How To Keep Air Healthy In Your Home
As we find ourselves spending most of our time at home, it’s important to follow the right protocols for healthier air.
Our experts put together a list of things you can do around your home to keep the air as healthy as possible.
Here’s how to keep your air healthy
Consider adding a germ-killing UV-light to your central air duct
Adding a UV-light to your HVAC system can kill harmful bacteria and airborne pathogens as air circulates through your home. Ask IwantSMART if adding one is appropriate for your unit and home.
Change your air filters regularly
HVAC experts advise examining your air conditioner’s filter once a month to determine if it’s running effectively, having a trained technician clean or replace the filter every 1-3 months. Filters may need more frequent attention if the air conditioner is in constant use, is subjected to dusty conditions, and if you have pets or family members who smoke in the house.
Choose a filter with the right MERV rating for you house
All filters have an efficiency rating to determine its effectiveness at cooling. A Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV rating) is a standard to rate the overall effectiveness of air filters. Filters are given a MERV rating on a scale of 1 to 16 for efficiency, with higher values equating to filtration that prevents more dust particles and airborne contaminants from getting through. Ask your certified IwantSMART.com contractor if a HEPA filter (like the ones used in hospitals) would work for your house.
Make sure your filter is right for your unit
It’s important to know that there are a variety of AC filter types and efficiencies to choose from. Some filters’ efficiency ratings are too high for particular units and can actually have a negative effect on its performance. A filter that is too large or small for your system will block the flow of air. If necessary, ask your IwantSMART HVAC technician about installing a separate filtration system for better air quality.
Install the right humidifier for your house
In the colder temperatures of the fall and winter, less moisture in the air. Moist membranes line our respiratory system – including the nose and throat – that catch dirt, dust, and different harmful airborne pathogens before they make contact with our lungs. Very dry air can lead to a number of uncomfortable side effects: aggravated throat and nose, itchy or flaky skin, tight joints, and even added creaks in your wood floors from improper moisture levels.
Humidity helps block allergens from sensitive areas of our lungs. Purchasing a humidifier will help alleviate irritation so your family can breathe easier and fight infection better. Many humidifiers are now equipped with sensors that will, in essence, control the output depending on the outdoor temperature and moisture level. No more running down to the basement to adjust for condensation on the windows!
Do a deep cleaning to keep dust and allergens at bay
Cleaning your whole house is probably not the way you want to spend your day, but…. since we’re spending more time at home, it’s the perfect time to do a deep clean. If doing the whole house in one day seems unachievable, start by cleaning one room per day. Make sure no stone is left unturned! Thoroughly vacuum, mop, and dust in the nooks and crannies you normally gloss over. Cleaning dirt, dust, and allergens out of your home is essential to breathing in clean air that is healthy for your respiratory system. To minimize the accumulation of dust, consider more high tech options. Electronic whole house air cleaners and ultraviolet light devices in your central air ducts can help maintain a clean environment. Ask a certified IwantSMART.com contractor about additional ways you can keep your air healthy.
Most people assume what we mean by ‘going green’ is to install a higher-efficiency HVAC system to circulate quality air at an overall lower cost. While this is certainly a good idea, we mean “green” in another sense: plants. Plants naturally convert carbon dioxide into oxygen, providing a breath of fresh(er) air! You can fill your home with plants to purify the air efficiently.