We spend 90% of our time indoors, but indoor environments are typically 5x more polluted than outdoors. Dust, mould, expired air, CO2 and contaminants from cooking all create an indoor environment that contributes to allergies, asthma and sleep disturbance. Rather than wait until suffering from health symptoms, it makes sense to monitor the air quality of your indoor environment.
4.3 million people a year die from the exposure to household air pollution” – World Health Organization
“long-term exposure to fine particles in air pollution leads to higher rates of hospitalisation for pneumonia, heart attack, stroke, & diabetes” – Harvard Health
Ideally we would all live in a Passive House which provides a constant supply of fresh, filtered and preconditioned air.
But if you live in an older home, (or even a new home) there are now a range of consumer grade air quality monitors that can help us keep our families safe by knowing and understanding the pollutants that are present in our homes.
Devices like the Foobot https://foobot.io and Awair https://getawair.com are affordable and excellent at monitoring the air for things like VOCs (chemicals), PM (particle matter), and CO2 (carbon dioxide), to better understand the indoor air quality (IAQ).
If you have knowledge of these levels then it you can take active steps to improve the indoor environment such as opening a window, or using an air purifier…or moving house!
These devices also monitor temperature and log historical data so you can analyse the comfort and performance of your home over time.
Certain temperature and humidity levels promote mould and bacteria growth, along with other contaminants. The data gathered can be useful to determine if significant intervention is required to improve the health of your home, such as water proofing, or improved ventilation and insulation.
At Leanhaus, We have installed Awair monitors at Abbethaus and are tracking the home’s performance over time. We will also be placing a Foobot monitor in a new build, non-passive house, it will be interesting to see how this stacks up against our Passive House!
Passive House is currently the only building standard that actively ensures homes are designed for a healthy indoor environment.