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Dust Mites

How To Not Worsen Your Indoor Air Quality When Winter Hits

Yes, we’re well aware that the winter season doesn’t become official until the 21st of December. But, let’s be honest. We live and work in Alberta – a province known for snowfalls long before the winter season hits. With that said, it’s likely you’re already in “keep warm” mode, which is pretty much a pastime for all Canadians, at this time of year. However, when winter hits, it’s important we be mindful of the problems the season can create for our indoor air quality.

Naturally, we keep our homes sealed all winter long. Everyone loves the warm and cozy feeling that comes with staying indoors. But we have to keep in mind that when the doors and windows are shut, the air inside the home can’t escape. That can lead to some health issues. So what should we do so that we don’t worsen indoor air quality when winter hits?

Crack open the windows.

This may sound like a strange piece of advice, during the winter, but it’s one we’ve given before and one we’re sure to give again. Crack those windows open! Yes, we know that it’s cold outside, but you need to ventilate your home in order to avoid the health issues that can occur due to breathing stale and stagnant air. As HappyHiller.com points out, the secret to healthy indoor air quality is a delicate balance of insulation and ventilation.

“If your home is too tight, then air gets stuck in the home and gets more and more polluted, with very little introduction of fresh air from outside,” reads the website, “Modern homes and improved renovation practices have made homes more airtight, which is great for reducing energy bills, but not so great from improving air quality. When indoor air becomes trapped, it gets more and more contaminated every day.”

Step up your laundry game.

The more you stay inside, the more likely you will be to shed your hair and skin all over your home. This may sound odd, but it’s true. And when you shed those skin cells of yours, you invite dust mites to take residence in your domicile. Especially in your bedding, these dust mites like to eat skin cells and leave behind allergy-inducing waste. Therefore, it is best you launder your bedding more regularly than normal during the winter.

“Because more time is spent indoors during the winter, the concentration of dust mite food – shed human skin cells – increases, as do dust mite populations,” affirms AchooAllergy.com, “Dust mites are present wherever there is dust, including household surfaces, upholstered furniture, draperies, carpets, and especially bedding.”

Stay away from the spray.

To be specific, it’s wise to stop cleaning your home by spraying those VOC-heavy products all over the place. You know the ones we mean – air fresheners and disinfectants with strong scents. These products contain volatile organic compounds which are among the main contributors to unhealthy indoor air. To keep your home clean, smelling sweet and a healthy environment all at once, use natural cleansers instead.

At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we’d love to help you not worsen your indoor air quality when winter hits. 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 Often Should You Be Vacuuming Your Floors?

Allow us to tell you a little story. Earlier this week, one of our colleagues decided to regale us with stories about his vacuuming practices. He works from home and uses an old desk chair each and every day. As of late, this desk chair has been shedding. In other words, the vinyl covering that encapsulates the seat and the backing is coming undone. As a result, there are small black pieces of ripped vinyl all over his home office floor.

“I have to vacuum every single day,” our colleague informed us, “I basically just keep the vacuum in the office now. It’s so annoying. It never fails. Every single day, I have to vacuum the floor to pick up all of these ripped up pieces of chair covering. If I didn’t see the mess my chair was making, I likely wouldn’t be vacuuming that much at all.”

We generally only clean what we see as dirty.

We found our colleague’s final comment to be a very interesting one. It’s true, isn’t it? We don’t tend to clean unless we can visually see messes. However, dust accumulates on our floors and surfaces each and every day. For many people who don’t vacuum regularly, the risk of respiratory illnesses increases. An accumulation of dust generally means the presence of dust mites – miniscule creatures that feed on dead skin and leave behind asthma-inducing waste.

Now, daily vacuuming may not necessarily be mandatory. But just how often should we vacuum? Our colleague admits that his home office is carpeted and that the outside living area has hardwood flooring. As a result, he tends to vacuum the living room a lot less often than he does his office.

Vacuuming frequency depends on a few factors.

