While the State of California has done a good job reducing harmful outdoor emissions, many homes have unhealthy indoor air. Depending on the home you buy or currently occupy, you may be walking into a chemical soup. Possible contaminants include:
- Carbon monoxide (CO). Sources of carbon monoxide in LA homes include gas furnaces, stoves and water heaters. An attached garage can also leak CO into a home if you start or stop a vehicle, gas lawnmower or other garden equipment inside of the garage. A CO detector placed strategically on each floor of the home can prevent CO poisoning by alerting you when levels become unsafe.
- Radon. Another toxic gas found in homes is radon, which can cause lung cancer. Luckily, testing for it is easy. The California Department of Public Health provides radon testing kits and an analysis for a low cost. You can order these kits online and have them delivered by mail.
- Mold. The humidity in the LA area varies by season and time of day. During the wet winter months and the June gloom, humidity levels are higher, fostering favorable environments for the growth of mold in and outside your home. If you find mold in your home, your indoor air quality will not improve until you remove the mold, the spores and the damaged material. Contact a licensed mold removal service to test and remedy the problem.
If you’re buying a home that has been recently remodeled, ask your realtor if the current owners used low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) materials. If they did, you have little to worry about. If the buyers did use building materials that contain VOCs, let the home air out before occupying it. You can test for VOCs by putting a small sample of the product inside a jar, setting it in the sun to warm it and then smell it. If you detect odors, the material is still off-gassing.
Around the Clock Air Conditioning and Heating can help you improve your indoor air quality. Please contact us to learn more about systems that clean your air continually.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about indoor air quality and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.