Enjoy a Healthy Home: 10 Mistakes to Avoid

Defeat allergens: here's how to control the dust, mold, pollen and other contaminants that are making you sneeze.

bedding

Mistake 1: Bedding down with dust mites

Use zippered dust-proof casings for pillows and mattresses; the pore space of such casings is so small that dust mites and their waste products can't get through.

boy vacuuming

Mistake 2: Vacuuming without a HEPA filter

Use HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filters to prevent tiny particles of dust from being blown back out into the air.

Mistake 3: Forgetting to change the vacuum's filter

Changing the filter is an essential part of keeping dust out of the air and preserving the life of the machine.

Mistake 4: Forgetting to change the AC filters

Never run your heating/air conditioning system without filters, and be sure to change them regularly.

master-bathroom-after

Mistake 5: Not ventilating your bathroom

Running the exhaust fan (and making sure it's vented to the outdoors) helps remove moisture from this naturally humid room.

Mistake 6: Not attending to your gutters

Leaky gutters can cause excessive moisture entering your basement or crawlspace. If you don't have covered gutters, regular litter removal is a must, not only in the fall but all year long.

bedroom pillows quilted headboard

Mistake 7: Too many textiles in the bedroom

Carpeting, lots of pillows, a quilted headboard and upholstered chairs all wind up being dust catchers. Consider losing some of those for an easier-to-keep-dust-free environment.

den furniture drapes

Mistake 8: Too many textiles in your living area

One primary dust source in a home are the fabrics themselves.

pennisetum alopecuroides

Mistake 9: Inviting allergens into your yard

Avoid plants that are wind-pollinated; grasses are among the worst pollen offenders among plants.

Mistake 10: Not following your nose

If you detect a musty smell in your home, inspect closely until you find the source of the smell. The sooner you find the mold, the easier it will be to remove.

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