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Indoor Air Quality

There is constant talk of the air quality outside. You hear politicians discuss climate control and smog, environmentalists often preach at reducing your emissions and planting trees to purify the air. Have you ever stopped to consider what the air quality inside your home is like?


As with everywhere you go, there are certain things you don’t want to inhale. Your lungs can only tolerate so many things before symptoms start to appear. The gasses you should be worried about are things like formaldehyde, benzene, trichloroethylene, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, phenols and radon. Any of these harmful gasses in your home can cause irreparable damage to your health. One of the easiest, and most gratifying ways to improve the air quality in your home is to invest in some air-purifying house plants. The best part about this, is that there are plants out there for even the most unsuccessful gardener. Thanks to Nasa, there are lists out there covering 50+ plants that remove pollutants and gasses from your home. Here are a couple of our favorites.

1. The Areca palm, also known as the Butterfly Palm, is extremely talented at removing toluene and xylene from the home. Toluene is commonly found in glue, nail polish remover, and paint thinner. These chemicals are not necessarily harmful in the short term, but have been known to cause long term effects as they accumulate. The Areca palm also emits large amounts of water vapor, which can help to alleviate dry air.

2. The Lady Palm, or the Rhapis, is one of the simplest palms to grow. There are many different species, and they all have different requirements, but overall should be manageable for those of us lacking a green thumb. The Rhapis adapts well to most environments, and are resistant to most insect infestations. If their habitat is too dry, the tips of the palm will turn brown.

3. The Ficus Alii is great for removing chemicals from the air and loves being inside. They prefer a humid environment and tolerate low light, but these guys won’t like being near any kind of draft or heating elements. They do best where they can be left alone to clean your air in peace. This plant is also poisonous and should be kept away from pets and children.

4. The Peace Lily has a high transpiration rate which humidify and purify the indoors. It excels in removing alcohols, acetone, benzene, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene from the home. This is another plant for those of us that can’t keep anything alive, as it flourishes with neglect, out of the way of drafts and ventilation. This plant is also poisonous and should be kept away from pets and children.

This is the air that you’re breathing day in, and day out. If that air is of poor quality, it’s affecting your lungs and wellbeing. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to immediately call an expert to come and inspect your home, but stop and think about the small things you can do to improve your families health. If you have any worry of a gas leak, or just want to make sure that all your ducts are in a row, call us today!


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