Take small steps to cleaner indoor air

| by Guest Blogger
Take small steps to cleaner indoor air

Photo via Shutterstock

With spring just around the corner, you may feel that your children are better off indoors, far away from those allergy-causing pollens. But wait, did you know that indoor air can be more than twice as much as polluted as outdoor air?  Follow these simple steps to protect your family from the harmful effects of indoor air pollution.

  • Aim for a clean home

Dust and vacuum your home regularly to keep it free of allergens and disease-causing irritants. Mop up the remaining dust with a cloth and plain water. A vacuum cleaner with a high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter, strong suction and rotating brushes will ensure that the dust is not blown back into the air through the exhaust. Include hard-to-reach spots like the loft, the ceiling spans and the top of the refrigerator in your monthly cleaning schedule.

  • Use eco-friendly cleaning products

Minimize your exposure to harmful chemicals by buying eco-friendly, fragrance-free cleaning agents. If you can make your cleaners at home, nothing like it! This link from Good Housekeeping shows you how to make nine efficient cleaners out of common ingredients found in every pantry.

  • Don’t smoke indoors

Tobacco smoke, with thousands of toxins, is the most toxic indoor air pollutant. According to Karin Pacheco, a researcher at Denver’s National Jewish Medical and Research Center, children whose parents smoke have observed to have higher rates of asthma. Even secondhand smoke can increase your risk of developing cancer, or suffering from heart attack and stroke.

  • Change your bedding regularly

An average mattress can contain thousands of dust mites. Vacuum your mattress regularly and wash your sheets and pillows every week to reduce your exposure to these dust mites and other allergens.

  • Clean your air filters regularly

Check and clean the filters in your air conditioning systems regularly for their efficient operation. An electrostatic filter can reportedly remove particles as small as .3 micron.

  • Ensure proper ventilation

As long as the temperature permits, keep the windows of your house open to let in cool, fresh air. While cooking, make sure that the exhaust fan is on to remove grease and vapors from the kitchen air.

  • Place floor mats at all entrances to the house

Cut down on the dust entering your home by placing floor mats at all entryways to the house. Or consider taking your shoes off at the door.

  • Don’t let moisture build up

Water damage and high humidity can cause mold to build up. Repair all leaky taps promptly and use dehumidifiers to keep relative humidity levels less than 60 percent. While showering, don’t forget to switch on the exhaust fans.

  • Pet care

Keep fur and dander at bay by following a regular bath and grooming routine for your pet. As much as it may hurt you, don’t allow your pet to climb on furniture. Restrict their access to bedrooms and the kitchen.

These are just but a few simple steps to make sure that the air you breathe in is clean and healthy. You can also choose from any of these 15 houseplants to give your indoor air quality a green boost. The snake plant, also known as mother-in-law’s tongue, is known to be effective in removing formaldehyde, a regular component of many cleaning and personal care products.

Kurt Jacobson is a surfing enthusiast with a background in real estate. Having moved 10 times in the past 7 years, he thrives on helping others learn from his experiences. When he's not out shredding waves he writes abouthomes forhousehunter.co.

Read more about indoor air quality.


Topics: Going Green, Healthy Homes, Indoor Air Quality, Paint | Low VOC and No VOC, Ventilation

Guest Blogger
These columns are the work of our guest bloggers who want to share their expert green opinions on a range of topics.

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