If you’re building a new home from the ground up, what considerations should impact design as it relates to air quality?
Routinely cleaning gutters and emptying your dryer’s lint trap can help keep your house and its appliances in tip-top shape, but maintaining good indoor air quality should also be part of every homeowner’s maintenance checklist. The next time you’re planning out your household to-dos, add these six air safety tune-ups to the list.
As the temperature increases, so does the desire to throw open the windows and let the fresh air in. Before you do, remove window screens for a thorough cleaning with a garden hose and/or vacuum, which will prevent all that build-up and gunk that screens collect from blowing into your home.
Even if you don’t use your chimney often, you should still have it professionally inspected and swept annually. Neglected maintenance of the flues can lead to a build-up of creosote—a black tar pollutant that can stink up your house—especially in the summertime when humidity levels are higher.**
When it comes to the cleanliness of your home’s air, your HVAC system is quite possibly the most important appliance you own. Along with annual checkups to prevent problems before they occur, switch out the filter at least every three months to ensure ideal airflow.
If you have some bigger home maintenance plans on the to-do list, take steps necessary to protect the quality of your indoor air. Whether you’re painting or knocking down walls, following best practices—such as properly ventilating the house and wearing a dust mask—is a must.
Talk to your contractor about your HVAC system options, and consider adding a whole-home air filtration unit to your overall system. The EPA recommends air cleaners that remove particles, such a high-efficiency mechanical filter, and says to avoid using air cleaners that work by generating ozone, which can increase the pollution in your home.**** Once your system is installed, use only the highest-quality air filters and replace them regularly to make sure your home’s air quality stays in peak condition throughout the many years you’re enjoying your home.