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Important Facts About Indoor Air Quality That You Need To Know

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Air quality is something that has many people very concerned. Unfortunately, while outdoor pollution levels continue to get a great deal of attention, many people are completely unaware of the fact that indoor air quality is often much worse than the air outdoors.

Additionally, people are generally not aware of how poor indoor air quality can compromise their health and overall quality of life. This is particularly true for senior citizens or individuals who have allergies or breathing problems.

Common Indoor Air Pollutants

These are a few common indoor air pollutants that we can all learn more about.

Candles

Many people like to burn candles. While candles can definitely add a touch of ambiance and beauty to your home environment, they can also release toxic chemicals into the air your family breathes. If you do use candles, always make sure they are either bees wax or soy based and that only essential oils are used in scenting the candle.

Air Fresheners

For those who want to freshen-up their home with air fresheners, it’s important to know that almost all air fresheners release toxic chemicals. These noxious chemicals can exacerbate asthma and other respiratory problems.

Furniture And Printers

Other common household items that can contribute to poor indoor air quality include ink jet printers and even furniture. The toxic chemicals used in many flame retardant treatments applied to furniture made before 2006 are known carcinogens.

Create A Healthier And More Comfortable Home

While it can be unsettling to think about all of the air pollutants that may be inside your home, at Cool Breeze Comfort Solutions, we can help you create a healthier and more comfortable indoor environment for your entire family. We offer duct cleaning, air filtration systems, air purifiers and other effective solutions for your indoor air quality problems.

We are your Tucson air conditioning and indoor air quality services experts!

Call Us Now To See What Will Work Best To Keep The Air Clean For You And Your Family!

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The Importance Of Indoor Air Quality For A Business

When the topics of air pollution and air quality come up, most people automatically assume these terms refer to the air outdoors. While both terms can and do apply to outdoor air, they can also apply to indoor air as well.

In fact, sometimes air pollutants can be found in quantities two to five times that of the outdoor air. For many places of business and employment, indoor air quality is a bigger concern than most might think.

Problems With Poor Indoor Air Quality In A Business

Indoor Air Quality Experts-Cool Breeze Comfort Solutions

Many different components can pollute indoor air. Some are naturally occurring, such as dust and mold. Others are not natural, such as chemicals off-gassed by textiles, cleaners and other building materials. This means that volatile organic compounds (VOCs), like formaldehyde, phthalates, and other harmful and illegal substances can be present in the air you, your employees, and your customers breathe.

Reduced air exchange inside of a building makes these pollutants even more of a health problem indoors. Lack of circulating fresh air can greatly increase the problem. Poor indoor air quality can lead to headaches, allergies, and even hormonal problems.

The EPA has listed indoor air quality in the list of top five urgent environmental issues that are impacting public health. With Americans spending about 90 percent of their time indoors, it is no wonder why this such a concern. The EPA has estimated that the cost of medical treatments and missed days at work due to poor indoor air quality are in the tens of billions of dollars every year. These figures do not include legal liability for unsafe working conditions.

Ways To Improve Indoor Air Quality

As a business owner or manager, here are a few simple ways you can take on your own to improve indoor air quality:

  • Do not allow smoking indoors
  • Clean frequently
  • Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter
  • Damp dust and mop to trap particles
  • Place large doormats outside and inside your entrances. This will help trap dust and dirt that can enter your business on people’s shoes

Your Indoor Air Quality Experts

If you are ready to create a better environment for your customers and employees, or for your own home, call Cool Breeze Comfort Solutions today. Our experts can offer you solutions to making the indoor air quality healthier for everyone.

Discover All The Beneficial Indoor Air Quality Products And Systems We Offer!

Why HVAC Maintenance Is Important

If you have made the decision to invest in an HVAC system, it makes sense that you should also take the time and effort to maintain it properly after installation. You expect that your system will last for a number of years, and if you are going to get the maximum life out of it, you will need to invest in proper HVAC maintenance.

Benefits Of Regular HVAC Maintenance

Better Air Quality

Benefits Of Regular HVAC Maintenance - Cool Breeze Arizona

Keeping your HVAC system maintained regularly will not only keep your home comfortable in winter months and cool during the summer but it will also ensure a better air quality environment inside your home.

Making sure that your air filter and coils are clean means that all members of your family will have healthier air to breathe. If anyone in your family suffers from asthma or allergies, they will benefit substantially from the improved air quality.

