Tips to Improve Indoor Air Quality

Beware chemical cleanersImproving indoor air quality is one of the easiest ways to improve your overall health. That's because you spend more time in your home than anywhere else. Just your sleeping hours account for up to one-third of all the hours in the day. That means that the quality of the air you breathe at home is bound to have a measurable impact on the quality of your life. The good news is that by using a few simple strategies, like buying eco-friendly cleaning products and using low moisture carpet cleaning services, you'll be breathing easier in no time.

Cut Back on Chemical Pollutants

One of the easiest ways to keep unwanted chemical pollutants out of the air you breathe is to avoid introducing them in the first place. Small amounts of pollutants can linger in your home's air for a long time, especially during months when you're running your air conditioning or heater and the windows and doors are closed.

Number one on your list of ways to improve indoor air quality is to eliminate smoking in the house. If you smoke, quitting will improve your health and lengthen your lifespan, not to mention all the money it will put back in your pocket. Even if you don't smoke, you shouldn't allow visitors to smoke in your house, either. Asking your guests to step outside if they need to smoke will make a big improvement in indoor air quality. Tobacco smoke contains hundreds of pollutants, and the nature of the smoke makes it linger until it's removed by carpet cleaning and vigorous scrubbing of the other surfaces in your home.

Choose nontoxic cleaning products and services to avoid introducing a lot of harsh chemicals into your home. Stick with eco-friendly cleaners for all surfaces, and avoid products that have a strong fragrance.

Avoid Products That Emit VOCs

Look for products that don't emit VOCs. Volatile Organic Compounds are common in household furnishings like furniture, carpets, and paint. In almost every case, a little shopping around will yield alternatives that won't outgas VOCs into your home's air. Be vigilant about claims from manufacturers. Look for third-party certifications of compliance with low VOC standards from independent laboratories like Greenguard.

Simple Cleaning Will Help

Indoor air quality is about little things. If you control indoor allergens like dust mites, animal dander, dirt, and household dust that collect on surfaces and fabrics, your air quality is bound to improve. Make sure to launder all your bedding regularly. Have your mattress cleaned at least yearly. Place mats at every entry, both inside and outside your home, to cut down on tracked in dirt. If your vacuum cleaner doesn't already have a HEPA filter, install one.

Use Low Moisture Carpet Cleaning

If your home has large areas of wall-to-wall carpeting, a thorough carpet cleaning will make the largest improvement in your indoor air quality, as long as the carpet cleaning service uses green detergents. But using eco-friendly cleaners is only half the battle when trying to improve indoor air quality. It's important to hire carpet cleaning services that use low moisture carpet cleaning techniques to truly improve the air you breathe.

Any cleaning technique that introduces a lot of moisture into your home will encourage the growth of mold and mildew. The same thing applies to upholstery cleaning, and even to watering your plants. Don't put more moisture into the air you breathe than necessary to get the job done.

Ventilate Wisely

During heating or air-conditioning season, it can be tempting to shut your house up tight to avoid wasting energy. That can lead to breathing stale air that accumulates humidity, dust, and allergens. Make sure your mechanical ventilation systems introduce enough fresh air to keep humidity and fresh air levels constant. It's especially important to exhaust moisture-laden air from showering and cooking to the outside. Use the exhaust fans in your bathrooms and kitchens to keep mildew from forming due to steam in the room.

Small Steps Add Up

There's no need to invest in very expensive air cleaners to improve indoor air quality. A series of simple, inexpensive steps like keeping humidity down, buying nontoxic cleaning products, and using low moisture carpet cleaning services can make a world of difference.

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