Indoor Air Quality and Allergies

Many people who are looking for home improvement contractors in Grand Rapids want to make their home healthier and more efficient. If you or a family member has allergies, you may have already considered home performance improvements to better your health and comfort in the long term. One of the ways to reduce allergy symptoms is to improve your indoor air quality (IAQ).

According to the EPA, indoor air quality refers to the “the air quality within and around buildings and structures, especially as it relates to the health and comfort of building occupants.” People react in different ways to indoor air pollution, depending on age, general health, and other factors. One thing we do know is that poor indoor air quality can only make allergy symptoms worse. Because Americans tend to spend an estimated 80-90% of each day indoors, many health organizations focus on the quality of indoor air for improving symptoms of patients with allergies and asthma.

The best home improvements for your allergies depend on your specific triggers, but improvements to ventilation and indoor air quality will generally offer health benefits for anyone with allergies.

  • Improve your ventilation. Whether your allergy is mold, dust, or pollen, improved ventilation will help. Modern homes are built much tighter than they were historically, so the idea behind improving ventilation is to bring in enough outdoor air to dilute emissions from indoor sources and carry indoor and outdoor pollutants out of the home. For many home designs, natural ventilation in the attic maintains indoor air quality. Attic ventilation cools the home and reduces dampness, but is outside the building envelope. Adequate natural ventilation depends on equal intake at the soffit and exhaust through the roof vents, so whenever you are remodeling, it’s important to check the NFA of soffit and vents to make sure they are in balance, and sufficient for your home.
  • Address water damage to reduce mold. Replace any water damaged building materials, fix leaks, and make sure your home is not only tightly constructed, but also well ventilated.
  • Replace aging windows with newer, tighter windows to reduce pollen and condensation.
  • Evaluate your HVAC, and make any necessary ventilation and air filtration adjustments to improve your indoor air quality. Air conditioners help reduce the humidity (thereby discouraging dust mites and mold growth). Air conditioning also helps prevent the introduction of outdoor allergens such as pollen and mold if you use it to cool your home with the windows and doors closed and the air conditioner set on recirculate.

Are you considering home performance renovations? Or do you know you would like to know what home improvement contractors in Grand Rapids can do to help improve indoor air quality? Look for remodeling contractors in Grand Rapids who know the latest materials and methods to make your home more allergy resistant. Contact the experts at GreenFIT Homes today, and you can be breathing easier before you know it.

Photo: William Brawley

Share This!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *