Signs Your House Has Low Indoor Air Quality and How to Restore It

May 22, 2020

We are often indoors. In fact, the EPA has calculated most people spend 90% of their time within a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times poorer than outside.

Poor indoor air quality can have an unfavorable influence on your wellness. That’s why it’s critical to identify the signs of poor air quality in your residence, what triggers it and how to repair it.

If you want to know how you can tell if your Lake Forest home’s air quality is bad, our team of home comfort pros at 1st Choice Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. can help. We’ll go over the issues you’re running into and offer ideas to make your residence’s air better.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you picture pollution, you generally think of smog. But common things in your residence can cause pollution by the gases or particles they leak into the air.

These origins consist of:

  • Carbon monoxide
  • Cleaning, personal care and hobby products
  • Combustion appliances, like a furnace or stove that uses gas
  • Dust, animal dander and pollen
  • Excessive moisture
  • HVAC systems
  • Recently placed flooring or carpeting
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Synthetic building materials, such as furniture manufactured from pressed wood

Indoor air pollution can be exacerbated by a lack of ventilation in your house, as well as hot temperatures and humidity. Recently built homes are tightly sealed for energy conservation, which is a plus for your energy expenses but not so fantastic when you require additional fresh air inside.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

Because people respond differently to indoor air pollutants, you might experience symptoms right away or later on. Your symptoms could alleviate when you leave your house but come back when you return.

Some of the most usual immediate issues involve:

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

If someone in your family deals with allergies or asthma, their symptoms can be heightened.

Constant or long-term exposure could cause respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.

Other Signs of Poor Indoor Air Quality and How to Fix It

Your residence will also indicate that its air isn’t as healthy as it could be.

  1. Your house is very dusty, especially near the vents. It’s common for your home to get dusty in a week’s time, but accumulation close to your air registers should be cause for concern. There are other things within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can affect your health, especially if you deal with allergies or asthma. A higher-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help reduce dust and other annoying pollutants.
  2. Your house has hot and cold rooms. Your HVAC system could be having difficulty maintaining appropriate temperature and humidity levels. Or there may be air distribution issues as a result of your home comfort equipment or ductwork. Our 1st Choice Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. specialists can pinpoint the problem and suggest repairs or replacement.
  3. Your house’s air appears too dry or too wet. We recommend maintaining your house’s humidity percentage between 30–40% for optimum comfort. If your house isn’t humid enough during cold weather, your skin and throat can feel dry. You might also battle colds and other respiratory illnesses more regularly. If your residence is too humid during the summer, you might have higher mold and mildew growth, both of which are bad for your well-being. You can combat these troubles with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which partners your HVAC unit to give appropriate humidity across your residence.
  4. Your house has odors that won’t go away. You may notice a musty odor when you arrive. Or a cooking smell that just won’t disperse. Since it’s not feasible to open your windows 24/7, a whole-home ventilation system can get your home smelling fresh again. It substitutes stuffy inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other steps the EPA advises doing include keeping your house smoke-free, adding carbon monoxide alarms and tuning up your home comfort unit. Annual furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your systems clean and efficient and might even help them last longer.

We Can Help Boost Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

If you suspect your home has an air quality problem, give our 1st Choice Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. HVAC experts a call at 949-204-0859 or contact us online. We’re available to talk with you about options and provide a free estimate.