How IAQ Impacts Your Health

When you think of home, there’s a good chance that your first thought isn’t about indoor air pollution. However, the quality of the air inside your home plays a significant role in your health and comfort. It’s important for homeowners to understand how indoor air quality, or IAQ, impacts their health so that they can start taking the right steps to make their home a happier and healthier place.

4 Ways Indoor Air Quality Impacts Your Health

Indoor air quality refers to the quality of air inside your home or within and around other buildings and structures. By identifying common pollutants and working to decrease indoor air pollution, homeowners can help reduce the risks of indoor air health concerns. Here are just a few ways that your home’s indoor air quality can impact your health.

  1. Indoor air pollution can make it hard to breathe.

If you or your family members have trouble breathing easy in your home then indoor air quality may be a concern. Three of the most common health effects of indoor air pollutants are coughing, sneezing, and upper respiratory congestion. When pollutants make their way into your home, they can make it difficult for some people to breathe, especially those who are sensitive to certain chemicals or family members who already suffer from respiratory issues.

  1. Indoor pollutants can also cause irritation.

Breathing issues are not the only sign that you may have an indoor air quality problem. Indoor air pollutants can also cause other irritations such as watery eyes, fatigue, headaches, and dizziness, which may lead to more severe health issues such as fever, nausea, and muscle pain. These symptoms can make it very hard for you and your family to stay happy, healthy, and comfortable in your own home.

  1. IAQ issues can aggravate existing conditions.

Another way that poor indoor air quality can impact your health is by aggravating existing conditions. For instance, if you have members of the family who suffer from asthma or other respiratory issues, they may be highly sensitive to the pollutants in your home. This can cause symptoms to increase or worsen, making it difficult for your family to stay healthy and comfortable. Indoor air pollutants can also have a greater impact on family members with weakened immune systems.

  1. Long-term exposure can have lasting harmful effects.

Though you can start to experience the effects of indoor air pollutants after immediate exposure or just being exposed a few times, there are also many long-term health effects that can result from exposure to poor indoor air quality over time. Long or repeated exposure to indoor air pollutants can cause serious debilitating health issues such as respiratory disease, heart disease, and even cancer.

The best way to avoid both the short- and long-term harmful health effects of indoor air pollutants is to identify issues early on and work to improve your indoor air quality. Sometimes the only way to determine if IAQ is impacting your health is to have your home air tested by an HVAC professional. Indoor air quality testing allows homeowners to better understand whether their home air is safe and healthy. Once you know the status of your IAQ, you can find the right HVAC products and systems to improve your air quality.

Get Your Home IAQ Tested

Are you concerned about your indoor air quality? The HVAC experts at Bartlett provide indoor air quality testing services that can help you determine the quality of your indoor air. We can even recommend the best products for helping you improve IAQ throughout the year. Call today (630) 504-7855 to meet with our IAQ specialists.

4 Ways to Significantly Decrease Indoor Air Pollution

Did you know that indoor air is generally much more polluted than outdoor air? And, considering most people spend approximately 90% of their time indoors, it’s important to monitor the quality of your indoor air.

Listed below, we’ve outlined 4 ways that you can significantly decrease the airborne pollutants in your home’s air. Read on for some great tips on preventing indoor air pollution in your home.

Preventing Indoor Air Pollution

If you are concerned about the level of pollution in your air, consider setting up an indoor air quality control system for your home. At Premier, we offer several options to help you home maintain a clean and comfortable atmosphere.

Give us a call for more information at 630-504-7855

Top Home Comfort Tips from Bartlett

Bartlett Heating and Air Conditioning has been providing the very best in home comfort products and services since 1978. Along the way, we have learned some of the best ways for Bartlett homeowners to keep their home comfortable no matter what the outdoor thermometer reads. Below are some of our favorite articles from the blog archives about home comfort.

Articles on How to Keep Your Home Comfortable

We have reached back deep into the blog archives to share some of our top blog posts on home comfort. Bartlett homeowners can use these tips to stay comfortable in every season:

Regularly Changing Your Filter is Important!

Indoor air quality is an important part of home comfort. Most homeowners know they should change their air filter regularly, but they may not know the reasons why. This short post explains why changing your air filter regularly is vital for maintaining a clean, healthy, and comfortable home environment year-round.

How Does My Humidifier Work?

