Indoor air quality in the winter season is a significant factor due to the increment of air pollution in domestic areas. Because of the weather during the end of the year, people have a tendency to want to warm up and congregate inside the buildings and other indoor locations.
Due to the fact that the air pollution count in residential areas is larger than it is outdoors, a substantial number of people become ill during the winter season, despite the fact that this can be prevented by taking a number of steps on a more significant level.
In the Know Your Facts segment for today, we are going to discuss 10 ways to improve your indoor air quality in the winter throughout the winter months. Read and have fun with it.
Polluted Indoor Air Quality in The Winter
There are a couple of reasons behind higher air pollution in the winter season.
1. Spend More Time in Domestic Areas
The Winter season is a relatively insignificant human activity that may be witnessed outside due to the trembling cold temperature.
As a result of this, we are making an effort to spend as much time as possible inside, where it is nice and toasty.
Due to the indoor environment’s smaller surface area, several types of air contaminants are more likely to congregate within homes and other buildings.
Winter can be a real pain, especially if you don’t have a solid game plan for controlling the temperature and humidity inside your home.
Because the temperature inside is typically higher than that of the outside, there is a greater risk of the growth of fungus-like conditions inside than there is outside.
2. High Humidity
The fluctuating humidity indoors is one of the things that can be really bothersome throughout the winter.
If you do not correctly control the humidity inside your home, it can immediately contribute to the formation of mold and dust mites inside your home.
The majority of the health problems caused by these molds occur at the air level. In addition to this, there are many other reasons that can be pinpointed for the increased levels of air pollution that have been seen.
3. Development of Air Pollutants
Due to the chilly conditions, individuals can be seen queuing for warm backdrops virtually everywhere they go.
Every enclosed space has a number of energy-hungry heating appliances, such as heaters, fireplaces, furnaces, or wood-burning stoves, which are installed there.
Other electrical utilities have a lower degree of energy consumption. This circumstance results in a higher level of energy generation, which in turn indirectly results in increased levels of air pollution.
Inadequate ventilation leads to the eventual development of a larger level of air pollutants in our surroundings when coal is used to heat indoor places. This is an unsafe and insecure practice.
Additionally, one other common item that we may witness throughout the winter is heated vehicles. Because of this, the vehicle will have a greater need for fuel gas rather than electricity.
This eventually leads to an increase in the level of air pollution in natural environments throughout the winter.
4. Temperature Difference
Temperature inversion is another name for this phenomenon, which occurs when the temperature of the lower atmosphere drops below that of the upper atmosphere.
This allows pollutants to become easily trapped in the lower atmosphere. This is primarily due to the warmer upper layer that is located above the warmer (similar) atmosphere in the wintertime.
It is possible for it to operate as a trap that retains the bottom layer of air pollutants and prevents them from spreading deeper. When it is counted over a longer length of time, however, it has a number of negative implications on health.
Because of this phenomenon, air pollutants such as carbon dioxide and nitrogen can easily become trapped, which results in the formation of smog, smoke, and other types of health problems that continue throughout the season.
This temperature inversion condition will remain unchanged until rapid weather changes such as winds, rains, and snow pass through the particular region of the atmosphere where it is currently occurring.
How to Improve Your Indoor Air Quality in The Winter
1. Control the Humidity
Humidity is one of the common reasons which impact indoor air quality in the winter season. In addition to having an effect on the expansion of air pollutants, it also has a direct stimulating effect on the growth of mold and dust mites in residential settings.
The lower the humidity, the more of an influence it has on your skin, causing it to become dry and itchy. This increases the risk of developing a range of respiratory medical issues.
If you can maintain a relative humidity of between 30 and 50 percent, you will have achieved the optimum level for a pleasant environment.
In most cases, you should be able to use a dehumidifier to bring down the level of humidity that has grown and maintain it at or above 30 percent.
2. Replace the Air Filters
When we start to feel really uneasy with the indoor atmosphere way things are currently going, one of the first things that come to our minds to do is change the air filters.
The majority of filters have a recommended lifespan of at least three months and have the ability to filter a significant degree of numerous air pollutants and pathogens.
Before the onset of winter, it is important to clean and replace the filters found in air conditioners, air purifiers, and HVAC systems.
A season with significant levels of air pollution can also make it simple for them to become clogged in a short amount of time.
In addition to ensuring that you have clean air to breathe, changing them with new ones before the winter season arrives will help you avoid the following inconveniences:
2.1 Health Impacts
Even the filtration process can be compromised when there is a filter in the system that is not being replaced. This can result in the filter becoming clogged with germs and other types of contaminants on a daily basis.
