Indoor Air Quality Explained
Breathing in clean air is one of the most essential requirements for a healthy life. This is why indoor air quality is one of the things that should be highlighted in celebration of National Wellness Month. But what exactly is indoor air quality, and how can it be improved?
To put it simply, indoor air quality describes the cleanliness of the air inside and around enclosed spaces such as homes and buildings. Indoor air quality, or IAQ, is determined by contaminants or pollutants in the air that may affect a person’s respiratory and overall health. These contaminants may include large particles such as dirt, dust, mold, pollen, and other allergens. It can also involve smaller microorganisms such as germs, viruses, and other biological contaminants. Poor indoor air quality can have various adverse health effects, so it’s vital to have good indoor air quality to stay healthy at home.
How Does Poor Indoor Air Quality Affect a Person’s Health?
People who live and work in places with poor indoor air quality may suffer from many of its ill effects, some of which are immediately apparent, while others may take a long time to manifest in the body. Some of the most common health symptoms that people experience due to poor IAQ include irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat, frequent headaches, dizziness, and fatigue.
Additionally, asthma and allergy symptoms that may not have been a problem before or the worsening of these symptoms among those who already suffer from these respiratory issues can also occur due to poor air quality at home. Maintaining good indoor air quality to prevent these potential health problems is essential.
HVAC Maintenance and Air Filter Replacement
Thankfully, there are many ways to improve the quality of air indoors to prevent these ill effects from becoming chronic respiratory issues. Routine maintenance on the AC and heater is a crucial way to improve indoor air quality along with various other benefits. Maintenance also prevents problems with the system, extends its life expectancy, and improves its efficiency, lowering energy bills.
Replacing the air filters is an essential part of maintenance that must be done more often than the rest of the maintenance to improve indoor air quality and keep the HVAC system running efficiently. The filter traps dust and other allergens, preventing them from entering the system and circulating around the home. However, when dirty, the filters cannot work effectively anymore, so they must be replaced on time or more often than required, typically once every three months.
Devices to Help Clean the Air
Another tool in the fight for better indoor air quality is air cleaning devices such as an air purifier or UV sanitizer. Both are excellent at improving the quality of air indoors, albeit in very different ways. An air purifier, for example, does this by drawing in air and passing it through a series of filters that remove airborne pollutants that may be present so that the air that comes out is free from contaminants.
On the other hand, a UV air sanitizer cleans the air by producing UV-C light rays that destroy microorganisms such as mold, bacteria, viruses, and other germs. They are also effective at getting rid of household odors and musty smells. Since they clean the air via different methods, determining what kind of contaminants are a problem in the home is an excellent way to determine which may be needed. Those who want to get rid of smaller microorganisms may benefit from having a UV air sanitizer, and those afflicted by larger particles such as dirt, dust, and pollen may want to install a filter-based air purifier instead.
About Master Plumbing, Heating, & Cooling
Master Plumbing, Heating, & Cooling has over 30 years of experience serving Cedar Rapids and the surrounding areas. They offer upfront pricing, same-day service, and tailored options. Call them today for indoor air quality services in Cedar Rapids, IA.