Lower Energy Costs

If your unit is running efficiently, you will be spending less money on your utility costs. Scheduling regular HVAC maintenance checks is a good way to catch issues with your system early, before they turn into bigger and more expensive problems to fix.

Fewer Emergency Repairs

Most HVAC systems need some emergency repairs from time to time. A well-maintained unit is less likely to fail during the peak seasons of operation (June-September and December-March). Making a point of keeping up to date with regular inspections will help to ensure that your system is running well and will lower the likelihood of needing an emergency service call.

Warranty Available

If you run into a problem with a part that was replaced in a regular maintenance check, it may be covered under a warranty. You’ll want to keep a list of all work performed on your HVAC system, as well as the date it was performed. A faulty part can often be replaced at no cost.

Longer System Life

A well-maintained system will be able to function well and last longer than one that has not been as well cared for over the years. By scheduling regular maintenance checks, a system can last for well over 10 years. The HVAC system is an investment in your home, and it makes sense to keep it running well as long as possible.

Cool Breeze Comfort Solutions is proud to be the leading HVAC dealer in Tucson! We offer amazing Maintenance Program Membership Benefits!

Call Us Now To Learn More!

What Causes Poor Indoor Air Quality?

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156534187The indoor air quality in your home affects the way you breathe. If you do not have good indoor air quality, you and your family might be exposed to potentially harmful contamination that can spread germs and cause certain air problems. Keep reading to learn about the major causes of poor indoor air quality.

Pollutants
Mold, bacteria, and viruses are some of the leading biological pollutants that affect the air quality in your home. Pollen, animal dander, and even dust mites or cockroaches might also affect the way you can breathe at home. If these biological pollutants affect your air quality, it might lead to infections, allergic reactions, or even asthma attacks.

Smoke
If you or anyone in your home smokes, you probably have poor indoor air quality. Secondhand smoke has more than 200 poisons like carbon monoxide and 60 chemicals that increase the risk for developing cancer. If secondhand smoke is polluting your indoor air quality, it puts your lungs at serious risk for health problems like lung cancer, pneumonia, and respiratory tract infections.

Combustion Pollutants
Certain appliances like a furnace or a fireplace might release combustible pollutants that negatively affect your air quality. Most of the time, these combustion pollutants are the result of colorless and odorless gases. Carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide are impossible to see, but they can have a negative affect on your health. If you are exposed to extremely high levels, it can even cause death.

Asbestos
Older homes often have asbestos in the carpets, the particle boards, and plywood paneling. Asbestos is made with formaldehyde, which can pollute your air quality and lead to serious health issues.

The experts at Cool Breeze Comfort Solutions can come to your home to improve your indoor air quality. We provide air cleaners and air filtration systems that can improve the air that circulates through your home. We also offer air duct cleanings. To learn more about our indoor air quality or our heating and cooling services, call 1-844-550-5300.

Tucson Indoor Air Quality Tips

The condition of ductwork in Tucson homes can have a major effect on your heating and air conditioning system in addition to the actual air quality of your home. This is especially true if you have people living in the home that suffer form chronic allergies and pollutants such as pollen, dust, pet dander and hair. In fact, poorly maintained ducts can actually make these things worse for allergy sufferers.

Irritants get trapped in your ducting and build up over time that can just circulate higher concentrations throughout the entire home. We recommend frequent inspections because every home needs regular ductwork maintenance – there is no method of keeping them clean indefinitely.

If you have not had your air conditioning ductwork, give Cool Breeze Comfort Solutions a call today and we will take a professional look at the system in your home. We can make recommendations and find out what works best for your individual situation.

In addition to just making your Tucson more comfortable, cleaning your ducts can also improve the efficiency of your air conditioning system because it ensures proper air flow. A professional duct cleaning is a comprehensive approach to the whole home with the intent of cleaning every square inch of the ducting within your system and then treating it afterward to improve longevity. We can also look for damaged ductwork, which can lead to a loss of airflow as well.

Tucson air conditioning, air quality and clean duct management are some of our specialties! And remember, the best thing you can do on an ongoing basis as a home owner is replace your filters often! If you are concerned about the quality of any of these areas in your home, give us a call right away and we can schedule an appointment today!

How Do You Measure Your Air Cleaner’s Performance? A Question from Tucson

Your air cleaner is designed to keep your family comfortable and healthy, regardless of what contaminants make their way inside in your Tucson home. This is important because homes these days are sealed up tightly to minimize the loss of heating or cooling, but as a result they have poor ventilation and frequently they will suffer a buildup of excess contaminants like mold, dust, pollen and dander.

