Staying Healthy this Winter Starts at Home with Indoor Air Quality Solutions


Sedgwick blog

As the kids return to school and the days grow colder, we are reminded that flu season is rapidly approaching. Good hygiene practices are obviously encouraged, but have you considered that one of the biggest factors of your family’s health this winter could be your home’s indoor air quality (IAQ)?

If you or members of your family are suffering from headaches, coughing, sneezing, watery eyes, or exasperated allergies, it might not be early signs of a cold or the flu. These symptoms can actually indicate poor air quality in your home.

Although you can’t see your IAQ, you can see signs that indicate poor air quality or IAQ problems. Actually, your home is pretty good at letting you know there is a problem with the air quality in your home. You may notice condensation on the windows, warped wood floors, loose drywall tape on your ceilings and walls, or discoloration of your walls, carpets, and ceiling. Musty smells and mysterious, dank odors are also indicative of poor IAQ, especially if the root cause is mold.

Mold isn’t the only cause of unhealthy air quality in your home. Other sources of pollution include:

  • Humidity
  • Harmful gases or fumes (like carbon monoxide or radon)
  • Dust
  • Smoke (if someone in your home is a smoker, fireplaces, etc.)
  • Pet dander

Regularly cleaning your home will make your home feel more comfortable, but there are other steps you can take to ensure good air quality in your home – especially in the winter. Keeping your humidity in check is a big factor in improved air quality. A general rule-of-thumb is to keep your home’s humidity levels under 50%. During the winter, that usually isn’t a problem. However, dry homes can also foster respiratory problems and damage your home’s woodwork or furniture. Humidity can also make the air feel warmer, so you can save money on your heating bills with a quality humidifier. Of course, for the summer seasons, a dehumidifier will help balance your IAQ.

Homes stay closed up throughout the winter, which can cause the air to stale. However, a good air exchanger can efficiently make your time inside healthier and much more comfortable. Air filtration systems can also help keep your family healthy. These can easily be attached to your heating/cooling system to filter out a lot of the causes of poor IAQ.

By addressing your home’s air quality, you can help keep your family happier and healthier year round!

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