According to Tyler Mears, home experts recommend that carpets and rugs be vacuumed at least twice a week. On the U.K.’s Wales Online website, he writes that high-traffic areas (like our colleague’s home office) should be vacuumed with more frequency. Vacuuming frequency should also greatly increase if you have pets. “If pets are in the home, daily vacuum cleaning is strongly recommended to remove dirt, hair, dander, and the smaller microscopic allergens that are invisible to the naked eye,” informs Mears.

Carol J. Alexander agrees. On FamilyHandyman.com, she insists that people who love their pets love their vacuum cleaners just as much. “Pets shed and drop fleas and dander that can aggravate or cause allergies and disease,” she explains, “Not to mention what they bring in on their paws! No matter what type of floors you have, if you have dogs, cats and/or other furry friends running loose in your home, vacuum every day.”

Are vacuuming your home often enough?

At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we’d like to help you get a much better understanding of how clean your home really is. Assessing its indoor air quality is a great step towards ensuring better health for everyone who lives in it. 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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Never Underestimate The Importance Of Vacuuming

We get it. Chores aren’t exactly fun. Activities such as dusting, mopping, washing the dishes, doing the laundry and vacuuming can be made a lot more entertaining if you put on some music. Make it a party! Dance and get some always-needed exercise while doing your chores and your regular cleaning routines won’t seem so mundane.

If the whole “party while you tidy” thing doesn’t work for you, then perhaps it’s best you take a more intense look at the health implications that can ensue when you don’t clean up regularly. Vacuuming, in particular, is especially vital to your health. Believe it or not, the removal of dust, dirt and other home contaminants is essential in preventing respiratory problems and the onset of allergy symptoms.

There is more than just dust in your carpets!

Sure, dust can make you sneeze and cough. But when you’re not vacuuming your carpets (where dust easily accumulates) on a regular basis, you’re inviting unwanted visitors into your home – literally. Dust mites and other microorganisms feed off of the skin you shed every day. You may not notice it, but you shed a lot of skin all day long.

“A human sheds over 1 million skin cells per hour,” reveals Jason Roberts on an infographic provided by VacuumsGuide.com, “Every year, these mingle with airborne dust (soil particles) and accumulate to several pounds into carpets, rugs and furniture. They provide a great developing environment for lots of dangerous microorganisms.”

California-based professional carpet cleaners, Chem-Dry of Fair Oaks/Folsom corroborates this point. “When a carpet is not cleaned regularly, microorganisms tend to grow quickly and this can become an issue for those who are sensitive to allergens or who have asthma,” reads their website, “Dust particles and other micro substances that can become clogged within the fibres of the carpet can get stirred up and airborne every time someone walks across the room.”

Do you eat in the living room?

If so, you’re like most Canadians. It’s fun to plop in front of the television to watch the game or catch up on your favourite show during dinner time. And for everyone who partakes in the popular “watch while you eat” routine, it’s important to know just how dirty your floors are!

You may think you picked up every rice grain. You may assume you’ve swept up all of the crumbs. But living room eaters always leave food behind. And food in your carpets equals an illness waiting to happen.

“Dropped food is wasted food,” Roberts insists, “There is no 3 second, 5 second or 7 second rule. Dropped food gets infected with bacteria instantly…you could get Salmonella, Campylobacter, E-coli or several other viruses that will affect your digestive system.”

There are two things to draw from this information. 1) Never eat food that drops on the floor and 2) Vacuum the carpets of rooms you eat in right after eating!

How clean is your home?

At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we’d like to help you get a much better understanding of how clean your home really is. Assessing its air quality is a great step towards ensuring better health for all who live in it. 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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Making Your Home Healthier For The Holidays

Now that we’re a week into November, it’s pretty safe to say that the holiday shopping season is here. Many Canadians have already filled out their holiday shopping lists and are making plans to hit the malls in order to locate specially selected items. Of course, the official start of the holidays is still many weeks away. But you can never start your holiday shopping too early.

