Indoor air quality is becoming increasingly important as people spend more and more time indoors. Studies have shown that the average American spends 90% or more of his or her time indoors, and that indoor air may be 2-5 times more polluted than outdoor air.
The single most effective way to reduce indoor air pollution is to eliminate the source. This involves a two step process of identifying and then eliminating the sources of indoor air pollution. Other less effective ways to reduce indoor air pollution include improving ventilation and cleaning the air by filtering or purifying.
Identifying the Source of Pollution
The first step to reducing indoor air pollution is determining the source of the pollutants. The investigation may take on different forms depending on the specific situation and the problems involved.
Frequently, a thorough visual inspection is most effective for identifying mold, asbestos, lead, dust, and other pollutants. Other times, air sampling is the appropriate choice. Air sampling may be the best method when the indoor pollutants of concern are volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or other chemicals, especially those that do not have an odor, such as carbon monoxide.
Eliminating the Source of Pollution
Once the sources of indoor air pollution have been identified, the final step is to develop and implement a plan to eliminate them. This may be as simple as cleaning mold off of affected furniture, replacing toxic cleaning products with non-toxic products, or limiting smoking to outdoors only.
Some projects are more involved, and may require multiple steps such as replacing carpet with a low or no VOC flooring option, cleaning mold in a crawl space, sealing and cleaning ductwork and air handlers, or radon mitigation. No matter the scope of the project, eliminating sources of indoor air pollution will have a positive impact on the health of home and building occupants.
How Branch Environmental Can Help
Visit our resource for air quality improvement to learn more about factors that affect the air you breathe inside your home. At Branch Environmental, we provide comprehensive solutions that address the air quality inside your home.
Call us today at (706) 310-0097 if you would like to schedule an indoor air quality inspection or simply have questions regarding indoor air pollution.