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Life

What Are Possible Sources of Indoor Air Pollution?

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Nobody wants to breathe polluted air, but they have no idea that the air they breathed in inside their home are contaminated to many pollutants. It is sad to be true, but the indoor air quality is 10 times worse than the outdoor air quality. 

Since we spent 80% of our times indoor, there is a high chance that we breathed polluted air every day and infected our lung with pollutants that can impact to our health. 

Common Indoor Air Pollutants 

1. Particulates 

If you use alternative heating coal such as wood stove, then you are exposed to the smoke particulates every day. The particulates in the smoke can fly in the air and inhaled to your lungs. It can absorb to your lung and damaging it. 

2. Tobacco 

If you are a smoker or live with a smoker, chances of compounds and chemicals in your indoor air are heavily high. The only solution to avoid this is to make your home smoke-free and do not let anyone smoke inside your house. 

3. Volatiles 

You may not know about this, but, your cleaning products, hairsprays, paints, fabrics are the sources of volatile organic compounds. You can reduce the uses of hairsprays to protect yourself from the exposure of pollutants. 

 

These indoor air pollutants are dangerous to our health. You can protect yourself and your family by cleaning-up your house regularly, let the window open to circulate the air or installing an air purifier in your living room or your bedroom to keep your indoor air fresh. 

 

Life

5 Smart Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality

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Indoor Air Pollution 

Did you know that the indoor air quality is 10 times worse than the outdoor air quality? Yes, the air that you breathe in your home is as bad – or even worse than it is outdoors.  To make it worse, 80% of our time are spent in indoor area which makes us breathe pollute air every day 

What is exactly air pollution? 

According to the British Lung Foundation defines indoor air pollution as “dust, dirt or gases in the air inside a building that harms us if we breathe it in”. 

It means that without us knowing, the indoor air is contained so many dust, gases, bacteria and other pollutants in the airborne. The World Health Organization (WHO) said, the indoor air pollution killed a staggering 4.3 million people worldwide in 2012, of which 99,000 people were in Europe suffering from serious respiratory and cardiovascular conditions such as lung cancer and heart disease. 

But there are still ways for us to breathe cleaner and fresher air.  

5 Smart Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality 

  • Clean your house regularly 
    Clean your house, carpets and sofas regularly can reduce the level of pollutants in your home or your office. So, make sure to clean it up regularly or hire a professional to clean it up for you.
  • Make your home smoke-free zone 
    If you are a smoker, then you should hold yourself a bit to not smoke cigarettes inside your house. Why? Cigarettes contain more than 4,000 chemicals and the smoke and odour of your cigarettes can pollute your air.  It would be better if you stop smoking, or smoke outside your house and do not let anyone smoke inside your house. 
  • Use Cooking Vents 
    Gas stoves release harmful contaminants, including carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide. Which is why, you need to install a kitchen vents to remove and filter out the air to improve indoor air quality. 
  • Buy indoor plants 
    Plants are nature’s natural air filters. Besides, investing indoor plants can boost your mood by looking at the green fresh leaves. 
  • Invest in an air purifier 
    Yes, an air purifier is great to trap and remove almost 100% of pollutants, bacteria and viruses, filtering it and releasing it back out into the room with cleaner and fresher air.
    It is highly recommended tools to improve your indoor air quality. 
Life

How To Remove Cigarette Smell in 3 Ways

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Who likes the smell of cigarette smoke? Even though you are smokers or non-smokers, we all do not like the smells from cigarette smoke or another object lingering in our house or cars, isn’t it? 

However, the cigarette smoke leaves a strong odour in your car and even your house. The reason why cigarettes leave a strong odour in your fabric, sofa, hairs and leather is because these types of material can easily be absorbed by cigarette smoke.  

Unfortunately, removing the lingering cigarette smells in your t-shirt, sofa, fabric or your room is not as easy as we thought. But there are ways for you to try to remove the cigarette smell easier. 

Here are the three ways for you to remove cigarette smell: 

Coffee Grounds 

If you are a coffee lover, then you can easily have this thing. The coffee grounds can absorb the odour of cigarette smoke in your car or your room. 

How to use coffee grounds to remove odours? 

  1. You need to prepare coffee grounds and a bowl 
  2. Fill the bowl with the coffee grounds 
  3. Please place it in the place you want to remove the odours 

Charcoal

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Some of you do not think that charcoal can help you to remove odour in your room. It turns out, charcoal contains pores (small microscopic holes), that attract molecules (gases, liquids, and even solids). That is why charcoal is a highly recommended option for you to remove odours. 

How to use charcoal to remove odours? 