Be sure to include a special someone on your list. To be more accurate, it’s a special “something”. Your home deserves all the love you can give it! The more you take care of your home, the happier and healthier your family will be. This forthcoming holiday season, be sure to pick up some gifts that will make your home healthier.

Soy candles.

Who doesn’t love a pleasant smelling home? The problem, for most of us, is that keeping our homes smelling sweet often involves the spraying of air fresheners. These products commonly contain volatile organic compounds (or VOCs) which are detrimental to our health. To prevent wreaking havoc on our respiratory systems, opt for natural products that emit sweet smells. On Bustle.com, Carina Wolff recommends soy candles.

“Scented candles can make your home smell nice, but they come at a risk,” she explains, “Petroleum-based paraffin wax candles emit potentially hazardous chemicals that can lead to health risks such as cancer, common allergies, and asthma, according to a study from South Carolina State University. Vegetable-based options such as 100 percent soy candles don’t produce those harmful chemicals, so opt for those instead.”

Moisture meter.

Keeping your home’s humidity at a safe level is also imperative to its overall health. High levels of humidity promote breeding grounds for mould. And when mould spores become airborne, they turn into major irritants to our respiratory systems, especially for those of us with asthma and allergies. Best Health Magazine highly recommends that you buy a moisture meter for your home.

“Nothing helps mould to flourish like high humidity, so do all you can to get household moisture under control,” notes their website, “Obviously, that means keeping an eye out for roof leaks and drip-drip-dripping faucets…You might want to pick up a moisture meter (hygrometer) at a hardware store. If the indoor humidity in your home regularly exceeds 50 percent, a dehumidifier should solve your problem.”

New bedding.

Do you find you’re using the same sheets and pillowcases over and over again? Do you get lazy and just leave the same ones on your bed for weeks on end? To prevent an onslaught of dust mites, which provide major triggers of our asthma symptoms and other allergies, it’s important to remove your bed sheets and wash them in hot water at least once a week. To help with the bedding rotation, you may want to pick up a new bed set.

“Chronic exposure of dust mites can cause allergies and asthma, according to the American Lung Association, so be sure to vacuum frequently, change your bedding and pillowcases often, and reduce the humidity in your house,” advises Wolff.

At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we’d argue that an inspection of your home’s indoor air quality is the best holiday gift you could give it! For information about our Air Quality Services and/or our Mould Assessment Services, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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3 Important Fall Cleaning Tips

We hate to have to remind you, but the summertime will soon be coming to a close. With the start of school just around the corner, we only have a few days left of what we officially refer to as “summer vacation”. And while the fall season doesn’t officially get underway until September 22nd, we all know that the temperatures are about to cool off.

With the approaching of each new season, it’s always a good idea to have somewhat of a fresh start. Spring isn’t the only time of year when a cleaning is necessary! We’d argue that fall cleaning is an equally important annual event.

Here are three important fall cleaning tips:

1. Wash all of your bedding.

Most people wash their bed sheets on a weekly basis. This, of course, is a wise idea as it helps to keep dust mites at bay. Making sure to regularly change the sheets and washing them in hot water is a great way to cleanse your bedding of the dead skin, sweat and hair left behind when you sleep. In addition, it rids you of the dust mites that love to eat that dead skin and leave their respiratory system-affecting waste behind.

With that said, it’s important to also wash your comforters and heavy blankets. As Sara Elliot advises on HowStuffWorks.com, washing all of your bedding is an important fall cleaning ritual. “Wash all bedding in preparation for cooler temperatures and use very hot water, 130 degrees Fahrenheit (54.4 Celsius) or higher to kill dust mites and bacteria,” she instructs, “Over the winter season, be sure to wash bedding weekly.”

2. Test and clean your smoke detectors.

This is a tip that cannot be stressed enough. Cleaning your smoke detectors will help to ensure that they are perfectly operational. Protecting your family from a potential fire is obviously a life-saving action.

“You already know to put fresh batteries in your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors,” writes Christina Peterson on GoodHousekeeping.com, “But you also need to clean your units, since dust that accumulates can cause them to underperform. Using your vacuum cleaner’s soft brush attachment, clean in and around the dectectors’ openings. If any are more than 10 years old, replace them.”

