Signs Your Residence Has Poor Indoor Air Quality and How to Repair It

May 22, 2020

We are indoors a lot. In fact, the EPA has calculated most people spend 90% of their lives inside a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times more polluted than outside.

Poor indoor air quality can have an unfavorable influence on your health. That’s why it’s critical to identify the warnings of inferior air quality in your residence, what leads to it and how to take care of it.

If you’re looking for ways to tell if your Rocky Mount home’s air quality is bad, our team of HVAC professionals at Davis Heating & Air Conditioning can help. We’ll go through the troubles you’re having and offer plans to make your home’s air cleaner.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you think of pollution, you typically think of smog. But common items within your house can create pollution by the gases or particles they release into the air.

These sources include:

  • Carbon monoxide
  • Cleaning, personal care and hobby products
  • Combustion appliances, like a furnace or stove that runs on gas
  • Dust, animal dander and pollen
  • Too much moisture
  • HVAC equipment
  • New flooring or carpeting
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Artificial building materials, like furniture made from pressed wood

Indoor air pollution can be intensified by a lack of ventilation in your residence, as well as hot temperatures and humidity. Modern homes are firmly sealed for energy efficiency, which is good for your energy bill but not so fantastic when you need additional fresh air inside.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

Because people are affected differently by indoor air pollutants, you might develop symptoms now or later on. Your symptoms can go away when you leave your residence but get worse when you return.

Some of the most common immediate issues deal with:

  • Dry eyes, nose or throat
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue

If someone in your family suffers from allergies or asthma, their symptoms might be heightened.

Constant or prolonged exposure can result in respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.

Other Symptoms of Low Indoor Air Quality and How to Make It Better

Your residence will also give you some signs that its air isn’t as clean as it should be.

  1. Your home is very dusty, especially near the vents. It’s expected for your home to get dusty over the week, but accumulation around your air registers should be concerning. There are other substances within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can impact your health, particularly if you have allergies or asthma. A premium air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help reduce dust and other annoying pollutants.
  2. Your house has hot and cold spots. Your heating and cooling system could be having difficulty maintaining correct temperature and humidity percentages. Or there might be air distribution troubles because of your heating and cooling equipment or ductwork. Our Davis Heating & Air Conditioning pros can find the trouble and advise repairs or replacement.
  3. Your home’s air feels too dry or too wet. We suggest maintaining your house’s humidity levels between 30–40% for ideal comfort. If your home isn’t humid enough during cold weather, your skin and throat could feel dry. You might also have colds and other respiratory illnesses more frequently. If your home is too humid during hot temperatures, you could have more mold and mildew growth, both of which are harmful to your health. You can take care of these problems with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which partners your heating and cooling system to give balanced humidity around your home.
  4. Your home has odors that stick around. You might notice a stale scent when you come home. Or a cooking odor that just won’t dissipate. Since it’s not practical to keep your windows open all the time, a whole-home ventilation system can get your house smelling good again. It exchanges stale inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other approaches the EPA advises implementing include keeping your residence smoke-free, installing carbon monoxide alarms and tuning up your home comfort unit. Routine furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your units clean and efficient and can even help them run for a greater amount of time.

We Can Help Improve Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

If you suspect your residence has air quality trouble, give our Davis Heating & Air Conditioning HVAC pros a call at 540-369-3790 or contact us online. We’re available to talk with you about options and give you a free estimate.