Tag Archives: indoor air quality

How to Ventilate Your Craft Room Properly

How to Ventilate Your Craft Room ProperlyHaving a hobby room inside your home makes it more convenient to work on them whenever you have the time. If the activity involves pains, adhesives, or solvents, there’s also the risk that the fumes will harm your health without adequate ventilation.

Many hobby materials contain VOCs (volatile organic compounds) that are known health hazards. Aside from avoiding them entirely, the best way to avoid the consequences of VOC exposure by having an exhaust system set up in the hobby room to vent them safely and quickly to the outdoors.

Exhaust fans.

A fan, whether it’s built into a wall or placed in a window, is simplest and often the least costly way to pull contaminated air out of your hobby room, as long as there’s enough suction to reach the area where you’re generating the fumes. Depending on how tightly constructed your home is, you may also need to open a window somewhere nearby to create enough of a draft to exhaust the gases effectively.

Overhead hood.

Placing a kitchen exhaust hood over the work area can be an effective way to exhaust the harmful gases as long as the fan is the right size. You and the pro from Powers Heating & Air can determine how many air changes per hour (ACH) you need to remove the gases from your work area.

Balanced ventilators.

An ERV (energy recovery ventilator) pulls out as much stale air as it pulls inside. This appliance is the most energy efficient way to keep the air in your hobby room fresh. The core of an ERV removes the energy from the outgoing air and puts it into the fresh, incoming air. An ERV extracts some of the humidity from the incoming air and some models have air filters that remove pollen and dust.

Although proper ventilation seems easy enough, your short- and long-term health is at risk if the system you choose is inadequate or undersized. If you’d like a pro at your side, contact Powers Heating & Air, providing HVAC services for Peachtree City homeowners.

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. 

It’s Heart Month! Know How IAQ Affects Health

It's Heart Month! Know How IAQ Affects HealthFebruary is National Heart Awareness Month. What better time to ponder all the things that affect the health of your heart? You’re probably well aware of how diet and exercise contribute to keeping your heart healthy, but do you ever consider the effects of your indoor air quality on your health?

The sad fact is that the air in our homes is much more polluted than the outside air. That can have an impact on your heart, as well as your lungs and kidneys. Read on for what you should know about IAQ effects on your health.

Airborne Pollutants in Your Home

A number of airborne pollutants may be found in the typical, airtight home:

  • Dust
  • Smoke
  • Pollen
  • Pet dander
  • Radon
  • Carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide
  • Mold
  • Volatile organic compounds (VOCs)

These substances have different impacts on the body, but all in large concentrations can make you sick — at the least, triggering sniffles and other signs of respiratory distress, as well as allergies and asthma symptoms, and even organ failure.

Controlling Airborne Pollutants

Here are some things you can to control airborne pollutants:

  • Vacuum frequently with a HEPA filter.
  • Ban smoking in the home.
  • Sequester pollen-bearing plants in one room; brush off clothing and pets before entering the home.
  • If your home tests positive for radon, look into having a radon barrier installed.
  • Install air quality monitors to keep track of the levels of CO, CO2 and other pollutants.
  • Fix all leaks and if need be, install a whole-house dehumidifier to control moisture, which can promote mold. Install ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) lights in the HVAC system to kill organisms in the air such as mold, mildew and bacteria.
  • Install a charcoal-activated air filter in the HVAC system to get rid of gases such as VOCs and cigarette smoke.
  • Use a good quality, pleated air filter to trap many types of airborne pollutants in your return air supply.

For more on IAQ effects, or to schedule HVAC repair, maintenance or upgrades, contact Powers Heating and Air. We serve Peachtree City.

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. 

Winter Concerns for Indoor Air Quality

Winter Concerns for Indoor Air QualityThe 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.

Make Your HVAC the Star Player at Your Football Watch Party

Make Your HVAC the Star Player at Your Football Watch PartyFootball season is finally upon us and Peachtree residents know what that means – watch parties! If you’re planning to host guests in your home, though, it’s important that you pay attention to party comfort concerns. Basically, what it comes down to is focusing your attention on heating/cooling concerns and indoor air quality.

Heating and Cooling

If your home is too hot or too cold, your guests will find it difficult to enjoy the game. Here are a few things you can do in preparation:

Get an HVAC tune-up – At least once a year, you should hire a qualified technician to perform a maintenance check on your heating and cooling systems to keep it running properly and efficiently.
Adjust the Thermostat – Even though you should always think about saving energy, it won’t hurt to adjust the thermostat to keep guests happy.
Grab a Few Fans – If the temperature is rising, which could certainly happen given the amount of body heat your guests will be giving off during the game, bring out a fan or two to cool everyone off.

 

Indoor Air Quality

You certainly don’t want to cause or irritate respiratory issues while your guests are trying to enjoy the game. Stop that from happening by following these tips:

  • Take Care of the Air Filter – Your system’s air filter should be replaced or cleaned every 1-3 months to ensure that contaminants are being removed from the air.
  • Dust with Microfiber Cloths – Since standard feather dusters tend to spread dust around your home rather than remove it, you should use microfiber cloths (which attract and capture dust) to clean up instead.
  • Install a Whole-House Air Cleaner – These air clearners will clear your home of the majority of the contaminants found in the air. Although these systems are a little costly, their efficiency and effectiveness are worth the price. ?

For more assistance with party comfort concerns, or if you have any general home comfort questions, please contact the friendly professionals at Powers Heating & Air. We’ve been serving the HVAC needs of Peachtree City and the surrounding area for more than 15 years.

 

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.

What You Should Know about Air Exchange Rate

What You Should Know about Air Exchange RateIf you’re like many homeowners, you may not be familiar with the term “air exchange rate.” However, the rate of air exchange in your HVAC system is one of the key factors in how well it heats and cools, and its ability to maintain a healthy, comfortable indoor environment.

Air Exchange Rate Defined

An “air exchange rate” refers the number of times per hour that air is replaced in each room of your home. The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) recommended air changes per hour vary according to a room’s use: a bedroom requires five to six exchanges, while a kitchen should have seven or eight.

 

To determine the necessary cubic feet per minute (CFM) of airflow to provide adequate air exchange in specific rooms, an HVAC pro multiplies the room’s volume (height × width × length) by the recommended number of changes, then divides that figure by 60.

The Importance of Sufficient Air Exchange

Today’s homes are constructed and weatherized to limit energy losses and boost efficiency. With our extended cooling seasons, homes here are also closed up for long periods to keep conditioned air inside. When a home lacks adequate air exchange, allergens and pollutants will build up inside too, resulting in air quality issues that can impact the health and well-being of the occupants.

 

If you have an older home that isn’t as tightly constructed or sealed, leaks in the exterior envelope may allow some fresh air to enter. If the amount isn’t sufficient, or you have a tightly-built, well-sealed home, your HVAC contractor may recommend taking extra measures to maintain good indoor air quality, like:

  • Integrating an air cleaner into the HVAC system to remove pollutants and allergens from the air supply.
  • Adding a ventilation unit to expel stale air and introduce fresher outdoor air.
  • Keeping your HVAC, air cleaning and ventilation equipment well maintained, and replacing the filters regularly to ensure they’re working effectively.

To schedule an HVAC system assessment to determine if the air exchange rate is sufficient in your Peachtree City home, contact us today at Powers Heating & Air.

 

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.