3. Give your pets a scrub.

The many pet owners across Canada put themselves in somewhat tougher positions to keep their homes clean. Between all of the pet dander, fur, saliva and tracked-in dirt, pets are known for keeping homes messy. Taking your pet to a groomer or giving it a good scrub yourself is an important way of maintaining a clean home and improving its overall air quality.

Pets “can be a handful, particularly if someone in the family has allergies,” says Elliot, “Whenever possible, bathe cats and dogs regularly to keep dander to a minimum. A weekly bath may seem unrealistic, but even a monthly wet or dry bath is better than nothing. If you teach them young, you may be able to train pets to tolerate the vacuum cleaner for a weekly vacuuming.”

At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we work tirelessly to ensure that our clients always enjoy the best indoor air quality possible. We’d be happy to provide a professional inspection of the air in your home. For more 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 Reduce Your Home’s Dust Mite Population

This may sound like a weird question, but how many living beings do you believe are in your household? We imagine that it would be your first inclination to state the number of actual residents such as yourself, your spouse, your children, and/or your parents. Perhaps, you live alone. As a result, your answer to the question above would be one. You get the picture.

What if we were to tell you that the actual number of living beings in your household is probably a lot closer several million? Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? However, the fact is you have millions of dust mites living and feeding inside your bed, carpeting, soft furnishings and even your clothes. And while this sounds gross, it’s more important to highlight the fact that dust mites are an allergy’s sufferer’s nightmare.

Get rid of their homes.

Allergic reactions to dust mite debris and waste include difficulty breathing, coughing, nasal congestion, sneezing, wheezing, watery eyes, itching and even eczema. Especially if you have asthma, dust mites can be among your worst enemies. They tend to live in dark, warm areas of your home where your skin tends to shed. Read: your bed. This is why it’s important to “get rid of their homes”, as AllergyStore.com puts it.

“Get rid of their hiding places and their home, sweet home,” insists the website, “That means giving a heave-ho to rugs and carpets. Small throw rugs that can be washed weekly are acceptable. Get rid of all other fibre-based floor coverings. Replace them with tile, hardwood, laminate, engineered wood, vinyl, or concrete floors. Hard surfaces can be vacuumed and mopped regularly to remove all dust, dust mite feces, and dust mites.”

Weekly washing: make it a habit.

Your dead skin flakes provide an excellent buffet for dust mites. Not only is your bed a warm, dark and humid place (a dust mite’s dream come true), but it’s also a place where you shed most of your dead skin. Your bed (a place where you spend upwards of eight hours every night) arguably deserves the most cleaning attention. Wash the sheets every week in hot water to minimize the presence of dust mites.

“Fortunately, dust mites don’t take too kindly to hot temperatures,” explains Doc Wordinger on Dengarden.com, “Putting your bed sheets through a 140°F (60°C) wash is usually enough to kill them and remove their fecal matter and skin particles. If you have a tumble dryer, put the sheets through a spin-cycle until they are fully dry. The heat from the dryer should take care of any mites that survived the wash.”

Hold off on making the bed.

You may be surprised to know that being a bit on the untidy side can help your dust mite problem. Wordinger reminds us that dust mites prefer moist areas. And since most people make their beds first thing in the morning, they don’t give their beds much opportunity to air out. Doing so “gives the moisture excreted from our bodies time to dry,” he informs, “By reducing moisture and humidity within the bed, we’re making life difficult for (dust mites).”

As you can imagine, there are many other ways to reduce the dust mite population in your home. At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we strongly recommend having the indoor air quality of your home tested to help you along the way. For more 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 Minimize All Of That Pesky Dust In Your Home

Dust is in all of our homes. No matter how often we clean, it always seems to return. Dust is primarily made up of our skin flakes and microscopic fibres, so there’s no real way to eliminate it from our homes for good. However, proper upkeep is integral removing dust and improving indoor air quality in order to live in a healthy environment. This is especially true for allergy and asthma sufferers.

