Our homes are our sanctuary so we want to know that we are safe and healthy inside. An important part of that is our indoor air quality, especially since we spend hours at a time relaxing and playing in the home! Thankfully, there are plenty of things that you can do to ensure that you have the highest quality healthy and fresh air inside your home. Here are just a few of them. For more hints and tips for improving your indoor air, speak with a local ventilation
This may sound simple but it’s actually key to improving your indoor air quality. Opening doors and windows or installing a ventilation system will let fresh, clean air into the home and flush out all those indoor pollutants such as fumes from cleaning products, gases emitted from paint/carpet/etc (these are called VOCs), carbon dioxide, airborne allergens, smoke and odours from cooking and so on. Of course, you don’t always want to ventilate your home! An excellent example of when to keep the doors and windows closed is when the outdoor air is worse than inside (smoky, lots of cars outside, etc).
Choosy Healthy Paints and Finishes
As anyone will tell you, it can be headache inducing or worse to live in a home that’s being painted, or that is having the floor stained or finished, thanks to the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) contained within standard paints and finishes. The solution here is to look for natural paint or paints and finishes that are classified as being low fume or low VOC. If this isn’t possible, try not to live in your home for the first few days after painting or finishing and be sure to air it out as much as possible.
Be Cautious of Your Cleaning Products
One of the biggest sources for indoor air pollutants is actually the cleaning products that you use. Just think of what an average home uses – disinfectants, detergents, deodorisers, waxes, polishes, and cleaning agents and so on. These all emit fumes and harmful chemicals that can upset the health of the people living inside. At an absolute minimum, you should ensure that your windows and doors are wide open to let the fumes dissipate. Ideally though, you will use low fume or low VOC alternatives or even better, go natural with your cleaning products, such as using vinegar and bi carb. It’s not much more work at all, and they clean just as well if not better than the commercial alternatives!
Get Rid of Mould and Mildew
A huge health hazard in the home is the presence of mould and mildew, which especially loves wet, dark areas. Mould and mildew can cause respiratory problems and other illnesses and it also just plain looks terrible. Get rid of it and you may find that you all perk up instantly! Use a solution of bleach and water or mould killer or for a natural alternative, clove oil works well. To stop the mould coming back, be sure to address the moisture issues that cause it to grow in the first place.
Keep Track of Pets
Pets are part of the family so it’s only natural that they spend time indoors! However, you may find that they’re soon shedding all over everything, and generally leaving a mess. Use a good vacuum cleaner to pick up all the fluff and hair and to remove dander (a potential allergen) from carpets and upholstery. Also make sure to bathe your pets regularly and to groom them outside as much as possible.