The Open Door Blog
Whether you own a new home or condo, are considering buying one, or just love to dream about it, the Open Door blog is here to share stories that can help you protect what is likely the biggest investment of your life.
The Open Door blog is published by Tarion, a non-profit corporation that administers Ontario’s New Home Warranty Plan and registers all new home builders in Ontario. Click here to learn more about us.
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- April 9, 2020
How to maintain a healthy home
Protecting our health has never been more important. While health experts encourage frequent handwashing and coughing and sneezing into our sleeves to combat the spread of germs, many forget that maintenance within your home can also help keep you and your loved ones healthy.
So, what are the ways you can keep your home healthy?
A clean filter improves your home’s air quality. When the filter is clogged, it’s no longer able to catch the dust, mould spores, pollen, dander and other kinds of dirt from the air.
Let’s start with air circulation within your home. Changing your furnace filter is key. A clean filter improves your home’s air quality. When the filter is clogged, it’s no longer able to catch the dust, mould spores, pollen, dander and other kinds of dirt from the air. Replacing your filter regularly also keeps your furnace in tip-top shape and allows it to operate as efficiently as possible. A dirty filter makes your furnace work harder to blow out heat, thus raising your energy bill. How often you need to change your filter depends on what kind of furnace you have. Review your furnace’s manual to ensure that you buy the proper filter type and size for your unit and follow the replacement schedule. Clean and test all air exhaust systems too.
In addition to maintaining your furnace, regular dusting and vacuuming can aid in the removal of allergens and dust and help keep them out of your lungs. This includes vacuuming air ducts and vents - but be sure to remove the covers to thoroughly vacuum them.
There are also air-purifying plants that are a good way to improve air quality and provide a nice touch of nature indoors. Here are some helpful plants that double up as décor pieces and oxygen boosters.
Next, let’s talk about moisture. Too much moisture within your home can cause mould. Mould is a type of fungus that can grow on any substance where there is moisture, and having it in the home increases the risk of respiratory issues and asthma. If you have any plumbing leaks, be sure to fix them quickly. You should also use your home ventilation system to control the humidity levels within the home. This includes running the bathroom fan when bathing or showering and turning on the range hood fan while cooking. You can also purchase a hygrometer, which monitors the humidity levels within your home. To help keep moisture out, fix the caulking around windows and doors if it’s cracked or separated and check all weatherstripping. And don’t forget to check your attic, crawl space and basement for leaks or moisture. Outside your home, clear eavestroughs of debris and extend downspouts so that water is directed away from the home.
Finally, check carbon monoxide detectors and smoke alarms every month. You should also test for radon and contact Tarion if there are excessive levels within your home.
Completing these few maintenance tips can have long-lasting effects on your home and health. For further ideas on how to maintain your new home, check out these seasonal maintenance checklists.