Which Factors Would Increase Poor Indoor Air Quality? Here’s How to Protect Your Home

Which Factors Would Increase Poor Indoor Air Quality? Here’s How to Protect Your Home

Indoor air quality is often overlooked when we consider the health of our homes. We prioritize our appliances and infrastructure, but what factors contribute to poor indoor air quality? The good news is, we can address these issues once we recognize them. At Uncle Mike’s, trust us to help you identify and enhance your indoor air quality, ensuring a healthier living environment.

We’re often guilty of thinking about the health of our home above all else. Our appliances, infrastructure, etc. They’re all important, but which factors would increase poor indoor air quality?

What about our health *in* our home? That’s where indoor air quality becomes a focal point. Poor indoor air has several ramifications and while that might be alarming, the good news is that we can solve these problems. We just have to know they exist.

You can trust Uncle Mike. Let’s talk about indoor air quality and how we can first identify it, and from there, get on track to healthier air inside the home.

What are the signs of indoor poor air quality?

Doctors and medical experts often tell us to listen to our bodies. If we aren’t feeling quite right, pay attention to that. Don’t ignore it. The same goes for your home’s indoor air quality; if you sense something is wrong, or can pinpoint one of the warning signs, it’s time to take action.

And in some cases, we can do this by (believe it or not) listening to our bodies and using the five senses. 

Feeling better when you’re outside the home

Fresh air is always good for the body, but if there is a discernible difference between the air you breathe inside the home and the air outdoors…you might have a problem. Shortness of breath, labored breathing, coughing and sneezing are some indicators that your home’s indoor air quality may be poor. This, of course, leads to feeling better when you’re not at home. If you work in an office, take note of how you feel when you’re at work as compared to how you feel at home. If there’s a change in how you feel, you should have your indoor air quality inspected.

Stale or stuffy indoor air

The way the air feels is also something to keep an eye on when monitoring your indoor air quality. As we just discussed how you feel inside the home versus away from home, one of the causes of feeling worse in your own home is stale or stuffy air. You may notice you’re congested or notice irritation around the eyes or nose. These are signs of poor indoor air quality and should be addressed. That’s when you call Uncle Mike’s Home Service.

High indoor humidity (even if it’s temporary)

We cannot stress enough the importance of a smart thermostat. Modern technology – which is now more affordable than it ever has been – can provide you with real-time vital signs for your home’s indoor air quality. Nearly all of the major brands (Honeywell, Nest, Sensi) will measure indoor humidity throughout the course of the day.

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No air movement

When your central air system (heating or cooling) isn’t working properly – or even when it’s turned off completely – this can impact your home’s indoor air quality. A lack of moving air keeps air “stuck,” which means new and cleaner air isn’t moving in through the system.

Broken or outdated central air conditioning

Regular service and maintenance of your HVAC system is critical to maintaining healthy indoor air. If your air conditioning system is more than 10 years old, it’s time to consider replacing it. Outdated systems or those that aren’t in top condition will not circulate air as efficiently as a new and/or properly serviced system. 

HVAC equipment that needs replacing is likely already costing you money. Older or outdated systems require more energy to distribute warm or cool air, leading to higher energy consumption and higher utility bills.

Noticeable odors inside the home

Does your air smell “musty” or just…a little bit off? It’s likely that you’re in the presence of poor indoor air. This can be caused by numerous things, but nothing that our team at Uncle Mike’s Home Service can’t diagnose and fix. Whether it’s HVAC maintenance, air duct cleaning and replacement or filter replacement, we’ve got you covered.

What are the signs of indoor poor air quality?

Not only is poor indoor air quality bad for your home and its HVAC system, but it’s bad for your health. That’s why we recommend giving Uncle Mike a call as soon as you suspect something may be amiss. 

Reference here: https://www.epa.gov/report-environment/indoor-air-quality#:~:text=Health%20effects%20associated%20with%20indoor,%2C%20heart%20disease%2C%20and%20cancer.

Skin irritation and allergic reactions

This is a common effect of poor indoor air quality – particularly irritation around the eyes, nose and throat. Air pollutants such as dust mites, mold and dander have been identified as “asthmatic triggers,” meaning those with asthma may experience adverse effects (like asthma attacks) if they’re breathing poor indoor air. 

As noted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), “While adverse health effects have been attributed to some specific pollutants, the scientific understanding of some indoor air quality issues continues to evolve.”

Headaches, fatigue and dizziness

Perhaps the most prevalent side effects of poor indoor air quality are the most identifiable indicators. If you experience any of these symptoms, it may be time to have your indoor air quality checked. 

Respiratory disease, heart disease and cancer

Other serious health problems can arise due to poor indoor air quality. People susceptible to respiratory problems or heart disease can experience exacerbations due to breathing poor air. 

Radon, a chemical commonly used in air conditioning systems manufactured before the 21st century, is a “human carcinogen” that has been linked to lung cancer. A newer, efficient air conditioning system is critical to ensuring higher-quality indoor air for your home.

What Factors Adversely Impact Your Home’s Indoor Air?

Look around your home. Do you have a dog, a cat, a bird or a rabbit? Have you noticed damage to your infrastructure such as pipes or filters? These are likely having an impact on your home and your health.

Pets and pests

Dogs, cats, and other fur-covered domestic animals carry dander that can negatively impact your home’s indoor air quality. Additionally, dust mites and bacteria from cockroaches and mice find their way into the air and impact its quality.

Microbes and particles

Homes without proper ventilation and efficient heating and cooling systems collect particles and microbes that create poor indoor air. This can cause allergic and asthmatic reactions due to bacteria and fungi that accumulate in airways, ducts and filters.

Poor ventilation

Several studies have indicated that ventilation is the No. 1 factor that contributes to poor indoor air quality. It’s imperative to have your ventilation system regularly inspected and maintained, because repairs can keep your home healthy and safe – as well as limiting the need for costly replacements down the road.

Elevated humidity

Increases in indoor humidity are frequently caused by temperature changes or not having your home set to the optimal temperature. A professionally-installed smart thermostat will help regulate indoor humidity, and in turn, improve your home’s indoor air quality.

Don’t Fret, Because Uncle Mike’s Home Service is Here to Help

Improving the quality of the air within your home or business is critical to ensuring good health and safety for all those within it. 

If your HVAC system hasn’t received maintenance recently, it’s time to give Uncle Mike’s Home Service a call! Contact us today at 848-900-MIKE, or send our team an email at info@trustunclemike.com