Urban smog, pollen, and humidity--with all the Cleveland area throws at us, it's not easy to keep our indoor air quality high. Brush up on the most common air quality problems, though, and you'll be off to a good start when it comes to avoiding them.
Volatile Organic Compounds
Q. How can I keep volatile organic compounds (VOCs) out of my air?
A. First off, choose carpeting, paint, and other material labeled "low-VOC." Because your air filter is useless against VOCs, make sure your home is equipped with a well-designed ventilation system. To knock out the rest, invest in an air purifier designed to absorb these chemicals.
Q. I found mold in my crawl space and attic. Is it really that big of a deal?
A. Mold in these spaces can give off tiny lung-irritating spores that slip into your rooms through cracks and gaps around the house, bringing down your whole home's indoor air quality. These spores then cause mold to sprout up elsewhere in your home. Mold in the attic or crawl space also suggests your home has a moisture problem. Excess moisture can seriously damage your home's wood structure and should never be ignored. Additionally, some forms of mold are more health threatening than others- it is always a good idea to have any significant mold infestation evaluated by a mold professional.
Q. I'm sick of all the dust in my house! Where's it coming from?
A. Those armies of dust bunnies are mostly likely invading through air leaks. Leaks in your ducts suck in dust from the attic, crawl space and other areas and spread it around your home. Leaks around your windows and doors let in dust from outside. Sealing these leaks will keep the dust in check. Your HVAC pro - schooled in improving Indoor air quality or IAQ- can make some practical suggestions tom make improvements for your family.
Q. My A/C cools just fine, but it's still too humid in my house.
A. Chances are your A/C is oversized. An oversized system will rapidly cool the house, but shut off before it's had time to dehumidify the air. If your system is more than 10 years old, consider replacing it with a new, more advanced model that can be properly sized before installation. Installing a dehumidifier is another option. Today there are some whole home dehumidifiers that have been introduced that offer substantial benefits over traditional "basement dehumidifiers" of years gone by. Finally, there are some adjustments that your HVAC pro can make to your system to improve its ability to reduce humidity without having to replace the entire system if it not due for replacement yet.
For more guidance on improving your indoor air quality, contact us at P.K. Wadsworth Heating & Cooling in the Greater Cleveland area.