Greenhart Blog: Archive for the ‘Indoor Air Quality’ Category

Why Your House May Need an Air Purifier

Monday, April 5th, 2021
clouds-in-sky

You want air in your home that’s not only pleasant to breathe, but healthy for you and your family. Good ventilation is a starting place, followed by having our professionals install an air filtration system. Sometimes, these steps will do the job necessary for the best indoor air quality.

But you may need to go a step further and have an air purification system installed; i.e. an electronic air purifier that uses ionization, UV lights, or another process to remove pollutants from the air. We think air purifiers are a good idea in general, but we want to address why your house specifically may need air purification along with air filtration and improved ventilation.

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Your Home vs. Allergy Season—We Can Help You Win!

Monday, March 8th, 2021
sprinkler-in-spring

This is a big title fight—one held in many homes each spring. It’s allergy season taking on the air quality in a house, and the losers can be anyone in the house who suffers from even mild allergies and asthma. This can be a miserable time of the year for these people, and with many trapped indoors this year, there isn’t much chance to get away from the concentration of allergens and asthma triggers that build up indoors.

But if your home has to duel it out with allergy season each year, you don’t have to fight the battle alone. We can help you! 

The allergy season dilemma

Let’s get to know the enemy. Why does “allergy season” happen at all? 

When the weather starts to warm up, it causes a spring bloom. The warmer weather is pleasant—who doesn’t like it when the cold starts to ebb?—and the flora sure looks pretty. But the bloom of plants and the warmer temperatures causes a release of pollen into the air, where it thrives. This pollen isn’t just from flowers. Ragweed, trees, and grass are major sources of allergens in the air. Mold spores are common as well during spring, and these are big allergy triggers. If your house has pets, they also start to shed fur at this time and that puts more dander into the air. 

As the pollen count rises in the air, it leads to many seasonal allergy problems, such as runny noses, sneezing, congestion, raspy breathing, itchy eyes and skin, and a general feeling of “ickiness.” Hay fever (allergic rhinitis) is the most common allergic reaction during the season. 

Staying inside isn’t much protection

“Wait, I’m staying indoors most of the time because of COVID-19. Why should I have problems with spring allergies?” 

It sounds sensible, right? But your home isn’t the fortress against outside air you may think it is. Pollen travels—that’s the point of pollen as a plant reproductive strategy. You only have to go for a short walk outside or open up the windows for fresh air and you’ll let the allergens inside, where they’ll circulate through your HVAC system. 

How we can help

Now, don’t despair. You don’t have to find a way to seal up your house entirely and give up those healthy walks that are necessary during the pandemic so you don’t go stir crazy. We can help you enjoy better air quality with IAQ solutions that trap or zap the most common allergens of the season. Air filtration systems can remove the larger particles, and to handle smaller ones we can find an air purifier in Ceres, CA that targets the specific seasonal allergens that bother your house. For example, a UV air purifier targets mold spores and bacteria, which are huge troubles for people with asthma and allergies. 

Spring hasn’t officially started, but it’s almost here—as is the warmer weather that will cause the pollen count to skyrocket. Now is the time to prepare your home and family with indoor air quality services. Speak to our experts today and we’ll see what you need to make allergy season as sniffle and sneeze-free as possible. 

Greenhart serves Modesto, CA with great indoor air quality services. Let us help you “Live Green, Save Green!”

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How Can an UV Air Purifier Help My Home?

Monday, February 8th, 2021
UV-air-purifier-light

We offer several types of air purifier in Modesto, CA to help our customers improve the quality of their indoor air. Many purifiers target chemicals, smoke, molecule odors, and the insidiously common volatile organic compounds. We can help homeowners determine what pollutants are moving through their HVAC system and install the air purification system that will remove them, often up to 99%.

When it comes to dealing with the many biological pollutants that can roam through the rooms of a home, a house may need a special dedication purifier: a UV air purifier a.k.a. UV germicidal lights. These biological hazards include toxic mold spores, viruses, germs, bacteria, and many other microbes. You probably don’t need us to tell you these are undesirables—but you may need an explanation for how a UV air purifier can help you win the fight against them. 

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How Often Do I Need to Schedule Duct Cleaning?

Monday, January 25th, 2021
duct-cleaning-with-vacuum

The ducts in your house are hidden from sight, so you won’t have a good idea about how much dust, dander, lint, and other debris builds up inside them over the years. To give you an idea, a six-person home circulates on average 40 lbs. of dust through the ventilation system annually. Plenty of that will stay on the duct walls, and the more that collects, the more dust it will catch. This eventually leads to ductwork with so much build-up that it affects the energy efficiency of the HVAC system and adds to the amount of debris and allergens blown out into the air.

Professional duct cleaning will restore the ducts to near-pristine condition and help significantly to improve the HVAC system. But how often does your home need this service?

