The indoor air quality of 90% of homes is surprisingly bad. Since you spend a lot of time in your home, this can have negative consequences on your health. There are several indoor air pollutants that are commonly found in homes.
Carbon monoxide is an odorless, invisible gas that is released when fossil fuels are burned. A car emits CO outdoors. It can be found in homes as well, especially those that have gas appliances and a furnace.
CO is harmful to health as it reduces the amount of oxygen your body transports to organs. At low levels, it can cause headaches and dizziness. At high levels, it can cause unconsciousness and even death. You need to own and maintain carbon monoxide detectors in your home for these reasons.
Formaldehyde is commonly found in building materials and household products. It’s used in wood products, glues, paints, insulation and preservatives. Short-term exposure can cause nose, throat, eye and skin irritation. Long-term exposure can cause cancer.
Pesticides are used to kill insects, termites and vermin. Insecticides and disinfects commonly contain pesticides. It can get tracked in from outside on shoes. Pesticides can irritate you the same as formaldehyde. It can also cause damage to your central nervous system.
Indoor Particulate Matter
Some indoor particulate matter you can see, such as dust, dirt and sand. Some are invisible to the naked eye. It’s commonly found inside homes, especially if the home is near a construction zone or the beach. The health issues it causes include aggravated asthma, respiratory problems, heart attacks and irregular heartbeats.
Controlled Climate Services in Kennesaw, GA, offers indoor air quality products and services. These include humidification, dehumidification, air purification and ventilation. We’ve been helping families in the surrounding area since 1990.
Volatile Organic Compounds
Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, are gasses that are released by many things found in homes. These include wood preservatives, cleansers, paints, disinfectants, air fresheners, aerosol sprays and dry-cleaned clothes. In addition to irritating your nose, throat, and eyes, VOCs can also cause damage to your kidney, liver and central nervous system.
Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas. It has no smell, taste or color. The only way to detect it is by using a radon testing kit. It’s not a major health issue when encountered outdoors, but it is when it’s trapped indoors.
Radon typically enters a home through cracks and gaps in its foundation. It can build up inside a home if it’s not properly ventilated. Long-term exposure to radon increases the risk of getting lung cancer. It’s second only to smoking in causing this form of cancer. Increasing the ventilation of a home is the best way to handle radon.
Homes that use a wood stove can have wood smoke in them. It’s also increasingly common in parts of the country where wildfires increasingly happen, such as California, Oregon and Washington. The biggest threat of wood smoke is particulate matter, as described above. It’s a good idea to replace wood stoves with newer technology.
Many allergens can be commonly found in homes. These include dust, pollen, pet dander and mites. Many people have allergies and exposure to allergens hurts their immune systems. This makes them more susceptible to getting sick, and the allergens make them feel bad all the time.
Despite the known health risks of smoking and second-hand smoke, some people still smoke cigarettes indoors. Cigarette smoke is filled with over 7,000 substances that cause lung cancer, asthma attacks, heart disease and strokes. Smokers must get at least 25 feet away from the door before lighting up.
There are many problems with carpets. Few of them are made from natural products and several chemicals are used to manufacture them. The padding under carpet and the glue used to lay it down are also known health hazards.
Carpets also collect other indoor air pollutants that get stirred up when walked on. This includes dust, dirt, pollen, pet dander and more. If carpets get wet, they can also harbor mildew and mold. When it’s time to replace carpeting, consider alternatives like hardwood, laminate, bamboo or tiles.
Controlled Climate Services repairs, installs and maintains heating and cooling systems. These include air conditioners, heat pumps, furnaces, geothermal systems and packaged systems. Please call today to schedule an appointment.