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The Air Quality Blog by Rabbit Air

How Do Air Purifiers Help With Asthma?
Asthma, a chronic disease that affects 26 million Americans, is an inflammation to the air passages that results in a temporary narrowing of the airways that carry oxygen to the lungs. Causing nearly 2 million emergency room visits ever year, asthma sufferers should take caution as there are many factors and triggers in your home that can cause an asthma attack.

 

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Stop, Drop and Prevention

While there are medications for asthma, the first line of defense should be identifying possible asthma triggers as prevention and environmental control can minimize asthma symptoms from the beginning. Some asthma triggers and ways to manage them are:

  • Smoke: Inhaling smoke from cigarettes and cigars can cause an inflammation of the bronchial tubes. This produces an excess of mucus production, which in turn leads to cough and phlegm. Prolonged smoking can also create an irreversible narrowing of the bronchial tubes from inflammation and scarring that can cause permanent breathing problems. Smoke from wood burning and fires also contain harmful gases and small particles, so areas that are affected by fire should be avoided to prevent particles from being inhaled.
Although staying far away from a smoker is highly recommended, if someone insists on smoking indoors, have a well ventilated    room or use an air purifier with an effective Charcoal Based Activated Carbon filter to help trap harmful chemicals and toxins that can get dispersed from smoke. For those who want an extra layer of filtration against odors, the MinusA2 from Rabbit Air gives you the option of choosing an Odor Remover Customized filter option that increases the efficiency of trapping odors to 91%.
  • Dust Mites: Dust mites are tiny bugs that feed off your dead skin and can be found in mattresses, carpets, furniture and bedding. They thrive in moist and humid environments and peak around July and August due to the weather. If you have asthma, dust mites can trigger an asthma attack, so prevention is important to keep dust mites at bay. Put airtight plastic dust-mite covers on pillows, mattresses, and box springs and wash all bedding in very hot water (over 130 degrees Fahrenheit) and dry in a hot dryer. It’s also recommended to vacuum your home with a vacuum that has a HEPA filter to trap the microscopic dust mites.
  • Pets: Pet allergies are very common, and for the 15 to 30 percent of Americans who suffer from them, relief can be hard to obtain. Pet dander, which are dead skin cells from animals, fur, saliva, and even urine, are allergens that can be transported via clothing and other surfaces, so even if a home has never had an animal inhabitant, the allergens can still become settled into a home. Washing your hands after petting an animal, and using a HEPA vacuum cleaner or air purifier, can be beneficial in helping trap the allergens. Since pet dander can also stick to your walls, wiping down surfaces is also a good step.
  • Mold: Mold can be found both indoors and outdoors, and while everyone breathes in airborne mold spores, in some, this can trigger asthmatic symptoms. If you find that you have mold, it will have to be removed from the source, and in some cases, professionally. But once the mold has been removed, it is recommended that an air purifier or whole house air system that uses a HEPA filter be used to trap any airborne mold spores from regrouping and taking over your home again.

Technologies

While air purifiers can be an asthma sufferer’s best friend, we should not assume that they are all the same.

  • HEPA filters (high-efficiency particulate air) were developed during World War II to prevent the spread of radioactive particles and are the most effective ways to trap airborne particles, such as bacteria, viruses, smoke and pollen. To qualify as a true HEPA filter, the air filter must be able to capture airborne allergens and contaminants down to 0.3 microns in size, 99.97% of the time.
  • Stay away from air purifiers that create ozone, a known respiratory irritant, such as Electrostatic Precipitators and ozone generators.
  • A whole-house air cleaner may be used if your home is heated or air-conditioned through ducts. HVAC systems include replacement filters that range from less than a dollar to about $20 and are designed to reduce the accumulation of dust and dirt in the ducts and coils of the system. Simple filters, while inexpensive, need to be replaced every month or two, and only remove large particles, not the small particles in the house that are inhaled into the lungs while the more efficient replacement filters (usually for 6 to 20 dollars each) will remove many smaller particles and are often pleated or coated with an electrostatic charge. 

