If you’ve been looking for ways on how to purify air from mold or smoke in your home, then this guide is exactly what you need. Nobody wants to be breathing in harmful substances such as mold or smoke, especially in the household where you spend such a large percentage of your time, but understandably, these things can be a major pain and even difficult to get rid of. So, what exactly can you do?
Unless you are experiencing a severe mold infestation, you can often get rid of the mold yourself and then take the necessary steps to prevent its regrowth. As for smoke, there are plenty of things that even current smokers can do to help improve air quality in the home and purify the air so that it smells and feels better for a long time. Sometimes these things are as simple as buying a machine or opening some windows, but if you are really committed, you may want to do some hardcore cleaning or even make some changes to your smoking habits.
How To Purify Air From Mold or Smoke
Ventilation and Air Circulation
The simplest way to get some immediate relief from smoke overload, unpleasant smells, and dirty air is to open some windows in the home. Not only does this allow fresh air to enter and circulate through the home, but it will also whisk away some of the smells and air pollutants that might be making it difficult to breathe.
In conjunction with the windows, you can always click on a couple of fans and have them facing the open windows so that smoke is forced out of your home while circulating fresh air throughout the home. If you have fans already, this is something that you can do immediately, and it will buy you some time until you find a more long-term solution.
Obviously, this isn’t much of a long-term solution, as you can’t keep your windows open 24/7, and while this will temporarily rid the home of odors and moisture, this won’t get rid of existing mold.
Consider Buying an Air Purifier or Dehumidifier
Both air purifiers and dehumidifiers can be useful tools against smoke and mold, and while they exist separately, you can also find dual-functionality machines that both purify and dehumidify.
Air purifiers remove pollutants from the air, which includes gaseous pollutants and smoke, and they can also remove mold particles and other particulate matter that contributes to allergies. On the other hand, a dehumidifier will help you get rid of moisture in the air, making it impossible for mold to thrive in the first place. While it won’t get rid of existing mold, it will prevent mold from spreading or from arising in the first place.
Clean Your Walls and Furniture
If your home is experiencing mold growth, the first step in purifying the air is to get rid of the mold. Sometimes you can do this with homemade or store bought cleaning solutions, but other times, you may need to call a professional to remove the mold and restore the area back to normal. After the mold is eliminated, you can implement strategies to prevent a recurrence.
If you have a history of smoking inside of the house, there’s a good chance that the smoke has clung to your walls and your furniture to some extent, in which case it would be wise to deeply clean these areas of your home. You may even benefit from replacing some furniture entirely. Once everything is cleaned, you can take steps to prevent the reintroduction of mold and smoke into your home.
Cleaning Air Ducts and Air Filters
One way to help purify the air of smoke and mold is to clean and purify the source of the air, namely your HVAC system. Your HVAC system circulates air in and out of your home, which means nicotine odors and smoke particulates are being collected and recirculated back into the home, and it could be that your air ducts are filled with these particulates.
HVAC technicians can help you get your air ducts clean, and there are also accessories that can be installed on your HVAC system that help purify the air that it’s putting out. More importantly, it’s important that your air filters in your HVAC system are kept clean, which not only contributes to air quality in the home, but it also contributes to the efficiency of your system.
Making Changes to Your Habits
While things such as air purifiers and fans will help you improve air quality in the moment, lasting changes are going to come from you adjusting your lifestyle to support your air quality goals.
For example, if you are used to smoking indoors, you may want to start going outside so that smoke is no longer being put into the home. Alternatively, you could smoke next to a window fan so that the smoke is immediately removed from the home and taken outside. By simultaneously running air purifiers, cleaning, and adjusting your smoking habits, you can effectively purify the air in your home for the long term.
Clean and Vacuum More Often
The more often you clean, the less time you give to smoke and mold particulates to cling to your belongings and impurify the air around you. Cleaning furniture, cleaning walls, vacuuming carpets – all of these things are going to support a healthier living environment and one that is less polluted with smoke and mold. Smoke particulates, especially, love to cling to carpets, which not only causes discolorations, but it also ensures that the smoke never truly leaves the home.
Keeping the area and its contents clean is one of the best ways to keep the air clean, and this includes both changing your habits and making an effort to clean more regularly. In doing so, you can dramatically enhance conditions in the home and enjoy a more breathable space.
In addition to opening windows and allowing fresh air to circulate throughout the home, there are a handful of other natural approaches to purifying air, and all of them can be used in conjunction with air purification devices and the other strategies listed above. The following are some things that you can bring into the home that may also help to purify the air and make the space more breathable.
- Beeswax Candles: Beeswax candles are said to be natural air purifiers, and they are natural candles that aren’t petroleum based or filled with toxins. These candles are able to neutralize toxins in the air and create a more soothing, as opposed to irritating, environment. They also burn slowly, so they would not need to be replaced often.
- Salt Lamps: Salt lamps absorb water vapor that is in the air and, therefore, reduce the presence of various irritants and pathogens, including those present in smoke and mold particulates. While they won’t do much for the entire house, they can help purify individual rooms, and they typically put out a warm, orange glow, so they wouldn’t be distracting if you left them on at night.
- Activated Charcoal: Activated charcoal is charcoal that has been heated, and it’s able to purify the air because it’s highly absorbent. Similar to a salt lamp, activated charcoal can absorb moisture in the air and reduce the risk of mold growth. It’s also odorless and can remove several toxins from the air.
- Houseplants: Plants are widely known to be a natural air purifier, and there are tons of small plants that you can place in your home. They are able to filter toxins in the air and reduce the impact of polluted air indoors.
- Essential Oils: There are several essential oils such as tea tree, rosemary, lemon, and clove, among others, that can remove the conditions necessary for mold and bacteria to survive. They can help purify the air, as well as kill bacteria, and you can even add essential oils to soaps and detergents to increase their presence. Just make sure that you are using appropriate ratios.
Creating a More Permanent Situation
If you want to purify the air around you and make sure that it stays that way, it’s important to put effort into all of these things. You may find it helpful to create a strategy and stick to it, and by incorporating these small, natural air purifiers into a more long-term strategy, you can speed up the process and make sure that the air stays clean for a longer period of time. Some things to keep in mind include the following:
- Carpets act like a sponge, and they need to be cleaned often to improve air quality.
- Excessive moisture will create conditions for mold. If you can, find out where the moisture is coming from and cut it off at the source. Mold specialists can do things such as waterproof your basement or recommend strategies for preventing mold.
- Consider quitting smoking or smoking in a different location.
- If you have plants, you may want to clean the leaves every once in a while.
- Don’t rely solely upon air purifiers or dehumidifiers to get the job done.
- Limit the use of harsh chemicals that, while getting rid of particulates, may also pollute the air themselves.