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What is indoor air pollution?

The definition for what is indoor air pollution includes any toxic contaminants that are encountered within the spaces we dwell that are inside, such as our homes, schools, department stores and workplaces.

According to the California Air Resources Board, pollution builds up much more rapidly indoors than it did in the past, which results in higher levels of pollutants than outside. In fact, studies have shown that the levels can be anywhere between 25-60% greater than the outdoors.

The cause of this is mainly due to the fact that newer buildings and homes are created with tighter construction and toxic particles are not able to freely escape.

What causes indoor air pollution?

Sources of Indoor Pollutants

Indoor pollutants come in types and forms, but the major ones you want to look out for include:

  • Tobacco smoke

  • Carbon monoxide

  • Nitrogen oxide from unvented or faulty gas appliances

  • Smoke from wood burning stoves and fireplaces

  • Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) including, paint, aerosol sprays, solvents, glues, adhesives, air fresheners, cleaning chemicals, etc.

  • Pet dander

  • Dust

  • Pollen

  • Mold

  • Asbestos

  • Radon

  • Lead

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How can I reduce indoor air pollution?

If you suspect that your home has an asbestos, lead or carbon monoxide problem, it’s best to call a professional. Professionals can test your home for these toxins and make a recommendation for how to eradicate it.

If on the other hand, you’re experiencing issues with dust, pet dander, pollen or mold, you can easily remove these pollutants through the use of HEPA air purifier. Here’s a guide on how to find the best allergy air purifier for your needs.

An air purifier is a specialized machine that strips the air of harmful indoor pollution. Depending on the type of device you get, will determine what types of particles the product can remove. Some air purifiers are excellent at removing all types of toxins, while others, like ionic air purifiers, focus on a select few.

You can find out more about how each type of air purifier works by browsing that section of our website. We have a host of articles dedicated to educating you on this topic.

If you’d like to hire a professional indoor air quality specialist, take a look at the Indoor Air Quality Association for a recommendation.

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