Your Pets and Indoor Air Quality

Our furry four-legged friends bring us a lot of joy. Like a bad dating website advertisement, there are lots of long walks, snuggling during your favourite TV show, and laughter. But pets could also be having a negative impact on your indoor air quality, leading to allergies and other health symptoms and diseases, like asthma.

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Wildfires & Indoor Air Quality

With wildfires raging for the past few weeks over parts of British Columbia, the importance of good indoor air quality is one of the issues many families are facing.

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Improving Office Indoor Air Quality

It’s Monday morning and you’ve just arrived at the office. You put down your bag, slide into your seat and take a big breath of… stale office air. You know the scent: old cardboard, the Xerox machine chugging away, dust frying on the florescent lights. However, your office’s indoor air quality could be affecting more than just your mood – it could be affecting your productivity or even your health. As an employee or business owner, improving the indoor air quality of your workplace can do more than lift the spirits of your employees or be another corporate wellness ploy – in fact, it’s serious enough that both Syracuse University and Harvard University are both studying the indoor air quality of offices to see how it affects the workers that use them.

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Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) and Indoor Air Quality

You may have heard of Sick Building Syndrome (or SBS) in the news, but you may not know exactly what that means or how it could be effecting you and your indoor air quality.

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Mold – The Worst Kind of Wallpaper

The cause of Napoleon Bonaparte’s death has plagued curious historians and history buffs since the day his coffin was lowered. One popular theory is that he was slowly poisoned by poor indoor air quality caused from noxious arsenic fumes given off by wallpaper. Longwood House on St. Helena’s Island where the emperor was imprisoned, was papered in the fashion of those days with bright green wallpaper, the pigment of which was created with arsenic. In a damp, hot room, the pigment would have entered the indoor air quality and been breathed in as a toxic vapour.

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Air Fresheners and Indoor Air Quality

There’s nothing nicer than the smell of a freshly cleaned home. If your home has a funky smell, or has developed one recently, you might be tempted to use an air freshener to improve your indoor air quality – but they might be doing a lot more to your indoor air quality than adding a pretty smell. Continue reading

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Spring Air Conditioning Unit check: For Better Indoor Air Quality this Summer

A late spring this year means that the allergy season is still upon us. While we wait for warmer days to arrive, improving your indoor air quality this spring can have a significant affect on you and your family’s health and wellness. It may soon be time to turn on your air conditioning unit – but before you do, like many things around the home, some simple maintenance will help keep it running smoothly and improve your indoor air quality for the season.

There are a couple of things you can do to improve your indoor air quality during the warmer months. Doing a visual inspection, or having an inspector come in to look at your outdoor unit is a good place to start – indoor air quality starts with the outdoors, of course! Missing or damaged panels, leaks, or fallen debris can all affect the proper functioning of an air conditioning unit and cause negative effects on your indoor air quality or even cause it to break.

If you’ve covered your unit, removing its winter blanket is an obvious next step – the cover may have trapped moisture during the winter months, which can have serious consequences once you switch it on to cool off your home. Indoor air quality starts with proper maintenance of your HVAC system, so remembering to inspect and uncover your air conditioning is key!

Your indoor air quality is also affected by the inner workings of your air conditioning unit. Having the filters inspected and changed can have a huge affect on the efficiency of your furnace as well as your indoor air quality. Your filters are collecting any pollens, dust, or other allergens entering your home from the outside. As these build up, they can cause your HVAC system to slow down; particles will also start making their way through the barrier and into your indoor air quality where they can cause allergic reactions. Regularly checking on your filters and making sure they are clean will have a huge affect on your indoor air quality.

Checking on the supply and return air grills and vents will also have a big affect on your indoor air quality. Dust and pet hair like to settle on these; removing any debris that has settled on your air grills will keep your indoor air quality free of any extra allergens. An uncleaned air conditioner will actually circulate more allergens in your indoor air quality and add to any reactions you may be having, so making sure it’s ready to go this spring will keep your indoor air quality at a high level for the summer season.

Of course, the next step to indoor air quality is to turn your air conditioner on! If no cool air is coming out of your registers after the first few minutes, something might be wrong. Having a qualified technician or indoor air quality specialist come and look at your home and air conditioning can help diagnose problems not visible to the naked eye. Gas leaks from refrigerants or mold growing from moisture-laden equipment can have a huge affect your indoor air quality while being relatively hard to spot. An indoor air quality specialist can help identify specific weaknesses with your air conditioning and HVAC system and suggest repairs and upgrades to keep your system running smoothly, and your indoor air quality at a high level all summer long.

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Ever Consider the Chimney is Affecting Your Indoor Air Quality?

Old homes can have many charming features – carved wood, old fixtures, fireplaces. But a beautiful old wood burning fireplace or stove can have a serious affect on your indoor air quality if it’s not kept clean and in good repair. Continue reading

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Lead Paint in Your Home is Affecting Your Indoor Air Quality

A fresh coat of paint can be just the thing to liven up a room, and is often a quick, and easy, way of making a change in your home or business. If you live in a century home and are considering repainting, there are a few key things to keep in mind to make sure you maintain a high standard of indoor air quality both before, during, and after painting. Continue reading

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Finding Asbestos During Your Home Renovations | Safe Air

When moving into or renovating an old home, keeping your indoor air quality free of contaminants is an important, and often forgotten, step of the construction process. Your indoor air quality isn’t just affected by dust, paint, or sealants, but can be very seriously affected by the materials used in construction itself. Many older homes and buildings were constructed when indoor air quality wasn’t a concern, and materials that are no longer approved for use may be polluting your indoor air quality. While lead pipes or knob-and-tube wiring can cause other serious problems, they don’t affect your indoor air quality. But asbestos does, and many older homes have it hiding all over the place. Continue reading

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