Indoor Air Quality Matters
The EPA tells us that indoor air quality is four to five times worse than the quality of the air outdoors. It’s important to keep the air circulating in your home so that it’s continuously removed and replaced with a fresh supply.
Polluted Indoor Air
The air inside your house is easily polluted with pets shedding hair and dander, carpets and cabinets off-gassing, smells from cooking, moisture from baths and showers, and from remodeling. Your house can also fill up with pollutants from the outside if they’re drawn in through the HVAC system. Mold spores, pollen, dust, and other allergens can build up in your home, and depending on the climate, the humidity level outdoors can be the source of indoor mold, mildew, and condensation issues.
While homes that are airtight may be more energy efficient, they often have poor indoor air quality. This is because, in an airtight home, there isn’t any way for polluted air to make its way out and for fresh air to find its way inside.
Tips for Improving Indoor Air Quality
- Each day, open your windows and your doors whenever you can. This allows fresh air to enter and circulate within your home while allowing polluted air to escape at the same time.
- Open the vent controls on your attic and window fans, as well as on window air conditioning units.
- Make sure your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans vent outdoors. While these vents are helpful in removing pollution from those rooms, they don’t allow clean air in.
- Add a semi-controlled ventilation system to your home. A semi-controlled ventilation system involves a return duct that helps outdoor air connect with the central return. You’ll need to seal the ducts so that polluted air doesn’t come in through the return ducts and enter your house.
More Advanced Ways to Ventilate Your Home
It’s likely that the best way to ventilate your home is via a whole-house system that will allow freshly filtered and conditioned air in from outdoors and will release contaminated air from the inside. The amount of air coming into your home will equal the amount that is pushed out, meaning that the pressure inside your house will stay balanced. This can help keep combustion appliances from backdrafting. There are a wide variety of sizes and shapes that this mechanized system can come in, making it easy to find one suitable for most any home.