The days are getting longer, and spring is in the air — but so are the allergens that often come with the warmer temperatures and resurrected plant life! So if you are looking to avoid the increase in spring allergy symptoms you experience at home, like:
…then creating a better barrier between your indoor living space and the outdoors is essential. But that's not the whole story! Total Home Performance is the trusted home performance and healthy home services contractor that knows how to improve indoor air quality in your home — here’s what you need to know.
A Closer Look at Indoor Air Quality
The air inside your home can become much more contaminated than the air outside — thanks to the equipment you rely on to keep your home comfortable. The heating and cooling system of your home handles nearly all of the air in your living space and sends it into a repeating loop. Both the furnace and air conditioner take air from inside the home, filter it, condition it, and send it back into your home before that same air is sucked into the loop again.
Contaminants that enter this loop can often find ways to sneak by dirty or outdated air filters, and are then given multiple chances to enter the lungs of you and your family members. This includes contaminants that come from the inside of your home, like chemicals and volatile organic compounds (VOCs), as well as bacteria and mold that grows in humid and hidden areas like the crawl space and attic.
Best Practices for Increasing Your Home IAQ
We know that contaminants are hard to get out once they get in, and that those contaminants will accumulate over time. So what are the best ways to stop contaminants from getting in, and how do you get rid of the ones that are introduced inside the home like smoke from cooking, excess humidity from the shower, and cleaning chemicals you use every day? By insulating and air sealing the problematic areas of your home (like the attic and crawl space), and ensuring your indoor air is being ventilated, filtered, purified, or even a combination of the three.
All throughout the construction of your home you’ll find tiny holes, gaps, and cracks where outside air is allowed to freely move in and out of your living space. Not all of these will be visible to the naked eye — and this is the benefit of professional air sealing. At Total Home Performance, we use infrared cameras, pressure tests like a blower door test, and our extensive building performance training to locate and seal your home from top to bottom.
Crawl Space Encapsulation
For many Eastern Shore homes, the crawl space is a magnet for humidity issues and problematic air holes, especially in the spring when everything is damp. Unfortunately, the air in the crawlspace is first in line to replace the air in your living space when that air escapes through your attic, meaning the healthier the crawlspace, the healthier the home! Total Home Performance tackles crawl space encapsulation by installing a plastic waterproof barrier, air sealing and insulating the crawl space, and adding any dehumidification that might be necessary.
Ventilation, Air Filtration, and Purification
Just like no two identical homes will have been “lived in” the same way, there is no one solution for filtering and ventilating the air in your house. While the allergy and health requirements will vary greatly between each Eastern Shore family, Total Home Performance can find the perfect combination of ventilating, filtering, purifying, humidifying, and/or dehumidifying for a healthy home in spring.
Save with ENERGY STAR Rebates
Even with all of the benefits comfort, heating and cooling efficiency, and indoor air quality improvements you’ll experience with these kinds of home upgrades, there are still rebates available to make these improvements more affordable. Total Home Performance is a Home Performance with ENERGY STAR contractor who can help you save up to $7,500 in rebates — in fact, we’re one of the only Eastern Shore contractors who qualify for such significant savings under this program!
Looking to alleviate some of your allergies this spring? Get the facts around your indoor air quality with Total Home Performance. Call 410-822-1390 or book a healthy home assessment with indoor air quality testing here.