With traffic congestion, haboobs and the general lack of rain that comes from living in a desert, it’s not really a surprise the Phoenix area doesn’t have the best air quality.
But it could be worse than you think. Here are a few stats we’ve collected about the kind of air in our the Phoenix area and how it affects your health.
General Air Quality
The quality of the air you breathe in plays an important role in your health (much the same way that the quality of water you drink affects your health.) With that in mind, consider the following.
- You breathe in approximately 35 gallons of air per day. That’s about 20,000 breaths and the quality of the air you breathe in affects your health. Source: American Lung Association
- Phoenix is in the top 25 most polluted cities in the United States in all three categories in the American Lung Association’s State of the Air 2013 report. Source: State of the Air 2013
- Maricopa County received an “F” for ozone pollution and particle pollution. Source: State of the Air 2013
- Air pollution has been linked to increased risk of lung cancer, cardiovascular disease and stroke. Sources: American Lung Association and American Heart Association
Air Quality in Your Home
The problems with outdoor air are well documented and you might think you’re safe as long as you stay in your home with the windows shut. But that’s not true.
- Indoor air is 2-5 times (and as much as 100 times) worse than the worst outdoor air. Source: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
- You spend 90% of your time indoors. Indoor air is more polluted than outdoor air and you spend more time inside. So shouldn’t you be concerned about your home’s air quality? Source: EPA
- 1 in 15 Arizona homes have high levels of radon, a naturally occurring chemical that causes 20,000 lung cancer deaths annually. Source: Arizona Radiation Regulatory Agency
- Opening the windows in your home may be a problem (you let in contaminants from the outside.) Source: American Lung Association
- Keeping your windows closed may lead to increased indoor air quality problems because you’re trapping the contaminants inside your home. Source: EPA
What You Can Do
Check out the American Lung Associations State of the Air 2013 report to see how you can affect change for outdoor air quality.
To improve the quality of the air in your home, the EPA recommends three things:
- Source control – remove items that are causing the indoor pollution
- Ventilation – as we stated above, though, this can be a double-edged sword. Open windows on low pollution days.
- Use air cleaners – air cleaners installed within your home can capture up to 99.9% of airborne contaminants that travel through the filter. (Ask us about the Fresh-Aire UV Purifier that is installed within your ductwork and removes airborne odors, toxic chemical vapors, germs and mold in your home.)
Want to see how Fountain Hills Air can protect you and your family from indoor air pollution? Schedule a free estimate with one of our air quality experts.