October 5, 2020
By Mark Paup

The 3 Main Types of Indoor Air Pollutants

Updated January 18, 2024

At Golden Rule, we have long stressed the importance of indoor air quality. In recent studies, the EPA has found that indoor air pollution may be an even bigger risk to your health than outdoor pollution, and in this particular moment in history, you can never be too careful when it comes to the air you breathe. But before you purchase an air filtration and/or air cleaning system, it is pertinent to do your research and learn what type of indoor air pollutants you most need to eliminate. Keep reading to learn about the three main types of indoor air pollutants and call our IAQ pros at Golden Rule the next time you need to upgrade your home’s air quality.

The 3 Types of Indoor Air Pollutants That May Be in Your Home:

  1. Particles: Particles, or to use the more technical term, “particulates,” can include any small matter that is likely to make its way into your HVAC system. Generally, a particulate is considered to be a piece of gritty matter roughly 100 microns or smaller in diameter. The most common type of particle is made of dust—something which everybody has in their home to varying degrees. While particulates aren’t good for anybody’s indoor air quality, they can be particularly bad for those with allergies and respiratory issues. Failure to deal with excessive particles in your air may lead to coughing and sneezing, itchy skin and hair, and even nausea and headaches.
  2. VOCs: VOCs, or volatile organic compounds, include any chemical vapors and odors that may be floating around your air. Common household VOCs include smoke, paint fumes, manufacturing solvents (i.e., the kind you would find in upholstery or carpeting,) as well as odors from cleaning liquids, personal hygiene products, and even perfumes. While a minimal number of VOCs in your indoor air is normal and almost unstoppable, an excessive amount can lead to serious health issues. Watch out for fumes that come from gas and wood stoves, kitchen odors, the smell of burning, and as you probably could have guessed toxic tobacco smoke. More serious VOCs include formaldehyde, ethanol, acetone, benzene, and butanol. Prolonged exposure to these noxious compounds may not only make you nauseous and sick but can contribute to serious diseases. Bottom line: do everything you can to reduce VOCs in your home, including installing a top-of-the-line indoor air quality device.
  3. Biological Contaminants: Of all the many threats to your indoor air quality, biological contaminants – also known as microorganisms and bioaerosols – are perhaps the most serious. On one end of the spectrum, you have mold spores and fungi. These microorganisms are not good for your health but can vary in terms of their danger. On the more intense side, you have bacteria and airborne pathogens, such as viruses. While there is no way to eliminate biological contaminants from your air supply entirely, using the right indoor air quality device can at least help you reduce the overall level of illness in your home, and even decrease the chance that someone will become sick with a serious disease.

Don’t Wait—Upgrade Your Indoor Air Quality Today!

At Golden Rule, we are equipped with everything you need to fight a wide range of particles, VOCs, and biological contaminants. Our air cleaners are excellent for trapping unwanted particles and reducing the effects of VOCs. Plus, we offer humidifiers/dehumidifiers and UV lights to help regulate mold and other biological contaminants. For the health and wellness of yourself and your entire household, take your indoor air quality up a notch, and call Golden Rule today.

Golden Rule is available by phone at 515-393-4526, or you can contact our indoor air quality experts online.

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