Indoor Air Quality Standards: Guide For Homeowners (2023)

Our homes are meant to be our sanctuaries, where we find comfort, safety, and relaxation. However, there is one aspect that is often overlooked but significantly impacts our well-being: indoor air quality. The air we breathe within the confines of our homes can have a direct effect on our health and overall quality of life. In this blog post, we will delve into:

  • The importance of indoor air quality in your home
  • How to recognize signs of poor air quality
  • Solutions for your home
  • Preventative tips

Ready to get started? Keep reading to become an expert on indoor air quality standards!

Understanding Air Quality Standards

Air quality standards are guidelines set by environmental agencies and health organizations (Such as the Environmental Protection Agency and the World Health Organization) that are designed to regulate pollutants and maintain acceptable levels of indoor air quality. These standards aim to safeguard the health of occupants, preventing respiratory issues and other health complications caused by poor air quality. Common indoor pollutants include:

  • Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs): Found in household products like paints, cleaning agents, and air fresheners, VOCs can cause headaches, dizziness, and eye, nose, or throat irritation.
  • Particulate Matter (PM): Tiny particles suspended in the air, such as dust, pollen, pet dander, and smoke, can worsen respiratory conditions and allergies.
  • Radon: A colorless and odorless gas that can seep into homes from the ground, increasing the risk of lung cancer.
  • Mold and Mildew: Thriving in damp and humid conditions, mold can trigger respiratory issues, allergies, and asthma attacks.
  • Carbon Monoxide (CO): A colorless and odorless gas produced by faulty combustion appliances, which can be fatal if not detected promptly.

These pollutants may or may not be detectable to the untrained eye, but all should be taken seriously if your goal is to have fresh, clean air in your home.

What Causes Poor Air Quality?

Poor air quality in your home can be influenced by a variety of factors. One of the primary contributors is inadequate ventilation, which traps indoor pollutants and hinders the entry of fresh outdoor air. Household activities such as cooking without proper exhaust ventilation, smoking indoors, and using chemical-based cleaning agents can release harmful particles and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the air.

Excessive humidity and moisture can foster the growth of mold and mildew, further compromising indoor air quality. Dust and pet dander accumulate over time, particularly in poorly cleaned or seldom-used areas, exacerbating respiratory issues for sensitive individuals. Moreover, the presence of household appliances or systems that are not adequately maintained, like HVAC systems or combustion appliances, can produce carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), and other harmful gases.

Identifying potential sources of contaminants is a great first step in helping your home to reach its optimal air quality level. 

5 Signs Your Home Has Poor Air Quality

Identifying poor air quality in your home is crucial to addressing the issue promptly. But it isn’t always as simple to spot as you might think. Look out for these common signs:

1) Frequent Allergy or Asthma Symptoms

If you or your family members experience recurrent sneezing, coughing, wheezing, or skin irritation, it may be due to allergens or pollutants in the air. Pay attention to whether your allergies are occurring on a seasonal basis or whether they seem to not go away.

2) Lingering Unpleasant Odors

Persistent foul smells may indicate the presence of VOCs or mold. This is usually characterized by a musty smell that some people compare to a “wet dog.” These smells are more common in spaces like basements or attics.

3) Condensation and Excess Humidity

Dampness can encourage mold growth, releasing spores that degrade indoor air quality. You may notice condensation forming on your windowpanes or mirrors or sliding glass doors. All of these things are clear signs that your home is very humid.

4) Stale or Stuffy Air

Inadequate ventilation can lead to stagnant air, trapping pollutants inside your home. This can just be a seasonal issue, but if you are noticing it year-round, it is a good idea to talk to a professional.

5) Increased Dust Accumulation

Excessive dust on surfaces may indicate poor air filtration. We recommend paying attention to how many times a week you find yourself dusting certain areas of your home.

Solution Ideas for Improved Air Quality

Fortunately, there are numerous solutions available to improve air quality in your home. Depending on the specific issues, consider implementing some of the following ideas:

  • Air Purifiers: Invest in high-quality air purifiers equipped with HEPA filters to remove particles, allergens, and pollutants from the air.
  • Ventilation Systems: Ensure proper ventilation by using exhaust fans in kitchens and bathrooms and opening windows regularly to allow fresh air circulation.
  • Indoor Plants: Certain houseplants act as natural air purifiers by absorbing pollutants and releasing oxygen. Spider plants, peace lilies, and aloe vera are excellent choices.
  • HVAC Maintenance: Regularly clean and change the filters in your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system to prevent dust and debris from recirculating.
  • Control Humidity: Use dehumidifiers in humid areas of your home to reduce mold growth, and consider using a hygrometer to monitor indoor humidity levels.
  • Green Cleaning: Opt for natural and eco-friendly cleaning products to minimize VOC exposure.
  • Radon Testing: Conduct radon testing in your home and install a mitigation system if levels are elevated.