Know your environment before purchasing replacement filters as some can become clogged quickly in dusty environments, reducing airflow through the system and causing a reduction in the heating or cooling efficiency.

  • Another option for your home is a permanent whole-house air cleaner, which can be added to an HVAC system, but the cost is several hundred to a few thousand dollars for the unit and the installation. Other disadvantages include frequent maintenance of the plates, the need to keep the fan running continuously (24/7) to clean the air, and the electricity cost and noise associated with the large blower fan running continuously. 

Although an air purifier can trap particles, such as dust, pollen and chemicals, it can only trap them in the general area of the air purifier and the room that they are placed in. It cannot trap particles that have already settled onto objects, such as furniture, beds, carpets, and if the source of the allergens is a pet, as animals release dander and fur continually. Depending on the air purifier and the size of your room, most room cleaners take 15-30 minutes to remove particulates in the air, and for the most effective use, it is recommended to have the air purifier operating in your room 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Let us help you choose the correct air purifier for your needs. Our knowledgeable, friendly and honest customer service representatives are available to you 24 hours a day. Just contact us or call 888.866.8862.

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How To Clean and Detect Mold

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You step inside your home and notice an unpleasant, pungent odor. After making sure you really did take out last week’s trash, you decide that there’s only one explanation: you may have a mold problem.

According to the EPA, mold can create and worsen a number of medical problems, most of which are triggered by their production of allergens. Inhaling or touching mold can elicit allergic reactions, which can include sneezing, red eyes, a runny nose, and skin rashes. Mold can also contribute significantly to asthma attacks.

Even with your emerging suspicions, it’s hard to act against mold — especially at first. Mold reproduces through the expansion of tiny spores that float through the air, and may begin to reproduce inside if its spores land on wet surfaces.

Oftentimes, it can only be found in hidden, hard-to-reach places, like behind walls, beneath wallpaper, inside ductwork, or beneath roofing panels. Despite potential challenges, once you’ve become suspicious of mold, it’s important that you act fast.

Taking Action

Since mold is commonly hidden from view, you have to be diligent about locating its source. Even before looking around obvious places, check parts of your home that get little sun exposure, according to Answers.

It’s important that your investigation be thorough and careful, especially in certain situations — if you discover a great deal of mold growing behind your wallpaper, for example, it’s imperative that you be careful in removing it, as this process, if done hastily, can release a great number of airborne spores.

After locating the source of mold, you must also attempt to restrict the area — this will save you trouble and money down the road.

Covering the moldy region with plastic bags and then fastening them with duct tape will prevent the mold from spreading, and also keep spores from becoming airborne. In minimizing the expansion of the mold, you’ll have an easier time successfully removing it.

Once you do make an effort to clean and remove the mold, you should be sure to use proper equipment. Again, be sure not to let the spores get released into the air, which is difficult to avoid while actively cleaning. It’s good to wear a mask, and you should conduct research on which cleaning agent will be best for your situation.

While cleaning the area, make sure to repeat the scrubbing process multiple times.

Future Prevention

Of course, even after you’ve dealt with your current mold issue, you’ll want to come up with a strategy for avoiding another one in the future. It’s wise to consult a professional about your problem, though many precautions can be conducted on your own.

In general, you’re looking to prevent the expansion of moisture within your home. Whenever something spills, act quickly. You should clean and repair your roof gutters frequently, and make sure the ground slopes away from the foundation of the building so that moisture doesn’t collect around it.

It’s also very helpful to keep the humidity in your home as low as possible. If you can dramatically lessen the amount of moisture in your building, then mold won’t feel welcome any longer. 

The air purifiers offered by Rabbit Air are a fantastic way to start living in a safer, mold-free home. Both useful in preventing future mold outbreaks and fighting against current ones, Rabbit Air’s products also eliminate 99.7% of allergens and pollutants from the air.

Each purifier is designed to adapt to your space and help it to maintain its usual equilibrium. Treat yourself to a mold-free existence with a Rabbit Air purifier.

