Indoor Air Quality Monitors
In recent years, more and more scientific discoveries have shown that the air in buildings and apartments can be more polluted than the air outside, even in the most extensive and largest industrialized cities. Although outdoor air quality is important, research shows that people spend about 90% of their time indoors. Hence, for various people, the health risks caused by air pollution may be higher indoors than outdoors.
Indoor pollution sources that emit gases or particles into the air are the leading cause of indoor air quality problems in buildings. Inadequate ventilation can increase indoor pollutant levels by not adding enough outdoor air to dilute indoor emissions.
Hence, indoor air quality (IAQ) monitors were created to measure harmful indoor air pollutants.
Common Indoor Air Quality Monitors for Your Home
Paying attention to the air quality inside the house is important and could be considered home security. Here are three air threats that are commonly known and descriptions of how to detect them.
Radon is a colorless, odorless radioactive gas that occurs naturally in the soil and can penetrate the lowest house levels. You can test the radon with a simple, inexpensive kit that includes a collector that the homeowner places on the lower level of the house for 2 to 7 days. The collector is then sent to a laboratory, which sends back the results of the radon test. Another possibility is to purchase an indoor air quality monitor.
If you have excess radon at home, you can take several steps to reduce it. The primary way is to install a ventilation duct system and a fan under the floor. This process, known as sub-plate depressurization, prevents radon from entering the house by venting it into the outside air. Other methods include increasing ventilation throughout the home, installing a radon pool, and waterproofing floors and walls.
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless gas emitted by fireplaces, gas stoves, gas water heaters, wood stoves, defective chimneys, defective stoves, gasoline generators, and other equipment.
CO can cause chest fatigue and chest pain at low levels and flu-like symptoms that go away when people leave their homes. It leads to visual disturbances, loss of coordination, headache, dizziness, confusion, decreased brain function, and nausea at higher concentrations. It is fatal in very high concentrations.
Indoor air quality monitors with carbon monoxide detectors can help homeowners by alerting them to excessive gas concentrations. The best detectors have CO levels in parts per million (ppm), so they can tell you if the levels are rising. Many alarms are triggered only when the values reach higher values such as 70 ppm. However, even 30 ppm is dangerous for children and pregnant women.
The Environmental Protection Agency recommends that you place a CO detector on each level of your home.
There are two versions of smoke detectors, some of which are included in CO detectors.
- Ionization detectors are good at detecting fires that burn quickly but often give false alarms for burned food and steam, making them unsuitable for use near the kitchen or bathroom.
- Photoelectric smoke detectors better recognize smoke and smoldering fire.
Some indoor air quality monitors combine both types of detection.
Other Indoor Air Quality Monitors and Measurement
Indoor air quality involves focus on the air in and around buildings, which impacts the inhabitants' comfort and health. To reduce the risk of health complications, you need to understand some common contaminants and implement systems to either monitor or remove them.
Indoor air quality monitoring merely has one goal: to create a safe and healthy indoor environment. This means that an interior should have adequate ventilation, a low concentration of harmful impurities, and a comfortable level of temperature/humidity.
Now that you understand the purpose of indoor air quality monitoring let's take a look at some tips for measuring indoor air quality to avoid common health problems.
Identify the sources of VOCs and indoor air pollution
An excellent way to determine if problems may occur in your home or business is to identify all potential pollution sources. Although their mere presence does not indicate that you have a problem, you need to be aware to properly evaluate and monitor your environment.
Consider your lifestyle and daily routines since human activities are the leading causes of air pollution.
Watch out for signs of inadequate ventilation. Check your home or office building for signs of ventilation problems. If you find that the air inside is smelly or clogged, moisture is condensing on walls or windows, or some areas have become moldy, it could be a sign that you are not adequately ventilated and need to do something about it immediately.
It can be challenging to notice odors in your home once you get used to them over time. This is why you should leave the house for a few minutes and then return to see if you can detect odors or not.
Check for symptoms caused by indoor air pollution
There are specific health effects that can indicate that you have an indoor air quality problem, especially they occur after moving into a new home or treating your home with pesticides.
If you think that your symptoms may be related to the indoor climate, consult your doctor to see if the indoor air problems are causing them. You can also talk to a board-certified allergist for informed answers to your questions.
What other types of electronic monitoring are possible?
You can also configure other types air quality sensors throughout a building or a home. These devices capture certain types of input into any physical environment, including motion, temperature, and light, and translate the information into a measurable signal. These sensors are designed to detect the presence of specific contaminants that can cause pollution.
In addition to the most common indoor air quality monitors described previously, the following technologies also exist:
- Lead Monitors
- Ozone Monitors
- NO2 Monitors
- Formaldehyde Monitors
- Particulate Monitors (PM)
There are times when an indoor air quality problem is caused by a single regular activity and requires only a short-term solution that does not cost much. In other cases, it may be significantly more complex and must be identified by monitoring air quality before it can be controlled appropriately. Take a look at Airpura's highly regarded Smart Air Monitor.
Indoor Air Quality Monitoring vs Cleaning The Air
Apart from the practical sensors we should have in our homes, such as CO, Radon, and Smoke detectors that beep when safety thresholds are exceeded, we should think seriously about proactive measures that can be taken.
Air purifiers are modern technology in action. They are yet another tool we can use to improve air quality and improve overall health.
Don’t just monitor your air. Clean your air.
Be proactive about air quality in your home. Shop now for our "Best Air Purifier" collections at Think Air Purifiers Home
We offer a variety of practical selections. Air purifiers that address a host of indoor air quality concerns:
To learn more about air purifiers and related topics, we invite you to check out our Blog.