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Improving Indoor Air Quality

When we think pollution we automatically think of outdoor contaminates, auto exhausts, belching smokestacks and visible damage to the environment. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA, www.epa.gov) and the American Lung Association (www.lungusa.org) however have recognized that indoor pollution can constitute an even greater risk to our respiratory health than the outdoor pollution levels in the largest and most industrialized cities. There are several sources for indoor pollution that can make our lives miserable, such as smoke from tobacco products or wood-burning stoves and fireplaces, radon gas entering the home from the ground, wet or damp environments, formaldehyde-leaking certain pressed-wood furniture products or even household cleaning and personal care products. Since we spend up to 90% of our time indoors it comes as no surprise that the number of allergy and asthma sufferers has risen dramatically over the past decades. Fortunately there are a number of very simple steps we can take to keep indoor pollution to a minimum. Following these steps can result in a noticeable improvement in indoor air quality, and ultimately better health.

  • Circulate The Air: One of the most obvious steps to take is opening windows. Simply opening windows as often as possible circulates the air and improves the quality of indoor air. During the winter months we all get a little negligent. Let's face it, who wants to freeze in their own home, but opening the windows on a regular basis even for short periods of time will result in a noticeable improvement in air quality. If you can, leave your windows open when running short errands.


  • Leave Your Shoes At The Door: Taking your shoes off when entering the home is highly effective in preventing the spread of dirt, mold spores and other outside influences throughout the home. This not only reduces the amount of contaminates being brought into the home, it also keeps your carpets and floors cleaner.


  • Buy Some House Plants: Recently studies have been showing that placing plants inside the home can improve indoor air quality, since a lot of contaminates that can negatively affect our health are absorbed by houseplants. In turn these plants give off oxygen. Heartier tropical plants that thrive in darker areas and are more forgiving if not cared for on a regular basis are great choices for those of us who were not blessed with green thumbs. Be careful not to over-water plants, since that in turn can encourage the growth of molds that may give off spores into the air. In particular, bamboo is a great choice, being unproblematic to care for, attractive and able to absorb a large amount of contaminates.


  • Change Your Filters: Keeping up with changing air filters in your home helps immensely. Especially at the beginning of the cold season you should change all air filters in the home. During months of inactivity they will have gathered a lot of dirt and grime, and as a consequence, will lose their capacity to filter effectively. It also pays to use higher quality and more efficient filters, such as HEPA filters where possible, since these will last much longer than cheaper filters and maintain their effectiveness longer.


  • Banish Chemicals From Your Home: Remove all harmful chemicals from the home. While most of us might think "Wait, I don't have any harmful chemicals in my house," think again. Most household cleaners contain chemicals that, when inhaled, are hazardous and often times carcinogenic. Most of these products also release these chemicals directly into the air even when they are not being used. Switch to environmentally friendly and non-toxic cleaning and personal care products made of natural ingredients that perform just as well, but do not release chemicals into their surrounding area. Avoiding scented candles and air fresheners also improves air quality. These products might cover up embarrassing odors by producing nice scents, but they also release harmful additives and chemicals. If you have a lawn or a garden, use boric acid and humane traps against pests instead of pesticides, and use organic lawn care methods like mowing high and adding top soil. Harmful chemical fertilizers and pesticides can be brought into the house by playing children and pets. Even furniture can emit harmful chemicals. A frequent ingredient in laminated or plywood furniture is formaldehyde, a compound known to cause cancer in humans.

Using an air purification system helps improve indoor air quality by trapping contaminates and filtering them from the circulated air. Air purifiers should, however, be viewed as one highly effective part of a whole regimen of techniques we can use to combat indoor air pollution. Keeping up with recommended maintenance schedules and changing filters on a regular basis will ensure your air purifier will work at full capacity. Look for a unit with a high CFM rating and a high clean air delivery rate (CADR) to ensure the highest level of performance for your home.

PureAirProducts.com offers a wide selection of air purifier models, and it can be confusing trying to find the right model for your home. Narrow down your search by asking yourself what type of air purifier you need. Do you need to be able to move your air purifier from one room to the next? If the answer is yes, choose a portable model. A smaller sized purifier is perfect for cleaning the air around a smaller area, like a favorite seating area, while a larger model is capable of filtering the air in the entire room without losing its portability. The advantage is that portable units can follow you wherever you need them. Whole house purifiers work centrally to treat the entire home at the same time.

It is important to consider what your major concern is when looking for an air purifier. Here at PureAirProducts.com, we offer a wide range of air purifiers that are capable of either concentrating on a specific health concern or the full spectrum of indoor air quality.


 



 

 

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