Healthy Homes

Existing homes and healthy products: What to keep and what to eliminate

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 16:39

The presence of older products in a home can have a significant impact on the health of people who reside there, as these old technologies may not only be inefficient and annoying for homeowners - they could be dangerous.
The Illinois chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council recently held a forum to teach residents of the state the best ways to limit the presence of unhealthy products in their homes.
While certain older products, such as lighting and heating systems, are often more expensive to replace than other appliances and fixtures, these are the most dangerous items in many homes.
Older lighting systems can hurt the eyes of residents, as products that only provide a dim light can limit the ability of people to see in both the short- and long-term. Also, fluorescent lights can be extremely dangerous and have the potential to shatter with only a small amount of contact.

Older versions of the fixtures contain harmful materials, and if they are not replaced, a threat is left in a residence.
Heating systems can often pose the same type of danger, as older products rely on the use of radiators, heating ducts and air vents, all of which help to store and circulate airborne contaminants that pose a significant health risk to families.
Newer products, such as radiant heating systems, limit the presence of airborne contaminants by not requiring these dirty fixtures. Not only does this technology help to make a home safer to live in, but it also helps to reduce the long-term operating costs for families while providing a more comfortable place to relax during winter months.