Improving Air Quality At Home

by Rachel Laurendeau on February 28, 2013

Considering how much time we all spend indoors (at home, at work, etc.) the quality of our indoor air is extremely important. The following are six ways to improve your home’s indoor air quality.

1. HVAC system – The most straightforward approach to improving your home’s indoor air quality is to ensure that your heating and ventilation system is modern and operating optimally. Keeping your filters free of dust, having your ducts cleaned by a reputable contractor and having your HVAC system serviced will keep it all running smoothly. Additionally,  if you are very concerned with the air quality in your home or someone in your home has allergies or other health problems, a professional HVAC contractor can recommend highly efficient mechanical filters or whole home electronic air cleaners.

2. HRV or ERV – in a new home that has very little seepage to the outdoors, you need a way for the air from the inside to be exchanged with the air from outside. Having your HVAC contractor install an HRV or ERV may be one of the best ways to improve your indoor air quality.

3. Bathroom and kitchen exhaust fans – these fans can help take out humid or gaseous air from the bathroom and kitchen. While they many not purify the air, when used regularly, they help to reduce conditions for mold or mildew growth and remove odors.

4. Free standing air cleaners – Free standing units are typically used to improve the air in a single room. As with the whole home units, you have the choice of either mechanical filters that capture the particulates on a filter or electronic air cleaners which use a process called electrostatic attraction to trap charged particles.

5. Indoor plants – A non-mechanical, DIY way to help improve your indoor air quality is to add air cleaning plants to your home. NASA researched ways to clean the air in space stations and their findings were published in the 1990s. Click here for a list of the top 15 air cleaning plants.

6. Himalayan salt lamps –this is a somewhat New Age approach to air purification and you’ll want to be your own judge of the science behind this option. Basically, it is said that by lighting the lamp, the salt is heated and releases negative ions. The ions then bind with airborne pollutants such as dust, making them heavier. The heavier particles then fall to the ground and no longer float about the air to be easily inhaled.

Taking the time to make improved air quality a priority home improvement in your house can be a benefit to your family’s health and help you all breathe a little easier.

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