  1. You need to prepare activated charcoal and a bowl 
  2. Fill the bowl with the activated charcoal 
  3. Please place it in the place you want to remove the odours 

Note: the more activated charcoal you use, the faster the odours absorb. 

Baking Soda

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Baking soda has the ability to absorb the odour of cigarette smoke in your carpet or furniture. 

How to use baking soda to remove odours? 

  1. Prepare the baking soda 
  2. Spread the baking soda on the carpets, sofas or other furnitures 
  3. Wait for 1 or 2 hours for baking soda to absorb the odour 
  4. Clean it. 

After trying this way to remove cigarette smells, do not forget to keep your house or your car clean by regularly cleaning your home or your vehicle so the odour will not linger for a long time.  

Life

Why is it important to protect drinking water?

Protect water

Contamination, the introduction of a pollutant or undesirable material into the air, soil, or water, has many negative and far-reaching effects. Thus it is important to protect drinking water from contamination for public health, economic, and environmental reasons.

Water is necessary to all living things. It makes up approximately 70% of the human body’s weight and plays a role in its functions, such as digestion and cooling.  Without clean drinking water, we could not survive.  If the drinking water is contaminated, many health risks can result: bacteria can result in illnesses such as hepatitis or cholera; a component of gasoline, benzene, is known to be a carcinogen; lead causes kidney, liver, and nerve damage as well as pregnancy risks.

Protecting drinking water also makes good environmental sense. In the past, people thought that if we buried chemicals in the ground they would disappear.  This is now a proven fallacy that has resulted in dire consequences for our environment.  Everything we put into the environment accumulates. Contamination can take years to clean up and not all ground water contamination can be treated successfully with current technology. This is why pollution prevention is crucial.

 

What is contamination?

Contamination is the introduction of a pollutant or undesirable material into air, soil, or water.  There are three types of contaminants: microorganisms, inorganic chemicals, and organic chemicals.  Microorganisms are living organisms such as bacteria, viruses, and Giardia.  Inorganic chemicals such as nitrate, arsenic and metals are another type of contaminant. Microorganisms and some inorganic chemicals are naturally occurring substances that taken out of drinking water through treatment at our local water systems.  Organic chemicals can be solvents, fuels, and pesticides.

Life

Smoking Ban Not Enough to Clear the Air

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The final implementation of Turkey’s ban on smoking took place in July 2009. It was once thought as a big hail to the public health. But one environmental engineer pinpointed that it might take more than banning cigarettes in enclosed spaces to truly clear the air.


Industrial Pollution Causes Cancer Too

People are still facing the risk of cancer even without being exposed to cigarette smoke. In Dilovası, an industrial city in the Marmara region, levels of air-borne toxins are 30 times higher than European Union standards, adding that 32 percent of deaths in the area in recent years have been attributed to cancer.
300,000 Tons of Sulfur Dioxide

In the southwest city of Yatağan, a coal-fired power plant has released more than 300,000 tons of sulfur dioxide into the air since it opened in 1982. Environmentalists have called for the facility to be shut down.

While smoking bans may well be implemented, other environmental laws are often not enforced, allowing factories to get away with not controlling or filtering their emissions. Indeed, if thesmoke-free air space campaign is meant to be supported, it is much more important to reduce air pollution caused by the industry apart from banning cigarettes.

Life

Is A Day-Old Water Safe To Drink?

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Have your tried water that’s been left overnight, or even for another day? How do you think about the taste?

Treated water’s added chlorine that takes care of microorganisms, but at room temperature they begin to multiply rapidly and can really get the things crazy. But that’s not what makes old water taste stale. For that we can thank carbon dioxide. After about 12 hours tap water starts to go flat as arbon dioxide in the air starts to mix with the water in the glass, lowering its pH and giving it an off taste. But it’s most likely safe to drink.

However, back to those microorganisms. Be careful if you use a dirty glass day after day, since there bacteria is likely to grow by themselves. But if you use a fresh glass every few days, you likely won’t have a problem. Unless the rim of the glass has been touched by dirty fingers.

As for plastic water bottles that has been exposed to the sun or left in the car, step away from the bottle. This’s warned by Dr. Kellogg Schwab, director of the Johns Hopkins University Water Institute, “A chemical called BPA, along with other things used to manufacture plastic can leak into your water if the bottle heats up or sits in the sun,” he explains. BPA is a hormone disruptor that is tentatively linked to everything from heart disease to cancer.

He also adds that plastic used for commercial bottled water isn’t meant to be washed or refilled, so use only one time and recycle. Or way better, don’t buy them at all; use a refillable water bottle instead.