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Improve Indoor Air Quality With Your Home Remodel

When you begin the process of remodeling your home, you are probably focused upon the aesthetics. A big part of the joy of remodeling is thinking of how your home will look upon completion, how the flow of the space will be, and how much easier you will be able to access certain spaces. Color, design, and convenience will surely be large components in how you plan. However, the one factor that is easy to miss but should most definitely play a large part is that how your remodel can also improve your air quality. With millions of people affected by respiratory issues such as asthma and allergies, this is the perfect time to change your home in such a way that indoor pollutants are minimized so that the health of the inhabitants may be improved.

Supplies and Materials
One of the first things to consider in the planning stages is the type of building supplies you will be using. Some materials such as bonding agents and adhesives can emit formaldehyde into the air, reducing the air quality. It can cause breathing difficulties, severe allergic reactions, wheezing, increased rates of cancer, and can trigger asthma attacks. It can also be found in in pressed woods, some types of drapes and certain foam insulation. Make sure the agents that are being used in the adhering of paneling, upholstery and carpets will not leave behind such contaminants. If they are present, be sure to increase ventilation both during and after the construction is complete.

Flooring
When choosing flooring, the formaldehyde content is only one of the factors to take into consideration. Be sure to choose flooring that will not be easily permeated by water, spilled or otherwise. If water can seep through into the subflooring, it can create an environment that where moisture lingers and can house mold spores or bacteria. These can contaminate the air at a quick rate. In addition, try to avoid using carpets in areas where the likelihood of water absorption is greater, such as near sinks, bathtubs and showers, or toilets. Regular water exposure is inevitable in these areas, making it difficult for moisture to be dried completely and thoroughly before it is once again exposed to wetness.

Windows
When replacing the windows in your home, efficiency is surely a top priority in regards to saving energy and money. Another benefit to high efficiency options, however, is the reduction in condensation that you are likely to experience. This removes another breeding ground for mold and bacteria.

If you are in an older home, there is the possibility that lead based paint was used at some point. Be cautious of this during construction and take the opportunity to either have it removed or sealed properly. Otherwise, the constant movement of opening and closing windows can disrupt the paint and release lead particles into your air. The risks of lead poisoning are high and can result in serious health issues including developmental issues in children, kidney damage, and fertility problems.

Painting
As with the windows, adding a fresh coat of paint to a room is the perfect time to ensure that any previously used lead based paint is either properly removed or covered. Do not sand down an area that may have lead based material beneath or you run the risk of disrupting and emitting it into the air. Also, do not paint over any areas that are flaking as it will continue to flake after the fresh coat has been applied.

When searching for the new color, research the brands that will emit fewer chemicals and have the least volatile organic compounds. Avoid using any that may include mercury in its content and be careful not to choose paints created for exterior use on interior projects, as they may release more chemicals. Water-based often emits fewer chemicals than oil-based tend to, but will want to verify the emissions information prior to choosing.

Ventilation
Remodeling is the ideal time to increase ventilation within your home. Unblock any systems that may be stuffed up, creating a slower process. Replace any old systems that may no long work properly. In the bathrooms, a well-functioning fan will be helpful in removing moisture and reducing the chances for mold or fungus to grow. You should also verify that the fan in the kitchen is whirring and operating smoothly to control moisture related to cooking and reduce the chances of biological pollutants settling in.

In addition to fans that are likely already in your home, remodeling is the perfect time to implement further ventilation throughout. By implementing filtration systems into your remodel, you can reduce the pollutants and pollens that make their way in from the outdoors as well as remove dust particles, pet dander and other contaminants that can impact indoor air quality.

Remodeling your home can improve the way you feel about your surroundings with a fresh appearance and updated décor. It can also be used to improve the way you feel in regards to your health. Do plenty of research before beginning your projects and tweak your plans to improve your indoor air quality at the same time.

Let us help you choose the proper air purifier for your needs. Our knowledgeable, friendly and honest customer service representatives are available to you 24 hours a day. Simply contact us or call 888.866.8862.

