Unless you’re “lucky” enough to work outside during the cold winter months it’s easy to feel like a hermit crab from around late November to early April every year. Besides the fact that it’s dark so early there really aren’t a whole lot of outdoor activities to partake in when the temperatures are in the single digits. Because most of our time is spent indoors during the winter, it’s especially important to take steps to make sure the furnace air quality is top notch. The human body and immune system is more prone to breaking down in cold weather so don’t escalate those weaknesses by inhaling a constant supply of allergens and dander – follow these tips:
Change Air Filters
Changing air filters is number 1, 1A, 2, and three on the list as I cannot stress its importance. Air filters should be changed up to once a month in the winter as the furnace is seemingly constantly running during these cold stretches. A dirty air filter filled with hair, dirt, and grime starts the irritation process by delivering this unhealthy furnace air quality to every room in the house. By having a clean filter every month you’ll not only notice improved breathing, but also lower utility bills and a longer furnace life.
Ease Up on the Thermostat
While it may be tempting to hit up on the thermostat an extra time or two before nestling on the couch to watch a movie, doing so could bring on all sorts of problems with furnace air quality. Creating a more humid indoor environment leads to the formation of mold and mildew in addition to a dry environment that cracks skin and lips. If you are a person who believes that 24° to 30° is your winter comfort zone then at least purchase a humidifier to combat the tropical environment that you’ve created.
Open the Windows
For about five months in the winter, there’s very little fresh air getting in the house. However, opening the windows for just five quick minutes a day can change the home’s makeup during the winter. Some people even sleep better with the bedroom window open just a tad.
Purchase Air Quality Monitors
For those of us that suffer from allergies, indoor furnace air quality monitors are proving to be a winter lifesaver. Some of the things these amazing devices can detect include:
- Carbon dioxide
- Carbon monoxide
- Particle matter
- Gasses such as formaldehyde, ethylene glycol, benzene, acetone, and more
- Relative humidity
Monitoring the levels of these elements in your home is greatly beneficial, especially in the winter where there is a minimal clean air source and where gas furnaces can malfunction and become dangerous.
Purchase Air Cleaners and Purifiers
Another big step in improving indoor furnace air quality in the winter is with cleaners and purifiers. An example of how these machines work is by sending negative ions out which attract to positive airborne particles which help to remove smoke and odors. Furnace air quality is important so don’t breath in toxins while you’re trying just to stay warm.