Indoor Air Quality

What causes indoor air pollution?

Many everyday house hold items contribute to poor indoor air quality. Compounds found in carpeting, furniture, upholstery and drapery fabric consistently emit gas or fumes. Other sources of pollutants can include, but are not limited to, cleaning agents, paints and personal care products.

Also, newer homes that are tightly sealed for energy efficiency tend to limit air circulation, which can contribute to a buildup of contaminants. Likewise, things like weather stripping and storm doors keep stale air in and fresh air out.

What is indoor air quality?

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), your exposure to air pollutants can be up to 100 times higher indoors than outdoors. The American Lung Association estimates that most people spend 90% of their time indoors, so clean indoor air is very important.

What can I do myself to enhance my home's air quality?

There are several everyday steps you can take to reduce the pollutants circulating in your home, including:

  • Store household cleaners, paint solvents and chemical products in tightly sealed containers. If possible, keep them outdoors.

  • Clean and vacuum at least once a week.

  • Regularly wash bed linens and stuffed toys.

  • Keep windows closed when pollen, pollution and humidity levels are high.

  • Ask us to local test the air in your home for dust, pollen, chemicals and other pollutants (data is evaluated by an independent testing agency).

  • Make sure your home is properly ventilated. (Modern homes are well insulated and sealed to conserve energy, which means airborne pollutants have no way to escape).

  • Keep humidity levels within a healthy, comfortable range to prevent growth of mold and mildew (25% – 55%).

  • Avoid using scented deodorizers and odor-masking air fresheners, which may cause toxic chemicals.

  • Have your HVAC system regularly inspected to make sure it is clean and in good operating condition.

  • Choose furnishings that emit the smallest possible amount of chemical vapors.

  • Do not allow smoking inside your home and make sure all gas appliances are properly vented.

Is there anything you can do about lingering odors?

You may have tried to get rid of odors in your home by spraying air fresheners or lighting candles. The problem with these methods is that they only mask the odors—they don't get rid of them. In fact, they may even cause further contamination of the home due with chemical ingredients.

Improve ventilation – What causes the lingering odors? Sometimes, poor ventilation in a home causes unpleasant odors. Moisture condensation on walls or windows and stuffy air are signs of poor ventilation. A qualified service technician can inspect your home comfort system to determine if this is indeed the problem, and the technician can also inform you whether or not your equipment is working properly.

Purify the air – Bacteria, dust mites, animal dander, cat saliva and mold may also be roots of your home's odor problem. You can reduce these odor-causing contaminants with a germicidal (UV) light, which inhibit the growth of biological contaminants, sterilizing surfaces in the HVAC system. Germicidal lights are designed to work with your home comfort system. Activated carbon and microbicide-treated filters can also purify your home's air. Both the carbon and the microbicide-treated filters remove odor and kill bacteria. The carbon filters are more effective at removing odor, and the microbicide-treated filters trap bacteria as the air is pulled through, which inhibits biological contaminants from growing.

Electronic air cleaners clean the air by taking recirculated air and passing it through a pre-filter that traps large pollutants. Then, ionizing wires give a positive electrical charge to remaining particles. The particles are collected by a negatively charged collecting section. Pollutants pass through an optional carbon filter that absorbs unwanted odors.

To find out which indoor air quality products are right for you, contact your trusted Elite Air associate.

Why is ventilation important for proper indoor air quality?

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), your exposure to air pollutants can be up to 100 times higher indoors than outdoors. The American Lung Association estimates that most people spend 90% of their time indoors, so clean indoor air is very important.

What are the benefits of clean air?

Allergies and asthma are two health problems that can be helped with clean indoor air. When airborne irritants are removed, allergy and asthma sufferers often find relief from their symptoms. Even healthy people who have never suffered from allergies can benefit from clean air. Dust, smoke and other particles float around in the air, causing your drapes and furniture to gather dust. By removing airborne dust particles, you reduce the amount of exposure you