Don’t Suffer Through Poor Indoor Air Quality This Winter
Winter air doesn't have to be bad for you!
Written by CW Suter
Air Quality furnace Health
Winter: The Perfect Time to Focus on Indoor Air Quality
Frigid temperatures will probably be sticking around for the foreseeable future, and that means that most of us will be confined to the indoors. Since you’ll be breathing more indoor air than those warm summer months, now is the perfect time to focus on indoor air quality.
How to Maintain Healthy Indoor Winter Air Quality:
Clean Ceiling Fan Blades
It’s simple, really – dusty ceiling fans circulate dust. We encourage you to use nontoxic chemicals to clean your ceiling fan blades. In winter, ventilation is typically less and the chemical fumes can stay inside the home for longer periods of time. Nontoxic chemicals are great for indoor air quality.
Money Saving Tip: While you’re cleaning the blades, and if you haven’t already, reverse the direction of your ceiling fan so it turns clockwise. Doing so will allow warm air to circulate throughout your home, and in turn may allow you to shave a few degrees off of your thermostat temperature.
Schedule a Duct Cleaning
The places you can’t see are ones you need to worry about the most when it comes to dust and allergens. A significant amount of debris moves through your HVAC system each year (about 40 lbs. of dust for a six bedroom home) and a lot of it will become trapped on the walls of your ducts. A number of negative consequences can result from dirty ducts, and a decline in air quality is probably the most obvious. Every time the blower for heater or AC is turns on, a heavy concentration of air pollutants will be circulated into your home. Also, dirty ducts place a strain on the on the air flow from the heater and air conditioner. That additional stress causes a rise in utility bills, and the debris inside the ducts can enter the HVAC cabinet. This can lead to damaged motors.
Clean Your HVAC Vents and Registers
Vents get dusty, and cleaning them can significantly cut down on the amount of dust circulating through your home. We suggest taking each register in your home out of the floor and dusting it off with a rag. For those filthy registers, a good scrubbing with soap and water should do the trick.
Filter replacements may need to be done more frequently during the winter months. People and pets are spending more time in doors and more skin cells and hair are potentially causing your filter to fill up faster.
Invest in an Air Filtration System
If you’re looking to invest in your indoor air quality, an air filtration system should be the first item on your list. Whole house air filtration systems filter our microscopic particles that could be flowing through your HVAC filters. But make no mistake, not all air filtration systems are created equal. Our advice is to look for whole house systems that remove the following:
Allergy aggravating particles
Check out our article Choosing an Air Purification System for more information.
Install UV Lights
HVAC UV lights do not capture particles, but they do a great service to your indoor air quality. In 2012, researchers at Duke University Medical Center used UV Radiation to almost eliminate drug resistant bacteria in 50 hospital rooms. The number of bacteria was reduced by more than 97%.
HVAC UV lights:
Control bacteria and mold
Reduce colds and flus (germs are not recirculated through HVAC system)
Remove VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds)
Prevents algae group and in doing so, reduces clogging of condensate drain lines.
If you have questions about professional duct cleaning, air filtration systems, or anything else HVAC related, contact us. If you’re in need of a duct cleaning, now is the time to schedule one. Through the month of January, 2018 professional duct cleaning is 25% off.