 

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Be Aware of Indoor Air Quality

Air pollution affects more than just outdoor air; dirty air can be inside every building you walk into, including your home and workplace. If there is a pollution alert outside, you might decide to stay inside to remain safe. This, unfortunately, doesn’t always help. In fact, your indoor air may be even more polluted than what you’re breathing outside.

What’s In the Air?
Outside, smog, haze, or smog hangs in the atmosphere. If there’s been a fire nearby, there might be smoke dirtying up the environment. Factories near you might be belching out all sorts of irritating pollutants and particulates. Inside your home or office, it’s likely that you’re breathing in harmful substances, too, such as:

  • Formaldehyde
  • Fire-retardants
  • Lead
  • Radon
  • Chemicals
  • Fragrances
  • Dust mites
  • Pet dander
  • Mold
  • Asbestos

How do all these indoor pollutants enter your space? They appear in multiple ways. For example, that new pseudo-leather sofa with its odd smell is releasing chemicals as it settles in. So is the laminate flooring you just had installed in your den. If you have dogs or cats, you already know where the pet dander originated. Your cleaning products also impact your environment, as most conventional cleansers get rid of grime through chemical concoctions.

Ventilation and Other Factors
There are multiple factors that magnify the effects of poor indoor air quality, also referred to as IAQ. Some of them you have more control over than others, for example:

  • Poor ventilation
  • Remodeling dust
  • Humidity levels
  • Leaks from roofs or plumbing

A poorly ventilated building is a surefire recipe for IAQ, as the healthiest spaces are those with free-flowing outdoor air. Remodeling jobs that involve drywall or lumber generate an amazing amount of microscopic dust particles that coat every surface and are inhaled as a matter of course. Low and high humidity levels impact air quality and leaks often lead to mildew and mold.

Modern Times Are Worse for IAQ
Indoor air has become more of a problem in modern times. This is because of several factors.

  • Central Air Conditioning and Heating: Today, our homes and offices have climate control systems that require closed windows and doors.
  • Chemical Cleansers: Many of the cleaning products we buy in the store are laden with harmful chemicals. If you want a spotless carpet or shiny faucet, you usually apply a squirt or sprinkle of air contaminants to accomplish your task.
  • Interior Decorating: More furnishings and flooring products are man-made from artificial materials than in yesteryear. For example, instead of having hardwood floors, homeowners install laminate reproductions. Polyester and plastic have taken the place of cotton and wood.
  • Time Indoors: People spend much more time indoors than they did in the past. This is true of workers on the job, school children in classrooms rather than on the playground, and family life in general (kids playing video games instead of freeze-tag, parents watching TV instead of taking walks).

Health Effects
When humans spend long hours inhaling polluted air, their health is adversely impacted. Many maladies and conditions are directly linked to IAQ, such as:

  • Headaches
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Allergies
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Cancer
  • Eye, nose, lungs, throat irritation

What Can You Do About It?
Happily, there are steps that you can take to improve the quality of your air. To start with, be more aware of what you bring into your home or office building. Here are some actions that can change the IAQ of your interior world:

  • Clean Your Vents: Cleaning the ventilation ductwork of your HVAC systems can make a substantial difference.
  • Open Your Windows and Doors: It’s a wise idea to open up your house or office building to the outside world to invite some fresh air in.
  • Use an Air Purifier: These units draw in dirty air and trap contaminates in a filter.
  • Read Labels: Take some time to read the labels on cleansers and furnishings that you bring into your home or work environment.
  • HEPA Vacuum: You can suck up allergen concentrations in your house by vacuuming with a machine that has a HEPA filter. You can even remove lead and other toxins with this type of vacuum cleaner, especially one with a rotating brush and powerful suction.
  • Mop with Water Only: After vacuuming, mop with plain water. Skip the detergents and just wash your floors with good old H2O.
  • Take Your Shoes Off: A helpful household custom is removing your shoes at the door. This keeps outdoor pollutants out of your household.

