Here are 15 helpful, and relatively inexpensive ways to improve your home's environment.1. Add mats on both sides of the door. Up to 80 percent of the dirt that gets tracked inside—along with
15 Tips for a healthier Home
Dated: August 28 2020
Here are 15 helpful, and relatively inexpensive ways to improve your home's environment.
1. Add mats on both sides of the door. Up to 80 percent of the dirt that gets tracked inside—along with countless allergens, bacteria, and lawn chemicals—can be caught with a double length of washable matting before it makes itself at home.
2. Filter your drinking water. Activated carbon filters—whether a pitcher, tap-mounted, or under-sink model—can cut levels of lead, chlorine, and other contaminants. Request a copy of your municipality's annual water quality test.
3. Change fridge filters before their expiration date. If your refrigerator comes with a water dispenser, change the filter every six months, before sediment buildup starts to overwhelm it.
4. Toss cracked cutting boards. Opt for ones made of maple or a hard plastic so that germs don't have a place to hide.
5. Open a window (unless you're fighting pollen, or it's summer in Arizona). Indoor air can contain two to five times more chemical pollutants than air outdoors.
6. Use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter. High-efficiency particulate air filters are best for sucking up dust, dust mites (and their allergy-aggravating droppings), animal dander, and fleas. Use a crevice tool on upholstery and a brush attachment on dust-catching curtains and lamp shades.
7. Sanitize handheld devices. Cordless phones, TV remotes—even computer keyboards—may harbor more bacteria than a toilet seat.
8. Replace failing caulk and cracked tiles to discourage mold from growing behind the walls.
9. Dehumidify. Run your ceiling vent fan after every shower. Install a switch timer to make sure it runs at least 20 minutes to vent moist, mildew-attracting air outside.
10. Install linoleum, cork, tile, wood, or stone in place of carpets and vinyl flooring. Unlike vinyl, these natural materials contain no phthalates, and linoleum inhibits bacterial growth. All collect less dust than carpeting does.
11. Sanitize doorknobs and toys, which can harbor germs for 48 hours.
12. Opt for paper- or plant-based kitty litter. Litter that contains dust-creating silica may be harmful to pets and people when inhaled.
13. Nip fleas naturally. Launder your pet's bedding regularly in hot water. Take it to a commercial laundry if your machine can't handle the bulk.
14. Let your bed air out before you make it each day. This will allow mite-friendly moisture to evaporate. Airing out your pillows and vacuuming the mattress will help control mites too.
15. Avoid placing office equipment in the bedroom; copiers and printers can generate lung irritants.