Audits For A Healthy Home
Everyone wants a healthy home but may not know where to start. Did you know that having an energy audit on your home has benefits beyond saving money on your heating and cooling bills? Our HEAT Squad auditors not only look at your home to find out where you are wasting energy, but they also look at the overall health of your home. There may be things in your home contributing to health issues or just keeping your home from being as healthy as you would like. Whether your home has moisture, air, or pest issues, we can help you improve your home health and safety. Here are some issues you may have that we can help you discover and tell you how to fix:
Top Three Home Health Issues:
- Air quality: Dust, pollen, pet dander, mold, and cigarette smoke are just some of the things that can pollute your inside air. These toxins and pollutants can trigger asthma and other illnesses such as COPD.
- Moisture: With enough moisture in the air, mold can grow anywhere in your home. The most common places to find moisture build-up, and thus mold, are basements, bathrooms, attics and around your windows. Moisture can structurally damage your home by causing wood to rot and make floors and walls discolored. Mold is also a trigger for allergies, asthma, and other health-related issues.
- Pests: All different kinds of pests can invade a home but there are certain pests to watch out for that can cause health issues.
- Mice: The dander and feces that mice leave around your home can create allergy symptoms and trigger asthma as well as make young children and elder adults sick. A mouse can fit through a hole the size of a quarter and can chew their way into cupboards and storage containers.
- Bugs: Insects come into your home to seek out shelter and can fit through the smallest cracks. Most bugs are harmless to humans, but some can cause damage to your home.
Things You Can Do To Keep Your Home Healthy:
- Improve air quality
- Invest in a home air filter or air purifier to help filter pollen and toxins.
- Bring some greenery indoors with some air purifying house plants.
- Remove carpets as they can trap dust and pollen.
- Let fresh air in! Open the windows during low pollen seasons to help freshen your indoor air.
- Reduce the humidity
- Use a dehumidifier or air conditioner to decrease the humidity to under 50%.
- Vent your dryer and bathroom to the outside.
- Install a fan in your bathroom to help circulate the air and dry towels and bathmats.
- Check for leaks regularly, especially in your attic and basement.
- Install proper moisture barrier insulation.
- Monitor radon and carbon monoxide levels
- Replace batteries in the detectors regularly.
- Have an expert come in to make sure detectors are located in the right places.
- Vacuum high-traffic areas and areas where pets sleep.
- Dust regularly.
- Wash bedding regularly.
- Don’t forget to clean or change out the filters in your heaters, air conditioners, purifiers, etc.
If you aren’t sure where to start, have our HEAT Squad come to your home to see how your home is actually performing. Energy audits reveal the functionality of your home and look at how all systems are working together and can reveal potential hazards as well as areas for improvement. Try following these tips to keep your home healthy and check out www.heatsquad.org for more or call 802-438-2303 to schedule your audit today!
Author: Bailey Aines, a part-time student employee.