Signs Your Residence Has Bad Indoor Air Quality and How to Fix It

May 22, 2020

We are often indoors. In fact, the EPA has determined most people spend 90% of their time inside a building, where air quality can be 2–5 times poorer than outside.

Decreased indoor air quality can have an unfavorable influence on your well-being. That’s why it’s critical to know the warnings of poor air quality in your residence, what triggers it and how to repair it.

If you’re looking for ways to tell if your Paso Robles home’s air quality is bad, our team of HVAC experts at Paso Robles Heating and Air can provide assistance. We’ll go through the issues you’re running into and offer suggestions to make your home’s air healthier.

What Causes Indoor Air Pollution?

When you think of pollution, you typically think of smog. But everyday things inside your residence can produce pollution by the gases or particles they release into the air.

These starting points include:

  • Carbon monoxide
  • Cleaning, personal care and hobby goods
  • Combustion appliances, such as a furnace or stove that consumes gas
  • Dust, animal dander and pollen
  • Excess moisture
  • HVAC equipment
  • Recently installed flooring or carpeting
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Artificial building materials, such as furniture constructed from pressed wood

Indoor air pollution can be intensified by a lack of ventilation in your home, as well as warm temperatures and humidity. Recently built homes are tightly sealed for energy conservation, which is a plus for your energy bill but not so good when you need additional fresh air indoors.

Can Poor Indoor Air Quality Make You Sick?

Because people respond differently to indoor air pollutants, you could have symptoms immediately or in the future. Your symptoms may alleviate when you leave your residence but get worse when you return.

Some of the most common immediate problems include:

  • Scratchy eyes, nose or throat
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue

If someone in your family has allergies or asthma, their symptoms can be more severe.

Continuous or lengthy exposure could cause respiratory diseases, heart disease or even cancer, the EPA warns.

Other Symptoms of Low Indoor Air Quality and How to Fix It

Your residence will also give you some signs that its air isn’t as fresh as it should be.

  1. Your residence is very dusty, notably by the vents. It’s expected for your home to get dusty during the week, but a lot of dust by your air registers should be troubling. There are other particles within dust, like dust mites, pollen and pet dander, that can impact your health, especially if you have allergies or asthma. A higher-quality air filter or whole-home air filtration system can help reduce dust and other annoying pollutants.
  2. Your home has hot and cold rooms. Your HVAC equipment may be failing to maintain proper temperature and humidity amounts. Or there might be air distribution troubles due to your heating and cooling equipment or ductwork. Our Paso Robles Heating and Air pros can diagnose the trouble and recommend repairs or replacement.
  3. Your home’s air appears too dry or too wet. We advise maintaining your house’s humidity range between 30–40% for optimum comfort. If your house isn’t humid enough during cold weather, your skin and throat may feel scratchy. You might also experience colds and other respiratory illnesses more often. If your home is too humid during warm weather, you might have more mold and mildew growth, both of which are harmful to your wellness. You can manage these problems with a whole-home humidifier or dehumidifier, which pairs your heating and cooling equipment to give balanced humidity throughout your home.
  4. Your house has lingering odors. You could catch a stuffy odor when you arrive. Or a cooking smell that just won’t go away. Since it’s not feasible to open your windows all the time, a whole-home ventilation system can get your house smelling fresh again. It exchanges stuffy inside air with fresh outdoor air.

Other steps the EPA suggests implementing include keeping your home smoke-free, buying carbon monoxide alarms and tuning up your heating and cooling equipment. Annual furnace maintenance and AC maintenance helps keep your systems clean and efficient and could even help them run for an extended period of time.

We Can Help Boost Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

If you think your home has air quality trouble, give our Paso Robles Heating and Air HVAC experts a call at 805-203-8667 or contact us online. We’re here to talk with you about possibilities and provide a free estimate.