Good indoor air quality is crucial for comfort and health. Knowing and controlling pollutants indoors can help lessen indoor health issues. Indoor air pollutants’ health effects may be immediate or long-term. Indoor air quality concerns may be due to pollution sources releasing particles or gasses into the air. High humidity and temperature levels may increase some pollutant concentrations.
Poor ventilation may also increase pollutant levels in your home or office by letting in insufficient outdoor air for diluting indoor emissions and not carrying air pollutants out of your space. Understanding the symptoms of unhealthy indoor air can help solve the underlying concerns before escalating. This article outlines five signs of poor indoor air quality.
1. Unpleasant odors
Unpleasant odors are usually due to stagnant air, which could be a sign of biological growth resulting from dust, dander, and pollen build-up, or high humidity from spaces that aren’t the air cleaning or filtration they deserve. They may be caused by moisture in your AC, refrigerant leak, poor ventilation, dirty or clogged air filters, dust on the furnace’s heat exchanger, bacteria growth, and more. If you experience unpleasant odors in your home, a professional air conditioner service can help solve the issue.
2. Difficulty breathing and coughing
Difficulty breathing and coughing are among the most prevalent symptoms of poor indoor air quality. Lack of adequate ventilation may result in particle concentration in the air, causing these respiratory issues. Poor air circulation reduces fresh oxygen in your space. This means you’ll end up breathing dirty, carbon dioxide-filled air, leading to respiratory problems and other complications.
3. Skin irritation and dryness
VOCs or airborne chemicals are odors and gasses from toxins in daily cleaning products, carpets, furniture, paints, wallpapers, and mattresses that impact indoor air quality. These chemicals can damage your skin’s protective layer, causing dry skin, inflammation, and irritation. The presence of radon in your indoor air can also cause skin damage. Poor indoor air quality can trigger skin conditions like eczema.
Abrupt indoor temperature changes may result in itchy skin. When your home’s humidity levels are low, the air inside is also dry, increasing the likelihood of drawing moisture from your skin. This may worsen eczema. Improving indoor air quality is the first step toward controlling skin diseases like eczema. You should also monitor indoor air quality and track air pressure, humidity, and temperature to be alerted when problems occur.
4. Hot and cold spaces
If indoor air isn’t circulating properly, you’ll experience hot and cold spaces in your house. This could be due to your HVAC system not handling the air in your home correctly, or the system is too small to sufficiently cater to your space. A poorly maintained AC or clogged ducts could also cause this problem.
If your home’s temperatures aren’t even, it could also mean uneven filtration. Getting your HVAC system professionally assessed can help determine the exact cause of hot and cold spaces in your home to find the right solution for proper filtration and even temperatures.
5. Dust build-up
Excessive dust in your home could mean that your air filters let in airborne dirt and dust. Leaky ducts and poor humidity levels may result in dust build-up. Vacuuming regularly, changing your filters, sealing your windows and doors, and running an air purifier can help improve indoor air quality.