Certain types of pollutants have the potential to grow even in the filter itself if the conditions there are favorable for their development.
Therefore, maintaining such infected filter results in the creation of new diseases rather than the prevention of existing ones.
As a consequence of this, we need to make sure that they are replaced at consistent periods of time.
2.2 Filtration Issues
As was just indicated, a filtration system that becomes clogged finally constitutes a failure of the system.
Imagine a breakdown of this kind occurring in the middle of a blizzard or during the severe winter season.
Prevention is a much more secure method of avoiding difficulty, particularly in such a precarious circumstance as this one.
2.4 Higher Energy Bills
When filters become clogged with contaminants, the process of filtering air through that barrier requires a higher degree of energy than usual.
Which will ultimately lead to an increase in your electricity production. Any filtering system will have a shorter lifespan if more loading work is performed on the machinery that operates the filtering system.
Read More – 8 Tips to Save Money On Energy Bills in Winter
3. Maintain the HVAC System
A well-maintained heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning system will help you avoid a variety of potentially hazardous situations during the winter season.
In contrast to the other seasons of the year, it is quite difficult to work or make repairs outside. Always maintain your heating and cooling system clean before the winter season arrives. It may be pretty beneficial if you managed to do it once a month.
Before the winter season arrives, keep your heating and cooling system clean. Which is a requirement that is necessary for both industrial and working interior areas.
It is highly recommended that you seek the assistance of a professional in order to clean your HVAC system, even only during the winter season.
Read More – Best 5 Wall-Mounted Heaters in 2022
4. Try Air Purifier
If you want to attempt one of the greatest options available to you without having to worry about any other kind of impact caused by air pollution, maintaining an air purifier is one of the best choices you can make.
As was previously indicated, we are required to repair the filters on the HVAC systems on a regular basis. The primary benefit of air purifiers in comparison to conventional air filtration systems is that;
- They may be utilized in a smaller space while maintaining a higher level of efficiency
- There are many different categories of air purifiers available, and the one you need will depend on your specific situation.
- Unlike normal filtration systems, air purifiers are simple appliances that require nothing in the way of upkeep and repair.
- They are convenient portable devices that may be simply fitted in a vehicle.
Aside from that, an air purifier may be utilized during every season, including winter and summer; maintaining healthy breathing habits is the most effective approach to protect yourself from a variety of illnesses.
Read More – 5 Reasons You Need an Air Purifier in Winter
5. Indoor Plants
As a method of naturally purifying the air within a home, maintaining a healthy indoor air quality level can be accomplished through the use of indoor plants to a significant degree.
Recommended plants offer a greater duty by removing a number of hazardous air pollutants from the indoor atmosphere, even while we appreciate the greeny-ness that they add to our indoor decoration.
In most cases, we have access to a variety of possibilities, some of which are described in the ‘Indoor Plants Category.’
However, the reality of the matter is that it is extremely difficult to maintain the plants alive owing to the abrupt change in the winter season.
But happily, there are a variety of choices available to us, several can be identified as follows,
- Aloe plants
- Fiddle leaf plants
- ZZ plants
- Spider plant
- Snake plant
In addition to using them as decoration, we should also have in mind that we should treat them in order to improve their overall performance.
6. Open Windows on Warm Days
During the colder months of the year, hearing anything like this might be a little bit humorous.
However, the reality is that if you are staying for a significantly longer period of time in a confined space of the atmosphere, there is a greater chance that your respiratory system will become compromised than it would be in a typical individual.
Even if it’s the middle of winter, you should still try to keep the windows open for at least a little while in order to revitalize the mood within.
Also, presuming that the winter breeze is coming through those openings in your home’s ventilation system, make sure that you do not block those openings.
Taking care of them is the most effective technique to protect oneself from harm. However, there will always be some wasted energy due to the need for additional heating. When considering this topic, one’s health should come first.
When it is considered for a longer length of time, it could provide the impression that you are saving money.
7. Clean the Carpets and Rugs
Maintaining a clean environment indoors is not something that is exclusive to the winter season. But during the winter, things become more chaotic because the indoors are dirty.
In the winter, carpets and floors are prime locations for the easy formation of high levels of dust mites, damp moisture, and other undesirable environments.
Carpets and floors are also common locations for allergens. There are a lot of things that we are capable of accomplishing here;
7.1 No Shoes or Slippers Allowed Inside
The winter months are notoriously filthy because people wear their muddy boots and shoes inside while the weather is cold and rainy.
