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Can Your Air Conditioning Contribute to an Unhealthy Home?

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Last Updated on October 14, 2021

You may be surprised to learn that the air in your home could be contributing to an unhealthy home. The EPA estimates that indoor air can be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air because we spend a lot of time indoors. Indoor pollutants can come from various sources: cleaning products, electronics, and even our homes' heating and cooling systems. This post will explore how your indoor air quality can affect your health and what you can do about it.

You may be surprised to learn that the air in your home could be contributing to an unhealthy home. The EPA estimates that indoor air can be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air because we spend a lot of time indoors. Indoor pollutants can come from various sources: cleaning products, electronics, and even our homes’ heating and cooling systems. This post will explore how your indoor air quality can affect your health and what you can do about it.

Dehydration

A major contributing factor to indoor air pollution is dehydration. We drink, use things like cleaning products and even our vehicles, and sweat, which all contribute to moisture retention inside the home. When moisture is trapped inside the home, the result is that the air contains many more pollutants. One of the main causes of this moisture is condensation from the air conditioning system.

To ensure the indoor air quality is at its best, you should never leave your home if the temperature is below 70 degrees F. Your home’s AC system should constantly run to remove moisture from the air. Make sure to shut off all sources of humidity, including cleaning products and the cooling system, too. This means high levels of energy spent, but don’t worry. Homes that use air conditioning amount to 12% of home energy expenditures.

Acclimatization to Cold Air

Most of us have heard of ‘cooling down’ before we go to bed. When you go from hot to cold air, it can help your body to regulate your temperature. As a result, your body doesn’t feel as much fever as it might otherwise. However, when the air is not properly filtered, as with many air conditioners, this action may be hindered or reduced, which could cause the body to work harder to stay in sync with the outside environment. Furthermore, poor indoor air quality has been shown to exacerbate asthma symptoms. In fact, as many as 90% of all asthma symptoms may be triggered by air pollution from outdoor and indoor sources.

Burns and Skin Conditions

Did you know that indoor air is twice as likely to cause contact dermatitis as outdoor air? The combination of pollutants such as dust, mites, mold, and the personal care products you use can trigger an allergic reaction. Indoor air is three times more likely to contribute to a breakout than outdoor air.

Spread Of Infectious Disease

When we breathe in polluted air, we introduce microorganisms (bacteria, viruses, and fungi) into the air and into our bodies. This is why some medical experts have linked indoor air pollution to numerous health problems, including asthma, bronchitis, and pneumonia. Our homes can serve as a good breeding ground for many kinds of disease-causing bacteria and viruses, and they can spread easily from person to person.

Certain health experts have claimed that 85% of airborne diseases are passed from person to person, and others have even gone so far as to call indoor air pollution a serious threat to public health. Research has found that the longer people or friends spend in the same indoor environment, the more likely they become sick or contract a respiratory infection.

A leaky HVAC unit can seep dangerous carbon monoxide into your home. Keep in mind that two-thirds of U.S. homes now have HVAC systems, so the chances that you have an issue with your heating or cooling unit can be high. If you own an older home, you might even have to hire a professional HVAC technician to fix it. It is advisable to have your HVAC system repaired twice per year. That is to say, air conditioning and heating should at least be repaired once.

The indoor air pollutants inside your home can be major culprits in making it unhealthy. Fortunately, there are many easy ways to improve your indoor air quality. You can improve the efficiency of your HVAC unit and other electrical devices that might be polluting the air. As a result, you’ll prevent air pollution and save energy. The number of homes in the United States that use air conditioners is around 75%, and they use 6% of all the electricity produced nationwide.