If you have allergies, asthma, or simply want to breathe better, you can improve your house's indoor air quality with some upgrades. Here are a few of the most effective indoor air quality upgrades to consider.
Choose a Higher-Rated Furnace Filter
If you have a forced-air furnace, you can switch to a higher-rated furnace filter. A higher-rated filter is easy to install, and it'll remove more particles from your house's air anytime the furnace runs. Assuming you run the furnace a lot during winter, the filter will be improving your air when you can't open windows to let in fresh air very often.
Even if you're not mechanically inclined, replacing a furnace filter is easy. The filter will be located in a slot somewhere on the main portion of your furnace, and the filter will slide out easily. Take the filter out and check the dimensions printed on it. Order a highly rated filter that's the same size, and slide the new filter in.
If you're ordering the new filter online, continue to keep the old one in place until the new one comes. If you purchase a new filter at a local store, you can change the old filter out immediately.
When you look at filter ratings, these aren't subjective customer reviews. All furnace filters are rated according to a standard MERV number system. Many residential furnaces have filters with MERV ratings between 5 and 8. Stepping up to a filter that's rated between 10 and 12 will significantly increase how many airborne particles the filter catches.
Set Up an Air Filter
Small air filters can be set up in any room of your home, so long as there's an outlet to power them. These units circulate air, passing it through one or more filters as they circulate.
You can set up an air filter to improve the air quality in a specific room. You might place one in each bedroom, where people spend hours a day sleeping. You also could place one in a room where a dog or cat spends most of their time.
Unlike a furnace filter, a freestanding air filter can be run without heating your house. Thus, they're a good solution for year-round air quality improvement.
Change to Hardwood Floors
Carpets catch dust, which gets released when your foot compresses its fibers. Hardwood floors don't collect dust as much because they're smooth. Change carpeted areas to hardwood and you won't kick up as much dust every time you walk in the house.
To learn more about your indoor air quality, talk to a professional in your area.