When to Call on a Professional

If you notice persistent or severe air quality issues in your home, it is crucial to seek the expertise of a professional to address the problem effectively and ensure the health and safety of your household. Here are some instances when contacting a professional is warranted:

  • Unexplained Health Symptoms: If you or your family members experience unexplained or worsening respiratory symptoms, allergies, or other health issues that seem to be connected to your home’s indoor air quality, it’s time to consult a professional.
  • Mold and Mildew Growth: If you detect mold or mildew in your home, especially in hidden or hard-to-reach areas, it is essential to enlist a professional mold remediation service to identify the extent of the problem and safely remove the infestation.
  • Lingering Odors: Persistent and unpleasant odors, even after a thorough cleaning, may indicate hidden sources of pollution or indoor air quality problems. A professional can help identify and eliminate the root cause of these odors.
  • Radon Testing: If you live in an area prone to high radon levels or suspect radon gas may be present in your home, contacting a professional for radon testing and potential mitigation is crucial, as radon is a silent and dangerous indoor pollutant.
  • HVAC and Ventilation Issues: If your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system is malfunctioning or not adequately circulating air, a professional HVAC technician can diagnose and rectify the problem to improve indoor air quality.
  • Air Quality Assessments: Professional air quality assessments can help identify specific pollutants, their sources, and their concentrations in your home, guiding you toward targeted solutions.
  • New Home or Renovations: If you have recently moved into a new home or completed renovations, consulting an indoor air quality expert can ensure that construction materials, paints, and adhesives do not pose health risks.

Remember, indoor air quality issues can vary significantly, and addressing them effectively often requires the knowledge and tools of a trained professional. Seeking assistance from an experienced expert ensures that the root causes are properly identified and resolved, leading to an acceptable indoor air quality level for you and your family.

7 Preventative Tips for Air Quality Maintenance

Maintaining good air quality in your home is an ongoing process that requires attention and care. But how can you make sure? Here are some preventative tips to ensure your home remains a healthy environment:

1) Regular Cleaning 🧹

Dust and vacuum your home regularly to reduce the accumulation of allergens and pollutants.

2) No Smoking Indoors 🚭

Designate smoking areas outside the house to prevent the infiltration of harmful tobacco smoke.

3) Store Chemicals Properly 🧪

Keep paints, solvents, and other chemical products in sealed containers and in well-ventilated areas.

4) Remove Shoes at the Door 👟

Encourage family members and guests to remove their shoes upon entering the house to minimize the tracking of outdoor pollutants inside.

5) Control Cooking Emissions 🍳

Use exhaust fans while cooking to minimize the release of cooking-related pollutants and gases.

6) Test for Carbon Monoxide ☠️

Regularly check and maintain carbon monoxide detectors in your home to ensure they are working correctly.

7) Educate Family Members 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦

Inform everyone in your household about the importance of air quality and the steps they can take to contribute to a healthier indoor environment.

Work With the Best Team in Town!

When it comes to protecting your home against toxins in the air, you don’t want just any Joe Schmoe helping you. You want an expert team who knows what they are talking about. That’s exactly what you will get when you work with Aquarius Home Services. We can help you with all of your home’s air filtration needs and get you breathing clean, fresh air all year long. Contact us today to set up your appointment. 

