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Prevent Indoor Air Problems When Building a New Home

June 5th, 2015

You’re building a new home that you will be moving into. The last thing you want is for the air in the house to become unhealthy. Fortunately, there are some easy ways to ensure that the air quality remains healthy for you and your family.

  • Radon Resistant Construction – A key contributor to poor air quality is radon, a radioactive material that comes from the soil. The best solution is to prevent the soil never finds its way into your home. This is possible with radon-resistant construction techniques that reduce the amount of soil that does come into your home. This technique will also assist in the duct cleaning and sealing process in the future.

For further details, consult the EPA booklet. It will explain the construction techniques used to control radon.

  • Building Materials – Almost everything in the house, from the materials used in construction to the furnishings, can contribute to unhealthy air.

Building materials can often encourage the growth of air pollution agents which lead to air quality problems. You can choose to have your floors, cabinets, and wall surfaces built from pressed wood products made from phenol-formaldehyde or solid wood.

If you are planning on installing carpets, be sure to first install a moisture-resistant barrier. You should have the carpet installed on top of this barrier so you can have it washed and dried if it gets wet and/or dirty.

  • Foundation and Drainage – The foundation is what your home is built on. This is the layer of your home that is built directly on the soil. When building the foundation, it is imperative that the drainage system is perfect. The same goes for the seals that are a part of the foundation. Cracks and openings in the foundation will allow the soil particles to rise up through the house with the air. The air from the foundation is a lot heavier with moisture than the air that comes in from the windows.
  • Mechanical Ventilation Systems – Mechanical ventilation systems are now available to install in new homes. These new ventilation systems keeps the air flowing from inside to outside, ensuring that pollution does not stay indoors. As an added bonus, there is also a heat recovery system that allows heat to remain inside the house, even as air flows through it. This will lead to energy savings and reduce the frequency of duct cleaning and sealing tasks.
  • Combustion Systems – The gases from your combustion systems are another key contributor to poor indoor air quality. Having an efficient ventilation system in any room of the home that you cook or burn fuel in is very important to ensure that fresh air can pass through and the gases can escape immediately. Proper placement of windows and fans can assist with the proper air flow in your home. However, if you want a more efficient system, consider installing an air supply that is dedicated to exclusively serving the combustion system. This ensures that the clean air in the house stays clean.

Use these indoor air quality solutions to keep your new home filled with clean air, even before you move in!

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