Signs Your Home Has Bad Indoor Air Quality and How to Fix It

May 22, 2020

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

Poor indoor air quality can have a negative effect on your wellness. That’s why it’s important to identify the signs of inferior air quality in your residence, what leads to it and how to take care of it.

If you’re wondering how you can tell if your Menomonie and western Wisconsin home’s air quality is bad, our team of HVAC professionals at Halverson Brothers Inc can provide assistance. We’ll go through the problems you’re experiencing and offer ideas to make your home’s air fresher.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you picture pollution, you usually think of smog. But common things inside your house can lead to pollution by the gases or particles they leak into the air.

These starting points include:

  • Carbon monoxide
  • Cleaning, personal care and hobby products
  • Combustion appliances, like a furnace or stove that uses gas
  • Dust, animal dander and pollen
  • Excess moisture
  • HVAC systems
  • Recently installed flooring or carpeting
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Man-made building materials, including furniture constructed from pressed wood

Indoor air pollution can be exacerbated by insufficient ventilation in your home, as well as hot temperatures and humidity. Modern homes are securely sealed for energy efficiency, which is a plus for your energy bill but not so great when you need more fresh air in your home.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

Because people react differently to indoor air pollutants, you might experience symptoms immediately or later. Your symptoms may lessen when you leave home but come back when you return.

Some of the most usual immediate problems include:

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

If someone in your home suffers from allergies or asthma, their symptoms might be more severe.

Constant or prolonged exposure could cause respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.

Other Symptoms of Poor Indoor Air Quality and How to Make It Better

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

  1. Your house is extremely dusty, notably close to the vents. It’s normal for your home to get dusty in a week’s time, but accumulation close to 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 deal with allergies or asthma. A better-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help lower the concentration of dust and other aggravating pollutants.
  2. Your home has hot and cold areas. Your home comfort system might be failing to maintain appropriate temperature and humidity levels. Or there could be air distribution problems because of your home comfort system or ductwork. Our Halverson Brothers Inc pros can locate the problem and suggest repairs or replacement.
  3. Your residence’s air feels too dry or too wet. We advise maintaining your house’s humidity percentage near 30–40% for optimal comfort. If your house isn’t humid enough during the winter, your skin and throat might feel dry. You might also experience colds and other respiratory illnesses more frequently. If your house is too humid during the summer, you could have higher mold and mildew growth, both of which are detrimental to your wellness. You can combat these issues with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which pairs your heating and cooling equipment to give appropriate humidity across your home.
  4. Your home has odors that stick around. You might catch a stuffy odor when you come home. Or a cooking scent that just won’t go away. Since it’s not practical to have your windows open all day, a whole-home ventilation system can get your home smelling fresh again. It replaces musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other approaches the EPA advises implementing include keeping your house smoke-free, adding carbon monoxide alarms and servicing your HVAC equipment. Annual furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your equipment clean and efficient and could even help them run for a greater amount of time.

We Can Help Improve Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

If you suspect your residence has an air quality issue, give our Halverson Brothers Inc HVAC experts a call at 715-352-4052 or contact us online. We’re ready to talk with you about possibilities and give you a free estimate.