The air in the average home is typically far more polluted than the air outside. And in winter, things are particularly bad. Poor IAQ can exacerbate allergies and asthma, facilitate illnesses like cold and flu, and more. Here are some reasons why your air quality goes down in winter, and a few things you can do about it.
Problems With Your Winter Air
Your winter indoor air quality suffers for a number of reasons. The first is a lack of ventilation. In winter, your house is sealed up tight, to keep warm air in and cold air out. If outside air can’t come in, the same contaminants keep getting cycled through your HVAC system again and again, increasing as the season progresses.
There are other factors affecting your IAQ as well. If you have a gas-burning furnace, you have carbon monoxide fumes to add to the pollution. And finally, there’s the issue of humidity. The air typically gets dryer in winter. And running your furnace dehumidifies it even further. When the humidity level gets below about 30 percent, it fosters viruses and other contaminants.
Improving Your Winter Indoor Air Quality
Here are a few steps you can take to raise your IAQ.
- Vacuum and dust regularly. With regular cleaning, you can eliminate dust and other contaminants from your air.
- Get a whole-house humidifier. This counteracts the dehumidifying effect of your HVAC system and allows you to keep your humidity at a healthy level – between 30 and 50 percent.
- Change your filters. Putting a new air filter in your HVAC system helps ensure it eliminates contaminants effectively. Change your filter every month in winter to maintain its efficiency.
- Get indoor plants. We all know plants convert carbon dioxide to oxygen. But did you know that some can filter other contaminants out of your air as well? A peace lily or a florist’s chrysanthemum can eliminate formaldehyde, benzene, and even the ammonia that comes from cleaning fluids.
To learn more about improving your winter indoor air quality, contact us at Powers Heating & Air today. We provide Peachtree City with quality HVAC solutions.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Peachtree City, Georgia and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 770-487-2040.