It may shock you to learn that approximately 119 million Americans live with polluted air. Most of us are aware that air pollution is a serious issue, but many people don’t consider how it can affect them. The truth is that you could be at risk even in your own home.
There are many indoor air pollutants that can adversely affect your health. We’ve put together a list of dirty facts about the four most common. Let’s explore what you should know.
1. Stove and Heater Emissions
Many people are unaware that the smoke from a wood stove, heater, or similar appliance can be hazardous to their health. These often burn fossil fuels like oil, natural gas, wood, or coal.
These materials give off harmful chemicals as they burn. They often contain sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides.
Even in small amounts, they can be harmful. Using stoves or heating devices in rooms with poor ventilation can lead to poor indoor air quality.
2. Carbon Monoxide (CO)
This is an odorless, colorless gas produced from burning fossil fuels. Outdoors, carbon monoxide is rarely an issue. In confined spaces, it can quickly lead to serious problems.
When carbon monoxide accumulates in the bloodstream, it prevents oxygen from reaching the heart and brain. You can minimize the presence of CO by ensuring your appliances are properly ventilated and connected to your home’s exterior.
This is one of the most concerning air pollutants. Asbestos is commonly found in insulation and flooring materials. Healthcare settings have a particularly high chance of asbestos exposure, but it can also occur in homes.
The presence of asbestos isn’t inherently dangerous. However, asbestos fibers can be released into the air when material is damaged or disturbed. Long-term inhalation of asbestos fibers has been linked to lung cancer and mesothelioma.
This occurs as a result of inflammation and scarring. Homes that are old or poorly maintained carry the most risk.
A professional can inspect your property and provide insight. Call someone as soon as possible if you suspect the presence of asbestos.
4. Biological Pollutants
These are living organisms like viruses, bacteria, and mold. Exposure can lead to disease or illness.
There are many sources of biological pollutants. Some of the most common are pollen from plants, animal dander, and contaminated air handling systems. Mold is an especially concerning pollutant.
Its growth often goes unnoticed due to it favoring dark and damp areas. Prolonged mold exposure can lead to respiratory distress. This is especially true if you don’t regularly change your AC unit’s air filter.
People with asthma are at a greater risk of negative consequences. Most homes have biological pollutants, but they often don’t cause issues. Small amounts typically aren’t hazardous.
If you begin to notice unexplained fatigue, shortness of breath, dizziness, or a musty smell, investigate your home for biological pollutants.
Don’t Overlook These Dirty Facts
The dirty facts in this list might seem hard to accept, but it’s important to understand the possible dangers of indoor air pollutants. If you worry that you have air pollutants in your home, take action as soon as possible. The right professional can ensure your home stays safe.
At Bowersox Air Conditioning & Heating, our team is committed to providing the best results. We’re available 24/7, even on holidays. Get a free quote today to see how we can help.