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Avoiding Asthma And Allergy Symptom Triggers While At Home

To all asthmatics and allergy sufferers, we hope that you’ve been experiencing a symptom-free spring so far. For many of you, a complete avoidance of any allergy symptoms during the spring is unlikely. And with summer coming up in a little over a month, pollen, dust, ragweed and the like aren’t bound to let up.

As a result, it’s important that you take measures to protect your lungs from the usual suspects. And, believe it or not, this goes double when you’re in the house. You may assume that avoiding nature is a great way to prevent your allergies from acting up, but it’s important to remember that your home is filled with allergens as well.

What can asthmatics and allergy sufferers do to avoid symptom triggers while at home?

Eliminate the presence of cigarette smoke at all costs.

If you have asthma or suffer from allergies, you likely stay clear from cigarettes. However, you’re also likely to have friends or family members who smoke. Put them on high alert that under no circumstances is cigarette smoking permitted in your home. Make no mistake about it. Cigarettes are killers. We all know they’re cancer-causing. But for many asthma sufferers, the smoke from cigarettes is so unbearable, it feels like they’re being choked to death!

“Staying smoke and scent free is an easy way to improve the air quality in your home or workplace,” Asthma.ca reminds us, “Cigarette smoke, wood smoke, and scented products like candles, flowers, perfumes, cleaning supplies, and laundry products can all be asthma triggers. You have the power to keep these triggers out of your indoor spaces.”

Dust and clean your home regularly.

It sounds like a no-brainer to keep your home clean, but you may be surprised to know how quickly dust accumulates. Missing a week of cleaning is as good as inviting an asthma attack – depending, of course, on how severe your asthma is. As Chin Chin of Dengarden.com points out, when dust accumulates in the home, chemicals and allergens accumulate as well.

“Sweep or use a vacuum cleaner to get rid of dust on the floor and carpets at least two times a week,” she recommends, “Choose a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter to make sure that the dust doesn’t get blown back from the exhaust and don’t forget to wash the filter. Mop the floor with plain water afterward to pick up the dust left behind by the vacuum or broom.”

Beware of volatile organic compounds.

Volatile organic compounds (or VOCs, for short) are found in a lot of consumer products. In addition to cigarettes, they are also found in paints, glues, cleaners, disinfectants, air fresheners and adhesives. You’ll notice that a few of the products mentioned are often used to clean and disinfect your home. In reality, such products – the ones that actually smell pretty nice – are causing more harm than good.

“Chemical fumes from products like paints, cleaners, scented cosmetics, and laundry supplies can all trigger an asthma attack or worsening of symptoms,” informs Asthma.ca, “Look for products with the asthma & allergy friendly™ certification program logo to find products that have been scientifically tested and proven to be more suitable for people with asthma and allergies.”

The DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd. team is committed to helping you avoid asthma and allergy symptom triggers all year round. For information about our Air Quality Services, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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How Does The Summertime Impact Indoor Air Quality?

If you’re like most Canadians, you’re counting down the days until summer arrives. By our calculations, we’re looking at about 44 days until the official start of summer on June 21st. You can’t blame Canadians for eagerly wanting the warm and sunny days of summer to return. Our winters are long enough! In addition to the renewed opportunity to enjoy the sun, summer is also a great time of year to freshen up our homes.

Let’s be honest. Most of us keep our homes cooped up all winter long. We keep the windows shut to stay warm – and that makes sense. However, our prevention of air circulating in and out of our windows causes the air in our homes to get stale and stagnant. To improve indoor air quality all year long, it’s important to crack the windows – even it’s just for a few minutes – even on really cold days.

With summer, it will be easier to keep the windows open!

What does that mean for the indoor air quality of our homes? Sure, the air will be fresher since the old and stale air from inside will be able to escape out of the house. However, as many Canadians know, summer is also a season when allergies act up. As explained by Toronto’s SafeAir Environmental Inc., three of the most common causes of summer allergies are pollen, mould and smog.

With our windows open, the opportunities for allergy symptom-inducing pollen to enter our homes significantly increase. It’s the most common summer allergen of all as it emanates from blooming trees, bushes and flowers. It is known to irritate the eyes, nose and throat. Mould can add to this irritation.

“With the warmth and water of spring comes the potential for mould growth inside our homes come summer, which can make for a very unpleasant indoor environment!” says SafeAir, “Any leaks, drips, or musty smells should be thoroughly investigated before they become major infestations, which can seriously harm your health and even the structure of your home.” Their website also alerts people to be on the lookout for smog alerts all summer long.

