In recent years here in Sarasota, FL, homebuilders and owners of existing homes have made great efforts to improve residential energy efficiency. To do it, they’ve increased insulation and installed more efficient windows, all to create a sealed indoor air envelope.

While that’s great for saving energy, however, it can have a major negative impact on indoor air quality. That’s because, without adequate ventilation, the air in a home can quickly become befouled. As a result, according to the EPA, the air inside your home can be between two and five times more polluted than the outdoor air.

Poor indoor air quality is more than an inconvenience, though. It can have a wide range of negative impacts on the health and well-being of everyone in your home. That makes it extremely important to learn how to spot the symptoms of poor indoor air quality so you can take steps to fix it. Here’s what to look for.

1. Odd Lingering Odors

Often, the first sign you’ll notice of poor indoor air quality is strange, lingering odors. This happens because of poor ventilation, which traps odors in your home and keeps them there. So, if you find yourself using air freshener to keep your home’s odors at bay, you may have an indoor air quality problem.

2. Constant Dust Buildup

Under normal circumstances, you should only have to dust the surfaces in your home roughly once every two weeks. If you notice enough dust building up in your home that you need to dust more frequently, you may have an indoor air quality issue. The dust you see on those surfaces is settling there as it circulates in the air inside your home. That means if there’s lots of dust on those surfaces, there’s likely even more in the air.

3. Excessive Mold Growth

Mold requires dark, damp conditions to thrive. So, if you notice excessive mold growth anywhere inside your home, it can be an indicator that your indoor humidity is too high. Believe it or not, excessive indoor humidity is an indoor air quality issue. Ideally, your indoor relative humidity level should remain as close to 50% as possible at all times. Since it gets rather humid outside in the summers here in Sarasota, your home may need a whole-house dehumidifier to keep your indoor humidity in check.

4. Persistent Allergy Symptoms

If you or anyone in your home suffers from allergies, and you notice that your symptoms get worse inside your home, you could have an indoor air quality issue. Often, this happens when allergens from plants and other sources build up inside your home and get circulated by your HVAC. The average HVAC filter can’t remove many of those particles from the air. As a result, allergens in your home will continue to build up until they become a noticeable problem for you.

5. Unexplained Headaches

It is also common for people in homes with poor indoor air quality to suffer from unexplained headaches. These are often the result of high levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in your home’s air. These can come from common household cleaning products, air fresheners, paints, and even the glues in new furniture.

6. Repeated Respiratory Illnesses

Finally, poor indoor air quality in your home might lead to repeated respiratory illnesses among your home’s occupants. This happens because the pollutants in your home’s air irritate your respiratory system, leading to symptoms like sore throats, persistent coughs, and difficulty breathing. It can also make you more prone to respiratory infections.

This is an especially acute problem for children since they’re less able to cope with airborne pollutants. In children, poor indoor air quality can lead to bronchitis, pneumonia, and sinusitis, among other things.

Your Local Indoor Air Quality Specialists

If you have reason to believe that your home suffers from poor indoor air quality, AirNow Air Conditioning can help. We offer a range of indoor air quality services, including duct cleaning, dehumidifiers, air cleaners, and filtration systems. Plus, we offer complete HVAC services, including installation, repair, and maintenance. We’ve been the most trusted HVAC company in Sarasota since 1946 and with good reason. Our HVAC technicians are NATE-certified, we’re top-rated on HomeAdvisor and are a recipient of the Angi Super Service award. We’re even Better Business Bureau-accredited with an A+ rating. So, if you need indoor air quality solutions for your home in Sarasota, call AirNow Air Conditioning right away!

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