When the average person thinks of formaldehyde, they think of a morgue, a funeral home, or those preserved frogs they had to dissect in science class; many of us don’t think of our own home. What may be surprising is that formaldehyde can be present in many different places in our homes, and it could be contributing to air pollution and poor air quality. Here’s what you should know.
What is Formaldehyde?
Formaldehyde is a common volatile organic compound (VOC) that’s colourless but very pungent in smell. Formaldehyde can be found naturally in many places, even being produced by humans themselves in very small quantities. Overall, formaldehyde is harmless to us when there is very little of it in the air, but as it can be found in several different places throughout the home, it’s important to try to reduce its presence in your house as much as possible.
Where Can Formaldehyde Be Found in Your Home?
Besides being created in small doses by your body, formaldehyde can be found in several very common places throughout the home, leading to air pollution and low air quality. The biggest contributor to the home would be your gas or wood stove or fireplace. Other places it may be found include your furniture, your wood (flooring, walling, etc.), your walls (the paint), and some fabrics.
How Can Formaldehyde Affect Your Home’s Air?
Formaldehyde can be very harmful to the human body in large doses, as can any common chemical causing air pollution. Even the smallest dose of formaldehyde–0.01PPM (parts per million)–can cause coughing, wheezing, and irritation to the skin, eyes, and nose. This can be especially harmful to the very old, the very young, immunocompromised individuals, and those with asthma and heart conditions.
How to Improve Your Home’s Air Quality?
If you want to improve your home’s air quality and protect yourself from formaldehyde and other harmful chemicals causing air pollution, there are a few things you can do. This includes:
● Keeping your home clean and vacuuming regularly
● Changing your HVAC filter frequently
● Investing in chemical-free clothing, furniture, and cleaning products
● Increase ventilation, particularly after bringing new sources of formaldehyde into the home.
● Investing in an air purification system
● Calling for regular HVAC maintenance
Thinking it’s time to improve your home’s air quality?
contact the expert team at HAMCO today!
Residents in Hamilton, Burlington, Oakville, Milton and surrounding areas have trusted the specialists at HAMCO Heating & Cooling Ltd. with all of their HVAC needs since 1946.