- 30 Jul 2019
Find out why our home’s indoor air quality is important and how you can improve the air quality in every room of your home!
We spend around 90% of our time indoors, so knowing that the spaces we spend the most time are healthy is important.
What do you know about the indoor air quality of your home?
What is indoor air quality?
Indoor air quality refers to the quality of the air within and around buildings and structures, most importantly, it relates to the health and comfort of the people occupying the building.
Why is indoor air quality important?
Indoor air quality is important because it can directly impact your health. Studies have shown than indoor air can be five times more polluted than outdoor air, which means we’re breathing in chemicals and pollutants while we’re sleeping, eating and relaxing at home.
How does the quality of indoor air affect your health?
Poor indoor air quality can cause immediate short-term health effects such as irritation to your eyes, nose and throat which can have a really big impact on people with pre-existing conditions such as asthma and allergies. Poor quality air in your home could also lead to headaches and tiredness.
In the long-term, poor indoor air quality has been linked to respiratory diseases, heart disease and cancer.
What actually impacts the quality of your home’s air?
The air inside your home can be compromised by a range of contaminants including chemical pollutants, mould, dust, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), pet dander and odours.
Inadequate ventilation aids the issue, increasing the indoor pollutant levels by not bringing in enough outdoor air to dilute the pollutants.
Tell-tale signs you have poor indoor air quality
Looking at our own lifestyles is a good way to decide whether your home may have poor indoor air quality.
Does your home have mould? Does condensation build on the windows or walls? Does the air become smelly or stuffy?
How can you improve your home's indoor air quality?
Fortunately, there are plenty of things we can do to make our homes healthier and help improve the quality of the air in our home. Choosing the right helpful houseplants, detoxing your home, and actively avoiding harsh chemicals is a great way to start.
Start improving the air quality in your home today
Knowing what to look for is the first step to improving indoor air quality, so we’ve put together a room-by-room assessment of potential air pollutants and ways you can avoid or reduce them.
How to improve indoor air quality in the kitchen
The way we choose to cook and clean-up in the kitchen can impact the air quality in the hub of the home.
Cooking generates heat, fumes and odours that affect the air quality in the kitchen. Turn on your extractor fans and open windows if possible. When was the last time you cleaned the filters in your ventilation system? Make sure you clean and replace old filters regularly.
Avoid toxic cleaning products
Traditional chemical cleaning products pollute the air and can act as an irritant to people who suffer from asthma symptoms. Fortunately, you can clean your entire kitchen without a single harsh chemical, this includes replacing the most toxic of kitchen cleaners – the oven cleaner – with 3 chemical-free products. A clean kitchen and clean air.
If the weather is good avoiding cooking indoors altogether. Cooking on the BBQ is a simple (and delicious) way to improve indoor air quality in the kitchen.
How to improve indoor air quality in the bathroom
Bathrooms tend to be one of the smaller rooms in the home meaning pollutants are more concentrated in the space.
Reduce moisture levels
High humidity levels in the bathroom create the perfect environment for two big contributors to poor air quality, dust mites and mould. Make sure you have an exhaust fan fitted in your bathroom, and if possible keep a window ajar, especially when having a shower.
Mould is an indicator of an ongoing issue with poor air quality as it needs long periods of humidity to grow. Mould produces microscopic, airborne spores that we breathe in impacting our health. There are many ways to help prevent mould including improved ventilation and washing towels frequently. Physically removing mould is the most effective way to ensure it is removed entirely and won’t grow back.
Avoid abrasive cleaning products
Some of the more potent chemical cleaners are reserved for use in the bathroom (which can lead to a cleaning mistake you don’t want to make). Using toxic chemicals in such a small space can really pollute the air quality and pose other potential health and environmental risks. Replace harsh chemicals with reusable fibre cleaning range to keep your bathroom clean with just water and zero harsh chemicals.
Avoid air fresheners
Artificial fragrances in the bathroom have become more common, but masking odours could mean your masking an issue with your indoor air quality. It could also mean introducing VOCs and other chemicals into the air.
How to improve indoor air quality in the laundry
Scented products like laundry detergent and softeners emit a bouquet of VOCs polluting your laundry room’s air quality.
Choose natural laundry detergent
Laundry detergents can contain high concentrations of irritating fragrances. Opt for a natural detergent with zero fragrance and store your detergents away safely in an airtight container.
Air dry your laundry load
Clothes dryers create poor indoor air quality by generating a humid environment in a small space. Opt to air dry your clothing or ensure there is adequate ventilation when using your dryer.
How to improve indoor air quality in the bedroom
Going to sleep at night means our bedroom is one of the spaces in the home we use most regularly and for continued periods of time, making air quality important.
Wash your sheets regularly
How does washing your sheets help improve your bedrooms indoor air quality? The answer, dust mites. Dust mites are a common asthma trigger and are commonly found in bed linens and mattresses. Stay on top of dust mites by wash your bed lining regularly on a hot wash.
Choose natural materials
You want the place you rest your head at night to have the best indoor air quality. Choose furniture and furnishings that are made from natural, raw materials (that don’t emit VOCs) to improve your bedrooms air quality.
Invest in a humidifier
A humidifier could help create the optimal humidity and improve air quality in the bedroom. Creating the balance is important as heating and cooling systems in the home can impact the balance.
Open the window and close the door
At least once a week open up the window in your bedroom and close the door. This will allow fresh air to circulate the room and dilute indoor pollutants for improved air quality.
How to improve indoor air quality in living areas
High traffic areas like living rooms and family rooms can generate poor indoor air quality in a number of ways.
Clean dust regularly
Even though there are ways you can minimise dust in your home, household dust can’t be avoided and is a big pollutant to indoor air quality. ENJO’s range of dust-magnet cleaning products aren’t like any other dust-cleaning solution on the market and have been proven to remove dust more effectively.
Reduce pet dander
Pets add so much to our homes including dander and hair that contribute to poor indoor quality. Keep on top of a pet-friendly cleaning routine, groom your pets regularly outdoors and make sure they stay off soft furnishing.
Plants and trees have been shown to make us calmer, happier and more creative, they have also been shown to help filter and clean air. In addition to absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen, plants also absorb molecules in the air that have a negative impact on indoor air quality. Simply choose from a range of helpful houseplants and enjoy cleaner air.
Committed to cleaner air indoors and outdoors
Proud to supply chemical-free cleaning products for healthier indoor air, ENJO Australia is committed to planting trees to offset our carbon emissions for cleaner air outdoors.
Learn more about the little things campaign and how small changes make a big difference.