Air pollution is a global problem that is mostly regarded in terms of outdoor air pollution. We fail to realize that the air we breathe inside our homes can be polluted as well. In this case, the main pollutants are not factory chimneys or traffic, but more sinister enemies. All kinds of allergens can be found inside the house, such as dirt or mold that are harmful to our respiratory system. They increase the humidity or air, making it harder to breathe. Even dirt can have a similar effect. The atmosphere of our planet has winds and plants to naturally clean the air, but do we have a similar solution in our home? Here are several points to take notice of when it comes to proper purification of air in your home.
Don’t smoke inside
Cigarette smoke is not only bad for your health directly, but it can damage it indirectly as well. If other people inside the house are not smokers, they will become secondhand smokers, whether they like it or not. Tobacco smoke lingers in the air for a long time and after a while it starts getting into the furniture and wallpapers as well. This way, the entire space becomes toxic and the air irreversibly polluted. If you are dying for a smoke, than it is much wiser to step outside and light the cigarette there. Your lungs will still suffer, but the air quality of your living space won’t.
Control the humidity levels
We have already stated that a high level of humidity contributes to the development of mold. Again, we are talking about indoor humidity, so this point is equally important in arid regions such as Australia, for example. This is why it is essential to keep the humidity levels inside the house anywhere between 30% and 50%. Make sure you constantly monitor the humidity levels to prevent them from going up. Some of the common causes for raised humidity can be cooking with the windows closed or a leak in the pipes that creates puddles which evaporate in a closed space. Also, avoid drying clothes inside the house. Basically, you do not want any mold to form since exposure to it over time can lead to asthma.
Clean the AC unit and the dehumidifier
The best artificial way to purify air is installing a humidifier, but this alone is not enough. Almost all homes have air conditioning that is used for cooling and heating alike. This means they operate throughout the year which increases the stress on the mechanism. Such is the case in Australia, so AC maintenance in Sydney, for example, implies regularly checking the operating temperatures, replacement of operating parts, and most importantly, cleaning of the evaporator unit. This way, the development and spread of dust mites, mold and mildew are thwarted from the very start. AC units contain water deposits which can increase humidity. Also, the exterior of air conditioning should be cleaned as well as dust can pile up on it.
Keeping the trashcan inside the house can be more harmful than you might imagine. The foul smell set aside, decaying and rooting food leftovers can be quite toxic. As organic matter decomposes it releases toxins in the air for the inhabitants to breathe in. This is why garbage should be disposed of frequently and, if possible, the trashcan should be kept outside the house or the apartment.
A natural solution and a great aid to the AC unit and the humidifier are plants. Not only will they make your home verdant, but they will pump in fresh air and purify the existing one. When choosing suitable plant species, don’t be afraid to go big. The larger the greenery, the bigger the purification effect. Fern is especially effective in removing pollutants such as xylene and benzene. Palm trees, on the other side, will clean the air and add a touch of the tropics. Rubbers plants are ideal for office space, but they look good in homes too. Just don’t forget to tend to all plants by watering them properly.
Out in the street, we cannot choose the quality of the air we breathe in, but our home is our realm. Here we can make the conscious choice to breathe in purified air that is attainable through these simple rules.
By Chloe Smith