People often think that the worst time for indoor air quality is Spring. And it’s true, Spring with its fresh blooming flowers and new grass growth can be challenging for common pollen allergies.
But in reality, winter is when indoor air quality for most homeowners is at its worst and there are multiple contributing factors.
Common Misconceptions About Indoor Allergens
It’s easy to assume that if your home had indoor air pollutants you would know it. The truth is there is a whole range of indoor air pollutants that are odorless. These contaminants often have no smell and are invisible to the naked eye.
Two common household examples are carbon monoxide and radon. Both can be monitored with relatively cheap alarm sensors, but issues need to be taken seriously and addressed at the source if you discover dangerous levels of these indoor air pollutants.
Indoor Air Contaminants that Trigger Respiratory Issues
The most common indoor air pollutants that trigger respiratory issues are
- Pet Dander
Each of these indoor air quality pollutants can be dealt with in a number of easy and cost-effective ways.
Start with Changing Your Air Filter
Changing your HVAC air filter is a seasonal maintenance chore that is typically as easy as sliding your old air filter out and sliding a new air filter in. While this may require a trip to a local hardware store, this is the best place to start tackling your indoor air quality problems.
The simplest way to ensure you buy a correct new air filter is to inspect your current one and look for any identifying brand or label markings. The cardboard frame of your current air filter will typically list the size as well as longevity of the filter. When you replace the filter, write the date on the new filter frame so that you can easily reference when it was last replaced.
Any routine cleaning you do or changes you make to improve your indoor air quality won’t amount to much if your air filter is already overloaded from a full season of purification. Starting with your air filter will increase the efficiency of your other indoor air purification methods.
Keep A Cleaning Routine
Putting time aside for intensive spring cleaning or deep cleaning is good, but to cut down on indoor allergens and air pollutants it’s better to clean regularly. Even the cleanliest lifestyles will accumulate dust and pet dander.
Here are some suggested routines to cut down on pet dander and dust:
- Dust & Vacuum Weekly – The easiest way to prevent dust accumulation is to dust and vacuum 1-2 times per week. Synchronize your dusting and vacuuming so that you can dust all the surfaces and furniture of a room, and then vacuum it all off the floor immediately afterward.
When starting, this process may be time-consuming, but once you start to employ it on a weekly basis you should notice a reduction in the number of times you need to empty your vacuum cleaner while cleaning.
- Wash Bedding Weekly – If you have pets and they also get to lay on your bed it’s important to wash your sheets, blankets, and comforters weekly to cut down on pet dander. After all, you spend nearly a third of your day in bed sleeping so you don’t want to be breathing in all those allergens.
The easiest way to maintain this routine is to buy multiple sets of bedding. That way you can change your sheets and blankets and still have time to wash the used bedding.
- Ceiling Fans & Curtains – Dust ceiling fans and curtains bi-weekly to cut down on any dust build-up. Both of these home features quietly collect dust and are often overlooked during regular cleaning sessions.
Open Your Windows
The truth is that homes are stuffier during winter because there’s less airflow than in the spring and summer months.
While we understand you’re concerned about the heating bill, it would still be good to open the windows and circulate air throughout your home during the warmest part of the day.
Open windows on opposite sides of the house to create an air channel and allow air to flow through for thirty minutes to an hour. This will help to circulate fresh air throughout your home.
Home Indoor Air Quality Solutions
If none of the above has helped to relieve indoor air quality issues, it may be time to talk to a professional about upgrading your forced-air system. A new system or even a residential geothermal HVAC upgrade could help to minimize dust and dander.
Our technicians can evaluate your entire home and provide you with a variety of solutions from a whole system upgrade to the ideal placement or installation of air purification systems.
When you call RSC for service you’ll receive timely text updates including photos of the technician coming to evaluate your indoor air quality needs. Professionalism, security, and customer service are our top priorities.