Here in Las Vegas, NV, homeowners face a silent epidemic of poor indoor air quality. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the air inside your home can be two to five times dirtier than the outdoor air. Luckily, there are solutions for many common indoor air quality problems. The key is to spot the signs of poor air quality early. With that in mind, here are 10 ways to spot poor indoor air quality.
1. Respiratory Problems and Allergies
The most common sign of poor air quality in a home is when its inhabitants start showing signs of respiratory problems or allergies. If you or anyone in your home finds themselves coughing, wheezing, or having difficulty breathing in your home, poor indoor air quality could be the culprit. Indoor air quality is likely the problem if the symptoms subside when you leave the home. The same thing goes for allergy symptoms. If you or anyone in your home experiences itchy eyes, a scratchy throat, or begins sneezing more often at home than in the outdoors, poor air quality could be to blame.
2. Excessive Dust Buildup
Another sign that could alert you to an indoor air quality problem in your home is excessive dust buildup. It’s normal for your home to need dusting roughly every two weeks. But if your home has noticeable dust buildup on its surfaces sooner than that, it’s a sign of an air quality problem. Remember, the dust that accumulates on the surfaces of your home starts out in the air. Your HVAC system’s air filter can help filter some of those particulates out of the air you breathe. You just have to remember to routinely change your filter to maintain healthy indoor air.
3. Frequent Headaches
If you or anyone in your home suffers from frequent headaches, poor indoor air quality may be to blame. This is because high levels of certain volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in your home’s air can irritate and inflame your sinus passages. The result is persistent headaches, often accompanied by fatigue and inflammation. VOCs may get into your home’s air by way of fresh paint, household cleaners, disinfectants, and adhesives. Your home may even end up with high levels of VOCs after you purchase new furniture due to the off-gassing that occurs.
Suffering from insomnia or persistent sleep disruptions can be inconvenient, but did you know this can occur from exposure to poor indoor air quality? Multiple studies have found that certain kinds of airborne pollutants, particularly fine particulate pollution (PM2.5), may affect your ability to sleep soundly.
5. Unpleasant Odors
One of the most common signs of poor indoor air quality is the presence of unusual or unpleasant odors in your home. These can result from a variety of air quality issues, ranging from mold growth in your home to the presence of mildew or chemicals in your air. In many cases, unpleasant odors aren’t just an annoyance but may also have an impact on the health of everyone in your home.
6. High Humidity
The air in Las Vegas is typically quite dry, but that doesn’t mean that indoor air is always the same. If your home suffers from poor air circulation or has an air conditioning system that isn’t being maintained properly, there is the potential that you may end up with abnormally high indoor humidity. High indoor humidity represents an indoor air quality problem you shouldn’t ignore. Humid air can foster microbial growth in your home, which will damage its air quality. Ideally, you want the humidity in your home to stay between 30% and 50% at all times.
7. Frequent Illness
Just as high humidity can damage your home’s air quality, so can low humidity. Instead of making it easier for microbes to grow in your home, it can help transmit airborne viruses more easily. So, if you notice your family members catching colds or getting sick quite frequently, you might have an indoor air quality problem.
8. Unexplained Rashes
Did you know that certain types of airborne pollutants can cause skin irritation and rashes? So, if you or anyone in your home develops issues like eczema or hives, your air quality could be the problem. One recent study even linked wildfire smoke with an increased likelihood of developing dermatitis. And given the rising prevalence of wildfires, this is likely to be a problem that Las Vegas homeowners will need to remain vigilant about going forward.
9. Frequently Dirty HVAC Filters
In the average home, you’ll need to replace your HVAC filters roughly every one to three months. However, if you notice that your HVAC air filters get excessively dirty before their replacement interval, you may have an air quality problem. Although your HVAC filter catching and trapping dirt and dust is a good thing, there are limits to what it can handle. So, if your air filter gets visibly dirty, it’s a safe bet that there’s quite a bit of pollution still circulating in your home’s air. Before you try to solve the problem by purchasing an HVAC filter with a higher MERV rating, be careful. If you install such a filter, you may impair your HVAC’s ability to properly circulate air through your home, which might make your air quality problems even worse.
10. Hot and Cold Spots
Finally, the presence of hot and cold spots inside your home may be a warning sign that you have an indoor air quality problem. This is because hot and cold spots happen when your home’s HVAC system can’t circulate enough air to reach every part of your home. Aside from making you less comfortable, this also means your HVAC isn’t filtering all of the air inside your home when it runs. That can lead to stagnant, polluted air. Of course, if the problem is the result of a malfunctioning HVAC system, repairs and maintenance will help. You should also have your air quality tested. This provides you with important insight into what kind of particulates and contaminants you’re actually dealing with. Your home might need more than a simple HVAC repair to solve the problem.
Indoor Air Quality Experts in Las Vegas
If you suspect that your Las Vegas home has an indoor air quality problem, BEST Air Conditioning Plumbing Repair can help. We offer expert indoor air quality testing that can help you identify the pollutants in your home’s air. Once we’ve zeroed in on the problem, we can help you solve it. We offer indoor air quality solutions like humidifiers, air filters, UV lights, and CO detectors. We’ll design the perfect system to correct your air quality problem and install it for you. We also offer comprehensive HVAC services, including installation, repair, and maintenance. And we can also handle your home’s plumbing needs as well.
If your Las Vegas home has an air quality problem, call the experts at BEST Air Conditioning Plumbing Repair for help right away.