Now that summer is here, indoor air quality needs to be thought about as we retreat into our homes to cool off. Indoor air quality can be affected by pollutants such as mold, bacteria, carbon monoxide, radon and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The best way to improve air quality in our homes is through source control.
Effects of Indoor Air Pollution
Clean air is critical for our health and we take the air we breathe in for granted. The levels of air pollution can be 100 times worse indoors than outdoors and with the average American spending more than 90% of their time indoors this can be problematic. When indoor filtration and ventilation systems aren’t working at their best, it can cause problems for allergy and asthma sufferers. It’s not just dust, mold and pollen that cause problems either. Pests like rodents, cockroaches and dust mites can have an impact on the air within a building. These can make it harder for building occupants to breathe and can lead to other health problems.
Does My Central Air Conditioner Purify Air?
A well-functioning AC system does a lot to improve the air quality in a home. Air conditioners are designed to pull air into your home through a filter, pass it over a cold coil and the push it back out through vents. While this process occurs, the system is also removing a large number of particles from the air and making your home a better and safer place to breathe. Large particles are trapped by the filter before they get a chance to come into your home. Your AC system also pulls water soluble particles from the air along with excess moisture. This process happens over and over. All the dust, debris and pollutants are pulled into the system and through the return air duct to clean the air and return it to your home. If you find the air in your home is a bit stale or stuffy and you’re having a harder time breathing, you may need to have your system checked to figure out why. There are steps you can take to make sure the air in your home is clean to avoid dangerous symptoms that can come from poor indoor air quality.
How Can You Improve Indoor Air Quality?
1. Change air filters. Air filters need to be changed regularly to have clean air in your home. Check filters every couple of weeks during the summer months and change them as soon as they look dirty. Dirty or clogged air filters will reduce air flow and make it harder for your air conditioner to clean the air.
2. Clean AC evaporator coil. Some systems make it easy for you to clean the evaporate coil, and others require professionals to do it. Regardless, maintaining a clean coil is essential to having clean air in your home. The evaporator coil needs to be cleaned at least once a year.
3. Tighten and clean air ducts. When ducts are dirty, they blow dirty air into your home. Make sure they are sealed tightly and have them cleaned to maintain healthy air in your home.