Indoor air quality refers to the quality of air inside buildings, including homes, offices, and other structures. Poor indoor air quality has a significant impact on the health and well-being of those who live or work in these spaces. Studies have shown that indoor air can be up to five times more polluted than outdoor air, which is why it is important to get your indoor air quality tested regularly to ensure that indoor living spaces are safe for you and your loved ones. How do you go about testing your indoor air for quality and safety? The two most common options are DIY testing and professional indoor air quality assessment; which one is best for you? Read on to see the benefits and differences between both kinds of tests as you make an informed choice for you and your home.
DIY Tests: Do They Really Work?
A DIY indoor air quality test is a test that you can perform yourself to assess the quality of the air in your home. These tests typically come in the form of a kit that you can purchase online or at a home improvement store. The kits usually include a sampling device that is used to collect air samples from different areas of your home, as well as instructions for how to use the kit and interpret the results.
There are several types of DIY indoor air quality tests available, including tests for common pollutants like mold, radon, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Some tests may also measure the levels of particulate matter (PM) in the air, which can include things like dust, pollen, and other small particles. It is debatable in professional HVAC circles whether these tests can give you the kind of accurate saturation percentage needed to make safety decisions regarding indoor air assessment and cleanup.
While DIY indoor air quality tests can be a useful tool for identifying potential problems with the air quality in your home, they are not always as accurate as professional tests. Interpreting the results of a DIY test can be challenging, as it requires a basic understanding of air quality and the pollutants that may be present in your home. It’s important to carefully follow the instructions included with the test kit and consider consulting with a professional if you have any questions or concerns about your indoor air quality.
What Your DIY Test Might Miss
While DIY tests are a useful tool for beginning to analyze potential problems with air quality, they are not as accurate or comprehensive as professional tests. DIY tests are generally limited to testing the air in the rooms in which they are conducted. They may miss sources of pollution that are hidden or difficult to access, such as mold between walls or asbestos insulation.
Indoor air quality can vary over time, depending on factors like weather, occupancy, and ventilation. A DIY test only provides a small snapshot of the air quality at the time that your test was conducted, and it may not capture the full range of variations present in your home at any given time.
Some pollutants, such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), can be very complex and difficult to measure accurately. DIY tests may not be able to detect low levels of these pollutants, which can contribute to significant health issues over time.
DIY tests are difficult to interpret unless you have knowledge of certain vocabulary terms and mathematical measurements. Additionally, a test may reveal the presence of chemicals or substances that you know little about. In these cases, a professional assessment would be necessary to determine the full extent of indoor air pollution and to make informed decisions about cleaning up indoor air quality moving forward.
The Professional Difference
DIY indoor air quality tests can be a useful tool for identifying potential problems with the air quality in your home, but they are not always as accurate or comprehensive as professional tests. If you have concerns about the air quality in your home, it may be worth investing in a professional assessment to ensure that you are getting accurate and reliable information. At Smith & Willis Heating & Air Conditioning, we have been proudly serving valued residents of Commerce City and beyond for over 20 years, bringing services such as heating repair, installation, and service, AC maintenance and repair services, and indoor air quality solutions to our important clients. We find air quality solutions that work for you, your home, and your budget. Contact Smith & Willis Heating & Air Conditioning today to see how we can provide clean, healthy solutions for your home environment.