Be Mindful
Clean air is one of the things that all living beings need to live healthy lives. You don’t have to shrug your shoulders and accept poor IAQ as a phenomenon of modern existence. By making a few lifestyle changes and being mindful of what you inhale, you can help to improve your health.

Let us help you choose the correct air purifier for your needs. Our knowledgeable, friendly and honest customer service representatives are available to you 24 hours a day. Just contact us or call 888.866.8862.

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5 Things You May Not Know About the Air Quality in Your Home

The majority of our lives are spent indoors, whether sleeping, in school or working. Unfortunately, the lack of ventilation found in many homes and buildings can result in higher quantities of contaminants, creating poor indoor air quality. This, in turn, can result in a number of health ailments. The type of air you breathe in your own house has quite the effect on your life in general. Here are five things you may not know about the air quality in your home.

A Little Mold Can Have Big Effects
Mold finds its ideal home when the tiny spores locate an area containing moisture. It doesn’t have to be a large area of wetness or even an obvious one, so if you have had a flood, a broken pipe or a slow leak, you want to be proactive in drying the area and getting humidity under control. Once mold finds its way in, it quickly becomes invasive, growing and damaging your property at a rather fast pace. However, it can affect more than just the structure of a building. Mold is transferred in small spores that are lightweight and easily airborne, making it easy to breathe in the contaminants without realizing it. For someone with an allergy to mold, this can result in sneezing, rashes, itching and other symptoms of hay-fever. It can also exacerbate asthmatic symptoms. Even if allergies aren’t present, mold can irritate one's eyes, skin, and respiratory system. Extended exposure can result in even more serious conditions and ailments. While the first step is to remove the conditions that helped create the mold in the home, such as fixing leaks and ensuring all areas are dry, the air needs to be purified as well to ensure the airborne spores have been removed.  

Better Air Quality = Higher productivity
If you have a home office, you might want to take measures to increase your air quality if you want to get more out of your workday. A study published by the International Centre for Indoor Environment and Energy, an organization from the Technical University of Denmark, shows that the better the indoor air quality is, the higher the output of productivity you can achieve. In fact, there can be upwards of a 9 percent difference based solely on the air around you. While it may cost a little extra to make the initial changes, it is projected that those particular expenses can be recouped by the boost of productivity that will come afterwards.

Radon May Be Present
Radon may sound like something out of a science-fiction film, but unfortunately it’s more than just a fictional plot twist in many homes. When naturally occurring uranium breaks down in the soil, radon is released. Openings in your home that are near this part of the earth can become a portal for the odorless, colorless – and very dangerous -- gas to enter your home. It can be a slow but deadly process. Once it is breathed in, it breaks down further in your lungs, resulting in increasing damage to your respiratory tissue. Over 20,000 lung cancer deaths each year are now being attributed to radon poisoning.

Pets Affect Air Quality
Most people associate pet allergies with an animal’s fur. However, this isn’t actually the case. The allergen is found in the dander (dead skin cells that have been discarded) and secreted fluids from the animal’s saliva or urine. These allergens can easily attach themselves to the hair, which is why the presence of the fur is commonly associated with allergic reactions. However, even when that fur is cleaned from an area, that doesn’t mean the dander is gone. Micro in size, dander is lightweight and can become airborne for some time before finding another surface on which to attach itself, whether fabric, flooring, carpets or clothing. Vacuuming and dusting can remove some,  but these activities also stir up the air, causing some dust and dander to become airborne again. Even if a person with an allergy keeps their distance from a pet, they are still exposed to the dander simply by breathing in the air, which can trigger an allergic reaction. Air purification is necessary to filter out these pollutants that are too small to be visible, thus difficult to remove by manual cleaning methods.

What Gets Inside Stays Inside
Today’s homes are built with amazing precision and with much tighter construction, which is usually viewed as a positive characteristic. After all, that means warm air stays in during winter months, less conditioned air seeps out in the summer, and nature is kept outdoors. Unfortunately, this all means there is less natural ventilation in today’s homes. When doors and windows are opened, outdoor pollutants that make their way in can’t easily make their way back out again. This also goes for indoor contaminants such as chemicals associated with cleaning products, byproducts of heat sources, allergens, smoke and pet dander, which become trapped.

