Improving your Mesa, AZ, home’s indoor air quality this winter will have a tri-fold effect: it makes the air in your home healthier to breathe, improves your overall comfort, and makes it easier for the heating system to heat your home. If you want to enjoy these benefits, use this guide on the top 10 ways to improve indoor air quality during the winter in combination with advice from a certified HVAC technician.
1. Ensure Proper Ventilation
Proper ventilation is particularly important for ensuring good interior air quality. It enables the replacement of filthy, stale indoor air with clean air from outside. This aids in the diluting of indoor contaminants such as allergens, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and carbon dioxide. Proper ventilation is also important for avoiding toxic gas buildup, like radon and carbon monoxide, and even improves the safety and health of a building’s inhabitants, particularly their respiratory systems.
2. Seal All Air Leaks
If your home has any cracks or crevices in its structure, the air outside will make its way into your home. This not only pollutes your home’s air but also makes it harder for your heating system to heat your home as the cold winter air replaces the warm air. Sealing gaps in your home, especially those in your heating system, such as the ductwork, will prevent pollutants from circulating throughout the air. It also helps keep the house at a constant temperature, which cuts down on the use of heating sources and lowers your heating bills.
3. Change the Air Filter
The more you run the furnace, the more it can collect dust, allergies, and other harmful airborne particles. However, the more you run it, the dirtier its filter will get. This is why it’s so important to change the air filter at least once every four to eight weeks during the winter. Not only will this improve indoor air quality, but it will also put less stress on the unit as it filters the air.
4. Maintain Healthy Humidity
The air has moisture in it at all times. During the winter, though, humidity levels drop. This is why your lips get chapped when it’s cold outside. In addition to dry skin, low humidity levels can lead to respiratory issues and an increased susceptibility to infections. Ideally, indoor humidity should range between 30% and 50% to maintain healthy air. Humidifiers and dehumidifiers are useful in striking this balance, but you’re more likely to need a humidifier during the winter because of the low outdoor humidity levels.
In addition to having healthier air to breathe, maintaining ideal humidity levels will help preserve any wooden items, musical instruments, or technological devices that you have in your home.
5. Dust and Vacuum Air Vents
For a better interior atmosphere, particularly during the colder months when dwellings are shut up, regular cleaning and sweeping of the air vents are crucial to indoor air quality. Dust and debris collect in vents over time, preventing proper airflow. These particles can spread throughout the home through the heating system while it is running, which can aggravate respiratory conditions. You can easily avoid those problems and make the air in your home cleaner by regularly cleaning the vents. In addition to improving indoor air quality, this method can also save you money by improving the performance of your heating system.
6. Use Air Purifiers
In the dead of winter, air purifiers are crucial for keeping the interior air as clean as possible. They utilize cutting-edge filtration technology to get rid of allergens and other pollutants in the air. This becomes much more important for houses with tightly enclosed spaces to keep in the heat, which may trap pollutants. Air purifiers with HEPA filters are very effective at removing contaminants as tiny as 0.3 microns from the air. Activated carbon filters work well in certain air purification systems to reduce smells and collect VOCs.
These devices have ongoing purification processes that significantly reduce respiratory irritants, improving the indoor environment for occupants. This is especially helpful in the winter when homeowners frequently close the windows to keep the cold air outside.
7. Insulate the Attic
Improving wintertime indoor air quality largely depends on having an adequately insulated attic. If there isn’t enough insulation, warm air might seep out, leading to uncomfortable temperature swings and drafts. This not only causes the heating system to work harder than normal to heat your home, but it also lets harmful pollutants into your home, compromising its air quality. A properly insulated attic also helps maintain a less moldy interior climate by preventing condensation from forming.
8. Address Necessary HVAC Repairs
There are many moving parts in your heating system. When one of them wears out or becomes damaged, it can impact the well-being of the entire system. Consider the case of faulty ducting. Because of this problem, dust and other debris will spread all around your house, which hurts the quality of the air. Or take, for example, a dirty filter, which harms the air you breathe and causes great strain on the furnace. Addressing necessary HVAC repairs in a timely manner enhances the performance of your system, allowing it to heat your home both evenly and safely, both of which are vital to maintaining good indoor air quality.
9. Invest in Regular Maintenance
Regular maintenance improves indoor air quality in the winter by increasing the efficiency of your heating system. With better efficiency comes better performance, meaning the furnace can better clean the air in your home before circulating it. Most experts recommend furnace maintenance at least once a year in addition to a regular AC maintenance inspection. They also suggest cleaning or changing the air filter once every one to two months to maximize your maintenance efforts.
10. Use Natural Cleaning Products
If you want to improve the quality of the air in your home this winter, switching to all-natural cleaning products is a must. Traditional cleaning products release toxic chemicals into the air because they contain VOCs. The effects of breathing in these contaminants can aggravate respiratory issues. Natural cleansers made from plant-based substances, on the other hand, are usually chemical-free. They clean well without negatively impacting indoor air quality. Additionally, they lessen the possibility of allergic reactions and other skin irritations by reducing your exposure to dangerous chemicals.
Enhancing Indoor Air Quality in Winter
There are more than a few good reasons to improve your home’s indoor air quality. Among the most valuable are enhancing your home’s indoor comfort, decreasing allergies and asthma symptoms, and making it easier for your furnace to keep your home at a warm and comfy temperature. Do you want to help to improve your home’s air quality this winter? Here at Honest Air Conditioning, we also specialize in all things related to heating and AC repair, maintenance, and installation. Give Honest Air Conditioning a call today to learn how you can make your Mesa home a healthier, happier place to live with better indoor air quality.