When we think of air quality we often think of air pollution from cars and factories or smog, haze and ozone. But the air we breathe can be contaminated where we live and work as well.
Find out from an experienced HVAC contractor who is well versed in the movement and control of heat, air, and moisture in buildings. This type of technician will also diagnose and resolve any indoor air quality issues.
For example, to find out whether the air in your home may be affecting your family’s respiratory system, ask yourself the following HVAC questions:
• Does anyone in your household suffer from asthma, allergies or respiratory problems?
• Do their symptoms appear to be worse when they are at home or in specific places at home?
• Has your home undergone significant changes such as the replacement of windows, a complete renovation of the basement, or an addition in the last few years?
• Do you notice excessive window condensation in winter, or is your basement damp or musty in the summer?
• Do you feel the need to use air fresheners or scented candles on a regular basis to keep your home feeling fresh?
• Do you find that odours linger in your home?
• Do you notice stains, spotting or dampness on walls or excessive dust on floors?
• Do visitors to your home suffer from allergic reactions?
• Do pets live in your home?
If you answered yes to more than 2 or 3 of these questions, then ask for a diagnosis to resolve the underlying issues. There are many things that you can do on your own, but there are items that should be left to a qualified professional. Usually, air quality improvements require a systematic and integrated approach – it is unlikely that any one measure solves all problems – and HRAI contractors (members of the Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Institute of Canada) have the training and experience to help you find the most cost effective ways to ensure the air you breathe is as healthy as possible.
In the Consumer Tips section of www.hrai.ca, take a look at the simple things you can do to improve the air quality in your home. The website also has a contractor locator to help you find a local professional.