The risks associated with poor air quality are seldom visible to the naked eye, making them difficult to pinpoint and rectify. It is important to remain vigilant in removing pollutants from the air you breathe in your own home with purification and continued testing to ensure it remains the highest of quality.

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How Indoor Air Quality is Affecting Asthma Sufferers

With industrial waste and the ever increasing amount of car emissions contaminating our air, it is easy to blame external air pollution for asthma issues. However, poor indoor air quality is now being pin pointed as having a huge impact on increased asthmatic problems as well. Here are a few ways the air inside your home can have an impact.

Secondhand Smoke
It is no secret that smoke is dangerous to the smoker, but to those around them there is also serious risk. Secondhand smoke places hundreds of poisons into the air including carbon monoxide and formaldehyde and can be instrumental in the development of asthma. Secondhand smoke affects the severity of attacks as well as the amount suffered by 200,000 plus children, with that number possibly being as high as a million. While being near a smoker who is currently puffing away is a large factor, being around a person who has smoked (but is not smoking at that particular moment) or in a room or household where smoking has happened is also a factor. The chemical residue that is left behind even after the cigarette is put out is still an asthmatic hazard.

Combustion Pollutants
Combustion pollutants are the byproduct of appliances that utilize fuel such as gas, coal or wood to operate. This includes water heaters, fireplaces, gas heaters and furnaces. Pollutants such as carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide can increase asthma issues by displacing the amount of oxygen that the body would otherwise receive. Maintenance and attention is needed for these appliances and a home monitoring system is helpful in signaling leaks or issues.

Radon
The natural breakdown of uranium found within soil, water, or rocks causes the radioactive gas known as radon to be released. Unfortunately, this natural gas can seep into a home through openings or cracks in its structure. When found in concentration, this pollutant can result in increased respiratory issues, including asthma. Unfortunately, it is not easily identifiable and an indoor air quality test is instrumental in locating issues.

Biological Pollutants
One of the biggest biological pollutants to keep watch for is mold, which can often result from having high humidity or areas covered with prolonged moisture in the household. If there is a crack in the structure, a leaky plumbing issue or flooding that was not properly taken care of, mold and bacteria can quickly set up shop and begin spreading, allowing dangerous spores to infiltrate your air and trigger allergic reactions and asthmatic episodes. Keep an eye out for any wet breeding grounds and keep potential trouble spots dry and well ventilated.

Other biological pollutants can include seasonal pollen, which can make its way in through open windows and doors, as well as dust mites or hidden excrement left behind from uninvited pests. Dander, which is lightweight and the result of shed skin cells or bodily fluids from pets and other animals, can also increase asthmatic attacks and affect the severity of them. Air filtration can assist in keeping biological pollutants to a minimum in your home.

Household Cleaners
Common household cleaners are often used in the hopes of removing triggers when, in fact, they can add pollutants to the air. Anti-bacterial mixtures, surface cleaners and furniture wipes are just a few of the perpetrators that leave dangerous chemicals behind that can irritate the respiratory system and result in inflammation of the bronchial tubes. Try instead to use more natural bases in your cleaning supplies such as vinegars, essential oils and other plant based items.

Building Supplies
Chemicals such as formaldehyde are often found in building supplies like adhesives and other agents used to bond materials such as carpets, paneling and upholstery. Formaldehyde can cause severe irritation triggering asthmatic episodes and increasing the number of attacks and severity over time. Check into the ingredients of building materials when doing any work on your home to avoid the inclusion of such items.

While it may not be possible to create a perfect indoor environment, it is possible to greatly reduce pollutants responsible for decreasing indoor air quality. Reducing these toxins can result in easier breathing for asthma sufferers.

Let us help you choose the proper air purifier for your needs. Our knowledgeable, friendly and honest customer service representatives are available to you 24 hours a day. Simply contact us or call 888.866.8862.

