You’re probably pretty knowledgeable about the factors that cause poor outdoor air quality (like smoke, allergens, and vehicle exhaust). And you probably know that high levels of any of these can affect your health and make breathing feel tougher. But did you know that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) considers indoor air pollution to be one of the top five environmental risks to public health?

Indoor air pollution is actually on the rise. Why? We’ve got better (airtight) buildings with less ventilation — good for keeping in heat; not so good for letting bad stuff out. Bad stuff like the chemicals that we use to clean our synthetic carpets and couches. The World Health Organization (WHO) says that about 30 percent of recently constructed or remodeled buildings have issues with indoor air quality.

EPA studies indicate that there could be four to five times as many pollutants indoors as outdoors. In some cases, indoor pollution levels could be 100 times higher than outdoor levels. One hundred! That’s crazy. It’s no wonder that more people have been diagnosed with asthma than ever before and tens of millions of Americans suffer from allergies. Unfortunately, our kids are even more likely to be affected by poor air quality because they breathe faster than adults, inhaling a lot more air and, with it, more pollutants.

The EPA estimates that the average American spends 87 percent of his or her time indoors and another 6 percent in cars — and the average American doesn’t even have to contend with dark, dreary Pacific Northwest winters. So, yeah, this presents a bit of a problem for most of us, along with some motivation to make sure that our homes’ air filtration systems are operating as efficiently as possible.

Wolcott offers a whole bunch of services to keep your indoor air quality on the up and up. Our HVAC experts are always happy to install or repair your top-of-the-line air filtration systems. Give us a call at (503) 420-8022 to schedule a free in-home consultation.

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