Maintaining healthy indoor air quality is challenging during winter months in Edmonton. People needing to get through cold climates spend plenty of time inside their homes. The reduced ventilation is just one of the reasons why you experience a poor indoor environment during the winter months.
How does winter affect indoor air quality? To keep the cold out, buildings are made increasingly airtight with enhanced insulation and efficient doors and windows. When you minimize the amount of warm air escaping your home or office, you have to breathe a significant amount of recirculated air which often contains pollen, pollutants, and odors. With the little space to escape your building, unhealthy elements in the air keep cycling through the building throughout the winter, increasing the concentration of contaminants in the air.
While some of the health issues related to bad indoor air are treatable and temporary, prolonged exposure can lead to more serious health issues such as respiratory conditions, cancer, and heart disease. Here are some tips for maintaining a healthy air quality in your home or building during winter:
Use humidifiers to fight air dryness
Most people living in Edmonton and across Canada have experienced the feeling of dry, cracked skin and lips. The warm air coming from your furnace isn’t what makes your house dry. The dryness comes from the outside. Air becomes increasingly dry when the temperature dips below 0 ºC. The cold air manages to enter no matter how airtight and well-insulated your home is.
Fortunately, you can use a humidifier, a simple solution to effectively reduce the impact of dry winter air. However, it’s essential to examine air quality in your house before choosing from several options ranging from a whole-house humidifier to small units for individual rooms. The function of humidifiers is to add moisture to the air to reduce the dryness. Make sure to monitor the level of moisture in the air to prevent the humidity from getting too high.
Prevent carbon monoxide poisoning
It becomes inevitable to use heating systems to keep a comfortable indoor environment. While furnaces and other heating systems can produce sufficient heat, they also cause the creation of air pollutants. Carbon monoxide is a by-product of combustion, which interferes with a person’s ability to consume oxygen and causes dizziness, headache, and impaired thinking. Even water heating systems generate carbon monoxide, but their impact is negligible.
To keep your house free of hazardous elements like carbon monoxide, make sure to install heating systems in a professional way. A professional HVAC expert will make sure your heating systems are properly installed and vented. Once installed, don’t forget to maintain them to avoid expensive repairs. A working carbon monoxide detector will help you monitor the quality of air in your house.
Wiping down surfaces, mopping and vacuuming will help remove a considerable amount of pollutants from different places in your house. If you’re not sure how to make your house healthier in the winter, consult a heating and air conditioning expert to get objective advice.