Should You Clean the Air in Your Home?
The answer to that question will depend entirely on the condition of the air supply within your house, which only you can be the judge of.
However, one thing is for sure given the current pandemic and the suggested quarantine most Americans are abiding by at the moment, it is worth considering.
Common Air Pollutants
Staying inside your home does not automatically keep you safe from air pollutants.
Americans spend around 90 percent of their time indoors amongst two to five times more air pollutants that are found outdoors.
Some of the factors that make indoor air quality poorer than outdoor air are mold, pollen, dust, and cleaning products.
Six other common harmful pollutants that are often found in indoor environments, including homes and apartments, include:
- Carbon Monoxide (CO)
- Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2)
- Lead Particles
- Secondhand Smoke
The worst of it is that In 2020, all of these pollutants are increasing due to the coronavirus pandemic and its resulting quarantine - a good majority of the country is currently working from home and not going out as frequently as before.
As more of us continue to stay indoors the number of particulate matter is increased and released into the air due to cooking, smoking, and lighting candles and incense.
Particulate matter is no joke and can result in many health issues like heart attacks, irregular heartbeat, and aggravated asthma conditions.
Symptoms of Poor Air Quality
What is the best way to detect if the air quality in your home is poor?
By taking stock of your physical conditions.
If after opening your windows, you get watery or itchy eyes or get a runny nose after playing with your pets, then you can be sure that specific allergens are floating around your house that are causing these symptoms to appear.
Other symptoms that may appear due to air pollutants and allergens lurking inside your home include:
- Sinus Problems (congestion)
- Taste or Smell Issues (abnormalities)
As many of these symptoms also correspond to the coronavirus, it would also be a good idea to seek medical advice while taking measures to purify the air in your home.
If you are already suffering from allergic conditions or lung issues like asthma, you should take extra precautions to keep the air in your home free of pollutants and continue to take medicine prescribed by your doctor for your specific condition.
Purifying the Air in Your Home
There are many ways you can help purify your home’s air supply.
One simple way you can clean the air in your home is to just clean your home.
Since air pollutants often settle on carpets, sheets, and furniture, you should make it a point to vacuum, wipe down surfaces, and clean your sheets regularly.
The following four home air cleaning tips can also be used to purify the air in your house:
Choose Cleaning/Laundry Products Wisely
Chemicals found in many household and laundry products contain allergens that are released into the air when used.
These chemical allergens can cause skin rashes and other physical irritations, so be mindful of where and how often you use them.
Lighter and reduced-chemical products should be used as frequently as possible but stronger and more chemically-laden products can and should be used where heavy disinfecting is a must such as in and around the toilet, within your sinks, and on your doorknobs.
It is all about targeting and limiting chemical products to only those areas in your home where there seems to be a high percentage of allergens floating around in the air.
Know Your Airflow
Keeping track of your home’s heating and cooling systems like windows and ventilators can help you track and redirect your home’s airflow.
As air pollutants often settle down in and around bathroom and kitchen areas, it is important to provide proper ventilation in those places.
This can be done by installing windows within these areas or by purchasing and installing devices that manage and exchange indoor air with outdoor air.
Add Some Plants to Your Home
There are a bunch of indoor plants that have shown to be effective in removing chemicals from the air.
Three of the more popular ones include:
- Aloe Vera
- English Ivy
However, you must be sure to acquire a household-purifying plant from a reputable source so that you don’t get one full of fungi and pests that end up contaminating your home, defeating the purpose of buying the plant in the first place.
One other thing to remember is that while household plants do help in removing pollutants and ozone from the air, they do so in a very slow and mild manner.
In other words, using plants for cleaning your home air flow should be part of your “air-purifying” strategy and not the whole strategy itself.
Get an Air Purifier
Air purifiers are extremely effective in removing allergens and can also help your skin in the process.
These devices push air through a filter which helps remove particles measuring .3 microns in size.
A couple of things you should consider before buying an air purifier are to make sure it is the right size for the space you wish to purify and purchase only those air purifiers that use HEPA filters as they are the most effective filters for snatching pollutants from the air.
There is no need to run air purifiers around the clock, although this type of constant use has shown to give the best results. You can run your air purifier as often as needed and only in those areas you feel that are the most susceptible to allergies and other particulate matter.
Final Word About Coronavirus and Your Home’s Air Supply
While all the steps mentioned above will go a long way to cleaning your home’s indoor air supply, they do not make your home “corona-proof”.
The coronavirus is even smaller than those tiny particles air purifiers are designed to filter out of the air.
However, following the above steps will go a long way to getting rid of many of the allergens found inside your home, as well as help in reducing the chances of coronavirus spreading indoors due to coughing, sneezing, and talking.