November 9, 2020

Time to Clear the Air

With cooler temperatures in the forecast and the continued threat of the coronavirus, it looks like homeowners will be staying inside more this fall and winter.

As if that weren’t reason enough, September’s unprecedented wildfire activity out west underlined how important it is to improve your home’s air quality.

Reducing indoor air pollutants is more important than ever, especially if you have a respiratory issue or immune-compromising condition. Hidden allergens can waft through the air or lurk in carpets, bedding, vents and upholstery.

One simple way to help is the installation of an air purifier with HEPA filtration. Make sure the machine’s capacity matches the size of your room. Air quality experts recommend cleaning the unit and changing out the filter at least once a month.

Prioritize bedrooms, living room and home office spaces where you spend the most time. Note the product's energy usage and noise level.

It’s also important to keep your dryer vent clean, especially if the laundry room is in a living area. Detach the exhaust hose from the machine and the wall to remove large deposits by hand, and then vacuum.

Speaking of the vacuum, you need to be cleaning the carpets two or three times a week to keep dust mites, dirt and other particles from being kicked into the air. A vacuum with true HEPA filtration is best.

Don’t forget to bathe and brush your pets. Pet dander can do a number on your allergies. Clean pet toys and bedding regularly and consider low-pile rugs or bare floors if you have furry animals you must keep inside.

Last of all, get some plants, which are natural air scrubbers. Consider placing English ivy, gerbera daisies, spider plants, and peace lilies on your side tables or bookshelves.

As a rule, you should have about one plant per 100 square feet of floor space.

Mom was right. Fresh air is good for you. Keep air moving to prevent the buildup of these allergens. simply cracking a window at either ends of the home can make a big difference. If you have a ceiling fan, they are great to keep air circulating.