Monitoring and controlling humidity in your home helps you maintain a more comfortable home climate. This short post explains a little bit more about how humidity can impact your home comfort and explains some ways to control humidity in your home. If you think you may need a dehumidifier in your home, contact us for more information.

What You Need to Know About Your Furnace and Carbon Monoxide

Did you know that an old or malfunctioning furnace can allow carbon monoxide to leak into your home? In order to maintain indoor air quality and keep your family safe, it is vital that you get routine furnace maintenance each year. To learn more, check out this post, which covers all that you need to know about carbon monoxide, its health impacts, and how you can prevent CO poisoning in your home.

5 Ways to Optimize Home Comfort

There are many aspects involved in keeping your home environment safe and comfortable for you and your family. The advice in this article will help you keep your home comfortable year-round. From making sure your home is clean and healthy to controlling your indoor climate, these tips will help you optimize your home comfort levels by creating a healthier, cleaner, and cozier home environment.

4 Tips for Keeping Your Home Comfortable During the Holidays

The holiday season is one of the most hectic but fun times of the year. Whether you’re hosting guests, throwing a party, or participating in other fun holiday activities, you can use these top tips for keeping your home comfortable for your family, friends, and other guests during the holiday season. As an added bonus, many of these tips will work no matter what time of the year it is!

Are you looking for more information on keeping your home comfortable year-round? Check out our blog, which is updated weekly, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+ for more great articles and company updates.

What You Need to Know About Your Furnace and Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is called the silent killer. It is colorless, odorless, and it cannot be seen, tasted or smelled. Carbon monoxide is emitted when any kind of fuel is being burnt since it’s a bi product of gas. It is poisonous to us because carbon monoxide binds to the red blood cells over oxygen and starves our body of oxygen. Below is a bit more information on preventing  carbon monoxide leaks in your home.

Carbon Monoxide in Your Home

There are many appliances in your home that create carbon monoxide. When these appliances  get old or are not maintained you have the risk of getting carbon monoxide poisoning. Gas and propane powered furnaces, wood-burning stoves, non-electric space heaters and gas or propane stoves and ovens all create carbon monoxide. Your car creates carbon monoxide too, and the levels can build to dangerous levels if you run your car in a closed place like your garage. Never run a generator in your home. They give off carbon monoxide and should not be in your home.

Your furnace is another big home appliance that you use often that can emit deadly amounts of carbon monoxide if not maintained. Your furnace’s heat exchanger can crack with old age and leak out the carbon monoxide that it should be keeping inside. This is why it is important for you to have your furnace cleaned and checked each fall.

How Carbon Monoxide Can Impact Your Health

Many people die each year from carbon monoxide poisoning, which is completely preventable with proper care. There are some early warning symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning that you can see. They are close to the flu symptoms of headache, dizziness, nausea, fatigue, and more. If you start to feel any of these symptoms get to fresh air immediately and then to a doctor.

When caught early you can fix the issue easier. Infants, children, pets and elderly are much more susceptible to carbon monoxide poisoning. Long term exposure to carbon monoxide can lead to permanent neurological and circulatory system damage or even worse, death. Getting your appliances checked each year can prevent accidental poisoning.

How Bartlett Can Help

Bartlett Heating and Air can help you avoid carbon monoxide poisoning in your home through regular furnace maintenance. The first test Bartlett Heating and Air does is the carbon monoxide test. We then follow with a 28-point full inspection and cleaning.

Keeping up with routine furnace maintenance, cleaning, and inspection is one of the most important things you can do to keep your family safe each year. You should also have carbon monoxide detectors on every level of your home and make sure they always have working batteries.

Make sure your chimney and flue are free of blockage, which can leak carbon monoxide into your home, and get your furnace maintained every year by a professional like the ones at Bartlett Heating and Air. Contact us today!

How Does My Dehumidifier Work?

Have you wondered how your dehumidifier works? A dehumidifier’s purpose is to decrease humidity in your home. Humidity can be best described as that muggy feeling you have on a warm day, almost like you’re swimming with no physical water around you. When you reach 100% relative humidity, the chance for rain increases.

