Step #1 Let Fresh Air In
Fresh air and adequate air circulation will significantly improve your home air quality. When weather permits, open your windows and patio doors to allow the fresh air to circulate throughout your home. Turn on the ceiling fans to circulate airflow when opening windows isn’t an option. Purchase an air purifier for your home during winter months and for basements without windows. Make sure your exhaust fans are cleaned regularly and that exhaust systems from your appliances are checked regularly for sufficient performance.
Step #2 Purchase Houseplants
Plants emit oxygen and they also absorb carbon dioxide. NASA’s Clean Air Study researched how effective plants can be in purifying indoor air. Their studies generated a list of which plants were most effective in filtering benzene, formaldehyde, ammonia, xylene, toluene and trichloroethylene from the air inside of your home. The plants capable of filtering the most toxic chemicals from indoor air are: English ivy, peace lily, chrysanthemums, red-edged dracaena, and the variegated snake plant.
Purchase several houseplants and place them throughout your home. It is suggested to have at least one plant per 100 square feet for maximum effect. These are common house plants and can be purchased from a local nursery. You can also order these plants from online retailers. Make sure to watch how much you water them since overwatering can lead to mold growth.
Step #3 Perform a Thorough Cleaning
Dust, pollen, pet dander, and particles settle on the surfaces of objects and flooring in your home. If you want to breathe healthier air you will need to thoroughly clean your home in order to get rid of these irritants. Vacuum carpeting with a HEPA filtered unit. Dust surfaces and clean hard wood and tile flooring with a microfiber cloth that will trap these irritants and particles rather than just moving them around. Pay attention to areas where dust and other particles may accumulate such as the tops of ceiling fan blades, the tops of doors and windows, and taller appliances.
Step #4 Get Rid of Chemical Cleaners and Air Fresheners
Chemical cleaners contain dozens of toxic materials contaminating your home air. Many cleaning products contain over 100 chemicals including: formaldehyde, benzene, chloroform and toluene. Use natural cleaning products such as vinegar and baking soda as a healthier alternative. Air fresheners and fragrance sprays contain toxic chemicals. Many popular brands of air fresheners contain phthalates, which have been proven to cause birth defects, reproductive problems, and hormonal abnormalities. They also may contain cancer-causing chemicals such as benzene and formaldehyde. Get rid of these and any other household products you use containing hazardous chemicals or limit their use and store them in an airtight container.