John Reuter
John Reuter
1719011907
I was scheduled for Thursday appointment in the morning. After waiting ALL day Thursday, at 3:30 pm I was informed that the technition was not going to be coming that day, I rescheduled for Friday after 10:00 and had to wait until almost 12:00 (noon) for the technition to arrive. The technician took only about 15 minutes to complete the job. To add insult to injury, he then charged us $292.40 which I feel was (is) excessive.
Laura Wardell
Laura Wardell
1718985974
Jack O
Jack O
1718934864
Ethan was here today for our A/C check-up. He was very thorough and professional. Explained everything did an excellent job. Thanks
Arif Ali
Arif Ali
1718907329
Good communication, prompt reply to my inquiry.Professional, knowledgeable and courteous technician, Josiah, who came to the site to perform the work. Our heater was leaking. The root cause was identified and corrected immediately at the spot. Thank you.
Kent Toft
Kent Toft
1718901229
I use this business every time!!They are 10 stars great!!!!!!I can go on and onThey are the best!!!Riley is my main guyHe is polite, courteous,and very thorough!!He explains everything!!!When he us done everything is clean & perfectGGGRREAT guy. Compliment to your business and to himselfI will always go with Aquarius and ALWAYS WITH RILEYThank everyone at Aquarius!!!Kent and Kim Toft. Blaine,MN
David Campbell
David Campbell
1718892842
Very professional. Thank you!
00
00
1718858125
This place was amazing. I called before 8 AM today and I was asked how they could make me smile today!! I thought I had the wrong number. Nope. I told them if they could get my central air working, I would smile. 😀Shortly after the call I received a text message with a brief bio about the technician Mike, with years of experience, stating he was on his way. If I wanted to track his location, I could click the link. Once Mike arrived it didn’t take him long to figure out what was going on with my central air unit. He described everything in detail about what was wrong with it and he took the time to answer several questions I had. Mike also cleaned the unit when he was done. I am very pleased with all aspects of this company and will definitely be using them again!
Mike (Just Mike)
Mike (Just Mike)
1718846047
Always a good experience!
David Tingstad
David Tingstad
1718834301
Nate and A. J. did some electrical work at my house. They were both knowledgeable and professional as well as personable. The finished work looks excellent. I would highly recommend them and Aquarius for any work you need done.
John Meyers
John Meyers
1718830702
Brandon was here to inspect our A/C. He did a wonderful job and suggested a couple items that might need replacing down the road. This was a very good experience and I highly recommend Aquarius.
Wendy Page
Wendy Page
1718821885
Ethan is an excellent tech and Aquarius associate. Very knowledgeable, very thorough, answered all of my questions and is respectful. Provided helpful HVAC information.
Ronald Kath
Ronald Kath
1718759245
Riley took time to explain all the services and answerd all my questions. He is very professional and knowledgeable. I feel my HVAC is working at top efficiency with the suggested preventive maintenance services. Those prevented maintenance services will help to avoid a future breakdown. He is personable. I will definitely be requesting Riley for my next scheduled service.
G ROSS
G ROSS
1718740363
Nicole Eggan
Nicole Eggan
1718736861
Everything went as planned. Installers were friendly and informative.
Ginger Murray
Ginger Murray
1718735936
We really like Aquarius' professional and friendly service. They always respond quickly when we have an issue, and we like being on their service plans for water, heating, and AC.
Debra Larsen
Debra Larsen
1718674439
Wow!! Talk about over and above in customer service! As a homeowner I highly recommend Aquarius. They were incredibly thorough and also took the time to do “extras” for me that I didn’t expect. They found and fixed problems that other companies would have walked away from. I have owned my home for 28 years and I am thrilled and just blown away by the level of excellence and customer service I received. I am going to use Aquarius for absolutely everything. Everything. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!
Alan Wetzel
Alan Wetzel
1718657730
Micah was thorough, efficient, and explained things while servicing the water heater. Also he is a pleasant person to be with during the service call.
Ben Nelson
Ben Nelson
1718647531
Great experience. Thanks for getting our A/C back on so quickly.
Terry Bilse -Kraft
Terry Bilse -Kraft
1718637426
Mike was very professional, polite and did a very good job of letting me know the condition of our AC unit.
Cherie. Skildum
Cherie. Skildum
1718633975
While the plumber was the nicest guy, I truly felt that the service was very slow. Installing 2 faucets and a shower head and simple control should never take 4 1/2 hours!! And our plumbing was up to code! A pretty big bill for a little work.
Chuck
Chuck
1718544944
Nick is awesome…figured out the recurring issue instantly. I can’t thank him enough for getting us up and running promptly and efficiently. Super positive attitude even after a long day, would request him for any future work.
Bill Sherck
Bill Sherck
1718471827
AC not working and Nicholas got to us on the weekend and problem-solved the blown fuses. No charge as warranty work. Professional. Thank goodness before excessive heat warbing! Thanks Aquarius!
Pat Alexander
Pat Alexander
1718405710
The most thorough AC check up I have EVER had in the 18 years I have owned my house. And I get AC and furnace check up done EVERY year.
Ileana Essig
Ileana Essig
1718398249
Ethan was friendly and very informative. When he arrived, I made it clear that I was not interested in additional services, just the tuneup/inspection of my HVAC system. He went over the results and answered my questions with thorough explanations without trying to upsell me via a list of ’recommendations’, which I sincerely appreciated.
Richard Pierson
Richard Pierson
1718388233
Michael Brandt
Michael Brandt
