How Poor Indoor Air Quality Can Affect Your House

At Shumate, we are committed to helping all Atlanta-area residents understand the importance of improving and protecting their homes' indoor air quality. We have shared some common sources of poor indoor air quality on our social media (if you're on Facebook or Instagram, be sure to follow us!), but we wanted to remind you that indoor air quality doesn't just affect you. Read more below about parts of your home that might be suffering from poor indoor air quality and what you can do to help improve your home's indoor air.

Your furry friend has a cough

Did you know that pets can suffer from allergies, too? If you've noticed your dog or cat is coughing or gagging or has difficulty breathing, you should consult with their vet about treatment options. But don't stop there. Your pets, especially if they are mainly living indoors, are signaling that you need to check the indoor air quality of your home. During high pollen counts and poor air quality alerts, keep doors and windows shut and only let your pets outside when they need to. Keep air purifiers running constantly and make sure you dust and wipe down surfaces regularly. It's also important to keep your pets groomed, as they can be trapping and bringing in allergens and irritants on their fur.

You have increased mold growth in your home

Bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms will understandably be temporary sources of excess moisture in your home, but when that moisture becomes more permanent due to lack of draining or drying, that's when you are at risk for damaged indoor air quality. Mold and mildew will quickly grow if given the right conditions, which will in turn damage surfaces in your home like sinks, toilets, and showers. Mold growth can also cause drainage problems within your home's pipes which can lead to a host of other issues. If you're noticing more mold or mildew, make sure your vent fans are running in your home's bathroom, check and regularly replace the air filters in your home's HVAC system, and if moisture retention becomes a constant problem, dehumidifiers might be a helpful tool to keep your home free of mold and mildew.

You are having to replace air filters more often

Your home's HVAC system and air purifier units require regular replacement in order to function properly and efficiently. HVAC filters should be replaced every three months, and air purifier filters are replaced every 6-12 months if they are HEPA filters. If, however, you're noticing that you have to replace those filters sooner than the recommended timing, you should start looking around your home for sources of indoor air pollution. Replacing filters more often is a hassle and an extra expense, but it also means your HVAC system and air purifiers are working harder, which means they will wear out sooner and ultimately need to be replaced prematurely.

Common sources of indoor air pollution include:

  • Fuel-burning combustion appliances

  • Tobacco products

  • Building materials and furnishings as diverse as:

    • Deteriorated asbestos-containing insulation

    • Newly installed flooring, upholstery or carpet

    • Cabinetry or furniture made of certain pressed wood products

  • Products for household cleaning and maintenance, personal care, or hobbies

  • Central heating and cooling systems and humidification devices

  • Excess moisture

*List from EPA's Introduction to Indoor Air Quality

If you're worried about the indoor air quality in your home, Shumate can help. Shumate is certified by the International Indoor Air Quality Commission, an independent certification body for professionals in the indoor air quality field. Our certified technicians will perform a thorough evaluation of your home's air quality and help you come up with a game plan to improve your home's indoor air quality and keep you and your loved ones breathing easy! Call us today at 678-SHUMATE or schedule online.

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