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

May 22, 2020

We are often indoors. In fact, the EPA has found the majority of people spend 90% of their time indoors a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times more polluted than outside.

Bad indoor air quality can have a negative influence on your well-being. That’s why it’s critical to know the warnings of bad air quality in your house, what leads to it and how to fix it.

If you’re looking for ways to tell if your Lincoln home’s air quality is bad, our team of HVAC professionals at AW Heating & Air Conditioning can assist you. We’ll review the problems you’re having and provide strategies to make your residence’s air cleaner.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you think of pollution, you typically think of smog. But everyday products in your home can cause pollution by the gases or particles they release into the air.

These starting points consist of:

  • Carbon monoxide
  • Cleaning, personal care and hobby goods
  • Combustion appliances, for example a furnace or stove that runs on gas
  • Dust, animal dander and pollen
  • Excess moisture
  • HVAC equipment
  • New flooring or carpeting
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Man-made building materials, like furniture constructed from pressed wood

Indoor air pollution can be worsened by not enough ventilation in your residence, as well as high temperatures and humidity. Recently built houses are firmly sealed for energy conservation, which is great for your utility costs but not so good when you have to have more fresh air inside.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

Because people are affected differently by indoor air pollutants, you could experience symptoms now or in the future. Your symptoms can lessen when you leave your house but worsen when you return.

Some of the most common immediate symptoms deal with:

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

If someone in your household suffers from allergies or asthma, their symptoms might be heightened.

Repeated or extended exposure can cause respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.

Other Signs of Low Indoor Air Quality and How to Make It Better

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

  1. Your house is extremely dusty, especially near the vents. It’s normal for your home to get dusty during the week, but accumulation around your air registers should be concerning. There are other particles within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can affect your health, especially if you have allergies or asthma. A better-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help reduce dust and other annoying pollutants.
  2. Your residence has hot and cold areas. Your HVAC system may be struggling to maintain appropriate temperature and humidity percentages. Or there could be air distribution issues because of your heating and cooling system or ductwork. Our AW Heating & Air Conditioning professionals can find the trouble and advise repairs or replacement.
  3. Your house’s air feels too dry or too wet. We advise maintaining your house’s humidity percentage around 30–40% for optimal comfort. If your residence isn’t humid enough during the winter, your skin and throat can feel dry. You might also battle colds and other respiratory illnesses more regularly. If your home is too humid during warm weather, you might have increased mold and mildew growth, both of which are harmful to your well-being. You can manage these problems with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which partners your HVAC equipment to deliver balanced humidity across your home.
  4. Your home has odors that won’t go away. You could detect a musty odor when you arrive. Or a cooking scent that just won’t go away. Since it’s not possible to keep your windows open all the time, a whole-home ventilation system can get your residence smelling good again. It substitutes musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other strategies the EPA suggests implementing include keeping your house smoke-free, installing carbon monoxide alarms and tuning up your heating and cooling system. Regular furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your units clean and efficient and might even help them last for a greater amount of time.

We Can Help Improve Your House’s Indoor Air Quality

If you believe your residence has an air quality issue, give our AW Heating & Air Conditioning HVAC specialists a call at 402-318-5351 or contact us online. We’re here to talk with you about possibilities and provide a free estimate.