When you have contaminated indoor air, it can be a very difficult and time-consuming process to get it fresh and clean. Sometimes, your air will turn polluted instantly, within minutes or overnight!
I’ll explain the reasons your indoors got contaminated in the first place, then share a few methods on how to fix the polluted air. It won’t be a difficult and time-consuming process if you follow these methods.
Before we talk about how to fix your contaminated indoor air, let’s first understand what causes it.
Why Do I Have Contaminated Indoor Air?
There are so many causes of contaminated indoor air, but I have broken it down into three main causes.
1. The Environment
Everything around your building can cause your air to be contaminated inside, that includes: emissions from industry, motor vehicles, lawn mowers, combustion of fuel, coal, gas and oil, cigarette smoking, bush fires, fine dust and pollen particles.
2. The Space Air Filter
Opening windows and doors, mechanical air purifier or ventilating system, if your air filter system is not working properly, or you’re not running your filter system at least 8 to 10 hours per day, then you are at high risk for contaminated air.
Your filter system constantly cleans the air in your space. Without it, you’re left with stagnant air that could become contaminated.
3. Indoor Air Toxics
An excessive amount of indoor toxics, combustion gases and pollutants can cause your air to be contaminated. That includes: personal care products, cleaning products, pest control products, renovating glues and paints, furnishings and appliances, mould and microbial contamination, house dust mites, particulates like asbestos, lead, metal and dust particles and the list goes on and on!
Practicing proper indoor air biology is important and easy. In this guide, I’ll provide you everything you need to know to keep your indoor air clean and fresh.
You want to make sure you ventilate with the proper amount of air for your size space.
Sometimes you’ll get contaminated air flow after ventilating. This is common and should dissipate over time. Just keep your windows open or filter running and it should clear up.
Spend less time cleaning and more time breathing !
Practicing proper indoor air science is important and easy. This article provides you everything you need to keep your indoor air clean and fresh.
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How To Clean A Contaminated Room
Once you have fixed all the possible problems that can cause your air to be contaminated, now we can work on a contaminated room air fix. Here are 3 ways to clear your contaminated air space:
1. Using Plants
It’s always a good idea to use some sort of plants. Plants work to gather the gases and VOCs and maintain moisture content, that are making your air contaminated and bring them together to create cleaner, fresher air.
The gases and VOCs alone will have a hard time being picked up by your air filter system, so this PLANT process absorbs them together and your filter now will be able to trap them. Air purifiers with a carbon filter effectively trap them.
Most air purifier retailers will carry more than one form of air purifier. Just ask if the filter is not only a HEPA but also a carbon filter and you will be well on your way to a clean, fresh space.
Peace Lilies are very common houseplants because they are easy to grow. They can grow up to 30cm tall.
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2. Using Zeolite
A natural mineral called Zeolite is a great idea if you’re in a rush, or would like to smell your room air cleared up quickly.
Lets say you have a party tomorrow and your air in your room is smelling stagnant. By using Zeolite, you can clean your stagnant room overnight (with a little extra work on your part). Cleaning your room is a great method, but it’s very time-consuming and needs to be planned.
Zeolite works by absorbing all the VOC gases and moisture that are making your air contaminated, and collecting them in the hundreds of pores found in natural zeolite rocks, like honey sticking inside honeycomb, and out of your air. Unlike an air purifier, these minerals WILL NOT help you filter to pick up the particles, because all of the VOCs and moisture are now trapped in the rocks.
Eliminates moisture, damp and musty smells safely and naturally from any wardrobe or room.
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At this point, you will need to manually vacuum up dust using your damp cloth and vacuum. When vacuuming, you want your HEPA filter to be new or clean (if you are using a bag in vacuum make sure that it is a new bag or clean bag with no previous dust).
The idea here is to vacuum up the dust and particles right OUT of your room, because putting that much dirty particles through your vacuum bag WILL NOT work and will send that dirty air right back into your room.
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By vacuuming and emptying bag afterwards, dust and particles will never be re-emitted through your air. You are going to lose a lot of dust everywhere, so make sure to empty outside away from the building and people. Keep a fresh mask and bag on hand so you don’t breathe in the finer particles and can dispose of dust in the rubbish quickly and safely.
Also, you must use a clean bag in the vacuum for the process. Previously used bags will not work and will just end up blowing the dust and particles in your room, right back out. Again, it is difficult and a lot of bags are costly, but it will clear your room if done properly.
3. Using Your Filter and Mechanical Ventilating System
Your space’s main filter system is located at the windows and doors and helps to clear the air, in turn the mechanical ventilating system which does not help to collect the dust and heavier particles that are on the floor of the room. Knowing this, we need to help the filter system to get to those particles.
You can achieve this two ways:
- Constantly stir up the air, by waving your hands or with a tea towel, so that it pushes the gases and finer particles closer to the ventilation systems.
- Turn on the air purifier.
It’s so easy for you to utilize them. This will allow the filter to start pulling air off the floor of the room, where the dusty particles are, and circulate the clean air back to the room.
E20 PLUS includes an additional final stage 6kg carbon filter for applications requiring heavy duty chemical & odour removal. Excellent for removing pollution from main roads, smoke and mycotoxins produced by mould spores.
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This works great, but what if you have a building that doesn’t have air purifiers? We have come up with a little trick to mimic the effect of moving air out.
Simply start an electric fan as if you were about to cool your room, but instead, leave the fan on and fan the air. Now your fan will be pushing air from the side and circulating the air, diffusing the particles and creating cleaner air.
These are three different methods of how to clean a contaminated air space by using natural items and your building’s equipment. Check out some of our related articles to get more information about contaminated spaces.
If you have any questions about your contaminated spaces, be sure to ask in the comments below and I’ll answer ASAP.
Towards healthier living Tony Parr 🙂
As Principal Consultant to Mitey Fresh since 1996, we have acquired knowledge of adverse health effects and recommend effective strategies to reduce occupants’ exposure by eliminating and controlling as many sources of pollutants in order to create healthy indoor living environments that are as exposure-free and natural as practically possible.
We cut out all the fluff and confusion of indoor air maintenance and stripped it down to the bare bones.