How Phoenix’s Outdoor Air Is Affecting Your Indoor Air (and How You Can Fix It)

In Phoenix, the skies may be sunny year round, but there’s more to the view than meets the eye. Amidst that balmy, dry air is a host of pollutants. Find out why this makes Phoenix one of the worst cities to breathe in and how you can protect yourself.

The Air Quality in Phoenix

How bad is the air quality in Phoenix? In 2019, the city received an F rating from the American Lung Association, and was deemed “the 7th most ozone-polluted metropolitan area in the country.” It’s been noted as even worse in lower income areas of the city, according to the Maricopa County Air Quality Department, as South and West Phoenix have poor air quality due to the older homes and dense populations in those areas. The scorching summer heat, regular monsoon seasons full of haboobs and dusty air, and the city’s highrises surrounded by concrete don’t help either.

Understanding Smog in Phoenix

What Can I Do to Help Improve Phoenix’s Outdoor Air Quality?

  • Don’t burn wood on ‘no burn days’ (indoor or outdoor). The best way to check for no burn day warnings is through the Maricopa County based website, Clean Air Make More. You can also call the Maricopa County Burn Line at (602) 506-6400 for a recorded message.
  • Reduce your time spent driving. Making unnecessary trips is not only a hassle, it contributes to poor air pollution. Reducing your number of trips or time spent driving overall can reduce your errand list and make your city’s air cleaner. This includes carpooling, riding your bike, walking, or taking public transportation.
  • Don’t idle your car. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, “Idling for more than 10 seconds uses more fuel and produces more emissions that contribute to smog and climate change than stopping and restarting your engine does.” This, of course, excludes moments when you’re stuck in traffic or when you’re waiting for a light to turn green again, but idling in a parking lot or outside your house is contributing unnecessarily to poor air quality.

How to improve Phoenix's air quality

When Outside Becomes Inside

At Magic Touch Mechanical, we understand how outdoor air quality can impact your health, and just like you, we care about the earth and the air we breathe. However, few of us spend more than an hour or two outside each day. The truth is, modern Americans spend 80% or more of their time inside. So… does outdoor pollution matter?

Absolutely. Sources of outdoor air pollution, such as smog from carbon emissions and dust from Arizona’s monsoon storms, can wreak havoc on your home’s indoor air quality. They can gunk up your filter, make your air conditioning unit work worse, and seep in through your windows or air ducts. Outdoor pollution follows us inside, wafting in whenever we open the window, clinging to our clothes and hair, and seeping in underneath our doors. So, if you live in an area prone to high levels of pollution, like Phoenix, it’s especially important that your HVAC unit is properly configured to deliver clean, temperate air.

Poor Indoor Air Quality in Your Home: Additional Sources

Your home may also be suffering from particulates and allergens that originate inside. Here are a few possible contributing factors that may be affecting your breathing indoors.

  • Pet Dander: Many of us love our pets, but they are also a source of poor indoor air quality. The dander from pets’ fur and general odors can permeate our homes. No matter how much we vacuum, Fido’s fur never seems to come off the couch completely. Vacuuming can’t completely get rid of pet dander, but an air scrubber can help.
  • Mold: Mold can make you sick, including a host of respiratory and health issues. Mold in the home comes from excess moisture, which can live in a variety of places, including the bathroom and kitchen. Mold can even contribute to ‘sick building syndrome,’  and can hang out in your A/C unit, so it’s important to make sure the HVAC professionals at Magic Touch Mechanical can ensure that your unit is keeping you healthy indoors.
  • Household Products: Household products that produce fragrance or come in aerosol form can be an air pollutant, as they often contain harsh chemicals. This includes everything from dishwashing to laundry to bathroom cleaning products. To reduce the number of toxic household cleaning product pollutants in your home, the Environmental Working Group’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning is a great start for finding what hidden chemicals lurk in these products.

Ways to improve indoor air quality

Still Coughing Up a “Storm?”

If it seems like you’ve tried everything to improve your indoor air quality and it still isn’t working, an air scrubber could be the solution. How do they work and what are the benefits?

What Is an Air Scrubber?

An air scrubber, such as the Air Scrubber by Aerus that is sold and installed by Magic Touch Mechanical, destroys pathogens in the air and on surfaces. This device originally used NASA developed technology that has since evolved to be applied to home HVAC use instead of in a spaceship!

Air Scrubber Features:
  • Kills pathogens in the air and on surfaces in the home.
  • Involved in many studies that showed its reduction of harmful pathogens such as E. Coli, Black Mold, dust, and pollen.
  • Removes odors.
  • Installed directly into the HVAC’s ductwork.

Air scrubber features

Call Magic Touch to Learn More

Achieving clean air outdoors and indoors may seem insurmountable in our present world, but by being conscious of your environmental impact, and with the help of Magic Touch Mechanical, you can improve the air quality in your life for you and your family. With expertise in air conditioning services and a variety of air purification products available for your home, our experts will ensure that you are on your way to a cleaner future. For more information, contact us today.

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