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  • How to Protect Your Indoor Air from Outdoor Construction

    Leave construction pollution at the door with these tips for keeping dust, debris and fumes out of your home.

    We can’t always control the construction around us—or the airborne particles it kicks up. Here’s how to keep your indoor air clean if construction is adding especially large amounts of particles, like dust and vehicle exhaust, into outdoor air.

    You can’t always control the construction taking place around you—and the airborne particles these projects kick up—but there are steps you can take to minimize the impact to your home’s indoor air quality.

    • Keep doors and windows closed

      Natural ventilation is important when it comes to dispersing indoor air pollutants, but if the air outside is being compromised by construction nearby, cracking that window or door could do more harm than good. Instead, wait until construction has wrapped up for the day, then air out your home at night.

      Repair any cracks

      Cracks and gaps around windows and doors can cost you extra energy and money over time, not to mention allow outside construction pollutants to infiltrate your home. Walk through your house to see if you can spot any obvious problem areas, then apply caulk or weather-stripping to prevent future leaks.1

      Seal up the fireplace

      Similar to open windows and doors, your fireplace chimney offers another entry point for potentially harmful pollutants to make their way into your home.1 As construction season picks up in your area, make sure your fireplace damper is closed.

      Check your AC settings

      On hot days, sometimes a fan just doesn’t cut it and you have to run the AC to cool your house down. Before you do, check whether your unit has a fresh-air intake vent. It’ll be a vent on the outside of the house with a screen covering the entry point. If you have one, keep it closed — this will prevent air being drawn in from the construction site outdoors.2

      Use an air purifier

      When your HVAC’s air filter is routinely changed according to the manufacturer’s schedule, it’s effective at removing unwanted particles from your home’s air supply. However, during periods of increased pollution—such as nearby construction—you might want to consider adding a room air purifier to your air cleanup brigade. Filtrete™ Air Purifiers freshen the air in individual rooms and with a True HEPA filter, can capture 99.97% of airborne particles.* Take it a step further and consider a Filtrete™ Smart Air Purifier, which automatically monitors and purifies your home’s air when it senses a quality issue, sending real-time air quality information to your Filtrete™ Smart App via Bluetooth®.

      Avoid candles and air fresheners

      Construction sites come with a lot of heavy machinery giving off odorous exhaust fumes. As unpleasant as the smell may be, now is not the time to try and cover up the scent with candles or aerosol air fresheners, as those can create more pollution inside your home—especially if you’re keeping windows and doors closed. One simple solution is a Filtrete™ Whole House Air Freshener, which attaches to your HVAC air filter to distribute nature-inspired fragrances (think: Citrus Zest, Lavender and Linen Breeze) throughout your home.

      Leave shoes at the door

      Whether it’s your neighbor building an addition to their home or a new coffee shop going up near your office, there may be times you need to be in close proximity to the construction site. If you notice you’re frequently walking through a layer of dust and debris, make sure to leave your shoes at the door when you get home to keep those particles from being tracked inside.

      *As small as 0.3 microns from the air passing through the filter media. Initial efficiency value.


      1. https://www.energy.gov/energysaver/weatherize/air-sealing-your-home
      2. https://www.airnow.gov/aqi/aqi-basics/extremely-high-levels-of-pm25/

      Related Reads

      1. Protect Your Air While Painting Your Walls
      2. 5 Ways to Improve Air Quality While Remodeling