Many people do not understand how the interrelationship of numerous factors can contribute to indoor pollution. Further, many do not realize that they can take a proactive role in preventing IAQ problems. And the big question will be which would be the least helpful in reducing indoor pollution.
Education and learning what to do to reduce indoor pollution are only part of the challenge. Changing mindsets and implementation will most often be your family’s biggest hurdle – and obviously is the most important part of any IAQ strategy for your home.
What are indoor air pollution examples?
The main source of poor indoor air quality in homes is pollution from gases or particles released into the air. Pollutants in the home can get worse if there isn’t enough outside air to dilute emissions from inside sources and if there isn’t enough air moving out of the home to carry indoor pollutants away. Some pollutants can also become more concentrated when the temperature and humidity are high.
Insulation that has broken down and contains asbestos, damp carpet, and cabinetry or furniture made of certain pressed wood products are all things that can contribute. Indoor air pollution comes from radon, pesticides, and outdoor air pollution, as well as from cleaning and maintenance products, personal care products, central heating, cooling systems, humidifiers, and other indoor and outdoor sources.
Some sources, like building materials, furniture, and household items like air fresheners, give off pollutants pretty much all the time. Pollutants are also sometimes released by other sources that have to do with things people do at home. Some of these are:
- using stoves, furnaces, or space heaters that don’t have vents or aren’t working right
- using solvents for cleaning and hobbies
- using paint strippers when redecorating
- using cleaning products and pesticides when cleaning the house
The air quality level in your home is determined by how much and how often pollution is getting into the air. For example, suppose you have a properly adjusted gas stove. In that case, it will emit significantly less carbon monoxide than one that is not properly adjusted. And, of course, good ventilation contributes to improving air quality.
How can we reduce indoor air pollutants?
There are several actions that you can do that will help in reducing indoor pollution. And they don’t require fancy technology, either.
Open your windows
Moving fresh air from outside through your home can eliminate stale air and move pollutants out. Opening windows will let in the fresh air and make your house feel much better.
Note: You might not want to open the window if the outside air is bad.
One of the best ways to reduce air pollution inside is to make sure there is enough ventilation. Proper ventilation helps get rid of dirty air inside and brings in clean air from the outside. Pollutants can build up to dangerous levels in places with insufficient airflow. This is a big problem for homes that are well-sealed to save energy. If there isn’t enough airflow, carbon dioxide can build up, which can cause headaches, dizziness, and tiredness, among other health problems.
Use cleaners that are good for the environment
Many common cleaning products have chemicals that are bad for your health and pollute the air inside your home. To avoid this, choose green cleaners made with natural ingredients like white vinegar, baking soda, borax, citrus fruits, and essential oils. These natural ingredients are safe indoors and eliminate dirt, dust, and grime from surfaces.
Use air purifier
A high-quality home air purifier helps circulate, clean, and purify the air in your house by removing airborne toxins. Air purifiers don’t eliminate all indoor air pollutants, but they can assist reduce allergies and keep pollutants out of your home.
Houseplants: The cure for indoor air pollution!
Many houseplants not only clean the air but can also absorb air pollutants. Since plants are nature’s lungs, it makes sense to have them around the house. Indoor plants also help improve the air quality by making it more humid and reducing the amount of dust in the air.
So which would be least helpful in reducing indoor pollution? While there are numerous things you can do to significantly prevent indoor air pollution, adding houseplants is something you can do today to reduce the pollution that currently exists in your home.