Signs Your House Has Poor Indoor Air Quality and How to Fix It

May 22, 2020

We spend a lot of time indoors. In fact, the EPA has determined the majority of people spend 90% of their time inside a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times more polluted than outside.

Bad indoor air quality can have a negative effect on your well-being. That’s why it’s important to know the symptoms of bad air quality in your house, what causes it and how to repair it.

If you want to know how you can tell if your Moline home’s air quality is bad, our team of heating and cooling experts at Freed Heating & Air Conditioning can provide assistance. We’ll go through the problems you’re having and give strategies to make your residence’s air healthier.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you think of pollution, you typically think of smog. But ordinary things within your residence can cause pollution by the gases or particles they leak into the air.

These starting points include:

  • Carbon monoxide
  • Cleaning, personal care and hobby items
  • Combustion appliances, for example a furnace or stove that consumes gas
  • Dust, animal dander and pollen
  • Excessive moisture
  • HVAC systems
  • Recently placed flooring or carpeting
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Synthetic building materials, including furniture manufactured from pressed wood

Indoor air pollution can be worsened by not enough ventilation in your home, as well as hot temperatures and humidity. Today’s residences are securely sealed for energy savings, which is a plus for your utility bill but not so fantastic when you need additional fresh air indoors.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

Because people are affected differently by indoor air pollutants, you may develop symptoms now or in the future. Your symptoms can alleviate when you leave home but worsen when you return.

Some of the most usual immediate problems involve:

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

If someone in your home deals with allergies or asthma, their symptoms could be worse.

Repeated or long-term exposure can cause respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.

Other Symptoms of Poor Indoor Air Quality and How to Improve It

Your residence will also indicate that its air isn’t as clean as it could be.

  1. Your house is very dusty, notably near the vents. It’s normal for your home to get dusty during the week, but buildup close to your air registers should be cause for concern. There are other substances within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can influence your health, especially if you have allergies or asthma. A better-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help cut down on dust and other irritating pollutants.
  2. Your house has hot and cold areas. Your home comfort unit might be having difficulty maintaining appropriate temperature and humidity amounts. Or there may be air distribution issues as a result of your heating and cooling system or ductwork. Our Freed Heating & Air Conditioning specialists can diagnose the problem and suggest repairs or replacement.
  3. Your home’s air feels too dry or too wet. We advise keeping your home’s humidity percentage near 30–40% for optimal comfort. If your residence isn’t humid enough during the winter, your skin and throat can feel dry. You might also battle colds and other respiratory illnesses more frequently. If your residence is too humid during hot temperatures, you could have increased mold and mildew growth, both of which are bad for your wellness. You can combat these issues with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which pairs your heating and cooling equipment to provide appropriate humidity across your home.
  4. Your house has odors that stick around. You might detect 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 24/7, a whole-home ventilation system can get your home smelling good again. It substitutes musty inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other strategies the EPA suggests implementing include keeping your home smoke-free, getting carbon monoxide alarms and tuning up your home comfort system. Routine furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your units clean and efficient and might even help them last for a greater amount of time.

We Can Help Enhance Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

If you think your home has an air quality issue, give our Freed Heating & Air Conditioning HVAC pros a call at 309-323-9584 or contact us online. We’re ready to talk with you about solutions and provide a free estimate.