Here’s the thing – indoor pollutants are sneaky. Sure, you can see most household dirt, but nasty stuff that suffocates your indoor air is hard to notice. In fact, you could have experienced a couple of air quality issues in your living space already. And, when the pollution rolls over, it can spell trouble for you and your family. Even more disturbing, the smog might be coming from the least expected place. Take a look;
Lemony Fresh Products
While you may not know it, the scented candles and cleaning products in your house could very well be a source of some serious pollution. More specifically, the chemicals they release into the air can turn into a toxic brew. Limonene, the ingredient that gives perfumed candles their fresh smell, for instance, is a volatile organic chemical. The compound becomes toxic when it mixes with ground-level ozone found in most homes.
Even then, it isn’t hard to reduce the pollution caused by limonene. A good cleaning system such as the Novita’ air cleaner can be useful for driving down airborne chemicals. Plus, you can mount a few spider plants in your house to help control pollution. Or, you can simply open your windows to let in fresh air.
Puffing an E-cig is fun, right? It sure is. What you may not know, however, is that e-cigarettes can still pollute your indoor air. The second smoke from e-juice hovers around longer than you think. The ripple effect is that it forms a sticky residue known as third-hand smoke that clings to your indoor surfaces.
So, what makes third-hand smoke harmful? Well, for starters, the chemical toxins it releases can remain on your surfaces, days, months and, yes, in some scenarios, years after the smoke clears. Besides, when third-hand smoke mixes with airborne chemicals such as nitrous acid, it becomes poisonous.
It is essential to mention at this point that third-hand smoke is impossible to remove if it seeps into porous surfaces. The best way to deal with it, therefore, is to replace the surface including drywall, carpet, and upholstery.
However, in cases where you cannot replace your drywall (due to high cost, for instance), you can apply a protective coat. The idea is to stop the smoke deposit from releasing harmful compounds into the air. More than that, coating surfaces helps reduce off-gassing.
The Bottom Line
Contaminated indoor air can cause both short-term and long-term effects. Failure to address the problem puts your family at risk of ailments such as eye and throat infections. In extreme cases, polluted air can lead to respiratory problems and cancer.
Still, you don’t have to wait until the situation aggravates to take the necessary action. Be sure to assess the safety of the air within your living space from time to time. Consider installing a VOC sensor in your home to measure volatile organic compounds. That way, you can pick up harmful compounds and ketones in your household. A carbon dioxide meter can also do the job.