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Indoor air quality refers to the air quality within your home. You may assume that what is inside your four walls is fine (why wouldn’t it be?), but the truth will surprise you. HVAC technicians are not medical doctors or industrial hygienists. However, it is estimated that over 80% of IAQ-related problems can be remedied by improving the design or maintenance program of a home’s HVAC system. The conclusion is obvious—in many cases, a qualified HVAC technician can improve the IAQ of a home.

Your home’s HVAC system serves as a distribution network for the air being cooled or heated throughout your home. This same HVAC system can also serve as a path—and sometimes a source—for harmful airborne pollutants. These indoor air pollutants can and do affect the comfort and health of the residents within your home.

In the past, much of the instruction that a HVAC technician received revolved around the mechanical, piping, and electrical aspects of installing and servicing equipment. Environmental concerns were rarely discussed. Today the environmental aspects of HVAC systems are becoming much more important and should not be ignored lightly.

Over the last decade our homes have been designed and built with tighter walls, doors, window, and roofing systems. In addition, these more current homes are being insulated well beyond the homes of our yesteryear. In the past, most buildings were not built as “tight” as they are today. With the “loose” houses previously built there were many inlets for outdoor air to enter and for indoor contaminants to exit. It was not uncommon for the previous homes to have one or two complete air changes per hour. An air change is where adequate amounts of new air is introduced where polluted air has been removed. With the newer houses of today there can be as little as one-tenth of an air change per hour.

Most people are aware that outdoor air pollution can damage their health but may not know that indoor air pollution can also have significant effects. EPA studies of human exposure to air pollutants indicate that indoor air levels of many pollutants may be 2 to 5 times, and in some cases more than 100 times higher than outdoor levels. High levels of indoor air pollutants are of concern in our society today because most people spend more time inside than outside. In fact, it is estimated that many of us spend more than 80% of our time indoors.

Over the past several decades, our exposure to indoor air pollutants is believed to have increased due to a variety of factors, among them the construction of more tightly sealed buildings, reduced ventilation rates (widely practiced as a means of saving energy), the use of synthetic building materials and furnishings, and the prevalence of chemically formulated personal care products, pesticides, and household cleaners. In recent years, comparative risk studies performed by the EPA and its Science Advisory Board have consistently ranked indoor air pollution among the top five environmental risks to public health.


At Global Warming and Cooling we do not lightly recommend to our customers the installation of a fix all product contained in some type of magical box. While there are many indoor air quality products that can be installed in your home, a whole house evaluation is always the best choice prior to any installation of additional products. A few of the products that may be recommended are:

  • Ultraviolet lighting system for prevention of fungus growth on the surface of the indoor air handler evaporator coil.
  • High performance filters such as high-efficiency particulate absorbing (HEPA)
  • Cold Plasma Bi-Polar
  • Hydroxyl Radicals
  • Ionized Hydrogen Peroxide
  • Whole house dehumidifiers
  • and more.

To schedule an estimate for your home or business indoor air, contact Global Warming & Cooling today.