How to have a healthy home

Healthy House Solutions — Indoor Air Quality

American families spend more than 90% of their time indoors. The American College of Allergists report that 50% of all illnesses are caused by indoor air pollution. Asthma and other respiratory problems are on the rise due to poor indoor air quality caused by:

  • Mold/Mildew
  • Pollens
  • Bacteria
  • Dust Mites
  • House Dust
  • Smoke
  • Pet Dander & Odors

Reduction of tiny particles such as these can help prevent many illnesses, general lethargy, sneezing, sore throats, headaches and other symptoms triggered by pollution.

All Quality Heating & Air is committed to providing solutions to combat indoor pollution. Our Healthy House Solutions offer the best value for regaining a higher quality of life for you and your loved ones.

Healthy House Questions & Answers

Q. Do you have a leaky and poorly insulated pull down attic stair?

Discomfort
The pull down attic stair is one of the leakiest and most poorly insulated part of your home, causing cold drafts and dryness in winter, humidity and uneven temperatures year round.

Dust & Health
Leaks around the stair opening in the ceiling cause unsightly and unhealthy attic particles into your home – dust, insulation fibers, mold, insects and droppings.

Energy
The area around the stair opening has little or no insulation allowing energy to literally vent out of the living space causing tremendous heating and cooling waste.

Solution: An attic stair zipper seal

Features and benefits:

  • Reduces dust and allergy suffering, helps with insulation and debris from falling into your house.
  • Makes your home more comfortable year around
  • Pays for itself through lower heating and cooling bills.
  • Maintains easy access to attic space.
  • Fire safe – exceeds building code standards for flame retardants.

Q. Does your crawlspace have high humidity, odors or mold?

Crawl spaces are the more inaccessible, dark, dirty, and more often a breeding ground for fungi, mold and bacteria (dead critters etc). The dark unventilated area also promotes humidity that accelerates mold growth and wood rot.

Solution: Closed crawl space system

Closed crawl spaces do a better job of controlling moisture levels. Humidity control dampens and eliminates mold growth and once sealed properly – prevent ingress of insects, critters, dirt etc.

The result is improved energy efficiency, and humidity control.

Q. Feeling lethargic or suffering from headaches and mental fatigue?

Carbon Monoxide (CO) is a very dangerous and often fatal health hazard. Harmful levels of CO can occur in any home. Common sources are gas and oil furnaces, water heaters, vehicles, space heaters and motorized lawn equipment.

The common symptoms of CO poisoning are: sickness, lethargy, disorientation, and can cause permanent physiological and nervous system damage. There is no acceptable low level of CO in a living space.

Solution: Low level CO alarm/monitor

Features and benefits of a low level CO monitor:

  • Alarms when there is as little as 10 ppm of CO (retail units alarm at 70 ppm!)
  • Precision digital display and memory recall features.
  • Sampling rates every 10 seconds.
  • Short term hush-silence depending on CO levels.
  • Battery operated for long term use – replaceable, and operates during power outages. Low battery warning.

Q. Feeling the stress effects of high humidity and high energy bills?

This is the most common problem that faces every homeowner, and is the result of several issues:

  • Outdoor air infiltration / leakage into the house
  • Poor sizing of HVAC equipment
  • HVAC not maintained, filters or returns clogged / blocked
  • Bad thermostat or improper settings
  • Incorrectly placed / sized roof power ventilators

Solution: Whole House Health and Comfort Analysis

Healthy Climate SolutionsGlobal warming, high energy costs, increased pollutants and poor building designs (shoddy construction) combined, cause quality of comfort issues and high energy bills. All Quality Heating and Air can help you solve these issues with a computerized test that was initially invented by the Department of Energy.

The “Blower Door” analysis, test uses a state-of-the-art Infiltrometer that measures leaks in the house. We check every possible HVAC input and output vent for leaks and provide you with detailed report that objectively shows the effects of air leakage on the efficiency of your Air Conditioning system, and the potential savings that are to be gained by using our solutions.

The cost of a house analysis will pay for itself in 1-2 years with the huge benefits of:

  • Energy savings – year after year.
  • Comfortable living – HVAC checkup’s, tuning and settings can make your system optimized for comfort.
  • Healthy living – window, door, and duct sealing can eliminate ingress of pollutants.

Note about Power Ventilators: contractors and building construction practices relied on the power ventilator to vent out the attic heat and remove moisture. But this mechanism works against you if the ventilator was not properly sized (too powerful), and placed in a location that creates negative pressure in the living spaces.

What that means is that the “conditioned” air in the house is being drawn out via cracks, attic stair openings, and canister lighting openings. This also pulls in hot or cold air into the house making your HVAC equipment ineffective.

We check for these problems when we do the whole house energy analysis, and make recommendations that save you money and restore your indoor living comfort, and air quality. Make a service request or give us a call today to make an appointment.

How to Prevent Contamination of Heat and Air Ducts

Whether or not you decide to have the air ducts in your business cleaned, committing to a good preventive maintenance program is essential to minimize duct contamination. To prevent dirt from entering the system:

  • Use the highest efficiency air filter recommended by the manufacturer of your heating and cooling system.
  • Change filters regularly.
  • If your filters become clogged, change them more frequently.
  • Be sure you do not have any missing filters and that air cannot bypass filters through gaps around the filter holder.
  • When having your heating and cooling system maintained or checked for other reasons, be sure to ask the service provider to clean cooling coils and drain pans.
  • During construction or renovation work that produces dust in your home, seal off supply and return registers and do not operate the heating and cooling system until after cleaning up the dust.
  • Remove dust and vacuum your home regularly. (Use a high efficiency vacuum (HEPA) cleaner or the highest efficiency filter bags your vacuum cleaner can take. Vacuuming can increase the amount of dust in the air during and after vacuuming as well as in your ducts).
  • If your heating system includes in-duct humidification equipment, be sure to operate and maintain the humidifier strictly as recommended by the manufacturer.
  • Commit to a preventive maintenance program of yearly inspections of your heating and cooling system, regular filter changes, and steps to prevent moisture contamination.

When should you have air ducts cleaned

You should consider having the air ducts in your business or home cleaned if:

  • There is substantial visible mold growth inside hard surface (e.g., sheet metal) ducts or on other components of your heating and cooling system.
  • There are several important points to understand concerning mold detection in heating and cooling systems:
    • Many sections of your heating and cooling system may not be accessible for a visible inspection, so call All Quality Heating and Air to test if mold exists.
    • You should be aware that although a substance may look like mold, a positive determination of whether it is mold or not can be made only by an expert and may require laboratory analysis for final confirmation.
    • If you have insulated air ducts and the insulation gets wet or moldy it cannot be effectively cleaned and should be removed and replaced.
  • If the conditions causing the mold growth in the first place are not corrected, mold growth will recur.
  • Ducts are clogged with excessive amounts of dust and debris and/or particles are actually released into the home from your supply registers.

If any of the conditions identified above exists, it usually suggests one or more underlying causes. Prior to any cleaning, retrofitting, or replacing of your ducts, the cause must be corrected or else the problem will likely recur.