So how can you minimize all of that pesky dust in your home? Here are three ideas:

1. Replace your bedding on a weekly basis.

You may not assume that your bed is among the dustiest areas of your home…but it is. What you may not realize is that while you’re dozing each and every night, your skin flakes. In addition to the fibres that your bedding regularly sheds, your nightly place of rest actually becomes a haven for dust – and therefore, dust mites. These microscopic creatures eat your skin flakes and leave behind microscopic droppings that only add to the list of asthma irritants already in your home.

Your best bet? Change and wash your sheets every single week. “To minimize the fallout (of dust), wash sheets and pillowcases weekly,” advises Gary Wentz of Reader’s Digest, “Items that aren’t machine washable don’t need weekly trips to the dry cleaners—just take blankets and bedspreads outside and shake them. You can smack some of the dust out of pillows, but for a thorough cleaning, wash or dry-clean them.”

2. Take your carpets outside for a beating.

Branching off of that last point, Wentz also suggests that you take things a step further with your carpeting. Firstly, the less carpet you have in your home the better. Naturally, dust gets trapped in carpet and no matter how much you vacuum, it’s hard to remove it completely. As a result, Wentz advises that you take your removable carpets and rugs outside and give them some good beatings!

“Drape them over a fence or clothesline and beat them with a broom or tennis racket,” he recommends, “Give your cushions the same treatment. Upholstery fabric not only sheds its own fibers but also absorbs dust that settles on it, so you raise puffs of dust every time you sit down. Beat cushions in the backyard or use slipcovers and give them a good shake. If you want to eliminate upholstery dust, buy leather- or vinyl-covered furniture.”

3. Use microfiber products for dusting.

Do away with dusters. Those feathery little trinkets only spread the dust around. A standard rag also won’t do the trick, even when using them with store-bought furniture polish. As FamilyHandyman.com, explains, “microfiber products attract and hold dust with an electrostatic charge, unlike dry rags and feather dusters, which just spread dust around. Machine washable microfiber products can save you money over disposable brands because you can use them over and over.”

As you can imagine, there are many other ways to minimize dust accumulation in your home. However, at DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we highly recommend having the indoor air quality of your home tested. For more 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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Just How Important Is It To Dust Regularly?

Dusting – it’s one of those household chores that many of us are guilty of putting off for weeks at a time. After all, it’s just dust, right? Harmless little specks that accumulate on our furniture and other belongings that do nothing more than make the place look a little bit more drab than usual.

We’ll just go ahead and stop with the misnomer there. Dust is so much more than harmless little particles!

“Dust is the collective term used to describe the wide variety of organic and inorganic particles that collect in our homes,” explains SixWise.com, “Here’s an unpleasant thought: The majority of dust is made up from shed skin cells. That’s why the areas of your home that are used most often also tend to have the most dust. (Dust mites like to eat these skin cells.) Dust on mattresses, bedding and sofas will contain a particularly large amount of skin cells.”

Why are dust mites a problem?

Although dust mites are so miniscule that they are invisible to the naked eye, these little critters live in our bed linens and mattresses along with other places in your home where you shed your skin. Your skin flakes make up their favourite meals. And when they leave behind waste, you are forced to endure a major allergen. People with allergies and respiratory illnesses such as asthma face a much greater risk of suffering from symptoms the dustier their homes are.

“When dust mite waste is inhaled, people can develop a number of nasty symptoms,” explains Jill Buchner on CanadianLiving.com, “Those with allergies might develop itchy eyes, a runny nose or sneezing, particularly when they first wake up, since the bed is a major site of exposure… Asthma sufferers might also experience wheezing or shortness of breath. About 50 percent of asthma sufferers will find they react to mites.”

What is the best way to minimize dust in the home?

