Dust

IAQ – Indoor Air Quality

How Dust Affects Your Indoor Air Quality

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What is dust and where does it come from? In Oklahoma, most of us have to deal with pervasive dust in our homes, so it's important to know its source and not only keep it from gaining entrance, but also to control the dust that wafts inside. Controlling dust will vastly improve your indoor air quality.

What Is Dust?

Many online sources claim that dust is us -- that is, most of it is made up of shredded human skin and hair. Turns out, that's untrue. Most human skin and hair particles are washed off during showers and go down the drain. Only a small percentage of the dust in our homes is human-derived.

Most dust blows in from the outdoors, particularly in homes that are less than airtight, or where the doors or windows are kept open, or from tracking the outdoors inside on our feet or on our pets.

The other dust particles are derived from pet hair and dander, decaying insect bodies, carpet fluff and clothing and textile fibers. Some dust may be made of pollen and soot.

Controlling Dust

The best way to keep dust under control is by frequent vacuuming with a HEPA filter. Be sure to vacuum carpets, rugs, furniture and baseboards. But do be aware that vacuuming can scatter dust particles into the air, so whenever possible, clean floors, such as tile or hardwood, with a damp mop.

Your HVAC system can play an important role in controlling dust, but to do so effectively, it needs frequent filter changing. Use a good quality, polyester, pleated air filter so it can catch the smaller particles that the cheap fiberglass filters can't catch. Filters should be rated 8-12 on the MERV (minimum efficiency reporting value) scale.

An in-house air purification system may also help. Consult your HVAC specialist to discuss the best type for your home.

Keep doors and windows shut to keep dust out. Air seal minute cracks around doors and windows that may be allowing dust inside.

For more on preventing dust from compromising your indoor air quality, contact Air Assurance of Broken Arrow.

IAQ – Indoor Air Quality

The Best Dusting Techniques and Products to Improve Your IAQ

The Best Dusting Techniques and Products to Improve Your IAQ

The Best Dusting Techniques and Products to Improve Your IAQ

Dust is one of the most annoying problems we face inside our homes. No matter how thoroughly you clean your house, dust tends to reappear with surreal frequency. Fortunately, you can keep your home dust-free for longer by using some brilliant dusting techniques. 

Change Air Filters Regularly

Dirty air filters are a huge source of indoor dust. They collect dust particles and prevent them from being blown back into your home's air. However, failing to replace the filters frequently allows the particles to cycle through and circulate throughout your home. You can significantly reduce the buildup of dust by changing your filters every month during the high-use summer and winter seasons.

Use Microfiber

You can dust your home like a pro by using microfiber towels. Unlike other commonly used tools like feather dusters that spread dust from surface to surface, microfiber dusters successfully capture dust. Use soft fluffy microfiber cloths to clean delicate surfaces that easily scratch and flatweave cloths to clean hard surfaces like glass.

Dust from Top to Bottom

This is one of the best dusting techniques that most people usually overlook. When dusting the highest items, some dust falls onto anything that's below. Therefore, you want to start dusting from the highest to the lowest points of the room. That way, everything will be clean once you're done with dusting.

Install an Air Purifier

If you're serious about minimizing dust in your home, then an air purifier is a must-have. It uses advanced technology to capture more dust and pollutants from your household air than air filters. The less the dust in your air, the less it will collect on your items, giving you the huge benefit of dusting less often.These dusting techniques reduce indoor dust. As a result, they make your house much easier to clean and the air you breathe healthier. If you have any questions related to air quality, contact us at Air Assurance. We offer air purifiers, air cleaners, and several other indoor air quality solutions that help homeowners in the Broken Arrow area breathe easier indoors.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, call us at 918-217-8273.

IAQ – Indoor Air Quality

Fall Indoor Air Concerns and How to Counter Them

Fall Indoor Air Concerns and How to Counter Them

As the weather gets cooler and you start spending more time indoors, you should think about how healthy the air in your home is. Fall allergens and other particles can lower your indoor air quality, which can put you and your loved ones at risk of developing health issues. Find out more about these concerns and how to deal with them.