How Humidity Impacts Home Comfort

When you are in increased humidity you are not as comfortable as you can be. Here are a few ways that humidity impacts your home comfort:

  • When the air in your home is too humid, your sweat cant evaporate because the air is already heavily saturated, leaving you more uncomfortable.
  • High humidity causes problems for people who have breathing issues such as asthma.
  • Excess humidity in your home makes a perfect breeding ground for mold which is dangerous for your breathing.
  • Termites and other pests love to make a humid home their own.

Controlling Humidity in Your Home

Your air conditioner acts partially as a dehumidifier when it is cooling your home. Air in a dehumidifier passes over a series of cooling coils (the evaporator) and then over a set of heating coils (the condenser). It gets sent back into the room as drier air removing humidity.

Ideal humidity at 90 degrees Fahrenheit is 31-41%. That is the ideal comfortable humidity for most people. Humidity of 42-52% starts to get uncomfortable for most people. Humidity of 52-60% is very humid and uncomfortable for most people. 62% and up is very uncomfortable.

Dehumidifiers help lessen the load on your air conditioner making your air conditioner last longer and you save money on your energy bills. Bartlett Heating and Air sells and installs dehumidifiers to make your home more comfortable so contact us today!

UV Light Can Kill Many Indoor Air Pollutants

Ultraviolet light can be a very useful weapon in the fight against indoor air pollutants. Hospitals, laboratories and even food processing use UV light to help keep their environments sterile, and your home can also benefit from UV germicidal irradiation.

The Importance of Indoor Air Quality

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), indoor air is often more polluted than outdoor air. Furthermore, many people spend as much as 90 percent of their time indoors, which means that polluted indoor air can have a major impact on their overall health.

Poor indoor air quality can worsen respiratory symptoms and difficulties for people who suffer from allergies or asthma. Even for people without these conditions, poor air quality can contribute to headaches, sinus irritation, dizziness and fatigue. Long-term exposure to polluted air can contribute to even more serious health consequences down the road, including cancer, respiratory disease and cardiac disease.

UV Light Destroys Genetic Material in Microorganisms

UV light improves air quality by damaging the DNA and RNA of organic contaminants that like to invade indoor air. These contaminants include mold, mildew, spores, fungi, viruses and bacteria, and they can all pose problems if you breathe them in on a regular basis. When UV light damages their genetic material, these contaminants are destroyed or rendered harmless.

UV light systems in homes usually target evaporator coils or ductwork. Systems located near coils will help to destroy contaminants before they reach your indoor air, while UV light in ductwork targets particles that escape your air filter.

UV light Systems Partner With Your HVAC System

Mold, dust mites and other dangerous particles can accumulate on coils and drain pans, where they not only contaminate your air but may also interfere with your HVAC system. UV light systems that target this area can help to keep both your air and your HVAC equipment clean. As a result, UV light can help your HVAC system to run efficiently and offset some of the costs of running the UV system.

UV light systems situated in your home’s ductwork will neutralize harmful particles that have escaped your air filter. An excellent air filter will remove a significant percentage of contaminants from the air before they reach your living spaces, but UV light is a great way to eliminate any microorganisms that slip through the cracks.

Thank you for reading! If you would like to find out how our products and services can improve the indoor air quality in your home, please don’t hesitate to call us today.

Controlling Dry Air In Your Home

If the air inside your home doesn’t contain enough moisture, you can experience a number of avoidable problems, including flooring damage and increased risks for illness. You have especially high chances of encountering these issues in colder parts of the year, when the outside air’s moisture content naturally drops. Luckily, you can keep dry air at bay by equipping your residence with a whole-home humidifier that allows you to precisely control the moisture levels in each room inside your dwelling.

The Damaging Impact of Overly Dry Air

The two most widespread forms of winter illness are the common cold and the flu. If the air inside your home doesn’t contain enough moisture, you increase your general susceptibility to the dozens of viruses capable of triggering a cold. Recent studies also show that a dry indoor environment makes it easier to spread the seasonal virus that causes the flu. In addition, flu symptoms can develop more quickly in a low-moisture environment. If you have a child with asthma, it’s important to note that repeated exposure to overly dry air makes symptoms of this condition more likely to appear. Dry air also intensifies the effects of asthma symptoms.

If you have hardwood floors in your home, lack of adequate moisture can lead to the development of expensive and unsightly cracking. The same type of cracking can appear in your walls, as well as in any woodwork inside your household. Dry air also increases the chances of generating static shocks, which are well-known for their ability to cause extensive damage in electronic equipment.

