The air quality in your home effects a lot—your comfort, allergies and even the smells in your home. Taking care of it is important, but hard. In fact, studies have revealed that indoor air pollution can be even harsher than outdoor air pollution. Knowing that, it only makes sense that homeowners continue to research ways to purify the air they breathe every day. One of the most common solution is houseplants. In theory, it makes sense that a living thing producing oxygen in your home would help air quality. But does it work in practice?
What’s the Real Impact of Houseplants on Air Quality?
In the 1980s, scientists at NASA reviewed the affect common houseplants had on air quality in a closed chamber. Within that closed chamber, they found the plants had a positive effect on air quality. In 2009, more research was completed by the University of Georgia to see the impact houseplants had on toxins in the air. Again, it was discovered that—in a closed setting—the plants studied reduced toxins.
While research implies plants can have a significant impact on a closed space, there’s one concern when it comes to translating that to your house. Your home is not a closed research area. So, it’s difficult to say what—if any impact—houseplants have on your home’s air quality. According to Time Magazine, the air in your home changes regularly and depends heavily on the outdoor air quality surrounding your home.
Beyond that challenge, the factors that plants can impact are somewhat limited. According to the American Lung Association, studies have shown that plants can eliminate harmful gases found in homes, like formaldehyde. Unfortunately, gases aren’t the only pollutants in your home hurting your air quality. Particles like pet hair, dust, mold or pollen are also hovering around your home—and this isn’t anything plants can do about those.
While houseplants likely won’t fix all the indoor air quality issues in your house, there are HVAC-centered solutions that can help.
- Keep Your System Clean. If you want to keep pollutants from circulating around your home, kick it off with your HVAC system. Sustaining a clean system is one of the best ways to keep your air clean. Check your air filter frequently and change it when it appears dirty. Capturing particles with your air filter is your first and easiest defense against poor air quality. Arrange annual maintenance to have a professional check out your system. In addition to regular tune-ups, they’ll confirm your system is clean.
- Contemplate an Air Purifier. If you want to grab even the smallest pollutants in your house, consider an air purifier. Select models can capture allergens and bacteria as small as .01 micron. Which is one-thousandth of a millimeter. The pros at Comfort Zone Inc can help you select a system that works for your home.
- Try a Humidifier. The humidity in your home also affects your air quality. Make sure your home stays comfortable and as irritant-free as possible by holding a humidity level between 30 and 50 percent. You can choose from portable or whole home humidifiers to help.
While houseplants can’t make a large difference in your air quality, there’s no harm in keeping them around. If you’re ready to enhance the quality of the air in your home, Comfort Zone Inc can help. Give us a call at 239-214-0411 or schedule an appointment online to get started. We’ll help you assess all your options.