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What Can an Air Purifier Filter?

Many people may be familiar with how air cleaning devices work on a surface level. For example, users likely know that they breathe easier when their purifier is turned on, or that the smell of last night’s dinner has gone away. Digging a little deeper, you may be surprised at just how thoroughly an air purifier works, filtering out a large number of particles that could be floating around your home or business.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average American is indoors nearly 90 percent of the time. What’s more, the agency reports that indoor air quality can be as much as 100 times more polluted than outdoor air. Ready to breathe easier? Check out the different contaminants an air purifier can remove.

Allergens
One of the most common reasons people purchase air filtration systems is because they work so well during peak allergy seasons: spring and fall. During these times, allergens such as mold or pollen run rampant in the air, leading to itchy eyes, a stuffy nose and headaches. Air purifiers work to filter these particles out of the air you breathe in your home. Your indoor air quality can greatly improve by putting a purifier in the rooms you frequent the most.

Harmful Toxins
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are a number of ways that harmful toxins can enter your home and impact your indoor air quality. For example, the following can emit dangerous contaminants into your home:

  • Tobacco smoke
  • Mold
  • Household cleaners
  • So-called air fresheners

If you live in a particularly humid climate or your home is poorly ventilated, the effects of these particles can be drastically worse. An air purifier works to eliminate your home of these substances. It will effectively trap chemicals, volatile organic compounds and other particles, greatly reducing the amount of them that are present in the air you breathe.

Odors
Homes have a way of getting smelly from time to time. It could be that you have children or a pet that create unpleasant odors, such as diapers or wet fur. It could be a gym bag that has clothes that should have been washed last week. Even cooking dinner can lead to smells that linger much too long.

An air purifier can remove those odors from the air. Depending on your needs, you may want to position one in the kitchen or one in the room where the pet sleeps. Having that filter turned on will be a welcome change for your home.

Germs
It can be incredibly frustrating to have a family member who is sick. On top of feeling bad for the person, you may also be worried that you will catch whatever the illness is. The same goes for the workplace: A co-worker who shows up sick is often a source of worry for everyone else in the office.

Air purifiers work to trap and reduce the particles that go airborne and spread disease. These include bacteria and other items that carry viruses. Consider putting one in your home to help protect your health. You may even want to check with your supervisor to see if having a purifier in the office is allowed, as it would likely be welcome from co-workers who want to remain healthy.

When you are shopping for an air purifier, it is a good idea to look for one that specifically targets the pollutants you want eliminated. If you are not sure which one to get, contact a sales representative who can help walk you through the process. Having the right product can help you breathe a little easier and stay a little healthier.

Let us help you choose the right air purifier for your needs. Our knowledgeable, friendly and honest customer service representatives are available to you 24 hours a day. Just contact us or call 888.866.8862.

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Controlling Winter Allergies

WinterWhen we think of allergy season, the image brought to mind is often of flowing plants and pollen or the dry leaves of fall.  Yet allergies can happen all year round, even during the months of winter. Often winter allergies get mistaken for being cold or flu symptoms and do not get properly treated, making sufferers go longer without relief.   Here are a few tips on how to reduce allergies during the winter.

Control Humidity at Home
Cold winter months means that we spend more time indoors, thus making our homes warmer and more comfortable.  Make sure to check water heaters and pipes regularly for signs of leaks, and if you cannot resist the urge to warm up with long baths or showers, be certain to run fans and ventilate the room once you are done so that mold does not have a chance to grow.

Decorate Without Dust
While it might be easier to pull last year’s tinsel and lights from their boxes and straight onto the tree, doing so might introduce a lot of unwanted dust into your home.  Unpack boxes away from carpet and upholstered furniture, and make sure to give everything a good dusting before putting it festively on display.

