What are the most common causes of indoor air pollution?
The causes to pay attention to in your home
Today, an important number of safety standards and controls are in place to monitor outdoor air pollution. Government and non-governmental organisations regulate air quality and ensure industry complies with environmental standards, helping us all to breathe easily.
But what about the indoor environments? Well, studies show that indoor air pollution is actually one of the biggest threats to our health. Considering that most Australians spend around 90% of each day indoors – more than half of that time at home – you may be experiencing indoor air pollution without even knowing it. That is why educating yourself on what generates this “unhealthy” air is the best way to keep your home clean.
Identifying the causes will help you take the correct actions and ensure a good air quality for yourself and your family. In this blog, we are going to explain to you the roots of the indoor air pollution problem and what you can do to treat it.
The biggest causes of indoor air pollution
Poor indoor ventilation
First of all, your home needs to be properly ventilated to remove indoor air pollution and expel it back outdoors. Whether you prefer high-quality air conditioners or ceiling fans, let them do what they do best.
Good ventilation eliminates bad air and welcomes the good air. It also reduces the risk of asthma, lung cancer and infections.
Did you know that simple things like everyday cleaning and personal care products can actually threaten your health?
For example, under Australian law, manufacturers are not required to list all the ingredients of their consumer products. Companies manufacturing items such as air fresheners, rarely disclose all chemicals their product contains. Additionally, consumer products typically emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs), a group of pollutants that can harm human health.
Air purification and ventilation systems help dilute the power of toxic chemicals and other unpleasant odours.
Airborne chemicals and biological contaminants represent another cause of indoor air pollution. This includes things like mould, mildew, dust mites, dirt, bacteria or viruses. Remember that breathing in these contaminants for a long period of time can become a danger to your health. They can also aggravate headaches, asthma and allergies.
Humidity control systems can help prevent moisture build-up, which usually facilitates mould and mildew growth. Alternatively, choose high-efficiency filtration products to capture small particles and keep them from recirculating back into your home’s air.
It is important to realise that any kind of smoke can significantly pollute your home. Smoke coming from your fireplace, cigarettes, cooking and even incense sticks can cause breathing problems and, in some cases, increase the risk of lung cancer.
You should carefully monitor how much smoke is indoors, as well as install a smoke alarm system.
Last but not least, one of the main causes of indoor air pollution is the carbon monoxide. In fact, high exposure to carbon monoxide can cause death, so it’s very important to control it in your home.
We dare to say that it’s probably the most dangerous form of “unhealthy” air you can encounter in your home. Carbon monoxide can come from your gas stove, boiler, furnace or car exhaust from your attached garage.
Therefore, a proper maintenance to your cooking or water heating systems will keep you safe in the long run.
Are there other causes of indoor air pollution?
While we only pointed out the main causes that can harm the air quality in your home, there can also be other pollutants that nest in your home. If you are concerned about them, you can also schedule air quality testing with specialized companies.
Generally speaking, vacuuming often, having a regular air conditioner service and installing a carbon monoxide alarm are the first step to a healthy and safe home.
Until next time, stay tuned to find out how your air conditioner can significantly improve your indoor air quality!