Did you know that indoor air is roughly five times worse than outdoor air?
Unfortunately, some people don’t pay much attention to indoor air quality (IAQ), until someone gets sick.
Poor indoor air quality has been associated with various respiratory problems and can affect a person’s quality of life.
These days, with many people stuck at home due to the pandemic, having clean indoor air is of utmost importance.
Fortunately, there are inexpensive and easy ways to improve indoor air quality, thanks to some traditional cleaning tools and modern equipment.
5 Simple Steps to Improve Indoor Air Quality
First things first. When it comes to improving indoor air quality, these are the three basic strategies to remember:
This strategy is said to be the most effective and cost-efficient solution in terms of indoor air quality improvement. The main objective is easy: target the root causes of air pollutants.
With this strategy, the aim is to increase the amount of outdoor air entering the room. There are different ways to allow the outdoor air coming indoors such as:
- natural ventilation (open doors and windows)
- mechanical approach (use of heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system)
- infiltration process
There are different air cleaners available on the market ranging from typical tabletop air purifiers to advanced air cleaning systems.
Although this approach may be effective in removing particles, air cleaners do not eliminate gaseous pollutants.
With these strategies in mind, here are our five tips for achieving a cleaner, healthier indoor air:
1. Do Not Smoke Indoors
Don’t allow someone to smoke inside your house, especially if you have kids at home or someone with a respiratory problem.
One cigarette is packed with around 200 poisons. When these poisons are released into the air, the surrounding environment will not only smell bad, it will also become highly toxic.
Besides, smoke residue can linger in walls, carpets, curtains and furniture for months or years!
Even ventilating systems are not safe from this toxic air pollutant. And that is why smoking indoors can lead to poor air quality.
These quick tips can help you eliminate the unpleasant smell of indoor smoke odors:
- Empty all ashtrays and dispose of cigarette butts properly.
- Allow natural ventilation by opening all windows as many as possible.
- To increase air circulation, turn on the fans facing the windows or doors.
- Sprinkle a pinch of baking soda on fabric-covered surfaces before using a vacuum cleaner.
- Put air-purifying plants in specific corners of your house to help absorb the harmful chemicals coming from cigar smoke.
- Wash all your curtains, sheets and other fabric items on a sunny day for a completely dry result.
- Clean the air ducts to remove any smoke residue.
2. Re-evaluate Your Paint
As mentioned earlier, VOCs are one of the top indoor air quality pollutants. These compounds are released as gases from certain types of solids and gases at room temperature.
VCOs can be found almost everywhere – in wood preservatives, building materials, aerosol sprays and paints. They can also be hazardous and may lead to short-term and long-term health issues.
If your paint is giving off a strong smell or is making you feel unwell, we strongly suggest a paint makeover!
When shopping for paints, make sure to look for non-toxic varieties with the following features:
- Labelled with “Low VOC” or “Zero VOC”
- Water-based and made of natural raw ingredients
- Odorless and eco-friendly
Although these paints may still contain VOCs (but at a very low level), they’re still considered as better, safer alternatives to toxic paints.
3. Purify Home Naturally
Air fresheners can come in handy whenever you want to banish indoor odors in an instant. But these so-called air fresheners don’t provide a safe and long-term solution to improve indoor air quality.
Aerosol sprays and other commercial fragrances contain chemicals that can be harmful to your health, especially for asthma sufferers.
If you want to get rid of an unpleasant smell using fragrances, you can always count on the natural methods.
We’ve searched the Internet for the top natural air fresheners, and here’s what we’ve collected:
As the name implies, these plants thrive best indoors. With their ability to receive carbon dioxide, release oxygen, and absorb toxic air pollutants, this natural air freshener deserves the top spot.
Check out some indoor plants that NASA Research recommends because of their amazing air-purifying effects: Aloe Vera, Chrysanthemum, Spider Plant, Snake Plant, Peace Lily, English Ivy, Bamboo Palm, and Azalea.
Not all candles are created equal, others are unique on its way just like the beeswax candles.
Made of 100% natural ingredients, beeswax candles improve indoor air quality by releasing negative ions to expel the positive ions carried by common air pollutants.
When it comes to essential oils, you can try different strategies to make indoors smelling fresh and improve air quality.
Using the essential oils of your choice, you can opt for homemade oil diffusers or homemade air freshening spray. Essential oils are also cost-effective as one bottle can last up to one year.
Odorless and highly absorptive, bamboo charcoal has built a reputation for being one of the most powerful air purifiers.
It reduces air contaminants by absorbing unpleasant odors, removing allergens and toxic air pollutants, eliminating bacteria and dehumidifying air.
In other countries, hardwood charcoal is also a popular choice to help purify the air.
4. Keep Your Floors Squeaky Clean
Floors can easily accumulate almost everything imaginable – food crumbs, allergens (such as your pet’s fur), moisture, you name it! And that is why it’s essential to keep them sparkling clean on a regular basis.
However, not all floors are the same. For this reason, you need to find out the best cleaning method for every flooring type. But not worry, we’ve got you covered:
If you don’t have a steam cleaner at home, you can still make your carpeted floors and stairs looking superbly clean.
Deep cleaning for carpet flooring can be achieved with the help of warm water, brushing materials, and natural cleaning agents like vinegar and baking soda.
For the stained concrete floor, sweep up the dirt and use an all-purpose cleaner to easily remove the stain.
To get rid of oil and grease, using a cat litter can help. For heavy cleaning, a sponge mop and a heavy-duty floor cleaner are recommended.
If your ceramic floors are unglazed, you do not need to use abrasive cleaners.
An all-purpose cleaner, with a mop and dry cloth, will do its job. Once a year, make sure to strip the unglazed ceramic tile without skipping the washing part.
For this type of flooring, you may use different floor cleaning products.
It can be the water and all-purpose cleaner combination or half-gallon water mixed with 1 cup fabric softener and self-polishing liquid wax.
Just like unglazed ceramic tiles, marble tiles must be stripped occasionally.
If your wood flooring is not treated with polyurethane, avoid using water to prevent any possible damages on the woods’ surfaces.
To be safe, only use a floor cleaner formulated for wood flooring together with a soft mop to maintain the floors’ shiny, clean finish.
Floors that are free from dust and other impurities can make any room smell good. However, if you need a little help in cleaning and maintaining a large room area, going for a home cleaning service is also a good decision.
5. Clean Your Air Conditioner Regularly
Air conditioners produce cool, fresh air by drying and refreshing the indoor air, helping to remove indoor impurities and purify the air. However, without proper maintenance, air conditioners can be troublesome.
Make sure to clean and replace the filters regularly to keep your air conditioner running smoothly and also to avoid potential health problems.
The filters are mainly responsible for removing and filtering solid contaminants like pollen, smoke, allergens and other dirt invisible to our naked eye.
To get the best air-conditioning experience possible, it’s extremely important to keep your AC’s filters dust-free, preferably every two weeks.
Be it an indoor space at home or at work, you deserve clean, fresh air. If you think your indoor air quality needs a boost, consider signing up for a Heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) maintenance.
HVAC System is a high-quality and comprehensive solution for improved indoor air quality. In these crucial times, staying at home is key to guarding your health. Keep your indoor air invisibly clean.