Everyone has had the experience of walking into a sunny room and seeing particles of dust floating in the air. Over time, all sorts of particles like dust, dander, and pollen can build up in your home’s atmosphere. Even worse are the volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, that you cannot see but can build up as you use cleaning products and beauty products. Air quality can be a real concern for homeowners, and ventilation is part of the solution. Here are three areas where it is especially important to think about ventilation.
1. The Kitchen
When you are cooking your favorite meal, you are also sending chemical traces of your cooking into the air. This is what gives food its distinctive smell. When you fry food, you are sending out tiny drops of cooking oil. Of course, if you burn your food, the smoke is hard to remove from the atmosphere. Make sure to use stove exhaust fans when you cook, especially with oil. Open a kitchen window to maintain an exchange of fresh and stale air. This can help remove kitchen odors like fish or smoke.
2. The Bathroom
The bathroom is the place where homeowners produce the most VOCs. There can be a mix of aerosol beauty products, cleaning products and steam from a hot shower. An unventilated bathroom can be a haven for mold and mildew. It is especially important to run your exhaust fan during a shower and for about ten minutes afterward. As with the kitchen, be sure to open a window when you are cleaning in the bathroom. This will help get chemicals out of the air.
3. Garage or Workspace
If you are a do-it-yourself expert, you probably have a work area with adhesives, lubricants, and paints. You may have tools that create large amounts of sawdust as well. Unfortunately, that workbench in the basement probably does not have great ventilation. It is best to do this work in an area where fresh air can reach you.
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