In a typical year, the transition to fall and winter signals more time spent indoors at home. But we’re in 2020 and it hasn’t been a normal year. And now many of us are spending much more time at home regardless of the season‐including working remotely or attending school from home in kitchens, basements, or bedrooms.
What does that mean for your home and its mechanical systems? If you’re working or schooling from home throughout the day, then you’re using your HVAC and plumbing systems with greater frequency than in the past—and you might be using them differently than if you were out of the house during the day.
What’s more, maintaining clean air in your home has always been a priority during the cold and flu season. But concerns over cleanliness and health loom even larger this fall as the coronavirus pandemic lingers.
If you’re working and schooling from home this fall, consider these 3 tips to ensure your home is up to the task of maintaining a healthy and comfortable environment with efficiency, from morning through night.
Consider the air
You might be surprised to learn that the air quality in your home can be worse than the air quality outside. According to the EPA, the levels of indoor air pollutants are often 2 to 5 times higher than outdoor levels, and in some cases these levels can exceed 100 times than that of outdoor levels of the same pollutants.
One of the best ways to clean your indoor air is with a home air filtration system. These are whole-house devices that integrate directly in your ductwork to trap a range of tiny, invisible particles and contaminants, including dander, pollen, mold, and dust.
While a filtration system serves as a great first line of defense against pollutants to improve your home’s indoor air quality, it doesn’t trap microorganisms, like germs and bacteria. A UV air purification system uses state-of-the-art light technology to destroy 99% of airborne microorganisms such as germs, bacteria, viruses and mold.
Accomplished with a professional installation inside your heating or air conditioning system’s air handler or in your ductwork, UV air purifiers also have the benefit of preventing biological growth from clogging your HVAC’s system air filter, making it operate more efficiently and maximizing the lifespan of your system.
Dial in your smart thermostat
Heating your home all day long can add up on your energy bills fast, but it’s often a necessity as we head into the colder months of the year.
Two of the biggest reasons homeowners upgrade to a smart thermostat—a thermostat that can be controlled with a phone, tablet, smart speaker, or other internet-connected device—is for convenience and to save on energy costs.
Controlling your thermostat remotely from an internet connected device is a great convenience because you can adjust the temperature inside your home before you walk in the door, and step into comfort without having to run your system all day long. It also provides cost savings as you’re not wasting energy when you don’t need it.
But what happens when you’re home all day long? Even though you’re spending more time at home, chances are you aren’t using every room. Maybe your home office is set up in the basement, while the kids are doing school from the kitchen table?
Depending on your system, some smart thermostats allow you to control your home temperature in room by room zones—allowing you to heat only the areas you’re using while reducing your energy spend on those you’re not. At the very least, be sure to reset your smart thermostat’s schedule to reflect your new routines and manage energy consumption.
Check your water
More time spent at home also means you are using your home’s plumbing system with much greater frequency than in the past.
This can put more wear and tear on your pipes and appliances. Given increased use, it is a smart preventative maintenance practice to schedule a whole-home plumbing safety inspection, leak check and drain maintenance. To avoid catastrophic damage from leaks or flooding, an advanced leak detection system can send alerts and shut off your water main when a leak is detected, and results in big-time savings.
If you’re concerned about your home’s drinking water—especially now that you’re likely drinking it more throughout the day —you may want to consider a water treatment solution.
Unpleasant odors, discoloration, or dishware that is stained and spotty are all signs that you may benefit from a home water treatment system. And the type of system you need will depend on your specific water quality issues. For example, bad taste or odors can be treated with a carbon filter water filtration system, while a UV filter system eliminates harmful bacteria. A licensed plumbing expert can help you decide what type of purification and filtration system is best for your needs.
Whether your home is in an area that uses municipal water or well water, a home water treatment system can ensure that you and your family are drinking fresher, cleaner water, free of common contaminants and chemicals.
Get peace of mind with Sila’s Home Comfort Experts
If you’re not sure about your home’s air or water quality, simply schedule an appointment with one of Sila’s home comfort experts. We will provide a thorough inspection and analysis to present you with all of your options — giving you peace of mind while you’re working and learning from home.