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Combating the Spread of Winter Illness With Air Purifiers

Monday, December 14th, 2020
virus-cells

This winter people are more worried than ever about the spread of illnesses inside their homes. Winter is traditionally a time when people are more exposed to colds and cases of flu because they’re spending a larger amount of time indoors in close proximity to other people. Additionally, many viruses and cold germs thrive in drier, colder environments, and these conditions contribute to dried mucus and sinus membranes that lower the body’s natural defenses. 

You do have options for improving the quality of your indoor air during the winter. There isn’t anything that can guarantee to stop the spread of all germs and microbes but using a professionally installed air purifier in Stockton, CA can significantly reduce the number of harmful particles circulating through your house. These same air purifiers can provide help against allergens and asthma triggers during the spring allergy season.

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A Few Sources of Poor Indoor Air Quality in Homes

Monday, November 16th, 2020
woman-with-allergies

The quality of air in many homes is much worse than it should be. This isn’t because polluted air from outside is moving inside. It’s because too many pollutants indoors are trapped there, with scant circulation of fresh air to remove them. This is an unfortunate side-effect of the improvement in home construction to make houses more energy efficient. The tight construction limits the ventilation that removes the concentration of pollutants.

The Pollutant Sources

“But where are these pollutants coming from?” That’s the big question. There’s no single answer because there are a range of sources for indoor pollutants that lower the quality of the air in a house. Below we’re going to look at some of the most common.

Appliances the combust fuel

If you live in a house that uses natural gas for cooking, heating, and other tasks, that is one of the main sources for harmful chemicals. True, you aren’t dealing with a toxic level of carbon monoxide (you have CO detectors to warn you if this is the case) or other gases, but they still have long-term health effects.

Building materials

Many modern materials used for the construction of homes have potentially harmful chemicals in them that will enter the house. An older home may have asbestos in it. Pressed-wood, which is much more common in homes today than even ten years before, often has chromated copper arsenate (CCA) in it, which contains arsenic, chromium, and copper, all of which can create health problems.

But the most common harmful chemical found in building material is formaldehyde—which also can result from combustion and cleaning products. Formaldehyde is often found in particleboard, hardwood paneling, and fiberboard.

Cleaning/Hobby/Personal Care Products

A large number of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) arise from these materials that can be found in almost every household. VOCs include numerous chemicals that can affect people’s health in both the short and long-term.

Mold

Yes, you may have mold hidden somewhere in your house, possibly in the ductwork or located under floorboards where excess moisture has allowed it to grow. Toxic mold spores are a significant danger in homes where mold is growing.

The Horror! What Can I Do About This?

You’re probably not likely to tear out all the walls and throw away every cleaning supply you have and then stop using your gas stove. But although you don’t have many options for reducing these sources of air pollutants in your house (aside from mold and asbestos remediation), you do have options for better indoor air quality in Modesto, CA when you work with us. We offer numerous IAQ solutions, including:

  • Air filters and air purifiers to remove contaminants.
  • UV air purifiers to target organic pollutants, including mold spores.
  • Heat and energy recovery ventilators, which allow for fresh air circulation without a loss of energy efficiency in the house.
  • Dehumidifiers to remove the source of mold growth.
  • Duct sealing and repair to improve ventilation.

Get in touch with our professionals, and they’ll get started finding out exactly what your house needs for better, healthier indoor air quality.

Your home should be a breath of fresh air. With Greenhart, you can Live Green, Save Green!

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How Our Professionals Do Duct Cleaning

Monday, November 2nd, 2020
duct-cleaning-brush

Cleaning air ducts in the HVAC system of a home is an important service to help with energy savings and protecting indoor air quality. Ductwork naturally collects dust, dander, lint, and other debris; after about a year a thin layer will already build up inside the ductwork. Given enough time, this build-up creates resistance against airflow that lowers HVAC efficiency. It also turns into a reservoir of pollutants that circulate through the house, affecting air quality and making the home generally dirtier.

Thorough professional duct cleaning removes almost all of this debris and cleans other parts of the ventilation system. We recommend scheduling duct cleaning in Modesto, CA every three to five years with our team.

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Ways We Can Improve Your Home’s Ventilation System

Monday, October 19th, 2020
vent-cover-in-ceiling

The ventilation system in the walls and ceilings of your house is often neglected as part of the overall comfort system. People focus on the heating and air conditioning, but ventilation misses out on the upgrades, tests, and repairs it needs.  A poor ventilation system can ruin the best AC or heater, create massive energy waste, and harm indoor air quality. 

What can you do about it? In fact, is there anything wrong with your ventilation system?

We can answer the second question easily with duct testing services. This will give us the data about the state of your ventilation system we need to know so we can decide what else needs to be done. Below are three major services we offer to improve your ventilation system.

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How Can I Tell If I Have Leaking Air Ducts?

