What’s the Big Deal About Indoor Air Quality?
Now more than ever, we place a lot of emphasis on our health. We watch what we eat and how much. We try to exercise as much as possible. We make it a point to stay more hydrated and less caffeinated (…mostly). But even so, one very important health issue unfortunately continues to go ignored: indoor air quality.
And we get it. Something as automatic as breathing is easy to take for granted. Moreover, we can’t see most of the harmful particles that contaminate our air, so why should we think about them and the short/long-term effect(s) they may be having on our health? The reasons why may surprise you…
Let’s dive into four facts that prove indoor air quality is a very big deal.
Indoor Air Can Be More Polluted than the Air Outside
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reports that indoor air can be about 5-7 TIMES more polluted than outdoor air. Why? While there are certainly many harmful pollutants floating around outside, the environment has natural “air cleaners” like UV rays from the sun, plus plants and trees that are capable of trapping airborne pollutants.
Your home, on the other hand, is likely built to be “airtight” - especially if its newer. This is great for energy efficiency, as a tight building envelope prevents conditioned air produced by your HVAC system from escaping and forcing the system to work harder to compensate. The drawback, however, is that unclean air can’t escape either.
Indoor Air Pollution is an EPA Top 5 Environmental Threat
Yep, you read that right. The EPA places indoor air pollution right up there with global warming, natural resource depletion, deforestation, and water contamination as one of the biggest environmental threats faced by humankind.
Numerous Chronic Health Issues Have Been Linked to Poor Indoor Air Quality
Indoor air can be polluted with as many as 900 toxins known to cause allergies, cold and flu symptoms, congestion, and other common ailments. However, the American Heart Association has linked poor indoor air quality to chronic heart problems, while the American Lung Association has recognized it as a leading cause of lung disease.
Indoor Air Pollution Is Everybody’s Problem
Studies have shown that indoor air pollution is an alarming issue in all types of homes - whether you live in the city, suburbs, or a rural area. Pollutants exist everywhere, and are sourced by things we might use or come in contact with every day including:
- Combustion Sources: Stoves, fireplaces, furnaces, tobacco products, scented candles, gas ranges
- Building Materials: Insulation, carpet, pressed wood products, plywood, drywall
- Chemical Products: Household cleaners, personal grooming items (bath soap, shampoo/conditioner, hair styling product), liquid adhesives
You spend about 90% of your time indoors…and about 65% of that time is spent at home.
Don’t ignore the indoor air quality issues you could be having in your home right now - contact Technical Hot & Cold!
As professionals who work with indoor air environments for a living, we know that improving its quality begins with your HVAC system. We offer a range of maintenance and installation services to help you start improving your indoor air quality today and support the long-term health of yourself and your family. Learn more about our air quality services, then call us at (734) 326-3900 or schedule an appointment online!