What can be done to minimize indoor pollutants during the summer?

Having houseplants is a great idea. As we’ve pointed out in numerous blogs before, houseplants are known to neutralize air pollutants. With the summer season approaching, plants will be in a much better position to receive sunlight allowing them to bloom and flourish. Another great idea is cleaning your air conditioner before cranking it up. Keep in mind that its dormant winter-state likely allowed it to accumulate a lot of dust.

“Your air conditioner can be a source of mould and bacteria if improperly maintained,” warns Mississauga’s Applewood Air Conditioning, “The air conditioner coil is continually damp and located in a dark environment. If you have UV lights installed inside of your ductwork, this breeding ground for mould and bacteria will be disrupted. UV rays are also a beneficial for protecting against infectious diseases, as they can damage the physical structure of biological pollutants.”

The DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd. team is committed to helping you prevent your allergies from acting up this summer. For information about our Air Quality Services, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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How To Eliminate Dust Mites From Your Home

They are so tiny, they can’t be seen by the naked eye. But, if we’re being honest, under the microscope, dust mites look pretty creepy! Smaller than 1/70th of an inch, dust mites are miniscule bugs that live in warm, dark and moist locations. They thrive in such areas of your home as the carpets, rugs, drapes, curtains and your bed!

Air your bed out.

One of your home’s locations that dust mites really seem to enjoy is your bed. This might make your skin crawl, but since it doesn’t get any warmer or darker than your bed, you can bet that there are countless dust mites joining you while you sleep at night. In fact, this is why it’s actually recommended that you hesitate before making your bed each morning.

“One of the biggest things you can do to reduce the dust mite population in your home is to stop making your bed,” informs Nicole Faires on EarthEasy.com, “If that’s not realistic, at least let your bed air out after a long night’s sleep before you create the ideal mite sandwich: dead skin inside warm, humid sheets.”

Steam clean your bedding.

Airing your bed out will only help to minimize the dust mite population. In order to eliminate it completely, you need to be a diligent bedding washer. Change your sheets weekly and be sure to wash them in hot water. You may also want to consider steam cleaning your fabrics. According to Gaiam.com, vapour steam cleaning, which heats surfaces with dry steam, kills fungus, bacteria and dust mites.

“Vapour contains only 5 to 6 percent water (conversely, most steam cleaners use lots of warm water to clean), so the vapour steam doesn’t contribute to a moist environment,” reports the website, “Vapour steam deeply penetrates whatever it is cleaning, and it is great for upholstery, couches, carpets, and mattresses.”

Reduce the amount of fabrics in your home.

If cleaning all of the fabrics in your home requires too much time and effort, it may be best to do away with them altogether. All of those soft and fluffy fabrics where dust accumulates are where you’ll find dust mites. We’re not just talking about your carpets and rugs, we’re also referring to your couches and cushions and even stuffed animals and books.

“Switch to blinds, swap out your carpet for a hard floor, and get rid of unnecessary fabric items,” Faires recommends, “Weed through your book collection in favour of an eReader or store all books outside the bedroom in a bookcase with glass doors. Get rid of your traditional dog bed and swap it with a washable blanket. If you must have carpeting, consider a natural fibre wool carpet, which will keep the environment in the fibre drier than other materials.”

At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we know how important it is to minimize dust in the home. Doing so helps to prevent the onset of allergy symptoms and asthma triggers. To get a better understanding of the air quality in your home, contact us to learn more about our Air Quality Services. Please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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How To Improve Indoor Air Quality When You Have A Pet

There are two types of people in this world. Those who can’t live without their pets and those who want nothing to do with animals. The former group are made up of a wide variety of dog and cat lovers as well as enthusiasts of all types of birds and fish. The latter group incorporates a lot of individuals who much prefer clean and tidy homes without the worry of having to constantly vacuum and sweep up hair and droppings.

“My brother’s dog sheds like crazy,” mentioned one of our colleagues in a conversation earlier this week, “He loves that dog but I can’t even stand petting it. Its fur just sheds all over the place. It’s on everything. And when I leave his house, it’s all over me! I just don’t know how he lives like that.”

What makes pet dander such a big deal?

A house full of dog hair is much more than an unsightly mess. It’s also a cause for concern as far as our breathing is concerned. It should be noted, however, that pet fur and dander aren’t the same thing. As Hamilton, Ontario’s Clean Air Solutions explains, dander is small particles of dead skin that falls off our pets. And they are known allergens.

