Coming home from the hospital after an illness might seem like the worst is over, but could your indoor air quality be putting you at a greater risk than you realize? Whether you or a loved one has been hospitalized for sickness, minor surgery, childbirth, or even simple procedures or monitoring, poor air quality in your home could put you at furth…
Is your basement sick and making you ill? Rickety stairs and rodent infiltration aren’t the only dangers lurking in your basement.Whether you visit your basement often for working out or just a quick visit for laundry, the presence of basement mold and other air contaminants could have a negative impact on your health.
Changes in weather and dropping temperatures are enough to make anyone feel a little sniffly. But are your itchy eyes and runny nose by-products of the weather, or could they be caused by fall allergies?
Fall allergies affect millions of people each year, including 75% of those who also suffer from spring allergies.
The sustained New England humidity during recent months can seem unbearable. Temperatures feel hotter. We tire easily. Muggy air can make every breath a struggle. You’re not imagining these things. Humidity can take a harsh toll on the body, even to point of overheating.
You can stop sneezing eliminating pet dander from your home.
Bathroom germs makes you sick. Everyone knows that bathrooms are one of the most germ-riddled rooms in the home. But the places that are dirtier than your tub or toilet might surprise you.
Why Your Bathroom Might Be Making You Sick
Here’s the truth: your bathroom fixtures aren’t the only things that get dirty.
Toxic spray foam insulation is the worst mistake you can make as a homeowner. Choosing the right insulation for your home is serious business. You expect it to seal your home and help you lower your energy bill, but sometimes, saving money comes at a hidden cost you might not be willing to pay.
Diligent carpet cleaning should relieve your fears of toxic mold creeping into your home… right?
If you’re cleaning carpet on a humid day, it can heighten your chance of inviting mold into your home – and giving mold an eviction notice isn’t so easy.
Auto repair shops release toxic fumes are concentrated in Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs). Air pollution is one of the most dangerous forms of pollution which can lead to a number of diseases. Cars, flying planes, smoking and industrial discharge are some of the common sources of outdoor air pollution.
Toxic mold can impact your health in many ways. We’re so used to seeing toxic mold in our shower stalls and basements that it’s easy to view this organic matter as nothing more than an unsightly nuisance. However, research has revealed that while some forms of mold are fairly benign (beyond being a common allergen), others can be highly toxic.
Avoid cleaning your carpets during humid days to prevent mold. Often, proper ventilation and air circulation prevents mold growth. However, during the summers, the indoor air becomes rich in moisture when you open the windows and air inlets. This can cause the carpet’s fabric to stretch out and expand in size and volume.
Poor indoor air quality can trigger your eczema. When we think of what causes eczema, we immediately start looking at what we put in or on our bodies: Our dietary choices, the chemicals in makeup and moisturizers, etc. Seldom do we think about the air around us, even though it’s a well-known fact that indoor air is often highly polluted.
New Hampshire joins several states regulating mold testing by requiring mold inspectors and remediators to be licensed. Additionally, the law states that it is illegal to conduct both the testing and remediation by the same company.
Toxic sewage contamination is the most hazardous contamination issue we deal with. You have no idea of the harmful toxins in sewage. The contamination pool might contain blood borne pathogens, flesh eating bacterias, Hepatits C, and other disease causing toxins.
Sanitary Sewer Overflows (SSOs) happen every day across the nation.
IndoorDoctor recommends the Austin Air Pet Machine to instantly improve the air quality in your home. This medical grade purifier made in America will eliminate allergens, pet odors and chemicals. This purifier is ready to go right out of the box, plug, play and breathe easier.
Do you suffer from frequent headaches, or worse, migraines? If you’re like 12% of Americans, you probably lose at least a few days per month to head pain. For some unfortunate individuals, this number climbs to ten or more days spent in pain every month.
Inhaling secondhand tobacco smoke indoors can seriously damage your health, particularly if you’re subjected to chronic smoke exposure. In fact, sidestream smoke (the smoke that’s emitted by the burning end of a cigarette) can be more toxic than the filtered smoke that’s directly inhaled by smokers.
