A well-decorated modern home may not be as sound as it seems. A lack of fresh air and proper ventilation is a common problem found by home inspectors in present-day homes. For new and aware homebuyers, having a property inspection with the check on the (IAQ) Indoor Air Quality is a critical aspect of the examination.
Poor Air Quality is said to have health implications such as fatigue, headaches, dizziness, and irritation to the eyes, nose and throat. And if it is even worse than poor, residents might face long-term dangers like cancer, respiratory diseases or heart-related issues. In this blog, we will highlight as much as we can to bring you the causes of the poor indoor air quality of the house and the necessary steps to curb the problem.
Without further ado, let us look into the factors that can lead to a home's poor indoor air quality.
An IAQ or Indoor Air Quality refers to the air quality inside and around the property's premises. Undergoing the property inspection process, there are high possibilities that the inspectors might come across things like pests, moisture, mould, radon and many such things that can affect the air quality of the property. Here are a few common causes of poor indoor air quality-
1. Poor Ventilation Provision:
People have indulged themselves in small and comprehensive living with modern construction designs and techniques. Houses that are well-insulated and energy-efficient are the talk of the hour. But as we all know, every coin has two sides; this construction style, too, has a con of less air circulation. Therefore, when any disturbing element gets into the house, it's difficult to escape it or get diluted by ventilation.
2. Damage by Humidity:
Moisture in the walls and surfaces of the property can give an invitation to poor quality of air. Therefore properties constructed in humid climates are more likely to be prone to inferior air quality of the house. Homeowners of such properties must be extra cautious over the growth of moulds and mildew in places like basements, bathrooms, kitchen sinks, water heaters and pools.
3. Presence of radioactive gases:
The air quality of a house may get severely affected by the presence of radioactive gases like radon. Radioactive gases are emitted from decomposed uranium rocks. These gases are primarily colourless, odourless and tasteless and find their way into the atmosphere of a place through gaps and escape holes. It might be harmless in small traces, but these radioactive gases can take the residents into serious health hazards when mainly exposed to a place.
4. Biological pollutants:
Biological contaminants like dust mites, pollen, bacteria, viruses, mould, mildew, droppings from rodents, cockroaches, and many other microorganisms are small enough to be invisible to the naked eye. These contaminants often lead to serious allergies and illness.
During property snagging, another primary concern of the poor air quality is the presence of (VOC)Volatile Organic Compounds like wall paints, cleaning products, air fresheners, hair spray, crafting supplies and many other common fabrics. Generally, VOCs are emitted via the chemical smell of new or fresh products, for example- new rugs, curtains, or wall paints, and can result in health symptoms like– headache, dizziness, and nausea.
Now that we have come across the various causes that can lead to poor indoor air quality, let's dive into the ways these uninvited situations can be identified and detected through a professional property inspection.
1. Radioactive gases testing:
Property Inspectors can conduct air testing like the radon test using an active or passive air testing device and detect traces of radioactive gases like radon. The testing requires the collection of air samples which are sent to labs for analysis.
2. Carbon monoxide testing:
Property inspectors often carry a portable CO detector to help get an overview of carbon monoxide's presence in the air. Apart from the portable detector, professionals commonly use thermal imaging during their property inspection process.
3. Bio contaminants testing:
The use of an XRF machine for lead detection on the surface is another tool used during a property inspection.
In a nutshell, we at GTA Inspectors advise you to go for a proper Indoor Air Quality Examination while getting sorted with the property's structure. The core reason behind this suggestion is the direct impact the air quality of a property possesses on its occupants. Ensure the good health of you and your loved ones by maintaining pleasant air quality within your nest!
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