What is Indoor Air Pollution?
Indoor Air pollution is the collection of contaminants that have accumulated in your home from various products that have been brought in intentionally and unintentionally. Carpets, cigarette smoke, chemicals, building materials, the list goes on. Sometimes through no fault of your own, these things accumulate in your home and in the HVAC system.
When you go outdoors and see the smog, smoke, dust, and dirt, you easily see just how polluted an area is. You cover your mouth and nose or stay indoors as much as possible. Unfortunately, not many are aware that the area behind closed doors, such as inside your office or home, can become just as polluted as that place you think you just escaped from.
And you know what is even more dangerous with indoor pollution? The culprits are usually silent, invisible killers. But this does not mean you are defenseless against them. As with any indoor adversary, knowledge of your ‘opponent’, early detection, and efficient action against them will be your best weapons.
What causes indoor pollution?
There are a variety of causes for an indoor space to become polluted. Many of the elements involved, however, are products that occupants use or are part of activities that people mindlessly do without knowing how it infects the air with bad gases.
Here are some of those that you must be wary of:
1. Cigarette smoke
3. Cleaning products
7. Carbon monoxide
How do you handle indoor air pollution?
- Avoid leaded paint and prohibit smoking indoors. While the smell of paint itself can be off-putting, it is the lead contained in a lot of paint products that is dangerous. Old homes and their painted walls can be especially problematic though, as the peeling and cracking walls can easily find its way to your system via inhalation. This is especially dangerous for children too, as they tend to put just about anything into their mouths. To amend this concern, have your walls repainted with either low-VOC or no-VOC paints.
Smoking indoors not only affects smokers, but it also causes secondhand smoke to spread throughout the area. And the latter is incredibly dangerous to anyone who inhales it, especially for a prolonged period of time.
- Ensure sufficient and proper ventilation. The mere presence of the elements mentioned above is not an immediate cause of indoor pollution. It is, however, the concentration and proliferation of the gases in an enclosed and poorly ventilated area that can become a concern. Allot time for opening your windows and doors to allow fresh air to circulate around your home or office. Make sure to also maintain your HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) system properly to ensure that you maintain a comfortable temperature and healthy humidity levels indoors.
- Keep your place clean. A clean home, with regularly-scrubbed floors and walls, lets you enjoy fresh air often. For your floors and dusty corners, use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter. This helps you avoid the accumulation of dirt, pet dander, and other allergens. Vacuuming itself is not sufficient though, make sure to also mop your floors to remove any sticky residue.
- Reduce the usage of chemical cleaners. Chemical cleaners emit toxins that can be harmful when inhaled or touched. This is why you are advised to wear gloves and must allow the smell of cleaners to disappear first, or allow a certain amount of time to elapse before we occupy a room doused with chemical cleaners. To avoid dealing with this kind of risk, use organic cleaners instead. They are just as effective but are safer to use in homes and offices.
- Avoid mold growth. Mold growth, when it reaches toxic levels can be very dangerous. It can cause allergies as well as a variety of respiratory illnesses. Prevent mold from multiplying by removing any visible mold growth, and maintaining a healthy level of humidity indoors. Make sure to also check for leakages as excess moisture coupled with heat and dirt are the perfect ingredients for a mold-friendly environment.
Morgan is an authorized dealer for the E-Z Breathe Ventilation System that cleans your indoor air for pennies a day. Compared to a dehumidifier or other air purifiers it cost less to run and it’s more efficient. Check out more on the EZ Breathe FAQs page of our website here. Or contact Morgan Basement Waterproofing at 610.696.0100 and we will answer all of your questions.