Indoor pollution: how to improve the air quality at home?

Sometimes, pollution is more important in the house than outside! What are the main sources of indoor pollution? What risks does it expose us to? What are the right things to do to improve the air quality at home?

Improving indoor air quality is a health priority

Knowing that we spend more than 80% of our time in closed places (home, work, school, transportation, etc.), the quality of the indoor air we breathe is a major factor that determines our health. Exposure to indoor pollution can lead to a variety of symptoms and conditions: respiratory irritation, headaches, poisoning, etc.

What are the main sources of indoor air pollution?

Tobacco is the first indoor pollutant … and one on which it is easiest to act! Then we find cleaning products (household products, home perfumes, incense), DIY products (paints, glues, solvents, gardening products), building materials (glass wool, rock wool), products used for the manufacture of furniture (formaldehyde for example), radon, etc.

The right things to do at home to fight against indoor pollution

Air regularly your home Our homes are becoming increasingly isolated, which translates into less energy expenditure. But this isolation hinders the  renewal of our inner air. It is therefore necessary to ventilate all the rooms every day by opening the windows for at least 10 minutes. Even if it is cold, and even during a period of peak outdoor pollution, it is essential to ventilate in order to renew and mix the air, dilute and evacuate indoor pollutants.Be careful, some activities require even more ventilation: cleaning, do-it-yourself, decoration work, renovation, etc.Equip your home with a suitable ventilation system Ventilation systems (VMC, controlled mechanical ventilation) installed in the housing provide air circulation, general and permanent. Their installation and the verification of their operation must be carried out by a specialist.Make sure air inlets, grills and exhaust vents are not obstructed and clean as often as necessary to keep them efficient.

What measures to adopt for each pollutant?

Reduce indoor pollution by tobacco Do not smoke indoors or even at the window. Also, have your guests smoke outside. With 3,000 toxic substances, tobacco is the number one pollutant in housing, causing cancer through active and passive smoking, asthma, allergies, cardiovascular disease, etc. Every year, some 5,000 people die from second-hand smoke.

Reduce indoor pollution with household products and home fragrancesVentilate when using household products, avoid spray products, do not mix the products with each other (especially with bleach), follow the directions for use, doses and safety instructions, limit the number of products you use, prefer products certified as protecting the environment.Avoid scented candles, incense and indoor perfumes, great purveyors of indoor pollution. Also beware of stain removers or to remove nail polish.Reduce indoor pollution by DIY products and building materials Many building materials and DIY products (paints, glues, solvents, varnishes, vitrifiers, waxes, paint removers, thinners, lacquers, etc.) emit toxic substances such as fibers or volatile organic compounds or VOCs (formaldehyde, organic solvents glycol ethers, hydrocarbons).

When you tinker:

always wear the appropriate protections (filter mask, gloves, glasses),close the products well after use,keep them in an airy place out of the reach of children.If the work is indoors, take regular breaks outdoors and ventilate. Choose products that contain the least amount of pollutants as soon as possible: read the VOC labels, choose European eco-labels and consult the pictograms.Be careful, some new furniture (in particular chipboard) release some chemical substances for a certain time. Ideally, leave them for a few days in a very ventilated place before installing them in your bedroom or living room.

Reduce indoor pollution with radon

Radon is a radioactive natural gas emitted by the soil that causes lung cancer (2nd cause after tobacco). The presence of radon depends on the nature of the soil and the degree of containment. If you live in a region with a high concentration of radon (Auvergne, Limousin, Franche Comté, Corsica, Brittany), work to increase the ventilation of your home may be necessary.

How to improve the security of your home?

The number of burglaries per year is not really successful every year. Indeed, despite the strengthening of rounds carried  out by police forces, burglars are clever and ingenious in order to act discreetly and effectively. However, before deciding  to buy an effective security system, but very expensive, we invite you upstream to strengthen your own security through a few simple tips.

Remember that the goal of home security is to make sure that the occasional burglar will be deterred from taking your home  to the target. Obviously, it is almost impossible to make your home perfectly secure, but there are more accessible measures  that will help you to perfect this security.

1. Establish safe habits

Make the security of your home a habit by introducing some kind of safety routine between you and the kids if there is any. Get used to the following measures:- Make a habit of locking all the doors and windows when you go out, but also when entering the house.- Check that everything is locked before going to sleep.- Do not open the door to unwanted or unknown visitors. Make it a habit to ask the person knocking on your door to identify themselves. This habit must become an automatism for the children of the house.- Always close and lock the garage door.- Secure your home even if you work around the house and yard. – Use your alarm system all the time, even when you’re away for a short time, whether it’s a round trip to the store or even a quick visit from a neighbor. A little extra : browse our Homify spaces dedicated to homes to repair important security points.

2. Calling the police

Many municipal police departments offer free home inspections. A police officer walks around your house and recommends simple and cost-effective changes to enhance security. In addition, you also have the option to request a regular round around your home to the police when you are away for a long  time (holidays, weekend outings, etc.).Village House: Modern Houses by Lautrefabrique Need help for your houseproject? Contact us! GET FREE HELP

3. Arrest a burglary

Organizing a fictional burglary is a fun, fun exercise to do with a neighbor or trusted friend: Allow your neighbor to move  through your house for three minutes. Their objective ? Find as many small valuables as possible and carry them without damage. Give someone who does not know your home the opportunity to find valuables in a very short time.This exercise will allow you to identify the sensitive points of your home and especially find new hiding places for your small valuables.This exercise could then be synonymous with buying a small safe that bolts to the floor, renting an off-premises safe, or storing jewelry and money in unorthodox places. . Do the same with your neighbor’s house.In addition to strengthening the bonds between neighbors, this exercise has a formidable efficiency in the sense that it allows to have an external point of view on the security of your home.

4. Remove the hidden key from the house

The key under the doormat, in the mailbox, under a rock, we are much to resort to this small technique of precaution which is to hide a second key of the house which will serve us in case of possible problems.The problem lies in the fact that burglars know better than anyone these small places and would make a great mistake to underestimate them.Forget about this dangerous practice and give your second key to a trusted neighbor.

5. Place garage door keys and remotes in a smart place

Do not make the mistake of leaving remote controls and garage keys in a place where they would be easily identifiable.Remember that burglary requires real preparation work upstream. Burglars could have made a few rounds and thus locate your keys and remotes garages or others.We invite you to gather the set of keys and remote controls in a lockable cabinet.

6. Evaluate the doors

Although changing doors can be a complicated and expensive operation, there is nothing to stop you from inspecting your front, side and rear doors.This exercise will allow you to identify the weak points of your doors: those with a certain fragility and that can be  easily forced will absolutely need to be repaired and this, as soon as possible.As such, sliding glass doors usually have a lock to close them, but they often represent an easily exploitable entry point  for experienced burglars.For this step, we invite you to call an expert to strengthen the security of your home. A professional job will significantly reduce the risk of burglary but will also destroy your doubts about the work you would have done yourself.

7. Replace weak locks

The lock represents the weakest point on a door.Make sure you have 3-point locks, if possible, on each door. This security strengthens the strength of your door considerably.There is no need for a specialized locksmith. These can be purchased at large distribution stores dedicated to home security.