Many people often overlook the obvious when attempting to locate Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) in their homes. They may expect finding VOC and mold sources to be a daunting task, but this is not the case. Here are a few tips on where to look for VOCs and mold and simple solutions for improving your indoor air quality:
Check cabinets and drawers. Do you store nail enamels and removers in the bathroom vanity or cleaning materials under the kitchen sink? If you do, keep the VOC sources in an airtight container, and you will reduce VOCs without needing to remove the products. We recommend this practice with VOC sources stored in attached garages or basements. Keeping products in airtight containers when not in use may significantly reduce the VOC level within the home. Also, take note that items such as left-over paint cans and gasoline-based tools stored in the garage or basement will produce VOCs that become part of the air you breathe in the living space.
New Furniture. Another commonly missed VOC source is new furniture. People are excited to sleep on that new mattress or cannot wait to enjoy that new recliner! It is strongly recommended you let newly purchased furniture air out before cohabitating with all those outgassing chemicals. Mattress, new upholstery, baby cribs, etc., should be opened and stored in the garage or on the deck, if the weather permits, for several hours to allow the chemicals to outgas before use.
Mold. When it comes to mold, dirty dishes and condensation can cause low levels of actively growing mold and is easy to overlook in day-to-day life. Keeping dishes clean and dry is an easy way to reduce mold in the home. Wiping condensation from under sinks and around toilets will also reduce the possibility of mold growth. Always run the bathroom fan when showering or bathing to help keep bathrooms free from actively growing mold.
If you need help searching for VOCS or mold in your home, a simple at-home test such as one from Home Air Check can help your search and bring you peace of mind.
For more information on indoor air quality and in-home testing, start a conversation with us now.