by Karen Bates
(last updated May 20, 2019)
Your home is a place where you like to relax, have fun with family and friends, and feel safe and secure. Ideally, your home is somewhere that you can go to unwind. But even though your home may appear to be safe and clean, there might be something going on that you aren't seeing.
Air quality is an issue both outside and inside of your home. Although you probably don't give too much thought to the air in your home, you spend a lot of time breathing this air and if it isn't clean, you could be getting sick. Many health issues can be linked to poor air quality indoors, and particles in the air can be responsible for symptoms such as asthma attacks, headaches, allergies, and other health problems.
There are many causes of poor air quality in the home, and your house may have one or several adding contaminants to the air. Harsh chemicals, mold and mildew, dust mites, animal dander, asbestos, and smoke are just some of the sources of indoor air pollution that can cause health problems. Although, in many cases, you can eliminate or reduce these sources, you may still end up dealing with some degree of air contamination indoors.
One way that you can help reduce the amount of pollution circulating in your indoor air is to choose a good air filter for your heating and air conditioning system. Many homes have a place in the furnace to install one of these air filters, and by changing or washing it regularly you can help lower the amount of contaminants you breathe in.
There are different kinds of air filters for your home, each working in a unique way to remove particles from the air. Electrostatic air filters use static electricity to clean the air that passes through. Air filters that are pleated use folded material to capture more air contaminants. HEPA, or High Efficiency Particulate Air, filters are well-known air filters that are capable of removing a very high percentage of allergens from the air. These various types of filters could each work well to help remove air particles from the air.
Once you have installed an air filter in your furnace, be sure to change or wash it as recommended in the manufacturer's instructions. Any filter can lose effectiveness when left too long without care or replacement. Most filters should be changed at least once a month.
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