An unhealthy bathroom leads to illness. With a few simple precautions you can make your bathroom healthy. Every room and corner of our home needs complete attention to ensure good health and functioning of the home. Our home environment is the space we live and breathe in and it has a great impact on our overall health and wellness.
Ice dams cause toxic mold in homes resulting in illness and property damage. Water back up behind the dams and leaks into a home resulting in property damage and toxic mold growth.
Ice Dams Cause Toxic Mold Inside Homes
Ice dams usually occur after a heavy snowfall and several days of freezing temperatures.
Many people suffer from indoor allergies during the cold winter months. Although these indoor allergies are sometimes confused with the common cold, if the condition lasts for more than 10 days the cause is likely due to allergies and not a cold.
Most people never think twice about health implications to refinishing their hard floors. If you are thinking of refinishing your floor I urge you to consider the health complications because if applied incorrectly your floor finish can make you and your family sick.
How to Correctly Select and Maintain Humidifiers
With winter on the horizon, many people are turning to humidifiers to combat the unpleasant effects of dry indoor air, such as chapped lips and itchy skin.
Is Your Office Making You Sick? Health is the greatest asset that we can build upon all through life! Be it at home, in office or even outside, it is critically essential to ensure a healthy surrounding. While most of us pay attention to our home environment needs, the office is one place that usually goes unnoticed.
Is Bleach effective after flooding? Hurricanes Harvey and Irma are catastrophically hitting storms that bring most of lives down. It’s actually the strongest storm to make landfall in the United States.
There is mounting evidence that living near an airport may cause health issues. There are various health risks which can have long term effects and can prove to be fatal for the life of people living near the airport. Listed below are four major contaminants residence should monitor while living near an airport.
Know the dangers of whole house humidifiers before you turn on this winter to avoid widespread mold contamination. Is the air too dry inside your house? Are you planning to get a whole house humidifier installed to combat the dryness? Then you should read on to find out the dangers of getting such a system installed.
5 Hurricane Lessons For Everyone. Even though the devastating hurricanes might be thousands of miles from where you live they do offer important lessons learned and we should all take heed so they do not become lessons lost.
Hurricane Lessons – Check Your Trees Around Your Home
Toxic swimming pools are making people sick. While Swimming or just being in the pool with friends or family is fun and refreshing. There are certain disadvantages of public swimming pools. Mold, chemical, harmful bacterias, yeast, viruses and other toxins are common with swimming pools.
High levels of formaldehyde in basement floor joists made by Weyerhaeuser. Floor joists with Flak Jacket® Protection manufactured after December 1, 2016. These floor joists are releasing an odor related to a recent formulation change that included a formaldehyde-based resin
Low cost IAQ meters don’t work, are not accurate, and we discourage homeowners from relying on these Amazon based purchases to see if their home is healthy. Many of my clients have suffered from years of poor indoor air quality because they thought their low cost IAQ meters were accurate.
Are you planning on renovating your home? Even small indoor renovations or repairs will severely degrade the air you and your family breathe to a very unhealthy level.
There are numerous benefits for quality assurance mold testing. We highly encourage you to inform your remediation company that you reserve the right to conduct independent quality assurance mold testing during and post remediation to ensure a healthy environment.
Quality Assurance Mold Sampling
Failure to properly vent basement closets will lead to toxic mold contamination. The basement walls, your stored items, clothing and air space will become contaminated with mold. The elevated mold spores in your closets will contaminate adjacent areas causing health issues for you and your family.
According to the center for disease and control (CDC) lead found in tap or drinking water usually comes from the corrosion of older fixtures or from the solder that connects pipes. When water sits in leaded pipes for several hours,lead can leach into the water supply.
A Boston boy who spent 211 days waiting for a heart transplant is now being treated for acute rejection. Meanwhile his parents deal with a major mold issue that has turned the family’s home into a “sick house.” Ari Schultz, 5, has been at Boston Children’s Hospital since December, and received his donated heart on March 3.
MFiberglass insulation from the attic, air ducts, and above the ceiling can break apart and enter the airspace through cracks and openings within recess lighting, air vents and other fixtures. We recommend to test your air for fiberglass and seal all fixtures to prevent unwanted glass intrusions.
