Poor air quality in your home can become a problem when you or someone in your family suffers from allergies and asthma. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are the primary cause of the poor air quality you are looking to improve. Learning what these VOCs are and how to reduce or substitute alternative products can drastically improve your home’s air quality.
What Are VOCs?
Volatile organic compounds or VOCs are the gasses that are released by many sources found inside your house. VOCs are typically more concentrated indoors than outdoors. This high concentration of VOCs can cause your home’s air quality to suffer, exacerbating preexisting conditions such as allergies and asthma. Other health-related issues caused by high levels of VOCs are headaches, shortness of breath, eye, nose, and throat irritation, dizziness, skin issues, nausea, and in extreme cases VOCs can cause cancer. Let’s talk about three of the most commonly used sources of VOCs that may be in your home.
- Building Materials
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Building materials such as formaldehyde releases VOCs and is used in particleboard, glues, and plywood. Formaldehyde emits a colorless gas that has a bitter and sharp smell. This material is also used in the manufacturing of certain fabrics, drapes, and foam insulation. Building materials are mass-produced, and it can be challenging to find them without formaldehyde. It is possible to find varnishes and paints labeled explicitly as having low VOCs. You can also find formaldehyde-free decor for your home.
- Personal Care Products
Personal care products such as colognes, hairsprays, and perfumes contain VOCs. When using personal care products such as these, you will need to be sure that you are using them in well-ventilated areas. This is to ensure that you aren’t breathing a high level of VOCs. Any products in your home that are scented will give off VOCs. Reducing the number of candles and aerosol or plug-in deodorizers being used in your home will improve air quality.
- Tobacco Products
Tobacco products are one of the many causes of high concentration of VOCs within your home. If you or your family use tobacco products, you can significantly reduce the inherent VOCs by not allowing smoking in or around your home. Second-hand smoke is known to contain numerous pollutants and VOCs that can cause serious health issues.
Having your home and HVAC system maintained by a branded and professional HVAC service company will reduce the VOCs producing poor air quality within your home. Trained technicians have the knowledge and the equipment necessary to test your air, ensuring that VOC levels within your home are at acceptable levels. If this is not the case, they can make suggestions and answer any questions you may have concerning your home’s air quality.
Assessing the air quality of your home will help you protect the health of everyone under your roof. You can accomplish this by learning what products and materials contain VOCs and reducing the use of such items. You will need to stay vigilant concerning the air quality of your home.