The term “indoor air quality” refers to the comfort and cleanliness of the air inside your Boston home. There are many factors that affect indoor air quality, ranging from temperature and humidity levels to the amount of airborne particles, chemicals, and gases present. As a homeowner, understanding the factors that affect your indoor air and how to improve its quality can help you achieve a more energy-efficient, healthier home environment.
Airborne pollutants refer to particles or chemicals that circulate through the air of your home. Some of the most common airborne pollutants include dirt and dust, animal dander, mold spores, smoke particles from cigarettes or cooking, and gases from sources such as cleaning chemicals, carbon monoxide, and ozone. Particulate matter poses a double hazard in your home; not only are airborne particles often responsible for worsening asthma and allergies, they can collect in your HVAC system and central air ducts, causing excess strain that reduces the efficiency of your furnace and air conditioner, while also shortening their functional lifetimes.
You can reduce the number of airborne particles in your home by changing your furnace filter regularly every one to three months. Depending upon your health needs, you may also want to upgrade to a higher-quality air filter, which will screen out smaller particles. Whole home air filters and purifiers can be installed as part of your central HVAC system, providing extremely effective removal of airborne particles and neutralizing pathogens. Opening the windows in your home while working with paint or cleaning chemicals can help to flush out these pollutants and draw in fresh air; alternatively, opt for eco-friendly VOC-free paint and cleaners, which don’t release harmful chemicals or artificial scents into the air. Professional duct cleaning services can reduce particulate buildup inside your air ducts, which will decrease particles circulating throughout your home via your forced air system. Scheduling regular inspections and tune-ups of your HVAC system will ensure these appliances are kept clean as well, improving efficiency and longevity.
Humidity levels contribute significantly to the quality of your indoor air. Air that is too humid feels sticky and uncomfortable. High levels of humidity can also cause damage to paper, photos, wood, and other surfaces inside your home. Conversely, air that is too dry can also cause discomfort, leading to dry, itchy skin and causing the materials in your home to become brittle and more easily damaged. Running your air conditioning when the weather is hot and humid outside will remove excess humidity from your indoor air. In the winter, using your furnace can contribute to dry air inside your home. By installing a single-room or whole-home humidifier, you can add moisture back into the air and better regulate the humidity levels throughout your home.
Improving your home’s indoor air quality is a positive step toward a healthier and more enjoyable indoor environment all year long. Your Boston HVAC specialist can help by providing indoor air quality solutions that include furnace and air conditioning tune-ups, duct cleaning services, and whole-home humidifiers and air filters to perfectly balance your home’s indoor climate for your needs. We invite you to find out more about our indoor air quality solutions and current special offers by visiting our website.