If you suffer from sneezing, headaches, eye, nose and throat irritation then you will want to make sure tiny airborne particles in your home referred to as particulate matter are not the proximate cause. IndoorDoctor can measure these tiny particles using a very sophisticated tool called a laser particle scanning machine.
During the 1990s, the air freshener market experienced a massive resurgence thanks to the introduction of convenient “plug-in” air fresheners. These air fresheners rely on heat induction technology and special heat-activated scented gels to continually release a scent.
Every parent should know the flame retardants content in the products they purchase. Many decades ago, house fires were a common and often deadly threat.
Channel 5 Special Report: Toxic Mold After Flooding
IndoorDoctor on the scene in Lexington with major flooding and advising the homeowner on the proper way to deal with the cleanup to ensure the home is not impacted by toxic mold.
Limitations of DIY Mold Test Kits
While it might be tempting to use DIY Mold Tests—petri dishes set out over a period of time to determine mold presence—to diagnose your household mold, these over-the-counter methods can be deceiving and inaccurate.
Salvaged firewood or other scraps can save you a lot of money when it comes to heating your home with wood in your fireplace. But there are certain wood products and other items that you should avoid for health and safety reasons.
It’s Winter and that familiar condensation around the windows is forming. You think nothing of it until one day you see the black specks or even heavier concentrations of mold growth. Yikes! What to do and how can you stop this from happening.
Most of us are already familiar with the nutritional and environmental benefits of soy as a food product. However few people realize that this versatile plant also has a potentially valuable role to play in home construction.
This is an excellent post by my client and expert Dr. Judy Tsafrir. There is a great need for further understanding the mental health impacts of toxic mold. If you suffer from the psychiatric symptoms of mold or have further questions regarding this topic please contact Dr. Judy from her website http://www.judytsafrirmd.
This week we will focus on fiberglass and indoor air quality issues with environmental engineer Jeff Bradley. Mr. Bradley is an environmental consultant with a MS degree in Environmental Engineering from Southern Methodist University.
Fireplaces and wood stoves can make you and your family sick. Children and the elderly are most at risk for respiratory distress. Improper venting, faulty flues and dampers can lead to increased lung damaging particulates containing hazardous soot particles.
IndoorDoctor at Homeowners Tradeshow Manchester
Enjoyed speaking and educating homeowners at the Homeowners Tradeshow Manchester on how poor air quality in your home can make you and your family sick. Understanding the healthiness of your home through independent testing will provide peace of mind and actionable results for healthy living.
Not in New Hampshire and many other states. As of January 1st 2016 it is illegal per NH Senate Bill 125 for someone to conduct both the remediation and testing in New Hampshire due to the inherent conflict of interest. Furthermore both the remediation company and testing company needs to obtain 3rd party certification.
Out of all of the various genera of mold present on Earth, Aspergillus is both the most common and one of the most worrying. So far, over 200 different species of Aspergillus have been identified all around the world. Mold experts believe that Aspergillus molds are the most common type of fungi found in the natural environment.
10 Ways Your Baby’s Bedroom Air Quality Can be Improved
1. Only use No VOC and No Odor paints: Before you paint your baby’s bedroom that perfect shade, make sure the paint you’ve chosen does not contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or harmful odors.
Most of us think of mold as being a problem that’s limited to obviously damp environments, such as basements and bathrooms; however, in reality, mold can grow anywhere in our homes. One of the most commonly overlooked areas where mold growth tends to occur is the attic.
Your IndoorDoctor air quality evaluation will instantly measure the invisible lung damaging particles you and your family are breathing.
Ultrafine particulate matter or particles are very tiny microscopic airborne particles comprised of both biological and inorganic matter like pollen, dander, mold, and minerals.
Thanks to the international media coverage of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, the residents of towns and cities are beginning to realize that the need for regular water sampling is not limited to rural areas.
For many people in very cold climates, having a working furnace is more than a luxury—it’s a life-preserving necessity. As useful as these appliances are, however, when not properly maintained, they can cause a range of health problems through contributing to indoor air pollution.
