Increasing Air Quality in Your Home
The air you’re breathing in your home can actually be more polluted than the air outside. April not only provides a great time for spring cleaning but also is the home of Air Quality Awareness Week (4/27-5/01) and Earth Month.
Keeping your floors fresh is a great start to eliminating household dust and allergens.
Try a vacuum with a HEPA filter, a type of mechanical air filter that can trap harmful particles such as pollen, pet dander and dust mites. Be sure to regularly clean all wood floors, carpets and rugs. Also consider the amount of dirt and other pollutants that can come in on household members and guests’ shoes. A doormat can help immensely, but also consider a “no shoes in the house” policy to leave these unwanted allergens at the door.
Allergens can also trap themselves in bedding and drapes. It’s important to change bedding regularly and wash your sheets in hot water to fully eliminate any traces. Keep in mind, newly purchased fabrics can retain chemicals from the manufacturing process so it’s a good idea to give them a wash before using. Also wipe down and vacuum couches and chairs as part of your cleaning routine.
There are several plants that can help purify the air in your home. Aloe is easy to grow and loves the sun (a great choice for a sunny kitchen window). Not only can its presence help clear chemicals produced from cleaning products, the gel inside can help heal cuts and burns. A spider plant can help battle carbon monoxide, is safe for pets, and is extremely low maintenance. See a full list of plants that help purify from Mother Nature Network.
Did you know that in a standard home, up to 40 pounds of dust is created annually? Though everyday living we generate contaminants and air pollutants, which are pulled into the heating and cooling system and re-circulated. Additionally, contaminants in the system can require it to work harder, wasting 25-40% of the energy. It may be a good time to consider an air duct cleaning by a professional.
What do you do to increase the quality of air in your living space?
We’d love to hear from you in the comments or on Facebook + Twitter.
More on Air Quality Awareness Week: http://1.usa.gov/1aXlrfn
Every Month is Earth Month: http://bit.ly/1I6RTpU