What You Need to Know About Indoor Air Quality08/08/2016 Many people realize how harmful outdoor air pollution like car emissions can be, but they don’t realize that the air inside the average living space might be more polluted—contingent on actual conditions, it can be up to five times more. Things have become so damaging, the EPA has indoor air pollution ranked as a top five environmental danger. Mold, pollen, pet dander, radon and even formaldehyde are commonly found in homes. Since Americans spend around 90% of their time indoors, superior indoor air quality is a necessity for great health, despite if it’s in our homes or our workplaces. To help manage this pollution and improve our indoor air quality, we can take several measures. But first, we need to grasp some vernacular consistently used to discuss indoor air quality. HEPA HEPA is a term a lot of people have heard or seen, but did you know it stands for “high-efficiency particulate air” or “high-efficiency particulate arrestance”? HEPA filtration systems are designed—and certified—to trap at least 99.97% of .3-micron particles (tinier than the diameter of a human hair) from the air that filters through the system. This drastically increases your home’s indoor air quality when dust, pollen, mites and other contaminants are trapped. MERV Minimum efficiency reporting value or MERV refers to the effectiveness of an air filter. With rankings ranging from 1–16, you should find a max rating that indicates the filter will remove more contaminants and allergens from your air without confining the airflow of your home comfort system. Ask us which MERV-rated filter will work best for your home. At O'Brien Heating & Air Conditioning, we can help you understand the importance of indoor air quality and help you work on breathing the best air possible. After all, the average adult breathes about 11,000 liters of air each day. Give us a call at 610-626-2540 if you have any questions or concerns about your home comfort system or schedule an appointment with us online.