Outdoor Allergens

Ragweed and other outdoor allergens can make their way into your home during fall. You might bring these in on the clothes you’re wearing, or you might spread them around if you walk around your home with your shoes on. These allergens can also get inside if you open your windows to let fresh air in. You can keep these allergens out of your home by changing clothes after coming in, taking off your shoes and keeping your windows closed during fall.

Dust

Dust can build up inside your home’s ductwork and on your HVAC system’s air filter over time. When you start using your heating system in fall, all of that dust can be blown into your home through your ducts and vents. You can lower your risk of having to deal with a lot of dust by having your ductwork cleaned and changing your air filter on a regular basis. You should also vacuum and dust your home frequently.

Pollutants

Pollutants are found in some household items, such as cleaning products and certain kinds of finishes. When you’re inside more during fall, you risk being exposed to these pollutants more often, which can result in respiratory problems and other health issues. Having an air purification system installed or making changes to your home’s ventilation can help reduce your risk of exposure to these particles. Working with an HVAC technician can also provide you with more ways to boost your indoor air quality by eliminating pollutants.

If you need additional information on improving your indoor air quality, please contact Air Assurance. We offer dependable HVAC services that can help make the air in your home healthier.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, call us at 918-217-8273.

IAQ – Indoor Air Quality

Is Your Home the Culprit for Your Allergies?

Is Your Home the Culprit for Your Allergies?

Spring allergies can leave you with a runny nose, itchy eyes, and other unpleasant symptoms, but it’s not just the outdoors you have to worry about. Pollen and other outdoor allergens can make their way into your home through windows and on your clothes. You can also have dust and other indoor allergens in your house all year round. Use the following information to reduce allergens in your home if you have allergies.

Get Rid of Dust

Dust mites are the main reason why you might sneeze when you’re exposed to dust. These tiny critters feed on dust particles and trigger allergic reactions. You can reduce the amount of dust in your home by vacuuming and dusting on a regular basis. You should also place dust mite covers on your pillow and mattress to protect you while you’re sleeping.

Change Your HVAC Filter

If your HVAC filter hasn’t been changed in awhile, it’s most likely covered in dust and debris. This filter helps keep the air in your home clean while your HVAC system is in use. Replace your old filter with a new one to reduce the amount of allergens in your home.

Place Doormats at Each Entrance

Putting doormats at each entrance in your home helps prevent you and other family members, as well as guests, from bringing allergens in on your shoes. Put one doormat outside each entrance and another doormat just inside each entrance. You should also have anyone who comes into your home take off their shoes to avoid spreading allergens around.

Invest in an Air Filter

Air filters can boost the indoor air quality in your home throughout the year. You can get filters that are used in one room only or invest in a whole-house filter that covers your entire home. These filters can help cut down on the amount of allergens that are in your home.

If you need help reducing the amount of dust and other allergens in your home, please contact Air Assurance. We offer indoor air quality services for customers in the Broken Arrow area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about spring allergies and other HVAC topics, call us at 918-217-8273.

Featured, IAQ – Indoor Air Quality

Controlling Dust in Your Home

Controlling Dust in Your Home

Winter is a season when dust problems are amplified as homes are closed up for the cold. Controlling dust can feel like a full-time job in your Broken Arrow home, but there are some steps you can take to make it a little easier to keep the space clean. Here are some tips for controlling dust in your home.

Change the Air Filter

When was the last time you changed the air filter in your HVAC system? One of the air filter's main jobs is controlling dust, so take some time now to swap it out with a clean one. If you've changed it recently and are still having troubles with dust, consider installing a more efficient model. Check with an HVAC professional to see which models are recommended for your home.

Clean the Ducts

If your ductwork is lined with dust, it's going to get circulated through your home. Consider having it professionally cleaned to remove that dust, then trust the air filter to do the job of keeping further dust at bay.

Install an Air Cleaner

In high-dust households or in families where dust allergies cause significant problems, an air purifier is a great asset. These clean the air in a specific room, or they can be installed in the HVAC system directly for whole-house purification. Air cleaners trap dust particles and other allergens to help your family breathe freely.

