luxury

AA Homepage Articles |

What Is “Luxury Air”? Navigating Life During Wildfire Season

2 minute read

2020 has been a particularly rough wildfire season for the western United States, leaving millions of people with unhealthy air quality for days or weeks at a time. With many experts predicting that wildfires will only get worse as the consequences of climate change accelerate, there needs to be a real conversation about the safety of living in places that can’t escape the path of destruction and whether that should be considered a luxury.

Luxury Air

The Los Angeles Times recently released an article focused on the concept of “luxury air.” This reflects a trend real estate agents in southern California have seen in recent years in which luxury home buyers have added deluxe air filtration systems to their “must-haves” list.

Homebuyers realize that the dangers of wildfire aren’t going anywhere. And while some are moving out, others are sticking around for work, family, lifestyle, and the otherwise pleasant weather.

From the article:

“[Luxury] homes are equipped with ventilation systems…with constant airflow out of areas that might produce moisture or particulate matter — kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms — and into the rest of the house, passing through MERV-15 filters en route. A separate ventilation system in the garage goes into overdrive to create negative pressure when a car pulls in, ensuring that exhaust and outside air don’t leak into the house.

…also equipped with indoor and outdoor sensors…which let residents monitor air quality and allow the system to react dynamically to contaminants….[The] house’s eco-conscious features also feed into maintaining healthy air: Without the solar and battery backup, the ventilation system would be useless during the blackouts that often accompany dire fire scenarios.”

Creating a Healthy Air Environment

While elaborate systems like the ones described above certainly qualify as a luxury, at Aprilaire we believe that Healthy Air should be accessible to everyone.

We created the Aprilaire Healthy Air System™ to help homeowners learn about the aspects of the home that aren’t often seen but have a large impact on health and comfort.

Invest in greater health, virus protection, fewer
allergens, more productivity, and better sleep.

Learn More

This easy-to-follow guide includes some facts and figures you’ll want to consider when setting up your home and shows how different air purifiers and ventilation systems will change the indoor air environment.

Contact an Aprilaire Healthy Air Professional to talk about small changes that can make a big difference for the air quality of your home environment, during wildfire season and all year long.

Healthy Air Is on the Way

Find an Aprilaire professional near you.

 

uv light

AA Homepage Articles | Healthy Air |

UV Light Can Be Harmful Tool In Fighting COVID-19

2 minute read

During a crisis, gimmicks can replace tried and true methods. As businesses and the general population look to remedy the health and safety issues of COVID-19, many have turned to ultraviolet (UV) light to help inactivate the airborne viruses.

UV Light Is ‘Potentially Hazardous’

While UV light is used as a disinfectant in hospital’s non-occupied spaces, it is not a credible solution to fight airborne viruses like COVID-19 in populated indoor spaces. UV light is harmful and increased exposure can cause health issues. In addition, any use of ultraviolet light in populated spaces should pass the burden of proof provided by the National Toxicology Program’s 14th Report on Carcinogens.

This is the primary reason that UV light should not be used as a primary tool to fight COVID-19 and other airborne viruses.

Despite the best intentions of businesses to keep patrons safe, using a quick scan of UV lights as patrons enter their business to inactivate COVID-19 aerosols does little to reduce the risk and could be harmful. In these short bursts, users would have to be exposed to high levels of UV light that would likely be harmful in order to be effective.

“However, UV portals that are meant to disinfect people as they enter indoor spaces are likely ineffective and potentially hazardous,” said Dr. Karl Linden, Ph.D., University of Colorado Boulder.

Adding UV light onto your ducts is proven to inactivate airborne viruses that flow through the ducts, but these add-ons are expensive and less beneficial than a MERV 16 or HEPA filter.

Alternatively, an Aprilaire Healthy Air System TM, a three-part, award-winning suite of whole-home Indoor Air Quality products, do not add any ozone or other harmful radiation levels into the air. It can be used in populated indoor spaces to help fight COVID-19 without any increased risk to the population.

Invest in greater health, virus protection, fewer
allergens, more productivity, and better sleep.

Learn More

By leveraging the power of humidity control, fresh air ventilation, and air filtration, you can help reduce the transmission rate of airborne viruses like COVID-19.