One way to minimize dust, and more specifically the presence of dust mites, is to regularly wash your bed sheets in hot water. It’s advisable to keep the same sheets on your bed for no more than a week. Secondly, it’s a good idea to remove the carpeting from your home, especially if you’re an asthma sufferer. The easier you make it to remove dust that accumulates in your home, the better your health will be.

And then there’s the obvious solution. Let’s put it this way: becoming a neat freak is good for your health! Make dusting and vacuuming a regular activity in your home and try not to forget all of its nooks and crannies. “Microfiber materials collect dust much better than other dusting cloths or materials,” informs The Cleaning Blog, “Go over hard surfaces, light fixtures, shelves, books, desks, knick-knacks, everything from top to bottom until the dust is gone.”

At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd, we strongly believe in giving people the opportunity to enjoy the best indoor air quality possible. Contact us today 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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4 Important Reminders Of How To Keep Air Pollutants Out Of Your Home

With the spring now in full swing, many Canadians are undergoing their annual spring cleaning routines. And while the act of cleaning our homes is clearly something we all should do on a regular basis, there is a special feeling of “out with the old” that comes with the cleaning that is done at this time of year.

At DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd., we recommend you take extra measures to clean your home in ways that will eliminate air pollutants. Readers of our blog are well aware of the major culprits of poor indoor air quality.

Allow us to offer you a few important reminders of how to keep air pollutants out of your home. Here are four:

1. Dust and vacuum regularly.

There are a variety of allergens that exist in our carpets and on our furniture. For those of you with pets, pet dander is certainly a concern. Regular vacuuming will help to you eliminate the fur, dead skin cells and dander left by your pets. Of course, dust is also a problem you’ll want to regularly eliminate. What may appear harmless is actually an indication of the presence of dust mites – microscopic insects that thrive in warm, humid environments and are known for triggering asthma attacks.

How do you minimize dust mites? “First, try to keep the humidity inside your home to less than 50 percent,” advises Reynard Loki on Alternet.org, “Air conditioners and dehumidifiers can help. Protect your bed by covering it with allergen-resistant covers. Make sure you wash your sheets and blankets regularly in hot water…And don’t give mites a place to hide and breed: keep your home as dust-, dander- and clutter-free as possible. Regular vacuuming is a must.”

2. Do away with scented cleaning products.

Air fresheners, laundry detergent, hand soap, perfumes – they all smell really nice, don’t they? The sad fact is that those smells are actually harmful to our health. Synthetic fragrances represent the presence of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). They are known for causing skin irritation and respiratory problems. If you’re looking to keep your home smelling sweet without imposing health risks on its inhabitants, try a few natural methods.

On Withings.com, Angela Chieh lists a number of great ideas. “Arrange slices of lemon on a plate to delicately perfume the air in a room,” she suggests, “Use baking soda in a small bowl to eliminate odours (it works particularly well in fridges). Choose fragrance-free products, or products with scents of natural origin for your laundry and cleaning needs. Stop using aerosol spray products that create a mist of liquid particles (hair sprays, air fresheners…).”

3. Tell smokers to practice their nasty habits outdoors.

When you have visitors to your home who are prone to lighting up, insist that they do so outside. In fact, you’d be doing yourself a big favour if you asked them not to smoke at all during their visits. Both secondhand smoke (exhaled from smokers) and thirdhand smoke (embedded in the clothes and hair of smokers) can be deadly. If one of the inhabitants of your home is a smoker, enforce the same strict rule.

“According to the Centers for Disease Control, tobacco smoke contains more than 7,000 chemicals, including hundreds of toxins, about 70 of which can cause cancer,” Loki reminds us, “Secondhand smoke is very harmful to children, who can experience ear infections, more frequent and severe asthma attacks, respiratory infections like bronchitis and pneumonia and a greater risk of sudden infant death syndrome.”

4. Get a thorough inspection of your home.

Want to guarantee that the indoor air quality of your home is excellent? Contact DF Technical & Consulting Services Ltd. to learn more about our Air Quality Services! We offer solutions to the health hazards that may be present in your living environment. Please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-855-668-3131 or email info@dftechnical.ca.

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