular household things.

They’re found in paint and stains along with:

  • Furniture
  • Carpet
  • Building materials
  • Cleaning products
  • Cosmetics
  • Air fresheners
  • Candles

When these vapors build up inside, they might irritate your eyes, nose and throat. They can also result in headaches and nausea. Regardless of whether your house is in a rural or industrial location, an EPA study found indoor levels of these pollutants can be 2–5 times greater than the air outside.

Always adhere to the manufacturer’s guidelines when using paint or cleaning supplies. Unlatching a window can help odors disappear more rapidly.

Air purification systems can also improve your air. This equipment partners with your heating and cooling unit to improve indoor air. When hunting for a system, check that it’s specifically created to eradicate VOCs.

Dust and Pet Dander

Dust and pet dander can trigger health problems like asthma and allergies, especially when it continually gets redistributed by your residence’s comfort equipment. While you can vacuum more routinely and get an improved air filter, an air filtration system could be a better solution.

This solution hooks to your comfort equipment to deliver mighty filtration. Some types provide hospital-quality filtration for eliminating particles and bioaerosols.

Persistent Odors

Newer houses are securely sealed to boost energy efficiency. While this is great for your energy costs, it’s not very good for your IAQ.

Musty odors can stay around for an extended amount of time since your house is pulling in reduced fresh air. Since keeping your windows open all year round isn’t a possibility, here are two approaches you can make your indoor air smell better.

An air purification system is placed in your ductwork to wipe out odors before they recirculate. Find one with a carbon filter and the ability to break down dangerous VOCs. This equipment can also help keep your loved ones healthy by getting rid of most bacteria and ordinary allergy triggers like pollen and mold spores.

A ventilation system takes out musty indoor air and substitutes it with fresh outdoor air. There are two kinds of units (heat recovery and energy recovery), so check with our experts for more information on which solution is right for your home.

Unbalanced Humidity

It’s important your home’s humidity remains even. Air that’s too moist can cause mold, while dry air can lead to respiratory issues.

Our techs recommend 40–50% for top comfort. To keep yours even, consider buying a whole-home humidifier or whole-home dehumidifier with your comfort unit.

Instead of having to drag a humidifier from room to room, this solution gives balanced humidity across your residence.

Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is colorless gas you can’t smell. It’s a byproduct of unfinished combustion in fuel-burning units, like gas heating systems, water heaters or fireplaces.

It produces an extreme health risk. In little levels, it can create flu-like symptoms like headaches and nausea. It could be lethal in large amounts.

We advise yearly furnace maintenance to double-check your system is working smoothly. This work allows our technicians to discover issues before they get bigger, including malfunctions that can create carbon monoxide leaks.

The best way to keep your home free of carbon monoxide is to get detectors. These alarms need to be on each floor near bedrooms and living rooms.

Improve Your Residence’s Air Quality with the Heartland Heating & Cooling Professionals

Aware that your house has bad air quality but not sure how to enhance it? Or unsure which solution is a good fit for you? Give our friendly HVAC pros a call at 515-344-3579 or contact us online right away. With free estimates and professional support, we’ll help you choose the best option for your home and budget.