How Garage Emissions Affect Your Indoor-Air Quality

How Garage Emissions Affect Your Indoor-Air Quality

Attached garages are a convenient addition to any home. Whether attached at the side or incorporated into the basement, they keep your vehicle safe and undamaged during seasonal temperature extremes and let you go from your car to your house without slogging through the rain, mud or cold.

An unfortunate disadvantage to attached garages is that they can decrease the your home’s indoor air quality. This is caused by the many types of pollutants that exist or can be generated in your garage. For example, when you start your car within the closed-in space of the garage, harmful exhaust fumes and combustion by-products accumulate very rapidly. These pollutants include the deadly gas carbon monoxide and the carcinogen benzene.

Your garage can also contain other sources of air contamination, including paint, solvents, herbicides and pesticides. If you start other fuel-powered equipment in your garage, such as mowers, lawn edgers, snow blowers or chain saws, these items can also generate pollutants.

After potentially harmful substances have accumulated in your garage, they can seep into your home through small cracks, holes or other gaps in the walls. If there is a pressure difference between the garage and the inside of your home, the pollutants can be actively drawn in through these openings. These substances dramatically degrade your indoor air quality and could harm the health of everybody living in your home.

To keep these pollutants out of your garage and, by extension, out of your house, you can install a ventilating fan — such as those normally found in bathrooms — in the garage. These types of fans can also change pressure rates enough to keep pollutants from entering your house. Running the fan for at least an hour after cars or yard equipment have been started in the garage will substantially reduce airborne pollutants.

Since 1969, Air-Tro Inc. has provided design, installation, repair and maintenance to customers in the greater Los Angeles area, including L.A. and Orange Counties, Riverside metro and San Bernardino County. Contact us todayfor more information on home and garage ventilation, to get an estimate on a garage ventilation system or to schedule an installation.

Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about garage emissions and other HVAC topics, visit our website.

Air-Tro Inc. services the greater Los Angeles area as well as the metro areas of Riverside and San Bernardino County