No matter how well you maintain your home, you can always improve its safety and cleanliness. One easy way to do this is to improve your indoor air quality. Some household items you use may actually be decreasing the quality of your air. Certain products are not as safe as you think. This article discusses common household products that can increase your indoor air pollution.
What Is Indoor Air Quality?
Indoor air quality, also known as IAQ, is the condition of the air inside or around a building, such as a commercial building or residential home. Good air quality can increase the health and comfort of the building’s occupants.
It’s important to be aware of your IAQ, especially if you live with elderly residents, young children, or people who are immuno-compromised. Health issues like allergies and respiratory problems can occur with high levels of moisture and pollutants. It’s important that homes and commercial buildings meet IAQ standards.
Keep reading to learn what household products might cause indoor air quality issues and what you can do to improve IAQ.
Household Products That Affect IAQ
Commercial cleaning products are typically formulated with chemicals that are harmful to both your health and the environment. Cleaning supplies often contain VOCs (volatile organic compounds), bleach, ammonia, and synthetic fragrances that lower IAQ and cause a bad reaction, especially if mixed with other chemicals.
Solution: Improve your indoor air quality by choosing natural cleaning products with environmentally-friendly ingredients or avoid those that contain harmful chemicals. If possible, learn how to use natural cleaners such as vinegar or baking soda.
If you smell paint, you are most likely breathing in unsafe fumes. A lot of paint that is sold and used has VOCs in it that contain carbon compounds. These turn into vapor, and when mixed with the air, create ozone. This increases air pollution, even once the paint dries.
Solution: To keep your indoor air clean, choose a low-VOC paint or, even better, a zero-VOC paint.
Lots of products like hairspray, deodorant, fragrances, and shaving cream are sold as aerosol sprays. Even some cooking oils are sold in these aerosol cans. There are lots of chemicals added to the aerosol to work properly.
Aerosol sprays propel droplets of liquid which often contain harmful ingredients that are unsafe.
Some substances in aerosol sprays are also known to be harmful to the environment.
Solution: Many products available in aerosol cans are often available in other forms that are safer for the environment and the IAQ of your home. Buy these instead, and if you must use an aerosol spray, limit the use of it.
Air fresheners can be helpful, but many people don’t know that they contain harmful ingredients Some release over 100 different types of chemicals that are toxic. For some people, even just inhaling a little bit of air freshener can make them sneeze or cough. For others, the mist can cause skin redness or irritation.
It seems contradictory that air fresheners can cause IAQ problems. But, air fresheners use propellants, fragrance, and other additives that reduce indoor air quality.
Solution: Use products with natural ingredients if there is a bad smell.
It may be news to you that candles can be a risk to health and indoor air quality. Not all candles are harmful though, only ones made with paraffin wax, which is a by-product of shale, petroleum, or coal oil. These types of candles are harmless until they are burnt and release carcinogenic compounds. Paraffin wax candles have been found to be linked to lung cancer and asthma.
Solution: Use natural candles, such as ones made out of beeswax instead of paraffin wax ones.
Dry cleaning removes stains and smells using an organic solvent. This cleaning solution can be dangerous to people with pre-existing heart, lung, kidney, or liver conditions. PERC, also known as perchloroethylene, is a type of VOC that can be quite harmful.
Solution: If you need to dry clean some of your clothes, make sure to leave them outside to air out and allow the chemicals to be released before bringing them back inside your home.
To maintain high indoor air quality, it’s important to be aware of what products can cause issues. Maintaining safe IAQ will help increase your health and safety, as well as environmental health. Reducing your use of things like aerosol sprays and unnatural cleaning supplies can do wonders for your home’s safety and comfort.
Call Lawes Company For Indoor Air Quality Solutions
Lawes Company offers superior heating and cooling services for communities in Monmouth and Ocean Counties, New Jersey. All of our technicians are NATE certified and can provide you with the best HVAC repairs, replacements, installations, and tune-ups. The techs have the experience and knowledge to service your HVAC system correctly.
Lawes Company guarantees the most competitive heating and cooling service costs in the area. Our services can improve your comfort, increase your energy efficiency while reducing your home cooling costs. We can also find practical solutions to improve your indoor air quality.
If you are in the market for an HVAC replacement system or need a repair, we can recommend the best one for your home while staying within your budget. All of our work is backed with a guarantee to ensure your satisfaction. To schedule a service appointment, give Lawes Company a call today. We offer free, in-home estimates.