What Is an Indoor Air Quality Test and When Is It Needed?

Pollution of the environment is a serious problem, but did you know that the air inside your home could have up to five times more pollutants? 

Poor air quality can make you feel fatigued, congested, or ill. For Americans, who spend the vast majority of the day indoors, the negative effects of poor air quality can be dramatic. 

How can you make sure you and your family are breathing clean air when you’re relaxing at home? Start with an air quality test. 

Learn more about indoor air quality tests and how to tell when you need one.

What is an Indoor Air Quality Test?

An indoor air quality test (IAQ) collects particle samples from your home’s air. These particles can include pollen, smoke, mold spores, pet dander, and more. 

Indoor air quality testing determines the number of pollutants and allergens in your air. Some irritating particles come from outside sources, including smoke, pollen, soil, dust, and even radon. Your home can also become polluted from indoor allergens. 

Do you often burn candles or use insecticides? The volatile compounds in these products don’t just disappear after use. Harmful chemicals, carbon monoxide, and carcinogens can linger in the air we breathe. 

When to Perform a Test

If you or your housemates are suffering from chronic ailments like sore throat, runny nose, or headaches, it may be time to test your air quality. Ideally, you should test the air quality in your home or office at least once per year. Perform an air quality test if you see any signs of mold or mildew or when renovating bathrooms and old buildings. 

Air quality tests are an important aspect of caring for chronic illnesses. People with chronic illnesses generally spend more time indoors and at home than the rest of the population. Poor air quality can exacerbate symptoms of asthma, COPD, and cystic fibrosis. 

Air quality tests should be part of the routine maintenance of your office, school, or church building. When you consider that our brains need oxygen to thrive, it’s easy to see how clean indoor air can actually improve employee focus and productivity. 

After the Air Quality Test

So you’ve conducted the air quality test; what’s next? Improving air quality isn’t as simple as “airing out” your home. As mentioned earlier, outdoor pollutants are a major contributing factor to poor air quality. 

The first step is to check your office or home’s HVAC system. Poor ventilation and filtration can lead to an increase in indoor allergens. Old or damaged HVAC systems can emit foul odors and pump mold and mildew back into the building. 

After repairing or updating your HVAC system, there are a few more essential tips you can follow to maintain good air quality: 

  • Regularly clean carpets, bedding, and drapes 
  • Change air filters monthly
  • Invest in air purifiers or dehumidifiers
  • Keep indoor plants to a minimum
  • Use gentle cleaning products
  • Ventilate bathrooms and basements

Breathe Easy

Say goodbye to grogginess, sniffles, and sneezes. Conducting an air quality test is a huge step toward making your home or office more relaxing and productive. 

Schwantes Heating and Air Conditioning is here to help you achieve healthy air. We’ve delivered exceptional air to the greater St. Paul area since 1947. Contact us today for your professional air quality test!