To ensure you get the best possible air cleaner for your home, there are a number of measurements available to help you in the purchasing process. Let’s take a look at a couple of those measurements and what they mean.

MERV

MERV ratings are used to measure the ability of a filter to remove dust from the air that passes through it. The higher the MERV rating, the better the filter works at removing particles. The MERV rating scale goes from 1-16 with 16 being the best possible rating you can obtain from a residential (non-HEPA) grade filter. Usually, they are designed to measure things like dander, dust, smog, wood smoke, spores, bacteria and mold.

When choosing an air cleaner, it is recommended that you look for a MERV rating of at least 8, which is good enough to remove almost all common household contaminants. Higher MERV ratings (17 and up) are found in HEPA filters which are considered among the best on the market, able to remove particles as small as 0.3 microns.

CADR

This rating stands for Clean Air Delivery Rate and is a measurement of how efficiently the air cleaner delivers clean air for tobacco smoke, pollen and dust (the common measurements given for each device). This is not a measurement of the efficiency of the device, so much as the speed of it the device. So, the higher the CADR measurement for all three contaminants, the faster those particles are removed from the indoor air.

The best way to choose a device to match your needs is to look for a CADR rating of at least 2/3 of the size of the room you are cleaning. So, if you are cleaning the air of a 150 square foot bedroom, you should get a device with a CADR rating of at least 100.

When choosing a good air cleaner for your home, make sure you do your research and choose on the best possible option for the space you need to clean. MERV and CADR allow you to do this.

How Much Ventilation Do I Need for My House? A Question from Tucson

By now you’ve probably heard how important it is to have good ventilation in your Tucson home. Especially if your home was built in the 1980s or early 1990s when ventilation issues were prevalent, you may not have enough clean air moving through your home. But, how much ventilation do you need? What is enough and if you don’t have it, how do you ensure your home is retrofitted properly?

How Much Ventilation?

Most recommendations for ventilation come from the Home Ventilation Institute, which provides a series of standards of measurement for builders and contractors retrofitting homes for better ventilation. Here are some of their recommendations and how they might apply for your home:

  • Bathroom – Small bathrooms (less than 100 sq. ft) need 1 CFM per square foot of bathroom. The number goes up for each fixture if you have a large bathroom.
  • Kitchens – Your kitchen range needs at least 100 CFM if against the wall and upwards of 150 CFM if on an island.
  • Ventilators – If you have an HRV for your home, you should have at least 100 CFM for 2,000 square feet and another 50 for every 1,000 square feet of home size being ventilated.
  • Home Ventilators – The actual volume of CFM for ventilators depends on the type of ventilator being used. For example, a whole house ventilator needs upwards of 6,000 CFM for a 2,000 square foot home. Attic ventilators need 1,400 or more.

So, what does this mean for your home? It means in general that you need a lot of ventilation and that the best way to get it is through mechanical ventilation techniques combined with your air handler and ductwork.

Especially if you recently added insulation and weather proofing to your home but have not yet updated your ventilation, you might have a major air quality problem, so have a Tucson professional measure your home’s air flow as soon as possible.

Will My Air Conditioning Work Better with Dehumidification? A Question from Tucson

There are a number of common misconceptions about humidity and air conditioning and how one affects the other in your Tucson home. In truth, humidity is a major part of the discomfort we feel when the mercury rises. It can be 78 degrees outside but feel miserable simply because the humidity is high. So, many people wonder whether a dehumidifier is a good solution to moderate heat and how it will work in tandem with an air conditioner.

Humidity and Your Air Conditioner

First, remember that air conditioning naturally lowers humidity because it cycles air through its condenser and evaporator coil. Conditioned air is naturally lower in humidity, regardless of what’s going on outside. So, if it is hot outside and humid, an air conditioner alone is very effective. On the other hand, a dehumidifier is useful is when the temperature isn’t that high but the humidity is.

Dehumidification not only lowers the relative humidity in your home, it reduces the need for cooling because you will feel more comfortable. Not only that, but a dehumidifier costs significantly less to run. So, when the temperature outside isn’t that high, there is no need to use thousands of watts per day of electricity just to stay comfortable.

