How to improve the air quality in your house

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improve the air quality

Air disinfection in residential premises is carried out in order to reduce the risk of infectious and viral diseases that are transmitted by airborne droplets and are very dangerous for humans. The main task of disinfection is to reduce the concentration of harmful microorganisms in the air that cause various ailments, improve air quality and raise natural immunity. In this article, we will consider the main sources of bad air quality so you can improve it by looking for home air quality services in Sacramento

Sources of indoor air pollution

Oxygen is a vital component of the environment. It enters the body through a kind of natural filter – the lungs. But when the air is polluted and toxins and carcinogens enter the body, this can disrupt metabolic processes and lower immunity. Such impurities are of particular danger for children because the immune system is not yet fully developed and the body’s reaction can be very unpredictable. It must be remembered that sources of pollution that can have negative effects on the body are:

  • poor quality plastic;
  • furniture and household appliances  (as a rule, they emit phenol and formaldehyde,

that provokes suffocation, insomnia, headache, and allergies);

  • apartment renovation;
  • some finishing materials;
  • linoleum and parquet (it releases xylene);
  • mold, fungus (it provokes the appearance of cancer cells);
  • air conditioning (improper maintenance leads to contamination of the flora with bacteria);
  • landfills and factories.

HVAC filters

HVAC filters are air purification devices used in HVAC systems. These devices remove impurities and contaminants such as human skin particles, animal dander, pollen, tissue particles, germs and bacteria that frequently occur in residential and commercial buildings.

HVAC systems are used in almost every building and operate by sucking air out of ducts, heating or cooling it, and then exhausting it in the building. Therefore, these systems are an integral part of maintaining indoor air quality. Filters used in HVAC systems help clean the air before it is circulated.

While filtration can improve human and animal health by eliminating potentially unsalutary germs and allergens, it is also essential in protecting ventilation equipment for efficiency and longevity. HVAC filters prevent particles from clogging the machine.

Failure to use or regularly clean air cleaner filters can result in equipment failure due to obstructed airflow. Improperly maintained HVAC filters result in increased energy and repair costs.

To avoid these additional costs and possible damage, many ventilation systems are not supplied with a single filter, but with a series. Although filters are required at the air intake point to eliminate buildup in fans and ducts, some heaters and air conditioners have additional parts to improve air quality.

Types of HVAC filters

HVAC filters, varying in style, size, and materials, offer different degrees of filtration so a user will get various levels of air quality.

While filters can be found in every HVAC system among modern buildings, some industries, including medicine, biopharmaceuticals, and the food industry, use specialized filters – HEPA air filters and ULPA filters. These devices are effective at removing even microscopic particles.

Some heaters and air conditioners have secondary air outlet filters to further improve air quality.

HEPA and ULPA filters are often very expensive and require frequent cleaning or replacement. Although these devices are used in HVAC systems, the most common filters used in ventilation include fibreglass filters, polyester buffers and static filters.

The best methods to improve air quality

There are various methods of air quality improvement, but each of them has its pros and cons. Let’s consider the most popular solutions.

  1. Air ozonation

The most effective method of disinfection of premises. The process is performed with ozone generators. Gas is formed at the moment of contact with oxygen, ultraviolet, and electric charge.

Disinfectant capabilities of ozone gas:

  • disinfection occurs due to the strong oxidation of any type of infection;
  • no ozone-resistant fungi, bacteria, viruses, parasites;
  • simultaneously disinfects the air and all objects indoors;
  • freely penetrates porous materials, and cavities and destroys infections in places inaccessible to other methods;
  • eliminates odors.

Ozone is environmentally friendly: within 120 minutes it self-decomposes back into oxygen. However, ozone is toxic when inhaled and damages materials that are resistant to oxidation. Gas cannot disinfect ventilation.

2. Photocatalysis

Air purifiers with photocatalysts are used for disinfection. Disinfection is safe for humans and the environment. Photocatalysis occurs by the interaction of UV rays and titanium dioxide (TiO2).

During photocatalysis:

  • more than 99% of microbes + viruses + fungi die due to destruction and oxidation;
  • humidity decreases;
  • extraneous odors and suspended impurities are removed.

Among the disadvantages: 

  • frequent replacement of filters;
  • disinfection of only the air passing through the device.

3. Aerosol exposure

Aerosol air disinfection is performed by cold/hot fog generators. They spray disinfectant in the form of particles less than 30 microns. Experts use low-toxic drugs with a wide spectrum of action.

Surfaces are disinfected during the treatment. The mist penetrates microcracks and does not cover the settled pathogens with an air cushion. The method is suitable for processing ventilation shafts.

Groups of disinfectants for aerosol disinfection:

  • chlorine substances;
  • with alcohol;
  • with guanidines;
  • with QAC;
  • with peroxide and other oxygen-forming substances.

4. UV lights

The method is environmentally friendly. Specialists use the same ultraviolet as in the sun’s rays but formed in artificial UV lamps. Lamps produce UV rays with a length of 250–400 nm.

Ultraviolet destroys:

  • antibiotic-resistant microflora, pyogenic infections, Koch’s bacillus, and other bacteria;
  • viruses, including COVID-19, and HIV;
  • fungi, mold, spores;
  • protozoa.

Ultraviolet is used in medical institutions, ambulance transport, dressing rooms, money storage, and in everyday life. Such installations can be mounted inside ventilation shafts.

Conclusion

Indoor air quality is often much worse than outdoors. In fact, medical experts say it leads to problems ranging from allergies and asthma, breathing difficulties, bronchitis, coughs, colds, symptoms such as eye irritation, headache, sore throat, and more. Therefore, it is important to think about the use of reliable modern solutions to improve the air quality. Alpha Mechanical provides customers with different effective solutions for this purpose. The company’s specialists will help you to choose the right strategy, for example, there are mechanical and electronic air cleaners, photocatalytic oxidation air cleaners, UV solutions, etc.

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