Indoor Air Quality Critical for Year-Round Health
(4 months ago)
PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 24: Joseph Giannone Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning, a family-owned home service company with an A+ rating by the BBB, encourages Philly residents to recognize the dangers of poor indoor air quality and offers solutions for mitigating those dangers.
"The Environmental Protection Agency lists poor indoor air quality as a potential risk to our health," says Joe Giannone, owner of Joseph Giannone Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning. "We want Philly homeowners to be able to spot any potential air quality dangers inside the home and to help them improve the quality of the air inside their homes in order to create a better quality of life for their families."
The following are issues to be aware of and recommended solutions:
Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) - This term is used to describe situations where people experience negative health effects from spending time in a home or building. Family members may experience them in various zones in the home or they may be general in nature. An important factor in SBS is ineffective HVAC performance.
To combat potential SBS, Giannone recommends routine maintenance of the home's HVAC systems to include periodic cleaning or replacement of filters, replacement of water-stained ceiling tile and carpeting, and proper storage and use of paints, adhesives, solvents, and pesticides in well ventilated areas. Periodic maintenance of the home's HVAC system is paramount when trying to combat SBS.
Volatile Organic Compounds - In most cases, poor indoor air quality stems from sources inside the home. For example, adhesives, carpeting, upholstery, manufactured wood products and cleaning agents may emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs), including formaldehyde. Additionally, second-hand tobacco smoke contributes high levels of VOCs. According to the EPA, some VOCs in high concentrations can cause chronic and acute health effects. Some VOCs are also known carcinogens. Carbon monoxide and other dangerous particles can come from unvented kerosene and gas space heaters, woodstoves, fireplaces and gas stoves.
Should homeowners choose to use fuel-burning appliances, Giannone recommends that they be properly installed and maintained. It is also highly recommended that homeowners install carbon monoxide detectors in living spaces.
"I've seen the negative effects of poor indoor air quality," Giannone said. "I strongly recommend homeowners take IAQ seriously and take measures to protect their homes and families - including scheduling seasonal inspections and tune-ups for their heating and cooling systems."