Signs Your Residence Has Bad Indoor Air Quality and How to Restore It

May 22, 2020

We spend a lot of time indoors. In fact, the EPA has determined most people spend 90% of their day indoors a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times worse than outside.

Decreased indoor air quality can have an adverse effect on your well-being. That’s why it’s critical to identify the signs of bad air quality in your residence, what causes it and how to repair it.

If you’re wondering how you can tell if your Hudsonville home’s air quality is bad, our team of HVAC experts at West Michigan Heating & Air Conditioning Services can assist you. We’ll go over the troubles you’re having and offer plans to make your home’s air better.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you picture pollution, you usually think of smog. But ordinary items in your residence can produce pollution by the gases or particles they let into the air.

These origins include:

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

Indoor air pollution can be exacerbated by not enough ventilation in your residence, as well as hot temperatures and humidity. Today’s houses are securely sealed for energy savings, which is great for your utility expenses but not so good when you need additional fresh air indoors.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

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

Some of the most usual immediate symptoms deal with:

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

If someone in your household deals with allergies or asthma, their symptoms can be more severe.

Continuous or lengthy exposure could lead to respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.

Other Symptoms of Bad Indoor Air Quality and How to Fix It

Your residence will also signal that its air isn’t as healthy as it should be.

  1. Your home is extremely dusty, particularly around the vents. It’s normal for your house to get dusty during the week, but accumulation around your air registers should be troubling. There are other things within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can affect your health, very much so if you deal with allergies or asthma. A higher-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help cut down on dust and other aggravating pollutants.
  2. Your residence has hot and cold areas. Your heating and cooling unit could be struggling to maintain correct temperature and humidity amounts. Or there could be air distribution problems due to your home comfort system or ductwork. Our West Michigan Heating & Air Conditioning Services specialists can locate the issue and recommend repairs or replacement.
  3. Your residence’s air appears too dry or too wet. We suggest maintaining your residence’s humidity range between 30–40% for optimum comfort. If your house isn’t humid enough during the winter, your skin and throat could feel dry. You might also battle colds and other respiratory illnesses more often. If your residence is too humid during the summer, you might have more mold and mildew growth, both of which are harmful to your health. You can combat these troubles with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which partners your heating and cooling unit to give appropriate humidity across your house.
  4. Your home has lingering odors. You might notice a stuffy smell when you arrive. Or a cooking odor that just won’t go away. Since it’s not possible to keep your windows open all day, a whole-home ventilation system can get your house smelling pleasant again. It substitutes stuffy inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other approaches the EPA recommends taking include keeping your home smoke-free, adding carbon monoxide alarms and maintaining your heating and cooling unit. Annual furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your equipment clean and efficient and can even help them run longer.

We Can Help Enhance Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

If you think your residence has an air quality problem, give our West Michigan Heating & Air Conditioning Services HVAC professionals a call at (616) 669-3961 or contact us online. We’re here to chat with you about solutions and offer a free estimate.