Dry air can also lead to unnecessary increases in your utility costs. That’s because the human body feels colder in a low-moisture environment than in a high-moisture environment, even when the actual temperature remains the same. When you feel colder, you naturally want to crank up the thermostat and make your home warmer. In turn, every degree of temperature increase in your thermostat setting translates into a significant increase in your monthly heating bill.

A Whole-Home Humidifier Provides Relief

Whole-home humidifiers work on the same principle as single-room humidifiers by adding needed moisture to the air. However, as their name implies, whole-home units simultaneously supply extra moisture to your entire house. They provide this broad effect because they tie straight into your HVAC system and spread moistened air through the connected ducting network. A monitor attached to a whole-home humidifier lets you keep tabs on current moisture levels and make any required year-round adjustments.

Installation of a whole-home humidifier is a simple project for a trained HVAC specialist. This means that, for a relatively low cost, you can avoid excessively dry indoor air and the accompanying threats to your health and valuable property. Contact the expert staff at Bartlett Heating & Air Conditioning for more information on installing a whole-home humidifier in your household. You can also follow us on these pages for regular advice on how to maintain the comfort of your indoor environment.

The Importance Of Changing Your Air Filter

Your home is one of your most treasured investments. It is the place where you and your loved ones come home to everyday therefore it should be safe, comfortable and secure. One of your responsibilities as a homeowner is to make sure that your loved ones are breathing good quality indoor air. According to home improvement experts, this is the reason why you need to have proper air filter maintenance.

Why do you need to change your air filter regularly?

1.) Improves efficiency of your unit.

If you have a dusty filter, it reduces air flow thereby increasing the energy needed to make it function properly by as much as 15 percent. In addition to that, a dusty filter equates to a dirty coil that will negatively affect the performance of your HVAC unit.

2.) Reduces electricity bills.

Having clean air filters means that you get to save on your electricity bill. Since your unit is more efficient, it pumps heating and cooling smoothly without having to use up so much electricity.

3.) Keeps the air clean.

When air filters are dusty, it could become dangerous breeding grounds for dirt, bacteria and molds. Once this spreads throughout your home it could have severe repercussions to the health of your loved ones. In fact, studies show that a good number of respiratory problems are caused by bacteria found in the air that you breathe right inside your home. To keep your loved ones healthy, you need to change air filters regularly.

4.) Ensures the longevity of your unit.

One of the many reasons why HVAC units get damaged is because of a clogged air filter. It can actually cause extensive damage to your unit leading to expensive repairs and parts replacement. To make sure that your unit lasts you many years of use, change the air filters on a monthly basis.

Dirt and neglect are often the top causes of malfunctioning HVAC units. Having proper air filter maintenance is the easiest way to help you achieve clean and healthy air for your entire family to breathe. Call us today to schedule an air filter maintenance check up and for the rest of your HVAC needs.

Effects Of High Winds On HVAC Systems

Lately, the whole country has been bothered by high winds. This is a nuisance that has affected indoor air quality. As wind blows, it scatters dirt that gathers inside of HVAC units. This means that it is blowing within your home and other types of buildings. As the air circulates and is inhaled, it can have negative effects on health and cause parts of the air conditioning system to fail. To avoid these problems, it is wise to perform proper maintenance and HVAC vent cleaning.

As dust is blown through the home, it can set off allergic reactions or worse. It may lead to asthma attacks or other respiratory problems. It can also cause air conditioner parts to break, which leads to costly repairs. To prevent any of these issues, it is wise to clean the unit’s screen and vents. The screen can be simply washed with warm soapy water. The vents can be vacuumed as well.

If there is a musty odor coming from the A/C unit, it may be a sign that the evaporation coils have collected dust that may be causing blockages along the lines. This may act as a place for mold to grow and flourish. Mold is bad for a person’s health and must be eliminated. The air conditioner must be unblocked and cleaned correctly.

There are many professional companies that will perform in home air quality testing to uncover if there are any problems with your home’s HVAC unit. Then, they will complete maintenance and cleaning of your system. This will keep you and your family healthy and prevent costly repair issues. When the weather is causing wind to blow and scatter dirt into your HVAC equipment, the problem must be addressed immediately. There is no time like today to begin breathing cleaner air.