When it comes to our health, we mostly prioritize good nutrition, quality healthcare, and exercise. However, one thing that is often overlooked but it’s equally important is indoor air quality. Indoor air quality has a profound impact on our health, and this is especially true for young children and aging populations. If you’re living in an old home, it’s important to take the necessary precautions and ensure you’re breathing clean air.
Indoor air quality refers to the general condition of air within enclosed spaces, including homes, offices, and commercial or industrial set-ups. Indoor air quality encompasses various factors such as the presence of allergens, pollutants, humidity levels, and ventilation levels.
Let’s Explore Several Reasons to Check Your Indoor Air Quality:
1. Moisture and Mold
Poorly done roofing or plumbing may cause leaks, leading to moisture seep and affecting your indoor air quality. Older homes are particularly vulnerable to mold growth due to poor ventilation and deteriorating materials. The combination of deteriorating materials and poor ventilation all contribute to mold growth, leading to allergic reactions and severe respiratory illnesses. Regularly checking older homes for moisture-related infestations ensure a safe and healthy indoor living environment.
2. Lead and Asbestos
Many homes are constructed using materials made of asbestos, such as plumbing, ceiling tiles, and insulation materials. Asbestos, when disturbed, releases tiny fiber materials when inhaled may lead to serious and devastating respiratory illnesses. Prolonged asbestos exposure may pose significant conditions such as mesothelioma, lung cancer, and asbestosis. Moreover, older homes are painted using lead-based paint. Inhaling lead particles from deteriorating paint can lead to lead poisoning, especially in young children and older adults such as seniors or persons with respiratory conditions.
3. Radon Gas
Radon gas is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that can seep into older homes through pores found in the foundation. Older homes with basements or crawl spaces have a higher likelihood of the presence of radon gas. Studies have shown that prolonged exposure to radon gas can cause lung cancer. And because radon gas is odorless and colorless, it’s imperative that you regularly examine your indoor air quality to determine contamination levels. Homeowners must take appropriate measures such as radon gas mitigation measures to ensure a healthy living environment for themselves, young children, and older adults.
4. Aging HVAC
HVAC systems are efficient when new but lose efficiency when they age. Conducting regular check-ups on your HVAC system can help you identify issues early on. In older homes, these systems tend to be less efficient, posing a health risk because of poor indoor air quality. Inadequate ventilation may lead to circulation of allergens, pollutants, and contaminants. Regular inspection ensures clean air filters, preventing allergens and contaminants from circulating in your home.
5. Indoor Pollutants
Indoor pollutants represent a wide range of contaminants: allergens, dirt, dust, pollen, pet hair, and dander. Indoor pollutants can settle in carpets, upholstery, and furniture, posing a health risk to the occupants. Indoor contaminants may increase the risk for respiratory conditions such as asthma, allergies, lung cancer, and other respiratory issues. Checking indoor air quality promotes a healthy lifestyle because dust, pollen, foreign particles, and contaminants are eliminated.
Steps to Improve Indoor Air Quality
Improving indoor air quality requires specific steps to address the underlying challenges in older homes. Homeowners can significantly improve indoor air quality and create a healthy environment by following the following steps:
- Proper ventilation and air circulation. It’s advisable to open your windows and other openings during the day to allow for sufficient entry of fresh air. Open your windows whenever possible to allow fresh air to circulate and drive out stale air.
- Regular cleaning. Regular cleaning and maintenance eliminate dust and foreign participles lying around on your furniture or upholstery. It’s advisable to dust surfaces using a damp cloth to prevent particles from becoming airborne. Replace air filters in older air conditioners for maximum efficiency.
- Upgrading HVAC systems. HVAC systems with higher SEER ratings are more efficient and less costly to operate and maintain. Older homes must regularly update HVAC systems to take advantage of new cooling and heating technologies.
- Addressing moisture issues. Address moisture issues in older homes by sealing any pores or leaks on walls or foundations. Sealing air leaks prevents moisture accumulation, ensuring clean and fresh indoor air quality. Moisture-related issues such as high humidity levels and leaks, lead to deteriorating indoor air quality. Identifying and mitigating indoor moisture helps prevent mildew and mold buildup.
Improve Your Indoor Air Quality with Briggs HVAC in Northern Virginia
Whether you’re living in an old home or your HVAC system is aging, do not let low-quality indoor air get in the way of a quality and healthy lifestyle. At Briggs HVAC, we offer superior HVAC solutions, helping homeowners address the challenge of low quality indoor air. We help homeowners reclaim their freedom for quality indoor air.
Contact Briggs HVAC for quality and reliable HVAC solutions.