“Indoor air can be deadlier than outdoor air, research shows. Indoor air pollution may be as much or more of a problem as pollution outdoors, according to new research. … From cooking residue to paints, varnishes and fungal spores, the air we breathe indoors is often more polluted than that outside and Those who live in cities spend up to 90 percent of their time indoors — most of the air they are breathing is “indoor air.”
The air quality in a building depends on how fresh the air is entering the premises, which pollutants are emitted into indoor air from human activities or from the building itself and how effective ventilation vents out the pollutants.
Contact us if your problems with the indoor environment in your building.
If you have bad air, moisture or mold, you should contact us and we will help you with the problem. If you experience health concerns, contact your healthcare provider for examination.
A good ventilation, adapted to the activity in the building is important for the air quality to be good. Ventilation should continuously remove air pollution from the building, interior and living, regardless of load, weather, season and temperature. In buildings with poor and ineffective ventilation, pollutants are formed inside the house and humidity can be too high. In addition, too high levels of radon may occur.
Indoor air pollutants that directly or indirectly affect air quality and health can be divided into two categories:
Particles are solid objects and can range from millimeters in size to one millionth of a millimeter. The size determines whether they are floating in the air or if they fall. A large number of particles come in with the outside air. How much particles that enter depends on the ventilation system, the building has, if there are leaks and how the building is aired.
Particles can also occur indoors example is tobacco smoke, gas flames in stoves, burning candles, cooking, textiles, chemicals, cleaning and more. A large part of the particles inside are skin particles from those living or staying in the building. How people is affected by the particles depends on the amount, size and the presence of harmful substances in or on the surface of the particle. Indoor air should have as low levels of particles as possible.
Volatile substances (VOC) and gases
Gases / volatiles are released into the air due to physical conditions or chemical reactions. Building and interior materials, plastics and electronics may contain volatile substances emitted to the room air. Microorganisms can also deliver volatile substances through their metabolism. Although the levels are low, these substances can cause irritation and in some cases produce an unpleasant odor. Research has shown that substances in the air can change into more aggressive substances that can affect humans. Radon gas can enter the building through leaks in the house or in the ground or from building materials.
Factors that affect air quality
Incorrect adapted ventilation
An effective ventilation means more than a certain amount of air will pass a fan or a donor. The effectiveness is determined by how much of the old air is replaced with new fresh air in of the air volume in the building. In order for a good air quality to be achieved, the underpressure in the building must be compensated so that air can not enter through leaks in walls, floors and ceilings such as pipes, power lines, culverts and chimneys and more. The air must come in through the supply air that is available.
Too high humidity in the indoor air, in the building structure or under surface material is often a cause of air quality problems. Moisture can cause various chemical reactions and the growth of microorganisms. Old moisture damage that is dehydrated may adversely affect air quality unless all moisture damaged material is removed.
The microorganisms associated with indoor air are mainly bacteria and molds. A large part of the bacteria comes from the people staying in the building. Mold mainly comes in with outdoor air, but growth in building constructions or indoor surfaces can contribute to increased mold content. The levels in the room air depends largely on how much stirred up from the floor and other surfaces. This makes it more common with elevated levels of microorganisms in, for example, schools than in homes. Research indicates that health problems associated with microorganisms primarily are not a direct consequence of exposure to cells or spores. Instead, the health effect seems to be linked to substances that microorganisms emit to the environment, where some can be perceived as bad odor.
Allergen is a collective name for substances that can cause allergies to sensitive people. Animals, insects, mites and microorganisms can emit the allergen from, for example, fur, saliva, stools, urine or cell parts. Many of the particles carrying the allergen are of a size that allows them to be airborne for a long time. Therefore, effective ventilation is a way to reduce the levels of allergen in the air.
Mites thrives in humid environments. In poorly ventilated homes, humidity can come up to such levels that mites can live and multiply. Remnants and stools from mites can cause allergies. Mites in the room can be an indication of poor indoor climate.
Smoking indoors is a major source of pollutants in the indoor air. Smoking in combination with radon in buildings gives an increased risk of lung cancer. Children exposed to tobacco smoke get more respiratory infections and more often develop asthma and allergy than children who are not exposed.
Radon in the indoor air can come from the ground, the building’s building materials and sometimes from the tap water. Radon can cause lung cancer after daily and long-term exposure to high levels of radon for example in a home. Smoking along with radon increases the risk significantly.
It has become increasingly common for scenting in indoor with various perfumes to create a certain atmosphere. Scents can be irritating to sensitive people, but also to allergies and those with asthma. About 10% of the population suffer from varying degrees of scent hypersensitivity, even more have allergy and asthma. Adding perfumes to the air is to add a foreign substance that causes air quality to deteriorate and can pose a health danger to humans.
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