“Pet allergens (dander, mite waste, etc.) can cause numerous respiratory problems,” informs their site, “The most common problem associated with pet dander is asthma. Occasionally, allergens can cause skin conditions such as eczema. Many people have mild allergic reactions to pet dander, but others can have life threatening complications.”

How can pet-friendly homes be made allergen-free?

To minimize the frequency of allergic reactions and asthma symptoms in your pet-friendly home, it will be important to adopt neat freak-like tendencies. Naturally, regularly cleaning will help. This includes vacuuming areas where your pet likes to hang out and removing excess dander and hair from your sofas and even your clothing. Be sure to dust and wipe furniture and other surfaces as well. And, of course, you’ll want to keep your pet as clean as possible.

“Maintaining a regular grooming schedule for your pets helps reduce dander in your home,” advises JD’s A/C in Longview, Texas, “Bath your pets every week or two, and brush them at least once every other day. You can also use special cat dander wipes to remove dander from your cat. When you groom your pet, you’ll remove much of the dander from its coat as well as loose hair that can circulate through your home and worsen your air quality.”

Where can pet dander be found?

Pet hair and dander can literally be found everywhere. We’re talking about under the sofa and chair cushions, in your bedding and underneath the beds, inside of closets, along the baseboards, in air ducts and even in the cracks and crevices of your flooring and walls.

If you or anyone else in your home suffers from allergies or your notice your guests are having breathing issues, it’s best to get your home’s air quality tested. The DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd. team offers Air Quality Services, so please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca to find out how to take advantage of them!

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Preventing Your Allergies From Acting Up This Spring

It’s official! Spring is here! Well, technically speaking, the start of the spring season gets underway at 3:58 p.m. Mountain Time today. With a high somewhere around the 15 degrees Celsius mark in Calgary today, the signs of spring have already arrived! For most Canadians, this is amazing news. For many others, however, it’s the beginning of a nightmare.

Do you suffer from seasonal allergies? If so, you’re likely part of the latter “nightmare” group. Dust, pollen, ragweed and a myriad of other allergy irritants are known for rearing their ugly heads when the springtime rolls around. As a result, many allergy sufferers feel forced to resort to a variety of medications and changes to their daily routines. If this sounds like you, bear in mind that there are a number of ways to prevent your allergies from acting up this spring.

Add alternative remedies to your medications.

If you’re not particularly a big fan of taking meds, you’re not alone. Each and every day, more Canadians adopt natural remedies for their illnesses. Such solutions are often as simple as making dietary changes. So, while many of your prescriptions and over-the-counter medicines may be necessary to help you battle your allergies, Reader’s Digest suggests that you add some alternative remedies to your allergy-fighting routines.

As their website informs, “the following alternative remedies, when paired with your regular antihistamine, may relieve allergy symptoms: a daily multivitamin and mineral supplement that includes magnesium, selenium, vitamin C, vitamin E, and all the B vitamins; a cup of peppermint or chamomile tea each night before bed; or a daily dose of echinacea taken two weeks on, two weeks off.”

Discover your town’s pollen count.

If you’re one of the many Canadians who suffer from allergic reactions to pollen, it’s important that you become aware of the pollen count in your area. On VeryWellHealth.com, Dr. Daniel More informs readers about pollen counts and explains how they are obtained.

“Most pollen counters are placed on the tops of buildings, where they collect air samples through various methods,” he explains, “The pollen in the air lands on some type of surface, such as a glass microscope slide that has been coated with petroleum jelly. A person trained in pollen identification examines the slide under a microscope, and the amounts of different types of pollen are counted.”

Change your air conditioning filters.

Over the course of winter, it is likely your air conditioner stayed dormant. As a result, it is also likely that it accumulated a lot of dust. Before you fire up the air conditioning on a particularly warm day, be sure to clean or change your AC’s filters. The last thing you want is to spread all of that accumulated dust throughout your home.

“It’s important to change filters every three months and use filters with a MERV rating of 8 to 12,” advises Reader’s Digest, “A MERV rating tells you how well the filter can remove pollen and mould from the air as it passes through.”

The DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd. team is committed to helping you prevent your allergies from acting up this spring. For information about our Air Quality Services, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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Do The Right Thing: Bring The Outdoors Inside This Spring!

We’re only a week away now! Wednesday, March 20th marks the official start of the spring season. Throngs of Canadians nationwide are rejoicing at the fact that the frigid temperatures and heavy snowfall of winter will soon be behind us. Not only will we be able to enjoy the outdoors more often, we’ll be able to enjoy the indoors a lot more as well!