Monday, October 5th, 2020
duct-sealing-with-caulking

Leaks in the ductwork of a home are a major problem, and they are unfortunately one of those problems that often goes unnoticed or unrepaired for far too long. The consequences of leaking air ducts can be extremely high, so it’s important to know if your house has duct leakage. You can then arrange for a professional to seal the ducts and restore the integrity of the ventilation system.

Of course, that leads to the question of how to detect if you have duct leakage in the first place. The ducts are well-hidden within a home, so you can’t visually inspect them. But there are other signs you can watch for:

A drop in airflow from the vents

One of the immediate effects of leaks in the ductwork is that it lowers the air pressure in the ventilation system. Ducts must be kept airtight to maintain air pressure, and the consequence of a drop in air pressure is that the airflow from the vents will also drop. If you put your hand to the room vents and notice the airflow is weaker than normal, it may be duct leaks.

Uneven comfort around the house

Lower airflow will also mean rooms cool down/heat up slower, which will lower comfort around the house. This will happen unevenly: certain rooms will still feel normal, while hot and cold spots will appear in others. Duct leaks aren’t the only cause of uneven comfort, but it’s a serious problem no matter what the source.

Odd odors from the vents

Leaks in the ducts will allow air from closed-in spots of the home to infiltrate the ventilation system, such as between walls and from the attic. This will carry a musty and sometimes moldy odor to the rooms.

A rise in energy costs

The biggest chronic effect that duct leaks have on an HVAC system is that they place more stress on the blower, heater, and air conditioner. Around 30% of the air moving through the ductwork can disappear through leaks, and this is air you’ve already paid to heat/cool and push into the ventilation system. The HVAC system will need to put in extra work to overcome this deficit—and that means energy bills will rise. If you see steeper bills to heat and cool your house and you can’t account for the change, you probably have duct leaks.

Solving the Problem

If you suspect duct leaks, the next step is to contact our professionals. We will test the ventilation system to find out if it has leaks and how extensive they are. If you do have leaky ducts, the next step for us is to seal the leaks. We use a range of methods to ensure your ducts will be restored to airtight condition once more. (By the way, store-bought duct tape isn’t a method we use. This “duct tape” is not actually useful for ducts.)

To schedule duct testing and duct sealing in Modesto, CA, call our professionals. We’ll help you live green and save green.

Greenhart serves Modesto, CA and offers duct repair services for leaking air ducts. Live Green, Save Green!

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Duct Cleaning: The Difference Professionals Can Make

Monday, September 7th, 2020
ductwork-in-attic

You may have heard cautions about duct cleaning, and some of these are well-founded. Unfortunately, there are many non-professionals who solicit homeowners to hire them for “duct cleaning.” What they provide hardly merits the name—they can charge a low price because they don’t do much work, and the ducts are rarely much cleaner afterward than before.

But duct cleaning is an important service that residential homes need done every few years. But the cleaning must be done by professionals who have the right tools. This isn’t just a quick vacuum job that takes less than an hour. Professional and certified duct cleaners use powerful blowers to change the pressure inside the ductwork and agitate dust and other debris from the walls. A special vacuum system then removes the particles from the ventilation system. Separate rotary brushes are used to spot-clean areas around the house.

Why This Is Helpful

Professional duct cleaning is beneficial to your house in several ways. Here are the main reasons we recommend scheduling duct cleaning in Modesto, CA every few years.

  • HVAC System Efficiency: Even a thin layer of dust collected along the interior walls of flexible ductwork creates resistance against airflow. As dust, lint, and dander continue to build up inside ducts, the airflow resistance increases and causes the blower of the HVAC system to work harder and drain more power. Running the heater and AC in a home will become more expensive after years of missing out on duct cleaning.
  • HVAC System Longevity: The extra strain placed on the HVAC system from airflow resistance will cause the parts to age faster. Worse, all that extra dust and debris inside the ventilation system can get into the HVAC cabinet and cause damage to motors, the evaporator coil, and the heat exchanger. Cleaner ducts mean a healthier and longer-lived HVAC system.
  • Better Indoor Air Quality: Think of the ducts as a reservoir of dust and lint. It’s not an easy place for you to clean, so unlike the rest of your home, the dust remains year after year. When the HVAC blower turns on, it sends out this debris into your home, where it circulates. This can make for a home that’s dustier and which also can be unhealthy for people who have asthma and allergies.

When to Call for Duct Cleaning

Not certain if you need to have the ducts in your house cleaned? We recommend this service at least every five years, so if you’ve already lived in your house longer than that and haven’t had duct cleaning yet, it’s time. You can also make a visual check: open the register for one of the vents in your house, then put your hand down into the duct shaft and take a picture with your smartphone. If the image you see looks like a clogged air filter from a car, call us to schedule duct cleaning.

Our team has the top industry-approved tools for this job, and our technicians are experts at thorough duct cleaning.

Call Greenhart to schedule duct cleaning services for your home. We help you “Live Green, Save Green!”

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