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New Home Flooring? Protect Your Air Quality and Get Rid of Your IAQ Concerns

It's a great day when a homeowner gets new flooring installed. There's really nothing like it to update your home's interior. Choosing the right flooring can also boost the home's comfort level, while adding resale value.

But new flooring can have a downside if you don't take into consideration what it's made of, how it's installed and the effect of these factors on your home's occupants. It's all about indoor air quality, after all, and what you're left inhaling after the installers are gone. Increasingly, homeowners are becoming aware of the importance of diminishing hazardous substances in the air of the home. Airborne pollutants aggravate allergies and other respiratory ailments.

So take heed, and choose carefully, keeping IAQ concerns front and center when shopping for new flooring.

What Flooring is Best?

Hardwood floors are durable, easy to clean, and beautiful. For the most part, hardwood doesn't present many IAQ concerns, except for the types of cleaning agents or floor polishes you use. To avoid harmful VOCs, use natural cleaners and polishes when possible.

Laminates also look good, and are easy to care for. However, they may give off formaldehyde and other contaminants when cutting pieces to size.

Carpet is valued for its warmth and versatility of colors, but it can harbor pollutants such as dust mites, pet dander, dust, and mold. Neither vacuuming nor steam cleaning will remove all pollutants.

Tile is beautiful, long lasting, comes in many design options, and is easy to clean. It offers minimal IAQ concerns, as long as you clean it with natural products.

Vinyl holds up to vigorous use, and does not absorb pollutants. It's comfortable to walk on, and absorbs sound. However, ask your installer if the process is likely to involve off-gassing of airborne pollutants.

Want to learn more about flooring and IAQ concerns? Contact Sherlock Plumbing, Heating and Air. We've provided San Diego homeowners with excellent HVAC service since 2002.