GNcareers, from Gulf News

Indoor air quality at home a paramount concern

Indoor air quality at home a paramount concernImage Credit: Supplied
We always equate home to safety, but the alarming increase of respiratory allergies and asthma throughout the UAE over the last few years due to indoor air pollution says otherwise.
It is quite an irony that while living healthier through a greener lifestyle has become a priority, the quality of the indoor air we breathe at home is often neglected. A little known fact everyone should know about is that indoor air may be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air, thus causing 50% of all illnesses that you and your family could suffer from. Needless to say, poor indoor air quality is a major problem for homeowners.
Potential sources of indoor air pollution include fumes from combustion devices and gas-fired appliances, allergens such as pet dander, house dust mites and molds. The high humidity and temperature in the UAE allows for the growth of certain allergens and reproduction of dust mites, and trapped moisture from water leaks in the wall, ceilings and floors foster mold growth in air-conditioning systems.
The country’s dependence on air-conditioners is unquestionable as it makes living become bearable and comfortable especially during the hotter months. Nonetheless, an air-conditioner’s cooling system does more than keep your home comfortable as it also regulates or affects the quality of the air you breathe. An air-conditioning filter has a crucial role in keeping indoor air quality at its best as it keeps system components (blower and evaporator coil) clean by removing dust, pollen, mold and bacteria from the air. Poor indoor air quality results from improper servicing of air-conditioning units leading to the contamination of these filters and the home as a whole.
As an offshoot of poor indoor air quality, homeowners and their family may suffer from lingering allergies, colds or flu, which can be aggravated by musty smell, visible mold growth and moisture problems. In-depth solution investigations by certified third party inspection companies are essential to determine the sources of symptoms associated with poor indoor air quality, and to draw up recommendations to treat the same.
Indoor air quality at home is a paramount concern. Do not rest until your air-conditioners and ventilation systems are in tip top shape.
Source: Douglas Ralph, CPI, Special to Properties
The writer is Managing Director, Snag & Inspect