Clean up Clutter

Clutter, including piles of toys or clothes on the floor, is a breeding ground for dust. Cleaning them up will help keep dust from settling in or on them, so you will have less dust circulating through your home.

Dust Smart

Don't rely on a feather duster to eliminate dust. Instead, use a microfiber cloth, which will trap dust better than a feather duster. Also, consider dampening the cloth slightly before dusting most surfaces.

Are you looking for more ideas for controlling dust in your Broken Arrow home? Contact the Air Assurance team for expert tips to help you keep your home's air less dusty.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about controlling dust and other HVAC topics, call us at 918-217-8273. Credit/Copyright Attribution: “hans_pixabay”

IAQ – Indoor Air Quality

How is Dust Buildup Dangerous for Your Health?

How is Dust Buildup Dangerous for Your Health?

Every home has a little dust floating around, but when dust starts to build up it can negatively affect your health. Most people feel the effects of dust to some extent and may experience symptoms like sneezing, coughing and fatigue. This is because dust contains a variety of pollutants, including soil, sawdust, carpet fibers, pollen, skin cells, pet fur, chemical emissions, mold particles and bacteria.

The dangers of dust buildup include:

  • Attracting dust mites. Dust mites have been associated with the occurrence of nasal polyps, which are tiny, uncomfortable, swollen lumps in the nasal cavity that can affect your immune system over time.

  • Prolonging and circulating illness. If someone in your house is sick, bacteria can linger in the air and be recirculated through your home, passing the illness on to others.

  • Uncomfortable symptoms that may turn serious. Headaches and other effects of dust are uncomfortable to the average person. Dust buildup is more dangerous for vulnerable people, including the elderly and individuals with lung ailments, such as asthma, emphysema or weakened immune systems. Eczema symptoms, for example, are aggravated by dust and may progress into chronic dermatitis (skin inflammation). Children are more affected by dust partly because they play on the floor and touch dusty items more often.

Fortunately, you can minimize dust buildup in your house by:

  • Eliminating or reducing the amount of fabric furniture, drapes and carpets in your home. These items attract dust and shed particles, creating more dust.

  • Keeping your home clutter-free.

  • Eating in the kitchen or dining room and keeping food debris contained.

  • Cleaning and dusting surfaces and vacuuming floors, carpets and cushioned furniture regularly.

  • Replacing HVAC air filters monthly.

  • Using an indoor air purifier or installing a whole house air purification and humidity control system.

Are you concerned about the amount of dust accumulating in your home? You can count on Air Assurance to help keep your Broken Arrow home healthy and comfortable.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).Credit/Copyright Attribution: “Alfonso-de-Tomas/Shutterstock”

IAQ – Indoor Air Quality

Our State Is Windy, But You Don't Have to Put Up With Dust in Your Home

Our State Is Windy, But You Don't Have to Put Up With Dust in Your Home

There are many sources of dust in your home, and ridding your home of it completely could prove problematic. A dirty air conditioner or furnace filter could be the culprit, or it could be time for a new vacuum cleaner bag. Other sources of dust include activities such as sanding. Air leaks in your HVAC ducts can bring dust into your home as can air leaks around windows and doors.Here is what you can do:Every month you should change or clean your air conditioner filter. You can use metal-backed duct tape to seal the filter in its place, and write the date you changed it right on the tape. You will always know exactly when you need to change it again.Does your clothes dryer vent outside? It should. The vent should be secured to the dryer. Check it regularly to ensure it is not obstructed and that there are no holes in it. If it is damaged, replace it with a metal vent duct. Clean your dryer venting at least once per year.One of the largest sources of dust and debris in your home is your shoes. Everyone who comes into your home should remove his or her shoes at the door.Pets that go outside can also bring debris and dust into your home. Consider wiping them down when they are ready to come in, and bathe them regularly. This does double duty for home air quality because it also removes pollen that might be tracked into your home.Sealing your home against drafts and air leaks can also help eliminate dust in your home.If your ducts are leaking air, sealing these leaks can prevent dust from being circulated throughout your house.Have a professional inspect your ductwork if you are afraid they are the source of dust in your home. A qualified HVAC technician can discuss your options for professional duct cleaning.For more information on reducing dust in your home in the Broken Arrow area, contact Air Assurance Heating, Air Conditioning, Plumbing.Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). Credit/Copyright Attribution: “lanych/Shutterstock”

