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How to Test Your Air Quality This Winter

You’ve been coughing and sneezing for months now. Your eyes are red and watery, and your throat has an irritating tickle that’s driving you crazy – making you pop Claritin like Tic Tacs. Is it time to finally test your indoor air quality? Surprisingly, that question isn’t as simple as you might think. If you’re thinking about ways to test your air quality at home, there are some important things you need to consider and information to go over. For 20 years, Iceberg Heating & Cooling has been Monroe County’s premiere HVAC specialist, and today we’re going to run through the different ways air quality can be tested and show you how to improve the air quality in your home. Okay, let’s get started.

  • What Types of Indoor Pollutants Can be Tested For?

With so many devices on the market, you can test for almost anything. The most common tests are those that detect allergens (tree and ragweed pollen, mold spores, pet dander, et cetera) and harmful gases like carbon monoxide and radon. Other tests detect more exotic pollutants. For example, a volatile organic compound (VOC) test can determine if compounds like benzene, methylene chloride, and formaldehyde are present in harmful quantities. If it floats in the air, there is a test that can detect it.

  • Different Types of Tests.

As mentioned, there are many types of tests on the market. Finding the one that is right for you can be a challenge. Some tests are very specialized. For example, a radon test only tests for radon; a carbon monoxide test only tests for carbon monoxide. Others can detect several types for compounds like those designed to detect allergens. Unfortunately, there isn’t a grand test on the market that can test for everything. There are also a variety of ways in which tests report back on what they find. Some are called monitors. These are installed in the home and constantly monitor the air quality, triggering an alarm if a particular substance is found.

Another is at-home tests, which are designed to capture the air inside the home and report instantly on anything found. While generally inexpensive, the tests are not sensitive enough to detect most compounds unless they’re in great quantity. Some tests must be sent off to a laboratory for analysis. These tests – while much more accurate than an at-home test – can take up to 30 to 60 days for the results. The fact is, most tests made available to the consumer are either ineffective or very expensive. Some high-quality at-home tests can cost as much as $800 and still not be as accurate as having a professional come to your home and test your air quality.

While these tips will help you better understand the world of indoor air quality tests, they are by no means a substitute for an air quality professional. At Iceberg Heating & Cooling, our technicians are specially trained to properly diagnose air quality in your home. We also offer a variety of maintenance options with our Comfort Club™ membership program. Comfort Club™ provides you with regular system checks, bi-annual checkups, and superior service. This will ensure your HVAC unit is operating at its best and will meet manufacturer requirements for extended warranties. We’re on call, online, and always on time, so schedule your air quality appointment today by calling the professionals at Iceberg Heating & Cooling at (734) 375-1119, or email us.

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