Although we have championed the act of cracking the windows throughout the winter many times on this blog, we’re well aware that most Canadians keep their homes fully shut when it’s cold. It’s hard to blame those who simply wish to keep warm and toasty in the winter. However, the lack of ventilation, during the coldest months of the year, make for homes rife with stale and stagnant air.

Proper ventilation is a key to improved indoor air quality.

When the spring arrives, keeping the windows open will be a lot easier to tolerate. Bringing the outdoors inside by way of allowing the fresh air from outside to circulate with the stale air from inside will help everyone in your home to breathe easier. Sarasota, Florida’s Aqua Plumbing & Air reminds us that proper ventilation of the home also comes by way of always using your exhaust fans.

“Make sure your kitchen and bathrooms have exhaust fans to remove excess moisture, unpleasant odours, and pollutants,” advises their website, “An energy recovery ventilation system can also save energy by cooling warm air as it comes into your home in spring and summer. These ventilators work like heat pumps, transferring heat to the outgoing cool air. They also dilute concentrations of contaminants in your home and increase your comfort.”

Houseplants can filter out air pollutants.

Another way to bring the outdoors inside is to literally take plants from outside and bring them into your home. Purchasing houseplants is an excellent idea if you’re looking to purify the air you breathe while at home. Plants are known to rid the air of harmful pollutants. As Hiller Plumbing, Heating, Cooling, & Electrical reminds us, a NASA study confirmed that several types of houseplants have air purifying qualities.

“Houseplants are visually uplifting, while also working to filter out air pollutants,” states the site, “According to NASA’s Clean Air Study on this matter, titled Interior Landscape Plants for Indoor Air Pollution Abatement, you can achieve noticeable air purification by placing greenery every 100 square feet within any given space.”

Clean green.

When dusting your furniture, mopping your floors or even spraying the bathroom to improve its smell, stay away from chemical-based cleansers. The volatile organic compounds in many cleaning products only serve as irritants to our respiratory systems. A clean smell doesn’t actually represent a clean environment. Another way to bring the outdoors in is to use natural products to clean.

“When it comes to cleaning products, fragrance = chemicals,” reports Hiller, “In fact, that pine or citrus fresh scent we’ve come to associate with a clean home is actually just a mask for the chemicals and bacterial transfer underneath. Opt for fragrance-free or unscented products. The last thing you want is to unknowingly pollute the air with the petroleum-based chemicals in the very products you’re using to clean with!”

The DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd. team would love to help you enjoy the best possible indoor air quality this spring. For information about our Air Quality Services, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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How The Transition From Winter To Spring Can Impact Indoor Air Quality

Congratulations Canada! We’re almost there. In exactly two weeks, the spring season will officially be upon us. And while it’s true that winter-like weather conditions may persist well into April, there’s no question that we’re a lot closer to experiencing a return to warmer days. When the spring finally arrives, expect there to be a lot more people venturing outdoors. But what will that mean for the air inside our homes?

Is there an impact on indoor air quality when winter transitions into spring?

According to 1Source Safety and Health, Inc., people with allergies quite often have their symptoms triggered when the spring arrives. In their report entitled “Impact of Outdoor Seasonal Changes on Indoor Air Quality”, they note that outdoor contaminants are at their lowest levels during the winter. That’s because the frozen snow-covered ground combined with relatively low humidity levels tend to keep mould spores and other air pollutants at bay.

However, “dust, mould, temperature and humidity begin to increase during the spring months (March, April,  and  May),” reads the report, “ As  pollen,  mould  and  dust  concentrations  increase,  so  do  the  associated  symptoms. Interestingly, these symptoms, which also occur outside of the workplace, carry over into  an  employee’s  work  shift  and  are  often  incorrectly  associated  with  exposure  within  the  workplace.”  

Pollen and dust are major culprits for allergy symptoms.

Chances are, the windows of your home are bound to be open a lot more often during the spring than they were in the winter. With the warmer weather enabling pollen and dust to better enter our air space, it’s inevitable that some of it will enter our homes. Cincinnati’s Hader Solutions warns that it’s best to keep windows shut or not open too wide when there is a pollen alert. Your local weather station should be able to inform you if one is in effect.

As well, their website details how winter is the season of dust accumulation in the home, while spring enables it all to become airborne. “Because of improper ventilation during the colder months, dust can settle into vents, registers, and eventually ductwork, making it close to impossible to rid your home of these irritating pollutants,” says Hader Solutions.

