Going through a pandemic meant that we spent a lot of time in our homes. Now with allergy season upon us and the next Covid wave predicted for the fall, it’s more important than ever that to ensure we have the best air quality in our homes.
Having good air quality is important, and it’s one of those things that because you can’t see it, it often gets overlooked as something to be concerned about, said Jennifer Dunsmoor, Community Relations for Oosterveld Heating & Air Conditioning in Guelph. That said, poor air quality can cause a host of issues for anyone, but can be especially harmful to those with asthma, to children and the elderly.
If you wake up multiple times at night with a dry mouth or have constant sinus congestion, find you’re getting more headaches than usual or are coughing more inside your home than outside of it, these could all be indicators of poor air quality in your home.
There are many things that can contribute to poor air quality including poor insulation/ventilation, paint, chemical cleaners, even the off-gassing from the furniture you buy. “There’s a lot of off-gassing and there’s a lot of materials that emit chemicals into the air unknowingly, and while they are approved by the FDA, it’s still a contributor,” Dunsmoor said.
Every home needs a high-quality air purification system to prevent poor air quality from occurring.
Oosterveld sells and installs the Lennox PureAir System that’s proven to destroy 99.9 per cent of all airborne particles, over 90 per cent of Virus-sized particles, smaller viruses, bacteria, and fungal spores, while also eliminating up to 50 per cent of all household odours.
Dunsmoor said, along with a good quality air filter system, just as important is to have good quality filters. At Oosterveld, they sell Lennox’s Healthy Climate filters, a brand of filters that are not much more cost-wise than hardware store brands, and are unmatched in quality, efficiency, and longevity.
“The difference with our filters if you were to put them in a side-by-side comparison to a 3M, for example, is they are much thicker and there is difference in the weave of the actual filter material, so a tighter weave is going to keep materials from passing through easily and back into your home,” she said.
This means, a higher quality filter won’t make your furnace work as hard as it would with a cheap filter when it’s loaded because they can capture more particles before it starts to reduce airflow to your furnace.
Just as important is remembering to change your filters, ideally every three months, depending on your environment and lifestyle. For example, Dunsmoor said if you have pets, if you live in an area with a lot of pollen, it’s important to remember to change your filters regularly.
As well, Dunsmoor said depending on the age of your home and when it was built could mean the difference between your ventilation and air circulation being up to modern standards. Some homes, she said, may or may not have an air exchange filter, but there are different types of devices you can have in to sure you’re not recirculating the same air throughout your home.
“It’s kind of a silent thing that people don’t think about because you can’t “see” air quality, so it’s kind of out of sight, out of mind… but I think Covid has showed us that there is a benefit to investing in your home, even for resale value,” she said. “if you’ve invested in a quality air filtration system and have air exchange and air climate control measures, it’s going to add value to your home.”