How To Minimise The Air Pollution Effects This Holiday Season
Its summer across the southern hemisphere and that means it’s the time of year where you want to just be outside as much as possible! But with holiday season, it’s also a time of year where we spend a lot of time indoors – cooking, spending time with our families, relaxing and sleeping! And when we’re inside, we have fans blasting and windows and doors open as wide as they go (unless we’re lucky enough to have air conditioning!).
Ensuring the high quality of the air inside should be on top of your Things I Want For Christmas List. And while you might think that having all those doors and windows open are enough to ensure the quality of your indoor air, you’re wrong. In fact, the back yard could actually be your worst enemy and it can have quite an impact on the quality of the air INSIDE your home!
Here are some of the ways your yard can impact the air quality inside the home, and how you can minimise the effects this holiday season:
You might be wondering how can plants negatively affect the indoor air quality across the holiday season? One simple word answer: pollen. Allergens in your home are a recipe for disaster if you suffer from asthma, allergies, or any other type of respiratory problem.
By choosing the right plants to keep in your yard you could contribute to improved indoor air quality. So, before your next round of planting, do a bit of research about which plants contribute positively to the air. Choose to plant these items close to your home to cleanse the surrounding air. You might want to also bring some of those plants inside for maximum benefit.
Whether you have dogs, cats, or even a goat – your pets could be contributing to poor indoor air quality. Aside from their dander, they spend a lot of time outdoors and can track in all sorts of problems. Keep them off the furniture, bathe and brush them regularly to prevent any issues.
If you have a penchant for gardening and use pesticides to keep bugs at bay think about how the wind picks up and could carry harmful chemicals into your home. You probably wear a mask to spray your plant life, but you don’t wear a mask in your home, do you? Look for alternative methods to prevent pests from damaging your plants.
Do you use a chemical formula to eradicate bugs around the outside of your home? Or perhaps rodenticides or termiticides? All of these could be contributing to poor indoor air quality. Sure, they’re probably eliminating your pest problem but you’re forgetting what it’s doing to your health.
This should go without saying, yet people still do it. Particularly around Christmas where we all tend to build up so much rubbish it won’t fit in our bins! And while it may be illegal in many regions, not to mention highly dangerous during the heat of summer, that won’t stop people from doing it. It might not even be you that does it, or it could be a neighbour that just won’t stop burning garbage in a barrel in their backyard.
Well, that barrel burning is releasing pollutants into the air and they’re making their way to your home. If you burn your trash – stop. If it’s a neighbour you might consider reporting them (provided the practice is illegal in your area). Consider your health, and your sanity.
You always choose no-VOC paint when you’re tackling a room in the house, but do you do the same for your backyard? If not, it’s time to start. Think about the times you have painted outdoors and the smell has easily infiltrated the rest of your home? You probably didn’t think a whole lot about it at the time, but it’s something you have to consider now if you’re planning on painting outdoors again. When it comes to Christmas entertaining, we all like our homes to look immaculate. So if you’re really pedantic and planning on painting the walls on your patio or deck, choose a good paint brand!
Summer is the season for BBQs and while our northern hemisphere neighbours are busting their belts with traditional hot roasts and veges, we usually chow down on some snags and prawns on the Barbie! But it’s not as healthy as it seems!
You know you’re not supposed to barbecue indoors – why? It’s dangerous and not just because it’s a fire hazard. While there’s nothing quite like devouring a juicy burger straight off the grill you might want to reconsider its position in your backyard. It’s fairly common to keep it right outside the backdoor which means the smoke is going to travel directly inside. Reposition it as far away from your home as possible and be sure to keep the windows/doors shut while you’re cooking.
Whether you rev your engine while you work on the car or it’s down to your lawn mower, there’s a good chance you have chemicals hanging around wafting their compounds into the air in your home. Any type of chemical should be stored in a shed or garage and as far away from your home as possible because even when you’re not actively using it it’s still releasing itself into the air.
There are many ways your outdoor air could be affecting your indoor quality over the holiday season, so take time to pay attention and do what you can to enhance the health and safety of everyone in your home.