Asthma and other breathing-related illnesses are easily made worse by allergens—many of which can be found right in your Pennsylvania home. Of all the places we want to feel safe and breathe easy, home, where we sleep and spend as much as 90 percent of our time, is at the top of that list.
Today’s more energy-efficient homes are tightly sealed to prevent uncontrolled air exchange that brings pollutants and moisture in from the outdoors. This increases home comfort and reduces energy bills but can also hold allergens and pollutants inside the home where they can become more concentrated than they are in the air outside.
Fortunately, there are steps you can take to make your indoor air quality as healthy as possible so your home is an allergy-free zone. Air sealing keeps the majority of outside contaminants from entering your home. It’s also important to maintain your home’s air circulation and ventilation systems to ensure uninterrupted air flow. This prevents indoor air from becoming stale and allergens from recirculating throughout the house. Dehumidifiers are important for moisture control, and changing your filters regularly allows your HVAC unit to operate cleanly and efficiently.
How to Reduce Allergens in Your Home
Along with the steps above, there are more things you can do to reduce specific allergens in your home and to avoid feeling sick when you’re there.
A well-tuned air conditioning unit with clean filters will help keep pollen out of your indoor air. Try to avoid the outdoors in afternoons, when pollen counts are highest.
- Pet Dander
We love our pets, but their hair and dander often do not love us. More frequent vacuuming and highly-efficient air filters will help keep you breathing easy around your furry family members.
Stay on top of moisture in your home with air sealing, good ventilation and a dehumidifier. If you see mildew, be sure to clean it immediately. If you suspect mold issues, call a professional right away to help determine the source and eliminate it as soon as possible.
- Dust Mites
Dust mites are nearly inescapable, but you can greatly reduce their effects with regular vacuuming and dusting. In addition, purchase hypoallergenic covers for your mattresses and pillows and wash all bedding regularly.
Everyone knows about the dangers of smoking, second-hand and now even third-hand smoke, which lingers in sticky particulates on walls and furnishing, has been proven highly toxic as well. Also, avoid using candles or other sources of open flame indoors.
These pests aren’t just gross—they’re a health hazard as well. Air sealing will close tiny cracks that let them in from outdoors. For further insurance, keep your house free of food waste and be sure to cover and seal foods. Keep up with dirty dishes and avoid piles of newspapers or clothing. If you think you have a cockroach problem, call an exterminator.
- Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)
Perfumes and other scented products, such as household cleaners, can release VOCs. These chemicals are also found in paints and varnishes, air fresheners, dry cleaning and many other commonly used products. Be sure to work in well-ventilated areas, keep containers closed and use natural products when possible.
Take Control of Your Indoor Air Quality
At Energy Smart, we believe everyone deserves a safe and healthy home. We can help ensure your indoor air quality is not at risk from outdoor or indoor pollutants. An energy audit is a good place to start, so you can be sure you’re investing in the most effective home improvements. Together, we can give you peace of mind and clear the air to reduce allergens and protect the health of your family.
Clear the air in your home and breathe easier. Contact us or call (717) 258-6574 today to get started.