Airborne algae and cyanobacteria represent a considerable part of atmospheric bioaerosols. However, they are the most under-studied microorganisms in aerobiological studies. The most common airborne photosynthetic microorganisms are Cyanobacteria, found more often in tropical regions and Chlorophyta, mostly in temperate areas.
A new analysis of prior research found that household dust contains many chemicals that are emitted by everyday products creating toxic dust such as flame retardant clothing and vinyl flooring, according to the report published in Environmental Science & Technology.
Over the past decade, bagless vacuum cleaners have overtaken their bagged vacuum counterparts in popularity owing to their power and convenience.
There’s no questioning the fact that dehumidifiers are a boon to allergy sufferers and those who live in damp climates; these handy appliances can keep mold growth at bay, remove moisture, reducing allergy symptoms, safeguarding your family’s health, and protecting the structural integrity of your home.
Wearable technology is the new trend in the global market…
And in China, the trend is taking on a particular feature: smog-filtering wearables or wearable air purifiers.
Wearing a medical-grade face mask and installing air purifiers at home, used to be viewed as an over-reaction to air pollution.
Whether your basement is a dungeon or a showpiece, it likely needs some TLC to achieve a healthy environment. Basement air is generally worse than the rest of the home due to an overall lack of cross flow ventilation, higher sustained humidity, and ample amount of settled dusts.
Penicillium, a genus of ascomycetous fungi, has a long history of interaction with mankind; sometimes beneficial and sometimes harmful, the genus Penicillium contains over 300 species and remains poorly understood by the general public despite its widespread medical use.
Formaldehyde is a known carcinogen and is found in many building materials including pressed or laminate flooring, spray foam insulation, furniture and other building materials. Adverse health effects have been reported even at very low levels.
While many parents are aware of the importance of protecting their children from toxins at home and in the environment, they often give little thought to the schools indoor air quality that their children inhabit throughout much of the year.
Thanks to prolific and often hyperbolic media exposure in recent decades, there are a lot of myths about mold. Some people believe, for example, that all types of mold are extremely dangerous, or that only so-called “toxic black mold” poses a real risk, when in reality, neither of these common perceptions are true.
Have you ever thought about how therapeutic it is to visit the beach? Toes in the sand, sound of the waves and breathing in the fresh sea air! The Lung Institute suggests the ocean, especially breathing ocean air, has commonly been referred to as a source of healing for all types of ailments, including certain lung diseases.
If an indoor space appears to be free of obvious surface mold, many people erroneously assume that they are safe from mold-related illnesses. In reality, however, any structure with an HVAC system can harbor dangerous hidden mold.
Statistically you are more likely to die from radon exposure than a drunk driver. Radon has been linked as the sole contributor to over 21,000 US deaths per year. Radon is the 2nd leading cause of lung cancer deaths and 7th leading cause of total cancer deaths.
Deep Cleaning. One of the most beneficial things you can do for yourself and your family—especially when preparing for flu season—is to perform deep cleaning throughout your home.
Thanks to the many advances made in the field of neurosciences in recent decades, we know that just like developing bodies are more vulnerable to illness and injury, developing brains are, too.
The chemical drain cleaners which were conventionally used to unclog residential drains an eliminate drain odor are known to contain some of the harshest chemicals available to consumers, posing a potential threat to human and animal health (both through exposure to residual chemical vapors and through the risk of accidental ingestion).
Many people think of shower exhaust fans —if they think of them at all— as being mere accessories to their bathrooms, a handy convenience which clears moisture from the air and mirror, allowing them to get through their daily routines more quickly.
Most pet owners deal with pet odors in their home at one time or another. Sometimes, the pet itself is the source of the odor. Other times it’s soiled carpets, cages or beds that are the problem. Even if you don’t own a pet, odors from the pet of a previous owner or tenant can affect your Indoor Air Quality months or even years later.
Many people—especially those who live in hot climates—accept toilet condensation as a fact of life. Just as we humans sweat, so will anything that holds liquid, from our drinking glasses to our toilets.
