Residential Air Quality Service, Repair & Installation
The quality of air in your home can be up to five times more polluted than the air outside. With Portland-area residents spending most of their time inside, the effects of poor indoor air quality can dangerous to one’s health. By knowing common sources of indoor air pollution, their effects and when to call a residential air quality specialist, you’ll take strides in keeping your home healthy and comfortable.
Common Residential Air Quality Problems in the Pacific Northwest
- Mold: Humidity is one of the greatest challenges in western Oregon homes. It can be caused by moisture-related issues, the way a building is used or relative humidity levels.
- Carbon monoxide: A tight building envelope is good when it comes to saving energy. Without sufficient ventilation, it can lead to a dangerous buildup of carbon monoxide.
- Chemicals: Products like air fresheners, cleaning products, paint, pesticides, smoke, perfume, hairspray, nail polish and other common household items release chemicals into the air.
- Off-gassing building products: Several items in a home can release gasses into a home, including plywood, particleboard, dryer sheets, acetone, laser printers, wall paint, new carpeting and new furniture.
Troubleshooting Indoor Air Quality Problems
Things that seem like an inconvenience might actually symptoms of air quality issues:
- The house is dustier than usual: If your home has an HVAC system with ductwork, change the air filter. If that doesn’t help, the ductwork might have a leak or need cleaning.
- The home seems more humid than usual: A leak in the ductwork may be to blame. Some HVAC problems can also make a home feel more humid.
- The development of cold- or allergy-like symptoms: Dizziness, nausea, fatigue, difficulty breathing, asthma flare-ups, respiratory ailments, or irritation of the nose, eyes or throat are signs of air quality issues.
- Sick building syndrome: If a member of the household experiences one of the symptoms listed above and feels better after leaving the home, this may be a sign of poor air quality.
- Observation and elimination: Notice if individuals in the home feel sick in certain areas of the home, at certain times of the day or at certain temperatures. Then try different ways to remedy the problem. For example, of an individual feels ill in a bathroom with an air freshener, remove the air freshener. If people feel sick in a stuffy room, open a window to see if symptoms resolve.
When to Call a Specialist about Indoor Air Quality Issues
- You suspect high carbon monoxide levels: High carbon monoxide levels are deadly and can cause dizziness, headaches and fatigue. They resolve with fresh air. Immediately contact an air quality specialist if you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning.
- You suspect a problem with your HVAC equipment or ductwork: If your home seems dustier or more humid than normal or temperatures are uneven, call an HVAC pro to inspect and clean the systems.
- Observation and elimination didn’t work: Hire a Portland HVAC company to perform an air quality evaluation. They’ll pinpoint the problem and offer solutions.
Maintaining Air Quality Systems
Maintaining your air quality systems is as simple as:
- Changing the HVAC filter monthly and the air quality equipment filter as recommended
- Scheduling annual inspections of HVAC and air quality equipment
- Ensuring vents in your home aren’t blocked
- Keeping the areas around HVAC and air quality systems clear
Indoor air quality issues aren’t something you have to face alone. Contact AAA Heating and Cooling and let our specialists restore the health of your home.
Download our checklist to ensure your home has high-quality indoor air:
4 Tips to Improve Your Home's Indoor Air Quality (0 downloads)