The 2018 wildfire season in California was the deadliest and most destructive on the historical record. It amounted to 8,527 fires burning about 1.9 million acres. If you’re a homeowner in Ontario, California, you’re likely worried and thinking about the dangers of every wildfire season. But a wildfire doesn’t have to burn near your house to impact your health and safety. Read on to learn more about how California wildfires impact your indoor air quality.
Smoke Contains Dangerous Microscopic Particles
While the fire in a wildfire steals the headlines, the smoke can be just as dangerous. Therefore, it’s important that you don’t underestimate it. Smoke comprises a mixture of gases and microscopic particles. It’s produced when wood and other organic materials burn. The tiny particles present the most significant danger, as they can get into your eyes and respiratory system. Inhaling them can:
- Cause burning eyes and a running nose.
- Cause bronchitis.
- Aggravate chronic heart and lung diseases.
- Lead to premature death.
Wildfire Smoke Can Easily Sneak Inside Your Home
Outdoor air containing wildfire smoke can enter your home through:
- Open windows and doors.
- Bathroom and kitchen exhaust fans.
- HVAC systems with a fresh air intake.
- Cracks and gaps around your home.
Wildfire smoke can impact your indoor air quality in different ways. It depends on the proximity of the wildfire to your home and the density of the smoke. If the wildfire is close to your house, evacuate immediately. If the wildfire isn’t close enough to threaten your property, but there’s a thick cloud of smoke hovering overhead, also consider leaving your home. You can stay in your home if there’s a thin cloud of smoke nearby, but you must protect yourself.
Protect Your Family From Wildfire Smoke
Take these steps to protect your family from wildfire smoke:
- Invest in a high-efficiency air cleaner.
- Purchase N95 respirator masks.
- Know how and when to use your HVAC system.
- Keep windows and doors closed.
California wildfires are scary to think about. As a result, they can impact your peace of mind. To learn more about how to protect your family and prevent poor indoor air quality, contact Specialize Heating and Air at 909-740-3855.
Image provided by flickr