Although our green landscape means Portland enjoys better air quality than many cities, there are always things you can do to improve your indoor air quality. That’s especially true in spring when the pollen count rises. Here are some smart tips to put to use to keep your IAQ high all spring long.
Tips to Boost Indoor Air Quality
- Vacuum smart – For your spring cleaning, choose a vacuum cleaner that contains a HEPA filter. Remove the dust kicked up by vacuuming by turning the thermostat to “fan on,” letting it run 15 minutes and then switching it back to “auto.”
- Filter and clean your air – Use an HVAC system air filter with a MERV of 5 or higher, which is the minimum for improving indoor air quality. If you’re managing allergies or asthma, go for a MERV 10 or 11 pleated filter. Consider installing an air cleaner to control contaminants such as tiny dust and pollen particles, mold and bacteria, as well as the harmful fumes known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
- Maintain good airflow – To control odors and humidity, run exhaust fans for a few minutes after showering and cooking. If you had condensation on your windows this winter and still see it in spring, your home most likely needs more ventilation. A heating and cooling technician can assess your home and advise you on your best passive and mechanical ventilation options.
- Get a handle on humidity – High humidity makes you less comfortable and helps mold and dust mites spread. In addition to ventilating, repair leaky plumbing fixtures and basement or roof leaks because these also add moisture to the air. If you notice mold on your ceilings, bubbling paint or other signs of high humidity, consider installing a dehumidifier.
- Keep the HVAC system in shape – During normal use, the furnace and air conditioner pick up dust and debris that impair their efficiency and can eventually reduce air quality. Schedule your air conditioner’s annual inspection and cleaning early in spring so you have your pick of service providers and appointment times before the best ones are booked.
For more information on improving your indoor air quality, contact Roth Heating & Cooling. We proudly handle the HVAC needs of Portland area homeowners.