Life

Make Your Cleaning Routine Green

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Be careful with antibacterial cleaners

The antibacterial and ‘cleaners’ that many people think are helpful don’t clean hands better than soap and water, and also add to the risk of breeding “super germs,” bacteria that resist to the chemicals.

Toss toxic cleaners carefully

When handling your finished cleaning products, don’t just throw the old ones in the trash. If they’re too toxic for your home, they won’t be good for the drain or the landfill either. Many communities hold toxics electronics recycling days and will take all of these off your hands. Throwing chemicals in the trash or down the drain means they might end up back in your water supply.

Employ a green house cleaning service

For people don’t have the time to clean their own homes, there are an increasing number of green cleaning services out there to help get things done. If you can’t find one in your area, call around until you find a service willing to use the products and methods you specify.

Keep the toxins away from your room

Imagine what’s on your shoes at the end of the day. Bringing that oil, animal waste, particulate pollution, pollen, and who knows what else into the house. Especially for kids that spend time on floor level. Keep a good doormat and maintain a shoeless house policy. Less dirt also means less sweeping, mopping, and vacuuming, which means less work, water, energy, and fewer chemicals. So, why not?

Life

How’s The Water? Check It Before You Buy A House

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In the last decade, the number of products designed to reduce contaminants in tap water has expanded significantly. In this article, I summarized a quick lesson on home water purification systems.

  1. Know the TASTE. Does your water taste funny or smell bad? Does it look reddish or leave
  2. Look for products that tackle specifically your problem. Filters reduce chemical contaminants, some metals, parasites, sediment. Provide about 1/2 to 1 gallon of water a minute.
  3. DEVICE. Choose a style that fits your needs: Pitchers with filters: Inexpensive. No installation; frequent filter changes (every 40 gallons).

Faucet devices:

Faucet with builtin filter — may require pro to install; filter changes every 100 gallons or so.

Device that mounts on existing faucet; filter changes every 100 gallons or so.

Countertop device that connects to faucet via hose; filter change starting at about every 100 gallons. Plumbed-in: Systems that install under sink and refrigerator filters that install directly to plumbing line. Both have long filter lives; generally require pro to install.

CERTIFY/VERIFY. Look for an NSF-certified product. And be sure to read the owner’s manual to make sure you change the filter appropriately.

Life

Get Rid of Smoke from Your Surrounding Air

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Let’s say we have a family member who likes to smoke constantly. When he or she is in the house, we hate it. Then, what can we put in the house so other people aren’t consuming the smoke?

We are well aware about the second hand smoke and damages it brings. In addition to the smoke, cigarettes also produce a sticky tar that can build up on furniture and walls causing a brown discoloration (the same theory applies on smokers’ teeth). Fortunately, there’re still plenty of products available to help remove the room of this unpleasant and unhealthy smoke.

There are two factors that need to be considered with cigarette smoke. The first is an ozone producing machine. This neutralizes the odour and toxic components that are released with the cigarette smoke. The second is a HEPA filter. These are effective in filtering out the tar and particulate to keep it from landing on the surfaces in your home. Together, these two items will help remove the smell and keep the tar out of your home, making for an efficient cigarette smoke removal system. Trust it or not, they will do the job beyond your expectations.

Air purifiers or ionizers alone will not effectively remove the cigarette smoke from the air. Ensure that your air purifying device contains both an ozone generating component as well as a filtering system.

Life

Get Away Pollutants During Home Reconstruction

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Remodelling can make an older home feel new again. But it’s at the same time filling the air with dangerous chemicals and other contaminants that put your family’s health at risk. That’s why it’s important to protect your home’s Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) throughout the entire reconstruction process.

Demolition is generally the least pleasant and most dangerous step in reconstruction, at least in terms of IAQ. Dangerous pollutants are released by tearing, stripping and sanding paint. This is especially true for homes built before the late 1970s, when lead based paint and asbestos insulation were still commonly used in construction.

Solution: Seal off remodelling areas before you begin. Try to enter the room from the exterior only.

After the completion of demolition, the installation of new components comes. This process has its own IAQ issues. If materials such as stone, tile and wood are cut inside the home, this can create dust that triggers breathing problems, runny nose and watery eyes, especially in those with allergies.

Solution: Protect the indoor air from unnecessary contaminants. Ask your contractor to cut materials and tile outside so that most dust stays outside as well. Leave windows open at least a crack at all times until the fumes are gone.

The key is to plan ahead and pay attention to Indoor Air Quality at each critical stage of reconstruction. When the project is done, “fresh” your new home with a high-quality air purifier to reduce risks of leftover pollutants.