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How Your Air Quality May Suffer This Winter

smoking-chimney-in-winterWe’re busy now helping local homeowners prepare for the coming winter weather. A large part of this job is doing routine maintenance on furnaces and other heating systems. It’s the essential step to ensure a home has a steady heat supply without unwieldy bills—and that the heating system works for many winters to come.

But there’s another part of winter comfort that isn’t connected to indoor temperatures. It’s the quality of the air inside the house. Unfortunately, winter can bring with it stuffy and pollutant-filled air, and you may need the assistance of our indoor air quality specialists to help you prepare for a healthier season.

The Indoor Air Quality Winter Dilemma

What can go wrong with air quality in winter? A number of things, starting with the construction of your house itself.

No, it isn’t that your house is poorly built. It’s that it’s too well built. The modern home is designed to have a strong “heat envelope,” which means it prevents as much movement of heat into it or out of it as possible. The insulation on your house traps heat during the winter, which helps make the heating system more efficient. Gaps in the heat envelop mean drafts and higher energy bills.

But a strong heat envelop also means very little fresh air moves through the house, and indoor pollutants have nowhere to go. Many items and appliances in your household create airborne contaminants: cleaning products, hobby products, cosmetics, paint, building materials, gas combustion appliances, and more. The concentration of these contaminants can become high during winter when you have your home sealed up against the outside cold.

An additional air quality trouble is a drop in humidity levels below 30%. This is too dry! It gives the winter cold a harsher edge (your body loses heat faster in dry conditions) and contributes to cracked skin, irritated eyes, dried sinuses, and the easy transmission of illness from person to person.

What We Can Do to Help

We’re Garfield, NJ, HVAC experts, and handling indoor air quality services is an important part of our job. We install many types of air quality systems into homes to help filter and purify the air or balance its humidity:

  • Air filters are part of most IAQ solutions in homes. They trap larger particles moving through the HVAC system in mesh fibers.
  • Different types of electronic air purifiers target smaller contaminants that might slip through filters.
  • UV air purifiers are effective against germs and viruses, which especially helpful during the flu and cold season.
  • A whole-house humidifier integrated into the ventilation system makes it easy to enjoy balanced humidity.
  • Energy and heat recovery ventilators open a house to fresh air currents without putting strain on the heater or bringing in drafts.

You may need one or more of these installations to enjoy quality air in your house during the winter—and most of them are helpful during the summer as well. Trust to our technicians to find out exactly what your household needs to enjoy comfortable and healthful air quality.

Need better air quality? Call on Advanced Mechanical Services—we offer service throughout the Tri-State Area.

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