Air Quality in the Home: The Issues and How to Solve Them


When you think about air pollution, you might envision huge factories with smokestacks belching who-knows-what into the air, vehicles with visible exhaust coming from the back, or chimneys sending up plumes of grey smoke.

While these are definitely real examples of nasty air pollution, and they are definitely not things you want to breathe in, you might be surprised to learn that the inside of your home is also prone to an air pollution issue.

As for the common offenders and how to go about getting rid of them, check out the following:

Radon, Carpets and Fireplaces—Oh My!

There are a number of sources of air pollution in the home. For instance, if you just had new carpet installed, the material can emit volatile organic compounds, or VOCs. If you regularly use glues or adhesives as part of craft or other work around the house, they also emit VOCs into the air. Equipment like your fireplace, gas heater, wood stove and gas range can emit carbon monoxide. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, this poisonous gas causes more than 400 deaths a year in our country, as well as more than 20,000 emergency room visits. Radon is another hazard in the home; you can’t see or smell the radioactive gas, but it can definitely cause health issues. It can get into the home via well water or if it’s present in the soil, radon can enter through cracks in the foundation.

Start with Source Control

While the aforementioned information may be alarming, please know that there are solutions for all of these potential indoor air pollutants. You do not have to live in fear of odorless gases creeping around and harming you and your family; you can take tangible steps, starting right now, to eliminate these toxins from your home. According to the EPA, the best place to start is to eliminate individual sources of pollution or reduce their emissions. If you have a gas stove, call in a professional to check it for any gas leaks and make sure it has the least amount of emissions possible. If it has been some time since the chimney has been cleaned, hire a chimney sweep to thoroughly clean it and ensure that the flues are not blocked.

Think About Ventilation

Another effective way to combat indoor air pollution is with proper ventilation. After new carpet is installed, keep the windows open for a few days and really let the rooms air out. When using glue, adhesive, paint or anything else with an odor, run fans and also crack open the windows.

Invest in an Air Cleaner

While you can’t scrub the air with soap and water, you can clean it with the help of an indoor air treatment system. For instance, the Atmosphere Sky Air Treatment System from Amway provides a top-performing HEPA air purifier that works hard at removing not only contaminants but also allergens from your home’s air. You can like the Amway Facebook page to learn more about the company’s other air purification products like filters, as well as get updates on air quality and the best practices to improve it. The Amway air filter also has wheels so you can easily move it from room to room, and it can also tackle mildew and pet odors.

While indoor air pollution can come from a number of sources, all of them can be dealt with in one way or another. By knowing the biggest risk factors and then taking the steps to contain them, the air you breathe inside your home every day should be fresh and clean.