It is not difficult for it to soil or muck up carpets and floors. Because utilizing chemicals to remove them poses a risk to the carpets, the most effective approach to get rid of them is to avoid bringing them inside in the first place.
In a situation like this one, the best course of action is to keep a distinct area for taking off shoes.
7.2 Vacuum Clean Often
Investing in a high-quality vacuum cleaner is your greatest bet for reducing the number of infectious agents that are typically transferred through your carpets and other belongings.
However, be sure to vacuum them on a consistent and frequent basis during the winter. Many contaminants are able to conceal themselves more easily in these hidden sites.
Read More – How to Get Rid of Dust in the Winter
7.3 Keep the Carpets Clean
The technique of cleaning them while wearing “strong” clothing is the finest choice that you may try during the cleaning process.
You most certainly will. However, it is imperative that cleaning be performed at predetermined intervals. In addition to these, there are a variety of other things that can be done in houses to maintain an adequate degree of indoor air quality throughout the Winter months.
- Use houseplants to adorn the interior of your home.
- Use a humidifier
- the cleaning air ducts
- Inspect the CO detectors and make sure they are in good working order.
- Store hazardous substances in a secure location
- Perform routine cleaning of the air ducts.
8. Use Beeswax Candles
During the colder months, candles are a common sight and are frequently used in soothing warm baths at the end of a long, stressful day.
People are drawn to the fragrant character of it as well as the mind-relaxing aroma, which is accompanied by satisfying lightning.
On the other hand, these scented candles, which are almost always made of paraffin wax, can hide a potentially hazardous ingredient. They incorporated 50% of the traditional and gentle paraffin wax in each (petroleum by Product).
As a consequence of this, it unquestionably has an adverse impact on the users’ health. Beeswax is a suitable alternative that can be used in its stead.
These candles are an excellent choice for making mold candles. When compared to other natural products, these are the candles that have the greatest widespread acceptance.
Aside from fake combinations, it is quite simple to work with molds while utilizing them, and it also assists in the diffusion of particular scents.
Because original beeswaxes are considered to be 100% natural, it is generally accepted that they will cost more than similar products.
9. No Smoke Inside
The harmful habit of smoking has an immediate and negative impact not just on the smoker but also on the community that the smoker is a part of.
The wintertime is a time of year when people frequently begin smoking as a habit. If you are someone who has the habit of smoking inside your home, this can create an uncomfortable environment and also be a source that leads to a variety of medical conditions for the people living in the home.
It is estimated that more than 14 million children in the United States between the ages of three and eleven are exposed to secondhand smoke.
The only way to entirely protect non-smokers from the hazards of secondhand smoke is to prohibit smoking in enclosed public places.
This is the only technique that is currently available. It is imperative that smoke-free policies be put into place so that individuals can be shielded from the dangers of secondhand smoke in the most effective way possible.
In addition to this, the odor of cigarette smoke is easily absorbed into the outer layers of furniture, where it will stay for a longer period of time due to the increased surface area exposed to it.
The piece of advice that will be most useful to you is to make an effort to give up smoking. Do not attempt to pollute other people if you are unable to purge the air yourself.
It might be challenging to cope with smoking indoors during the winter months because the majority of people choose to spend their time inside during this season.
Therefore, you should attempt to cut back, even if only during the winter. That is the best option.
10. Test for Radon
Finding out how much Radon is in people’s homes is another type of significant challenge throughout the winter. Did you know that second only to smoking cigarettes, the most common cause of lung cancer is exposure to radon?
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) studies indicate that the average quantity of radon gas in the atmosphere should be 7.4 Bq/m3. Did you know that naturally occurring Radon gas can swiftly enter your rooms through cracks in the floor, building joints, gaps in the foundation around pipes, and other openings?
The risk of exposure to radon increases significantly when you live in close proximity to the building’s foundation. Because of this, there is a greater risk inside basements because there is a lack of ventilation in these areas.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends a concentration level that is lower than 148 Bq/m3 within your rooms. The issue is that radon is an odorless and colorless gas, thus its presence is unknown until certain symptoms of sickness manifest themselves.
Utilizing the Air Quality Monitor in the location of choice is the one and only approach to getting to the bottom of the situation.
If you are uneasy with the ventilation system that is currently in place, you should get a radon test, which is not extremely expensive.
What countermeasures can we take against radon?
- Simple to make repairs
- Employ a radon-reduction (mitigation) specialist in the construction industry.
- Make an Attempt to Make Use of a Radon Vent Pipe
Getting professional assistance is your best bet for surviving the winter in this area before things become much more challenging.