Air Conditioning

Don't Let a Noisy A/C Get You Down

A noisy air conditioner can easily lead to a lot of sleepless nights – and quite a few irritating days, as well. Noise is a major reason why many Broken Arrow residents become dissatisfied with their A/C units, especially as the years go by. A noisy A/C can not only rob you of your own personal comfort, but it can also signal hidden problems that could easily lead to failure if not properly diagnosed and fixed soon.

Don't Let a Noisy A/C Get You Down

What Can Cause a Noisy A/C?

There are a number of reasons why the silent partner in keeping your home cool suddenly makes itself heard. If you’ve recently heard humming noises or loud vibrations, the following may be involved:

  • Dust and debris that accumulates on or around the fan blades over time

  • Fan motor components that work themselves loose during operation

  • Misaligned blades – even the slightest bend can cause a lot of noise

  • Fan imbalance due to fan motor bearing wear

  • Clogged or bent A/C coil fins

  • Lack of fan motor lubrication

  • Improper installation

Ways to Fix It

If you don’t want to call on the pros just yet, there are a few ways you can do yourself to help restore peace and relative quiet to your A/C:

  • Remove any debris you see on or around the fan.

  • Check the fan blades to make sure they’re not loose. If possible, tighten the screws holding the fan in place at the hub.

  • Visually inspect the fan blades to ensure they’re not bent or broken.

  • Carefully and gently clean the coil fins with a vacuum cleaner fitted with a brush attachment.

For more in-depth fixes like fan motor lubrication and straightening out coil fins, you’ll definitely want the skill and expertise of a trained professional on hand. In case you need an upgrade to an energy-efficient A/C, a professional can also help you choose the one that works best for your home comfort needs.

Put an end to your noisy A/C troubles and contact the professionals at Air Assurance. Since 1985, we’ve helped countless Broken Arrow residents resolve their heating and cooling issues.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). 

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

IAQ – Indoor Air Quality

Dust In Your Tulsa Home: Learn How to Keep It Under Control

Dust In Your Tulsa Home: Learn How to Keep It Under Control

Controlling dust is a never-ending battle. You can go through your home and dust and clean everything, only for it to come back in a few days. Dust doesn't just magically appear in the air; it has a source. Most dust consists of a combination of dirt, skin cells, insect fragments, mold, pet dander and fibers from carpet, clothing and furniture.

Many times the ingredients in the dust in our homes are the culprits behind sickness that we may experience. Dust can be the root cause for allergies, breathing disorders, heart disease, cancers and a host of other diseases. Samples of the dust in our homes can be sent to laboratories to be tested to find out exactly what is in it. This can help determine what steps you need to take to protect your family's health.

Your HVAC system plays a big part in distributing dust throughout your home. There are several ways that you can improve the air quality in your home and reduce dust:

  • Proper home ventilation. Many of our newer homes are so well-sealed that there is little way for indoor air to be exchanged with outdoor air. A properly operating vent system on your HVAC equipment will take care of this.

  • Air cleaning systems. Installed in your furnace, these remove and destroy contaminants before they reenter your home.

  • BBJ Microbiocide. This kills mold, mildew and fungi for up to six months in your indoor air handler coil.

  • Germicidal lights. Ultraviolet light dramatically reduces contaminants, such as mold, mildew and bacteria.

  • Ductwork cleaning. Your ductwork is host to a lot of dust and contaminants that can be removed.

These things can dramatically reduce the pollutants that are harmful to your health.  Our Air Assurance Heating, Air Conditioning and Plumbing experts will be glad to answer any questions that you may have, so feel free to contact us at any time. We have been serving the Greater Tulsa Metropolitan Area since 1985.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). 

Image courtesy of Shutterstock