8 DIY Hacks for Cleaner Air Quality at Home
Updated: Nov 21, 2020
Clean Air Quality at Home is essential because:
Approximately 90% of our time is spent indoors, a number that is expected to rise due to COVID-19 shutdown(s) and work-from-home policies
We consume 4x as much air than both water and food combined every single day
We consume at least 15,000 Liters of Air a day - imagine that in water bottles!
(Source: WELL v2, 2018)
If a space is designed inadequately, our health will be negatively affected, both in the short-term and long-term, and can result in us having increased headaches, sinus irritations, asthma attacks, to even more serious cardiorespiratory diseases and cancer (WELL v2, 2018).
With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and knowing how the virus spreads, providing clean air at home should be a top priority for our health.
Here are therefore 8 DIY Hacks for Cleaner Air Quality at Home (from cheapest to expensive) within a reasonable price range:
1) Ban the use of Cigarettes, Tobacco and Weed at home
Cigarettes weaken our cardiorespiratory system and increase our risk of developing lung cancer.
Second hand smoking also negatively impacts the health of other occupants in a space. Although tobacco and weed are not as harmful, their fumes too disrupt the air quality of our spaces.
2) Make use of Operable Windows and/or Skylights
Cost: $0 to $20 (universally accessible casement handles)
Operable windows to the outside allows fresh air to circulate into our homes. Make sure that your windows do not open directly to a garage, exhaust, or any polluted areas; opening directly to nature is ideal.
Lastly, ensure your window handles are universally accessible to everyone. They should be “operable with one hand and with a closed fist and do not require tight grasping, pinching or twisting of the wrist” (WELL v2, 2018).
3) Purchase one Indoor Plant for every 100 SF of space
Cost: $5 to $50
According to NASA’s plant experiment in space, one air purifying plant for every 100 SF should suffice in eradicating common indoor air pollutants, such as Benzene*, Trichloroethylene (TCE)** and Formaldehyde***.
Plants are able to purify the air because the microorganisms and roots of plants enable them to “destroy the pathogenic viruses, bacteria, and the organic chemicals, ...converting all of these air pollutants into new plant tissue” (NASA, 2013).
A list of NASA-proven air purifying plants are listed here, and can be found in any local plant shop, convenient store or big box retail stores.
If you live in downtown Toronto, both Queens Fruit Market & Plants (Queen & Bathurst) and 21 Seven Market (Bloor & Ossington) are great places to buy plants
If you live uptown in Toronto, a visit to Valleyview Gardens (Markham-Stouffville) is a must