This also reduces the overall wear on your air conditioner. Since it doesn’t need to run 24 hours a day to reduce humidity, wear and tear on the device is reduced and you save a tremendous amount of money on repairs and eventual replacement costs.

When to Use a Dehumidifier Alone

Generally, the Department of Energy recommends setting your air conditioner to 78 degrees and using a combination of a dehumidifier and fans to stay cool while it is off. If the temperature rises above that level, the air conditioner will turn on and supplement your dehumidifier. Consider too that a dehumidifier will reduce the burden placed on your air conditioner to pull humidity from the air. Humid air takes more energy to cool than dry air. Despite the fact that dehumidifiers will often raise the air temperature by 1-2 degrees, they save energy and make you more comfortable.

So, if you’re looking for a way to reduce your energy bill and enhance the longevity of your air conditioner, look no further than a quality dehumidifier.

What Does the EPA Do for Indoor Air Quality? A Question from Tucson

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There are a number of agencies in the United States dedicated to protecting the health and wellbeing of citizens. What does that mean for you in Tucson? It means many of the rules and regulations related to indoor air quality are directly overseen by the EPA and the US government. For a better idea of how this impacts your currently lifestyle, here’s a quick look at what the EPA does.

Formation

The Environmental Protection Agency was formed in 1970 by Richard Nixon and the US Congress to oversee the regulation and oversight of air, water, land and hazardous waste. In short, the EPA works to keep our environment clean and safe.

The EPA and Homeowners

While much of what the EPA does relates to corporate pollution, regulations for manufacturing and consumer products, and development of safe methods of production for things like oil, food and water, the EPA has a big hand in ensuring your home stays safe.

Specifically, the EPA started and oversees the Energy Star program to help consumers purchase appliances and HVAC systems that use the least possible energy. Additionally, the EPA oversees the measurements and minimum requirements for home insulation and ventilation. This has as direct impact on indoor air quality.

Current EPA regulations are based on the ASHRAE Standards for low rise buildings and has been revised in the last two decades to ensure proper ventilation and insulation to reduce energy waste and maintain clean, fresh air.

The clean air act has a big impact on how homes are ventilated and maintained and the EPA does a lot of public service work to educate the public on ways to stay safe, including a recent campaign to get your home tested for radon – a potentially life threatening gas that can exist in any home, regardless of age.

Getting to Know the EPA

If you have an indoor air quality or suspect there may be issues in your home, one of the best resources on the Internet is the EPA’s indoor air quality website. It contains laws and regulations that impact your home (if you plan on remodeling or adding on to your home) and dozens of resources for testing and understanding the levels of pollutants in your home.

Allergens Affected by Indoor Air Quality Systems: A Tip from Tucson

Indoor air quality devices are designed to capture and remove certain allergens from the air, but what exactly is being removed and how would those allergens affect your health if left to circulate? Here is a quick rundown of common allergens found inside the average Tucson home and why you should have them removed:

  • Dust Mites – Dust mites develop in high humidity conditions – above 50%. This means that dehumidification to a healthy range between 35-50% will keep them from developing and ensure your indoor air stays comfortable and safe. Dust mites are not dangerous but they can severely increase complications from asthma and other uncomfortable conditions.
  • Animal Dander – Dander from cats, dogs, birds and other furry or feathered creatures is a common allergen for millions of people. If you suspect dander as an allergy, go on vacation to a place without dander and see how it affects you or your loved ones.
  • Dust and Dirt – Dust is in every home and while it is a common irritant, it can inflame asthma or worsen allergies many times over.
  • Pollen – Pollen is a problem for anyone with seasonal allergies or hay fever. While medicine can help, proper sealing of your house and indoor air filtration can reduce the presence of pollen from clothing and animals.
  • Mold Spores – Mold develops in high humidity and in ductwork where it is dark and sometimes damp. Proper filtration with a HEPA system and dehumidification will reduce this risk.
  • Bacteria and Viruses – Bacteria can develop in the air from common colds, old food or outside contaminants. Use a UV light to remove these from your air handler or ductwork.
  • Smoke and Exhaust – Indoor/outdoor ventilation can allow in smoke and exhaust that irritates most lungs. To avoid this problem install an electronic air cleaner that can target particles in smoke.

Getting rid of allergens in the air is an important aspect of maintaining a clean and healthy household. Proper air cleaning, filtration and UV purification will reduce these allergens many times over. There are also some great tips on the Asthma and Allergy Foundation website for how to reduce the presence of those allergens to start with.