Why Is it Always Allergy Season INSIDE My Home?
Face masks have become a fashion statement in the last year or so, and we are all getting used to having one on when we leave home. However, wearing a face mask might be more valuable while you’re inside your house, especially if you are prone to allergies and other respiratory conditions.
The Environmental Protection Agency reported that indoor pollution can be two to five times worse than outdoor pollution, even in metropolitan cities like Tacoma! We spend about 90% of the time indoors (even more during global pandemics) and are breathing some nasty air unless we take precautions to keep the air quality good.
What is in the air in my home that could be a problem? Allergens are the foreign substances that cause an allergic reaction to some people. Indoor allergies can be from:
- House dust
- Mold spores
- Dust mites
- Cat dander
- Dog dander
- Pet rodents
Here are some internal symptoms that may happen as a result of poor indoor air quality:
- Nasal Congestion
- Runny Nose
- Itchy Eyes
- Watery Eyes
- Sore Throat
- Difficulty Breathing
Let’s focus on an issue particularly prevalent in the Puget Sound area: MOLD. We live in one of the wettest areas in the country, and even the indoors are susceptible to this potentially harmful fungus. The three most common types of mold in the area based on color are black, green, and yellow.
- BLACK MOLD is black but can also be dark green or gray. Black mold is most often found where it is warm and moist like kitchens, bathrooms (especially the toilet and shower), and basements.
- GREEN MOLD is one we see outside a lot, but it is common indoors as well on spoiled food (like bread), on walls, cabinets, and carpets. Penicillium is a particular green mole that has antibacterial properties. It also can emit mycotoxins that are toxic to both people and pets. It is usually found outdoors but can grow on wet items inside your home.
- YELLOW MOLD is most often found on tile, walls, and wooden surfaces most frequently in kitchens and bathrooms. It looks and feels slippery and is sometimes called slime mold.
Mold also can form on many other places if unattended water is not dried.
Here’s a list of places where mold often grows inside the home:
- Any area where water damage occurred but wasn’t properly soaked up
- Heating ducts
- Behind or around washing machines
- Behind or around furnaces and water heaters
- Upholstered furniture
- Live plants kept indoors
- Vents and air conditioners
- Stoves and microwaves
At Ranger Heating, Cooling, and Electric, we provide a variety of services to help your home be as allergy-free as possible. Through regular maintenance of your heating and cooling systems, we’ll be sure allergens are addressed before they get near your nose. We also can check your air ducts for dirt, debris, mold, and leaks. Leave your face mask in your car for public use only. Enjoy fresh, allergen-free air in your home!