Frequently Asked Questions: Air Quality

Air Quality Questions

Should I be worried about my indoor air quality?
The short answer is, Yes. Air pollution directly affects your health, which has been a widely accepted notion.  Heart attacks, strokes, respiratory complications and heart disease have been directly correlated with exposure to air pollutants.

According to the EPA, the air quality in your home can be up to 100 times worse than the worst outdoor air, which is why you should be concerned with the quality of the air in your home. It can definitely play a role in your and your family’s health.

Do I have leaks in my air ducts?
If you are wondering if you have leaky air ducts, ask yourself if you have:

  • Rooms that are difficult to heat or cool.
  • Generally poor air quality.
  • High energy costs.
  • An increase in dust after turning on your air conditioner.

If you answered yes to all or some of the above instances, you may have leaky ducts that need to be sealed by a professional. You do not want to let this go unresolved, as it will affect your energy costs and can negatively affect you and your family’s health.

Are my ducts dirty? When should I have them cleaned?
Air ducts collect dust and debris over time just like everything else in your home. Sweeping and vacuuming the rest of your house will only make this worse. If you can open a register or vent, take a quick peek inside to see if debris is noticeable. Also keep an eye out for:

  • An excess of dust in your home even after vacuuming, sweeping, and dusting.
  • If you go through air filters very quickly.
  • Mold or rodent infestation.
  • Odors that appear after turning on your heating or cooling system.
  • Dust coming from your vents.
How can I use a UV light to improve my air quality?
When your heating and cooling system is used, condensation is created. This excess moisture if left unchecked can get trapped in your system causing mold, mildew, bacteria, and fungi to thrive.

A UV germicidal lamp will neutralize all of these organisms and can be installed within your system where contaminants are most likely to grow.

Are air fresheners bad for you?
Yes, they can be very bad for your health. While it is nice to have a house that smells like pumpkin pie around thanksgiving, many of these strong air fresheners contain:

  • Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)- which can cause many health problems in high concentrations like headaches, dizziness, memory impairment, and respiratory tract infections.
  • Phthalates- According to the “Hidden Hazards of Air Fresheners“, study by the NRDC,  these will aggravate asthma and allergic symptoms and are found in many common air fresheners.
What steps can I take to protect my family from carbon monoxide poisoning?
Since carbon monoxide is a odorless and colorless gas, it is very important to be aware of it’s presence in your home. You cannot expect to detect it on your own, as carbon monoxide poisoning may cause lapses in memory or judgement and there is no way to detect it without the proper equipment. Any house with gas appliances should have a working carbon monoxide detector.

We also recommend getting annual water heater and furnace tune ups to make sure they are functioning properly.  Any issue with these appliances can lead to unhealthy carbon monoxide levels in your home.

When does my air filter need to be changed?
The easiest and cheapest way to keep your heating and air conditioning running correctly is by replacing your air filter regularly.  Checking your air filter every 30 days is highly recommended.

If it is visibly dirty, clean it if possible, or it may need to be replaced. Dirty air filters will cause restricted airflow, which will eventually result in more costly repairs, higher energy costs, and a shorter system lifespan.

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