Watch out for all that snow melt!

What’s one of the biggest differences between winter and spring? Snowfall! All of the snow that winter brings ends up melting during the spring. And melted snow on your rooftop can lead to water leaking into your home. As you’re likely aware, water is the main culprit in the development of mould. It’s important to prevent any leak sources in your home.

“Prevent water from entering your home by making sure there are no cracks or gaps on your roof or foundation where water could easily enter,” Hader Solutions advises, “Standing water in your home can cause mould, which can be detrimental to indoor air quality. If you suspect any mould in your home, call an expert immediately to remove it.”

The DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd. team would love to help you ensure that your home enjoys the best possible indoor air quality this spring. For information about our Air Quality Services, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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The Importance Of Avoiding Secondhand Smoke At All Costs

In a recent conversation with a colleague, we received some insight into what it’s like to live with asthma. This isn’t to say we weren’t already aware of the dangers of smoking for asthmatics. After all, cigarettes are deadly for all of us. But after hearing our friend speak of his experiences with breathing issues related to cigarette smoke, we felt it necessary to communicate how important it is for us all to avoid secondhand smoke at all costs.

“I can’t even smell it,” our colleague informed us, “If you go outside to smoke and come back in and I smell it on you, I’ll start coughing. It’s unbearable. I literally don’t know how people do it. You couldn’t get me to smoke a cigarette for a million dollars. I’d literally die before I finished it.”

What can non-smokers do to avoid secondhand smoke?

“Put all of your friends who are smokers on alert,” says our colleague, “If my friends plan on lighting up, they make sure to do so away from me. To be honest, I don’t ever have them over to my home because I just can’t have smoke anywhere around me. And when I visit them, they always go outside. Believe me, I appreciate it.”

It’s important to point out that our asthmatic friend doesn’t have the breathing issues he had when he as a child. As a kid, he experienced wheezing and coughing fits due to such irritants as pollen and ragweed. His last major asthma attack took place during a camping trip in Grade 4. However, as an adult, his asthma is all but gone. That is, of course, unless he smells smoke.

You don’t have to be asthmatic for secondhand smoke to impact you.

“Secondhand smoke exposure contributes to approximately 41,000 deaths among nonsmoking adults and 400 deaths in infants each year,” reports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Secondhand smoke causes stroke, lung cancer, and coronary heart disease in adults. Children who are exposed to secondhand smoke are at increased risk for sudden infant death syndrome, acute respiratory infections, middle ear disease, more severe asthma, respiratory symptoms, and slowed lung growth.”

The Monday Campaigns is a global movement backed by leading public health schools that dedicates the first day of every week to health. On their website, they point out that secondhand smoke releases more than 7,000 harmful chemicals into the air. To reiterate, cigarette smoke is dangerous for all us, not just those with respiratory issues.

Keep your home strictly smoke-free.

If you’re a non-smoker trying to avoid secondhand smoke, there is no simpler advice. Keep cigarette smoke out of your home. As our colleague mentioned, he won’t even let someone who has recently smoked a cigarette to enter his home. While this may seem harsh for some people, it’s a necessity if you wish to completely avoid the health hazards associated with cigarette smoking.

Kentucky’s St. Elizabeth Healthcare encourages people to ask their friends not to smoke around them. “It may be an awkward conversation at first, but it’s important to help your friend understand that while you love spending time together, you can’t be around him when he smokes,” they say on their website, “Be caring and understanding, but be firm.”

Unquestionably, a smoke-free home will vastly improve its indoor air quality. At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we’d like to help you take things a step further. For information about our Air Quality Services, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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3 Ways To Improve Indoor Air Quality Throughout The Winter Months

February is here. And while there are claims that the recent Groundhog Day forecast an early spring, most Canadians are well aware that we still have a ways to go before we’ll be enjoying hot and sunny weather. As a result, most will keep their doors and windows firmly shut in order to keep the cold from entering their homes. But, as we pointed out in our last blog, ensuring a high quality of air in the home requires the cracking of the windows every now and again.

There are, of course, a number of other ways to improve your home’s indoor air quality throughout the winter months. Here are three:

1. Vacuum with vigour.

Keeping your floors clean is an especially important winter task. Especially when your windows are closed for most of the day, there is little to no escape for dust and other air pollutants. By vacuuming your carpets and keeping them as dust-free as possible, you’ll help to alleviate some of the irritants to your lungs that may be in the air. As Florida’s The Alternative Daily reminds us, carpets notoriously trap indoor pollutants of all types.

