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.