Make sure the brown cloud – in your home – isn’t making you sick
With dust, pollution and other factors, outdoor air quality in the desert southwest is among the worst in the U.S. However, even more likely to be harmful to your health is the air you breathe in your home and office. In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency has determined the air inside your home or business can be two to five times more polluted than the air outside.
Indoor air quality has also caught the attention of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, which estimates that 50 percent of all illnesses people face are caused or aggravated by poor indoor air quality. Especially vulnerable are the very young, those with respiratory issues and the elderly. Besides onset to asthma, poor indoor air quality can lead to itchy and water eyes, headaches, nausea, throat irritation, ear and skin infections, rashes, chest pain and fever.
As the summer heat eases and people think about turning on heaters, know that the build-up from summer – dirt, debris, pet dander, dust mites and more – are circulating through your home. Here are some proactive tips to keep your indoor air quality as clean as possible.
What can I do to ensure my home has clean air?
The first, and easiest step, is to install the right HVAC filters. Standard paper air filters do little to nothing to reduce harmful VOCs, pathogens and other microorganisms that are circulated through the air. Electronic air filters are a great option to reduce airborne contaminants in your home or business. As air passes through your system, larger particles are trapped while smaller particles – bacteria, mold and other – are also stopped before being circulated. The EPA estimates well-functioning electronic air filters reduce airborne particles by nearly 90 percent.
Besides utilizing quality air filters, what else can I do for better indoor air quality?
Regularly change all the filters in your home including vacuum cleaners, air purifiers and dryers. Routine maintenance of your kitchen vent and fans will also help. In urban areas, reduce the temptation to open your windows to allow “fresh air” into your home. Smog, dust and other pollution can kill any progress on your indoor air quality efforts. Also utilize bathroom vents and exhaust systems whenever possible.
What about my HVAC system?
Think of your indoor air quality like lungs – they’re only are as good as the air available to breathe. Regular HVAC maintenance, filter care and a few simple changes can produce improved indoor air quality. Having your air ducts cleaned annually is also a good idea – especially in the desert southwest.
Goettl Air Conditioning, an iconic pioneer of cooled air technology established in 1939, offers the highest quality HVAC equipment and a full range of maintenance, repair and replacement services. Goettl Air Conditioning currently has operations in the Phoenix, Tucson, Las Vegas and Southern California regions. Goettl Air Conditioning technicians are background-checked, drug-tested and receive continuous technical training to make them the best in the industry. Named to the 2018 Inc. 5000 listing of Fastest-Growing Private Companies, Goettl Air Conditioning does things the right way, not the easy way.
Ken Goodrich is owner and CEO of Goettl Air Conditioning.