“To keep them clean, use a vacuum with a HEPA filter once a week, and consider steam cleaning every couple of months,” reads their website, “Investing in your own steam cleaner is wise, as professional carpet cleaning services often use harsh chemicals which can make your air even more toxic. If you steam clean yourself, you can choose to use a mixture of white vinegar and hot water to get the job done.”

2. Freshen up your filters.

To reiterate, most homes are kept shut all winter long. As a result, they depend more on their air filters to purify the air than they do the circulation of fresh air from outside. It’s important to remember that air filters can quickly get clogged up with dust and other air pollutants. Not cleaning them or changing them regularly can result in having those pollutants circulate back into the home.

“Dirty air filters are a major contributor to poor indoor air quality,” informs Wisconsin’s Titan Air, “Check your filters regularly and change them as needed. Make sure that when they are installed, filters are secured tightly to avoid gaps between the filter frame and rack. This reduces bypass air, which can harm indoor air quality by allowing breathable particles to pass through without being filtered.”

3. Hook up some houseplants.

Back in December, we blogged about what great holiday gifts houseplants make. Their air-purifying ways make up some of the easiest ways to reduce air pollutants in your home. Houseplants provide such effortless solutions to poor indoor air quality. Just plop them down or hang them up and your job is done! As The Alternative Daily confirms, houseplants are known to filter air pollutants from our living environments.

“Azaleas and English ivy do well in cooler temperatures, and Chinese evergreens and bamboo palms thrive in the shade,” notes the site, “Aloe vera and chrysanthemums are two other great choices, however they require direct sunlight. Spider plants are a resilient and popular choice for first-time plant owners.”

At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we don’t sell houseplants, but we do still offer you ways to ensure the purity of the air inside your home. For information about our Air Quality Services, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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The Wonderful Act Of Cracking Open The Windows In Winter

As a Canadian, you’re most likely quite used to a few annual winter traditions. They include shovelling your driveway, scraping ice from your car windows and cranking up the heat of your home. And while every Canadian expects a fairly chilly winter each and every year, it doesn’t stop most of us from complaining about it when it arrives.

Complaining about the cold is as much part of the Canadian winter tradition as all of the above mentioned activities. That’s why the suggestion to crack open the windows, during the winter, is usually met with raised eyebrows. Maintaining top-of-the-line indoor air quality is a year-round requirement. And with the cold air outside encouraging us to keep our homes sealed shut, we leave ourselves susceptible to breathing stagnant, stale and polluted air more often.

Why should you crack open the windows?

Indoor air pollution is created in a number of ways and without ventilating the air in your home, it can actually lead to a number of health problems. On Glamour.com, Sarah Jio explains that opening your windows during the winter is a great way to both enjoy fresh air and avoid ill health.

“Health experts have longed warned of the dangers of ‘indoor air pollution,’ and for good reason,” she writes, “From mould spores to chemical off-gassing from paint, carpet, new furniture and cleaning products, sometimes the air in our homes and offices is many times more polluted than the air circulating outside.”

When should you crack open the windows?

Consider some of the actions you may be taking that lead to the pollution of the air in your home. Cleaning products that contain VOCs (volatile organic compounds) may leave behind fresh scents, but they can wreak havoc on your respiratory system. Cracking the windows during your cleaning routines is one way to promote high indoor air quality during the winter.

Jio reveals that her favourite time to crack open the windows on chilly days is when she is cleaning and tidying up. “I feel warmer anyway, since I’m moving around, and I don’t mind a cool breeze flowing in,” she notes, “Plus, when I’m cleaning my house, I love the feeling of cleaning the air a bit too. Try it!”

How long should you keep the windows cracked open?

As you may have guessed, keeping the windows open for prolonged periods of time will end up being counterproductive. Not only will it make your home cold, but it will waste a lot of the energy (and money) being used to keep your home warm. Crack open different windows in the home during different portions of the day for short periods of time. That way, each room will get its own special dose of freshness.

“You don’t have to leave windows open for hours on end,” WindowsCanada.com assures us, “Just cracking them for 15-20 minutes a day can vastly improve the air quality inside your home. Even though it’s cold outside, your health and the health of your family will be in much better shape with some fresh air.”

The DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd. team would love to work with you on keeping the air inside your home as pure as possible this winter. Please don’t hesitate to contact us in order to learn more about such services as our Air Quality Services and Mould Assessment Services. Call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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