Though the exact cause-and-effect relationship between household and workplace EMF exposure due to cellular phones, wireless internet signals, etc., and illnesses like cancer remains unclear, some further information has been revealed since we first wrote about the correlation between EMF waves and health issues back in 2012.
HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) is an air filter comprised of a mat of dense fibers arranged in folds thus creating a fine mesh, which are designed according to federal standards to trap at least 99.97% of airborne particles. HEPA works by forcing the air through the mesh thus trapping harmful particles.
If you suspect winter storm damage due to ice damming, burst pipes, excess condensate or basement flooding, we can help and here’s how:
1) Moisture Analysis: Our digital moisture meters and infrared technology can give you the peace of mind and documentation you need as to the moisture content of your walls and ceilings.
As the snow continues to build up and the warmer weather continues to get closer, one major issue you should be sure to keep an eye on is the potential for ice dams. An ice dam occurs when the snow on your roof melts and refreezes forming a ridge of ice at the edge of the roof which prevents melting snow from draining off the roof.
Carbon monoxide (CO) exists in your home. You and your family could be exposed to low levels of chronic carbon monoxide that is not being detected by your home CO detector. You may have a carbon monoxide detector that has a digital display reading of zero, but the actual level of carbon monoxide is not zero.
Radon is the second leading cause of cancer after smoking. Since the naturally occurring radioactive gas is colorless or odorless many people don’t bother to test every two years. Most people may think that since they had their home tested years ago and it was under the action limit that they are safe.
DIY Mold Petri Dish Taken From A Clean Environment
While it might be tempting to use DIY Mold Tests—petri dishes set out over a period of time to determine mold presence—to diagnose your household mold, these over-the-counter methods can be deceiving and inaccurate.
Check the model of your dehumidifier. If on the dehumidifier recall list then immediately turn off and unplug the dehumidifiers and contact Gree toll free for a full refund at 866-853-2802 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or online at www.greeusa.com and click on Recall for more information.
We like air recovery ventilation systems. It’s like leaving the windows open year round without all the heat loss and pollen from the outside coming in. Air recovery systems are broken down into two distinct types: Heat Recovery Ventilation (HRV) and Energy Recovery Ventilation (ERV).
IndoorDoctor is on the scene with TV Channel 5 News advising homeowners impacted by flooding on the proper protocol to deal with the aftermath. Improper cleanup will likely lead to a very serious toxic mold issue. A sound game plan with independent analysis and testing will ensure successful restoration of the property.
IndoorDoctor provides guidance and assistance to a distraught family displaced by localized flooding. The damage was so extensive that professional remediation needed to occur as soon as possible to prevent the mold from spreading and creating a toxic home. Improper remediation could have made the situation much worse.
You want your home to be as healthy as possible for you and your family. Listed below are 5 ways you can instantly improve your indoor air quality.
1: Replace any carpeting with hard wood floors. Your carpeting traps ultrafine particulates. The same principle goes for area rugs.
Channel 5 news interviews IndoorDoctor regarding the claim by some merchants that house plants improve the air quality. While house plants do brighten up the room there is little evidence to suggest any tangible improvement to the overall air quality.
Open sump pits and other holes in the foundation can increase overall radon levels, especially in the winter when the surrounding ground is frozen. Radon is the 2nd leading cause of lung cancer in the United States and the EPA recommends testing for radon in your home every two years.
Rubber baseboards will cause the lower wall to retain excess moisture after a water damage incident or even with routine carpet or hard floor cleaning. Floors at or below ground level are subject to retain excess moisture through a wicking action called capillary action.
Insulation is like a sponge and once it gets wet it will take a really long time to fully dry. The wet insulation will cause mold and foul odors even when the exterior wall has dried. Wall drying techniques are generally ineffective at drying insulation.
Do you or know somebody who lives in a home with the noxious “Basement Smell”? Based on thousands of assessments we’ve conducted and the resulting tens of thousands of samples processed as Indoor Air Quality Specialists, I can say with certainty that basement air is the most compromised air in every house.
