Indoor air quality is an important factor to consider during the winter months. If you wish to maintain optimal health and a safe living environment at home, you’ll want to address the following factors and implement a plan of action.
Cultivate a Green Thumb
When you’re looking to improve the indoor air quality of your home, certain plants can act as natural air purifiers because of a process called transpiration. When transpiration happens, water leaves the plants and enters the air as water vapor. You might want to try peace lilies, spider plants and aloe veras.
Change Your Cleaning Products
Though it might feel inconvenient at first, try using natural and eco-friendly cleaning products to enhance indoor air quality. Many of the standard cleaning products on the shelves are riddled with problematic chemicals that can contribute to indoor air pollution and negatively affect your health. Thankfully, with some effort, you can incorporate the myriad of natural options that work most efficiently without the detrimental side effects.
Two of the most popular natural ingredients are vinegar and baking soda, which you can use to clean surfaces and eliminate odors. You might also consider adding sweet-smelling essential oils like lemon and tea tree oil to homemade cleaning solutions for a fresh scent and extra effectiveness. By choosing natural and eco-friendly cleaning solutions, you’ll decrease the number of harmful toxins in the air and create a healthier living environment during the winter. Plus, this helps to reduce your carbon footprint.
Monitor Your Humidity Levels
You’ll run the heating system during winter to maintain warmth and comfort. However, this has an adverse effect on the quality of your indoor air, as it makes it drier than usual. This can lead to issues with dry skin, agitated eyes and nosebleeds. Plus, if anyone in your home suffers from respiratory problems, dry air will only exacerbate those symptoms. Thankfully, humidifiers exist to combat the lack of moisture in the air.
Once you’ve invested in a humidifier, purchase a hygrometer as well. Hygrometers measure the amount of moisture in the air. Typically, you’ll need between 30% and 50% moisture in the air. Whether you decide to invest in a whole-home humidification system or small ones for various rooms, include a humidifier and a hygrometer in your arsenal to improve your air quality during the winter months.
While many know the harmful effects of smoking, it can be a hard habit to break. If you or anyone in your home smokes, establish a specific outdoor smoking area during the winter. Try to make sure it’s a significant distance from your home to decrease the impact of second-hand smoke issues. Tobacco smoke is known to be a harmful pollutant with devastating health effects. Smoking outside will significantly improve your air quality because those chemicals won’t get trapped in the walls, furniture or ventilation systems.
Maintaining a Ventilation Process
When it’s cold outside and the heat is running, preserving that heat is essential. Therefore, weatherstripping methods are put in place to keep the heat inside, which also helps save money. While there’s nothing wrong with this goal, ventilation is still important during winter. When you don’t have proper ventilation, the air becomes stagnant, smelly and toxic. To avoid this, open your windows for at least 15 minutes every day. With that healthy amount of air circulation, it’ll be a lot harder for toxins to remain stagnant in the space. Also, turn on the exhaust fans when you’re cooking a meal on the stovetop or taking a shower.
Best Appliance to Buy
In addition to a humidifier, an air purifier is one of the best appliances to invest in. Air purifiers are powerful machines that can eliminate allergens, dust and more. If you have pets, pet dander is a major contributor to poor indoor air quality. Since it can be tough to clean and maintain air quality manually, an air purifier does a significant portion of the work for you. Invest in an air purifier that uses HEPA filters because these filters effectively catch smaller dust particles that can cause harm.
Our team at Bernard Heating & Cooling provides air purifiers, installation services and maintenance options. To learn how we can serve you and your goals for better indoor air quality this winter, contact Bernard Heating & Cooling today.