Have you ever thought about what affects the air quality inside your home? If you haven’t, now is the time to start. According to the EPA, the air inside your house is likely more polluted than the air outside it, and if you routinely cook at home, your food preparation could be contributing to that indoor air pollution.
How can cooking impact indoor air quality, and what can you do to keep your indoor air as clean as possible? Read on to find out.
Cooking Tools That Negatively Affect Indoor Air Quality
Anyone who cooks indoors uses some type of heat source to prepare food, and some of those heat sources naturally produce pollutants that negatively impact indoor air quality.
Propane and gas-powered stoves can release formaldehyde, carbon monoxide, and other contaminants into the air. If levels get high enough, they can be harmful to both people and animals. Although cooking on them isn’t common, wood stoves can also produce a considerable amount of smoke, which will inevitably impact indoor air quality, too.
If you use a self-cleaning oven, gas or electric, it can negatively affect your indoor air quality as well. As the oven burns away food waste stuck to its interior, it can generate toxic fumes from the burned materials, which will contribute to air pollution inside your home.
What Else About Cooking Impacts Indoor Air Quality?
Cooking tools aren’t the only fume producers that can decrease indoor air quality. The ingredients you use and how you use them can also contribute to the pollution inside your home.
When you heat oils and fats to their smoke point, they also produce toxic compounds that affect indoor air quality. The same idea applies if you ever happen to burn anything that you cook — burning anything carbon-based generates toxins that contribute to pollution. And when you burn something in a confined space, those toxins can linger in the air for prolonged periods.
How to Control Cooking-Related Indoor Air Pollution
Aside from eating out, improving your kitchen ventilation is the best way to keep cooking fumes from damaging your indoor air quality. If you have a range with a hood, here’s how to do that:
● Check to make sure your range’s exhaust fan is set up to vent fumes outdoors.
● Always use the hood exhaust fan while you cook.
● If you can, cook on the back burners. These burners are closer to the range hood, which helps direct fumes outdoors.
What if you don’t have a range hood over your cooktop? Here are some simple strategies you can use to control indoor air pollution:
● Open one or more windows in your kitchen while you cook.
● Turn on a nearby ceiling fan while you cook.
● If you don’t have a ceiling fan, consider placing a portable fan in your kitchen while you cook to help move fumes toward your HVAC intake vents.
For more helpful tips, be sure to check out these easy indoor air quality hacks.
Dust Doctors: The Twin Cities #1 Choice for Indoor Air Quality Services
Worried your indoor air quality isn’t quite as good as it should be? Let our team at Dust Doctors help you out! We specialize in full-service duct cleaning, air purification systems, and HVAC maintenance service for homeowners throughout Little Canada and the surrounding Twin Cities metro. To get started, request a free quote online or give us a call today at 65-319-9777 to learn more about what we can do for you.
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