An IndoorDoctor Healthy Air Check encompasses a wide variety of tests and instant diagnostic data to screen potential indoor air pollutants for multiple areas. This package is a good starting point for someone who wants to know if their air is healthy and free of dangerous contaminates.
Instead of keeping you clean, many front-loading washing machines can make you green with toxic mold and harmful bacteria’s. Water accumulates behind the seals. You may not notice visual signs of mold but every time you open and close the washer door you could be releasing tens of thousands of toxic mold spores, usually of the Cladosporium type.
The musty odor you smell is decay off-gassing from biological growth which includes molds, bacteria and biofilm. These odors contain microbial volatile organic compound (MVOC). People may compare this odor to a dank locker room, old cheese, dirty socks, or wet dog.
The application of spray foam is easy, but the removal is nearly impossible. The volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and mal-odors resulting from spray foam can absorb into nearby building materials and furnishings, allowing odors to permeate for years. Residual foam will remain embedded within the wood structures.
Toxic spray foam off-gasses or releases harmful chemicals in the air, some of which you can smell and some of which you cannot. Many of these chemicals cause immediate or acute reactions and can cause long-lasting and permanent damage to your body.
Last week we discussed the significance of testing for carbon monoxide (CO). This week I wanted to shed some light on its cousin, carbon dioxide (CO2). Our state of the art air quality meters test for both carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide in parts per million (ppm) as part of every indoor air quality inspection.
Often overlooked by our clients is their sensitivity to dust mites. Typically people sensitive to other indoor pollutants and allergens like molds are very susceptible to the allergic affects of dust mites. Generally people assume that “dust mites are everywhere” and “there’s not much you can do about them.
As New Englanders dig out from last week’s historic blizzard, a silent threat is creeping into their homes: mold. The snow accumulation on roofs and the high drifts against homes will soon start to melt as temperatures increase.
You can control a key variable associated with proper air quality in your home by maintaining relative humidity levels.
Anyone who has watched the Weather ChannelEverybody’s heard the weather report and grasp the concept that excess humidity is muggy and low humidity is dry.
1) Cap your sump pit. A properly capped sump pit will reduce radon gas, which is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. An added bonus: you deter the mice and rats from an unnecessary watering hole.
2) Change your air filters. Clean air filters will reduce the amount of harmful debris and particulates in the air.
There are many materials from which to choose, and professional floor refinishers who aren’t out to sell a particular product can recommend materials based on the dryness/dampness of your basement floor and its condition, whether it’s smooth, cracked or nicked.
In the winter, fresh air is cold air. And your home and business are built to keep the cold air out. But you can keep the air inside fresh year-round and conserve energy at the same time with the use of a heat-recovery air exchanger, also called an air-to-air heat exchanger.
An average home should have at least .35 air changes per hour (ACH).
More and more people are looking to finish their basements to increase overall property value and expand their space. It is still a common practice to finish a basement with carpeting, but this is not the best course of action. Carpeting and basement simply don’t mix.
Homeowners in New England may not think that their basement took in water from Hurricane Sandy, but hidden moisture may exist within carpeting and walls. This moisture can seep into the basement foundation, leading to very favorable conditions for mold growth, IndoorDoctor President Jeffrey Bradley warns.
Expect greater legislative enforcement of pharmacuitcal companies, specifically drug compounding centers, as the outbreak of contaminated drugs from The New England Compounding Center of Framingham, Mass expands nationally.
IndoorDoctor, a New England based indoor air quality testing firm, has seen a steady rise with indoor air quality concerns during winter months. Simply put, more people spend their times indoors when it’s cold outside.
Everyone relates to the visible effects the economy has one their lives: gas prices rising, home values plummeting, and even the rise of grocery bills. But what we cannot see might have one of the most consequential effect of our poor economy.
The World Health Organization (WHO) announced yesterday that cell phone radiation increases users’ risk of getting cancer. According to the WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (EMF) have been classified as possibly carcinogenic to humans.
Radon is a colorless and odorless gas that can have very serious health effects. According to the Surgeon General, radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer within the US. Radon levels fluctuate throughout the year, but often go undetected by homeowners, sometimes placing residents at risk without any detectable air quality changes.