Improving indoor air quality is important for everyone, but it can be a matter of life or death for some with asthma, respiratory conditions, or compromised immune systems. If you suspect that your indoor air quality is not as good as it should be, here are a few things you can do to improve it.
Keep Your Floors Clean
It’s very common for dust, dander, and other air pollutants to settle on the floor, but it usually doesn’t take much for it all to get worked back up into the air you breathe. Sweeping-- or better yet, vacuuming-- and mopping can safely remove many of these irritants and allergens. Choosing a vacuum with an effective HEPA filter is the best option for cleaning to improve your indoor air quality.
Monitor Your Humidity Levels
Your humidity level isn’t likely to be something you think about everyday, but it’s important to monitor it if you want to improve your indoor air quality. A high humidity level can encourage the growth of mites and molds, which means big trouble for your indoor air quality. A humidity level of 30-50% is best. If your humidity levels are higher than they should be, consider a dehumidifier to bring the levels down to a healthy range.
Replace Your Air Filters
Always pay attention to the recommended replacement time for the air filters you use, and make sure they are replaced with new ones when they should be. Air filters are amazing for removing contaminants from the air, but old filters that have been used too long can become clogged. Remember that fresh filters are the most effective filters.
Keep Smoking Outside
It can be next to impossible to remove the smell of tobacco from homes and furnishings, and warmer days can make the odor downright stifling. An air filter can help, but try to keep all smoking outside to get the best results for your indoor air quality.
Get Potted Plants
Plants work as natural air filters and are a great way to boost your indoor air quality. Even NASA has done research on utilizing plants as a solution for improving the air quality in space vessels. Just make sure the plants you choose are non-toxic if you have pets (or small children) who may be tempted to try a nibble. If you aren’t sure whether a plant you like is poisonous, the ASPCA has created a list of plants that are toxic and non-toxic.
Here are a few plants that are excellent for improving air quality and considered non-toxic by the ASPCA:
- Spider Plants
- Boston Fern
- Bamboo Palm
- Gerbera Daisy (also called African Daisy)
Other good plants for removing pollutants (but are not safe for pets) are:
- Snake Plant (also called Mother-in-Law’s Tongue)
- Peace Lily
- Aloe Vera
- English Ivy
- Weeping Fig (also called Ficus)
Have Air Ducts Cleaned
It’s an easy thing to overlook, but air duct cleaning should be a part of the routine maintenance for any building that has a central air system. Small amounts of dust and other air pollutants that sneak past the air filter can begin to accumulate throughout the ductwork, where they can wind up being distributed in the very air that you expect to be filtered. In addition to boosting your indoor air quality, regular air duct cleanings can also extend the life of your entire central air system.
If you’ve been worried about what contaminants are drifting through the air you breathe, using these tips is an excellent way to improve your air quality, and remove some of your worries along with the pollutants.
If you have any questions about what you can do to improve your air quality, contact us.