Signs Your House Has Low Indoor Air Quality and How to Repair It

May 22, 2020

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

Bad indoor air quality can have an unfavorable influence on your wellness. That’s why it’s critical to recognize the symptoms of inferior air quality in your house, what leads to it and how to take care of it.

If you’re wondering how you can tell if your Pacheco home’s air quality is bad, our team of heating and cooling pros at Clean Air HVAC can assist you. We’ll go through the problems you’re running into and give suggestions to make your house’s air better.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you picture pollution, you generally think of smog. But everyday things in your home can make pollution by the gases or particles they let into the air.

These starting points include:

  • Carbon monoxide
  • Cleaning, personal care and hobby items
  • Combustion appliances, like a furnace or stove that runs on gas
  • Dust, animal dander and pollen
  • Excessive moisture
  • HVAC equipment
  • Recently installed flooring or carpeting
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Artificial building materials, like furniture constructed from pressed wood

Indoor air pollution can be exacerbated by not enough ventilation in your house, as well as hot temperatures and humidity. Recently built residences are tightly sealed for energy efficiency, which is good for your utility bill but not so great when you require extra fresh air in your home.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

Because people react differently to indoor air pollutants, you could have symptoms right away or later. Your symptoms can alleviate when you leave home but come back when you return.

Some of the most common immediate problems deal with:

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

If someone in your household deals with allergies or asthma, their symptoms can be worse.

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

Other Signs of Poor Indoor Air Quality and How to Fix It

Your residence will also give you some signs that its air isn’t as clean as it should be.

  1. Your house is very dusty, particularly around the vents. It’s expected for your home to get dusty in a week’s time, but buildup by your air registers should be troubling. There are other things within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can affect your health, very much so if you struggle with allergies or asthma. A higher-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help lower the concentration of dust and other annoying pollutants.
  2. Your residence has hot and cold areas. Your home comfort unit may be failing to maintain correct temperature and humidity levels. Or there may be air distribution troubles because of your heating and cooling equipment or ductwork. Our Clean Air HVAC pros can find the problem and suggest repairs or replacement.
  3. Your home’s air feels too dry or too wet. We suggest having your residence’s humidity levels between 30–40% for optimum comfort. If your home isn’t humid enough during cold weather, your skin and throat could feel scratchy. You might also battle colds and other respiratory illnesses more often. If your home is too humid during the summer, you may have more mold and mildew growth, both of which are harmful to your well-being. You can combat these issues with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which works with your heating and cooling unit to provide even humidity around your house.
  4. Your home has odors that stick around. You may detect a musty odor when you get home. Or a cooking smell that just won’t dissipate. Since it’s not practical to open your windows 24/7, a whole-home ventilation system can get your home smelling fresh again. It replaces musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other steps the EPA advises taking include keeping your residence smoke-free, installing carbon monoxide alarms and tuning up your HVAC system. Routine furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your units clean and efficient and may even help them work longer.

We Can Help Enhance Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

If you suspect your home has an air quality issue, give our Clean Air HVAC HVAC experts a call at 925-233-6238 or contact us online. We’re ready to discuss solutions and provide a free estimate.