1718382329
Nick and Marcus were knowledgeable, efficient, and friendly. Great service call.
Nathan McCauley
Nathan McCauley
1718325023
Ethan did a great job servicing our A/C unit and went above and beyond the call of duty by removing the mice that had taken up residence in the unit.Thank you.
LA Paul
LA Paul
1718317846
Nicholas and Marcus went over everything in detail and explained what should be prioritized. Even tolerated the cat that wanted to supervise their work. Great employees for Aquarius, always responsive and professional. Ended up scheduling another appointment for some electrical repair. Great company to work with.
John Stiehl
John Stiehl
1718316855
Anson MacFarlane
Anson MacFarlane
1718314204
Great service!
Joel DeMarais
Joel DeMarais
1718222835
Completely satisfied with the work Chris, Nick and Matt did installing a new Furnace and A/C system. They were very thorough, courteous and professional!
Ted ALLISON
Ted ALLISON
1718216675
Raymond Cruz
Raymond Cruz
1718192723
RayVery satisfied and impressed!Thanks to Travis, David, Adam & EricFriendly, professional and knowledgeableThey arrived explained what was going to happen and kept me updated on the process.Answered my many questions.As they finished cleaning everything up. They again insured that I had no other questions before leaving.GREAT JOB!!
Patty George
Patty George
1718150859
Brandon was great! He gave great advice, had attention to details, was helpful and trustworthy. I love that I can be in a service program with Aquarius to help me remember the updates and cleanings during the year, especially when I have too many things to remember to do. ☺️
Bryce Chu
Bryce Chu
1718148665
Nick and his partner were incredibly thorough in their inspection of my AC and furnace unit. They clearly pointed out areas of concern as well as what working properly both inside and outside. They presented clear options for repair or intervention. I felt was given all the information I needed and had all my questions answered in simple direct language that most laymen unfamiliar with jargon could understand. Highly recommend.
Dale and Carol Tilden
Dale and Carol Tilden
1718131763
Aquarius takes excellent care of my water softening and heating as well as my furnace and air conditioning systems. Also just had a new electric panel installed (needed updating).
Debra Klejeski
Debra Klejeski
1718055650
Jon answered our questions and explained everything on the checklist. He was very professional and courteous!
Jeff Peterson
Jeff Peterson
1718055086
Wally Lee
Wally Lee
1718044949
Brandon did a great job for us with our A/C general maintenance check. Very knowledgeable, and was professional and efficient.
Joe Capistrant
Joe Capistrant
1718042522
Nate is wonderful. Knows his stuff. Resolved a troublesome problem. Very pleasant, enjoyable fellow.
Cindy Rae Dainsberg
Cindy Rae Dainsberg
1718034743
Brandon was exceptional. Professional. Knowledgeable. Efficient. Kind. Caring. Remembers the client from previous visits. An excellent example of what Customer Service should be to keep customers coming back.
Gary Smith
Gary Smith
1718030176
Excellent technician. Nick is an outstanding young man and very knowledgeable. I felt like he was giving me an honest assessment of my system.
mary bond
mary bond
1717801266
Our water heater went out on Fri evening. We called Aquarius early Sat morning and they said earliest they could get out was Mon. On Sun I received a text confirming our Mon appointment but on Mon morning they called and said the earliest they could get to us was the following week !We should be without hot water till then ? We are not a new customer…. 5 months previously we had a new furnace and air conditioner installed at quite an expense. I am appalled at their service or rather lack there of ! As an established customer they felt waiting approximately 10days without water was acceptable Bad, Bad, Bad !Two weeks later…The air conditioner Aquarius installed in Dec failed to cool when we turned it on on our 1st warm days. After the poor experience I had had with them I didn’t want to deal with them again but since it was under warranty I had to. We were told we would have a technician out Wed morning. After waiting at home all day they called and canceled at 4pm. We were rescheduled for Fri morning. We had several calls during the day with updates At 5:22 pm we received a cal the tech would be here at 6pm. We cancelled our dinner reservation and are awaiting his arrival.I realize our air conditioning is not an emergency but we have spent 2days waiting for our scheduled service. This is in addition to the 10days they wanted us to wait for a new water heater(which I do think is an emergency) I feel bad for the tech who I’m sure has had a long day and must now come at 6 on a Fri evening. Once again I repeat Aquarius has failed us again !!
Todd Schull
Todd Schull
1717795955
Riley was the tech that performed our membership maintenance check-up. He did an outstanding job explaining what was included in the maintenance check-up. After his inspection, he was very detailed, using pictures, to help describe what he found and he made recommendations on what should be addressed now and what could wait until our next membership maintenance check-up. He was very thorough doing the repairs, cleaning impeccably both our furnace and air conditioner. We are going to request Riley for all our member maintenance check-ups going forward.
Gary Winkel
Gary Winkel
1717786300
John Keller
John Keller
1717778469
Gordy replaced my lawn faucet once it was clear that it could not be repaired. He explained the problem and the process to fix it in a clear and professional manner. The cost were what I expected for such a job.
Robert McDivitt
Robert McDivitt
1717771730
Great service from Ethan. Very helpful and professional.
Frank Potocnik
Frank Potocnik
1717721504
Service Tech Nick was great. Thank you
Anthony Mielzarek
Anthony Mielzarek
1717713912
Riley is always a professional when coming to the house for HVAC services. He is always a pleasure to deal with! Even my dogs like him!
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