You may have heard that the air quality in our homes tends to be much worse than that which is outside. The reason? These days, new-home construction is very tight so that HVAC systems can work more efficiently, saving the homeowner money on utilities. In the old days, those loosely constructed homes wasted a lot of energy, as unconditioned air squeezed inside cracks and conditioned air leaked out.
But that loose construction also allowed for good natural ventilation in the home. That is, fresh air managed to get inside and stale, polluted air leaked out. Nowadays, without any mechanical means of ventilation, that polluted air just stays inside. Over time, it gets more polluted with pollen, dust, pet dander, mold, dust mites, and other airborne particulates escalating. It’s enough to make you sick.
What’s the Solution to Polluted Indoor Air?
Installing a ventilation system can certainly help, particularly if it’s the balanced system, which draws in fresh air and exhausts polluted air in equal measures. In lieu of that type of investment, you could try opening the windows.
Granted, it’s not always easy in the dead of winter. But cracking a window a bit for short periods can do wonders for your indoor air quality, allowing stale air to exit and letting fresh air inside.
In more clement times, you can also open the door for a bit and let in more air. Or, try opening a window that is facing the prevailing wind direction. Then, open a window that’s just opposite and you’ll create a kind of wind tunnel, with the breeze drawing through your home. Not only will the air quality be improved, you’ll also enjoy the way the breeze cools you off.
As long as your windows and doors are screened, you can leave the windows and doors open way into the summertime. Once it’s really hot, you may need to close doors and windows, but you can crack them now and then to freshen the air a bit.
To learn more about natural ventilation, contact Detmer and Sons of Dayton.