Beware of Guests Bringing in Pollen Along with Presents
Although many guests will be courteous and wipe their shoes before entering a home, the truth is that we bring pollen, dust, and pollutants inside on more than just our feet.  Our hair and clothes can pick up these tiny pollutants and transfer them inside.  Allergy sufferers are often advised to shower and put on a clean change of clothes after coming home, but when guests come to call, this is not an option.  Instead, if you have lots of family and friends coming to celebrate, make sure to clean more than usual by vacuuming carpets and upholstery, cleaning sheets frequently, and capturing any pollen that escapes by running an air purifier with a true HEPA filter.

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Four Fun Facts About Mold

1)       You may know mold as the slimy stuff that can make you sick, but did you know that not all molds are hazardous to humans? In fact, some of them have been used to our great benefit.  Penicillin, one of the most important antibiotics developed, was derived in part from penicillicum mold, and has been of great importance in combating disease.  The discovery and development of penicillin won its inventor, Alexander Fleming, a Nobel Prize.

blue cheese2)       There are even molds that are used with culinary purposes in mind.  Many delicious cheeses, including Roquefort, Brie, and Camembert are made by using molds like Penicillium candidum and Penicillium roqueforti to provide them with the soft rinds and blue veins that heighten their flavor.

3)       Some molds can solve mazes, like the fungi known as slime mold that have surprised scientists by following food sources laid out in a puzzle and retracting its protoplasmic tubes when they hit dead ends. Scientists working with the mold are hopeful that in the future, learning how slime molds move and cross distances can help humans plan more efficient travel routes.

4)       We know that mold needs a moist environment to grow, so it may come as a surprise that homes in hot, dry environments like the American southwest can also have their share of mold growth as well.  States like Texas, Arizona, and Nevada even made the top ten in the relative hazard mold ranking by American Risk Management Resources.  The major factor for mold growth in these states is not so much the weather, but a result of building conditions; if buildings are sealed too tightly, for example when trying to meet energy requirements, it can create poor ventilation which is a prime environment for mold growth. To help get rid of mold, it is best to use an air purifier, such as the MinusA2 with a true HEPA filter to trap and eliminate mold spores in your home.

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Healthy Resolutions for the New Year

fireworksThe tradition of making a resolution for the New Year goes back a surprisingly long time; all the way to the Romans during the first century BC, in fact.  At that time, the celebration revolved around the two headed god Janus, who had one head looking behind to the past year and the other, forward to the future. Roman citizens were encouraged to do the same and evaluate their past actions so that they could resolve to improve themselves in the coming year.  Over the centuries, the tradition has gone in and out of popularity, and was changed many times along the way.  While we no longer celebrate with Janus, the New Year’s Resolution is a popular practice that many like to make as they look forward to a bright new year.

Here are some ideas for a healthy New Year’s resolution!

1)       If you wake up with a stuffy nose and find yourself sniffling every morning, this might be the year to make your bedroom allergy friendly.  Every month, make one change to help you breathe better at night. This can be as easy as replacing cloth curtains with vertical blinds, using a hypo-allergenic cover for your mattress, or adding an air purifier.

2)       Start doing random acts of cleaning throughout your home.  Wash a dish every time you walk into the kitchen, or dust a different shelf during each commercial break of your favorite show. By making the tasks small and simple, you won’t get overwhelmed, and you can even help to relieve asthma and allergy symptoms by removing clutter and preventing a build-up of dust or mold.

3)       If you spent a lot of time last year lounging on the couch, try adding a brisk walk to your weekly routine.  You don’t have to do much to start reaping some of the benefits gained by regular walks, so don’t be afraid to start slowly. Easing into a new routine can make it easier to stick it out too; start at a pace that feels comfortable to you, and as your build up stamina, you can start walking faster or walking more days a week to get the most out of this healthy activity.

4)       Whether you want to lose a few pounds or just want to strive for a healthier lifestyle, make it your New Year’s resolution to add some more “super foods” into your diet.  These foods – like spinach, walnuts, honey, and salmon – contain powerful nutrients like anti-oxidants and vitamins that play an important part to keep you feeling great.  Challenge yourself to eat one of these nutrient rich foods every day for a healthy and delicious new year!

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