Spring House Cleaning
Who is thinking about spring housecleaning? For the past several months I have written about safety issues in the home for older folks. Here are more recommendations to make your home healthier and accident free. Much better to take measures now for a healthier home, than to suffer injury and illness later! Below are a few more items that may have been overlooked.
Cut down on Allergens:
· Allergens: Wash bedclothes at least once a week in water at 130 degrees.
· Use synthetic materials for pillows and blankets
· Avoid upholstered furniture and replace it with hard surfaces, such as wood and plastic.
· Instead of heavy curtains, replace them with shades that can be dusted.
· If you’re concerned about your flooring, replace it with hard floors or low-pile carpeting.
· Get a vacuum cleaner with a small-particle or high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter. Read the fine print and instruction manual.
· Brush your pets when they need it. Keep them out of the bedroom.
· Replace wood-burning fireplaces with gas fireplaces.
· Clean the exhaust fan above the kitchen stove. Install an inside-outside vented exhaust fan.
Chemicals and Storage of Toxic Materials:
· Take inventory of cleaning chemicals, paints, gasoline and flammable liquids. Many could be expired and should be disposed of properly.
· Over time, mold and moisture could coagulate the liquids. Check underneath for leaks and moisture that could cause mold.
· Recheck storage safety if children visit your home and keep out of reach of pets.
· Before mixing various cleaning agents, check the warning labels. Don’t mix certain chemicals.
· Paint thinners and varnishes emit vapors even if the lids are closed. Check the container labels every few months.
· There is no known safe home radon level.
· Purchase a Radon Test Kit for less than $30.00. Send results to a lab who will inform you if radon emissions are high.
· Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that may cause lung cancer over time. It has no odor and you can’t see it. Testing is the only way to determine its presence.
· It may be recommended in homes with homes with crawl spaces.
· There are ways to mitigate radon gas from permeating the lower floors.
One way would be to seal all cracks, walls, and floors. Another is to use pipes with a radon exhaust fan or reduction systems that are “sub-slab depressurization”. The technique doesn’t require major home changes.
Most homes can be remediated for about the same cost as other home repairs such painting or having a new hot water heater installed. The average cost is about $1,200 for a contractor to repair or install.
Selecting someone to fix your radon problem is much like choosing a contractor for other home repairs. You may want to get references and more than one estimate. Test your home again after it’s.mitigated and in the future. .
I hope you are working on the necessary home improvements I recommended last month. All of my old blogs can be found at firstname.lastname@example.org