Humidity control allows you to keep your home between 30-60 percent relative humidity. This is the optimal range where viruses remain less viable and your body’s natural defenses and immune response are most viable.

Fresh air ventilation dilutes the home of particles and germs and fills your home with fresh, breathable air while maintaining airflow. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information of the National Institutes of Health, ventilation is an important tool in reducing airborne pollutants in indoor air.

Air filtration captures particles that flow through the home and the filter. An Aprilaire MERV 16 filter captures up to 96% of airborne virus-sized particles passing through the filtering system.

To get the Aprilaire Healthy Air SystemTM installed in your house so you and your family can breathe easier with effective virus protection, contact a local Healthy Air Pro.

Healthy Air Is on the Way

Find an Aprilaire professional near you.

climate change

AA Homepage Articles | Environment |

How You Can Help Fight Climate Change Right Now

3 minute read

Through a year of rapid and monumental changes for the world, unfortunately, one thing that remained the same in 2020 is the threat posed by climate change.

For a refresher on what exactly “climate change” means, check out the resources provided by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), a non-profit environmental advocacy group.

To sum it up, human activity continues adding heat-trapping greenhouse gases to the atmosphere and causing a rise in average temperatures, extreme weather events, shifting wildlife populations, and other impacts.

It’s clear that large, global changes will be needed in order to improve or reverse any of the negative trends that are changing the world as we know it.

Much of the onus will be on governmental policies that require changes from large corporations that enable and profit off of activities that cause climate change. But, as individuals, there are some steps we can take in our everyday lives to help mitigate the effects of climate change.

Plus, our individual actions send a message to decision-makers in governments and corporations that there’s a demand for climate-friendly products and policies. They may be much more willing to make changes when there are adequate pressure and proof of profitability.

As the deputy director of NRDC’s Clean Power Plan initiative, Aliya Haq, puts it: “Change only happens when individuals take action. There’s no other way if it doesn’t start with people.

10 Individual Actions For Fighting Climate Change

Find out how you’re doing

Everyone produces a certain amount of greenhouse gases as they live their life. This is known as your “carbon footprint.” You can calculate your carbon footprint at carbonfootprint.com or use the EPA’s footprint calculator to see how much carbon and money you will save by making some of the following changes.

Use your voice

Share your thoughts with friends and family. Inspire others on social media, or take it a step further and contact your elected officials directly with your concerns.

Practice “Green Building”

Put simply, “Green Building” is a construction method that efficiently uses sustainable resources to create healthy, energy-smart homes and commercial buildings. If you’re planning to build a new home or add on to an existing one, you have a great opportunity to do it in a sustainable, cost-efficient way.

Choose energy- and water-efficient appliances

Labels like ENERGY STAR® and WaterSense make it easy to choose the best appliances for reducing your energy and water consumption. They will also save you money in the long run.

Weatherize your home

Simple home improvements like sealing drafts and caulking leaks can save you big on energy bills. Check out this Home Energy Checklist for more quick-fix ideas so you can start saving energy today.

Reduce your food waste

It’s easy to blame food waste on the marketplace or restaurants, but households reportedly waste 31.9% of their food. Learn more about food waste and ways you can reduce your household’s impact.

Buy LEDs for your home

LED lights use 70% less energy than traditional bulbs. And that’s not all: they last up to ten times longer, they’re brighter, eco-friendly, and are safer for young children because they remain cool to the touch.

Unplug idle devices

The NRDC reports that always-on but inactive devices may cost Americans $19 billion and 50 power plants worth of electricity a year. Be sure to unplug unused devices and reduce your idle load.

Drive and maintain an energy-efficient vehicle
Our personal vehicles contribute greatly to global warming, so if you can, do your part by buying an energy-efficient vehicle. Another way to reduce your energy consumption is to make sure your vehicle is getting as many miles to the gallon as possible through regular maintenance.

Make responsible transportation decisions

If you’re able to, drive and fly less often. Biking, carpooling, or taking public transportation, all mean less air pollution. And when it comes to those frequent flyer miles, less is absolutely more as air transport is a major source of climate pollution. When possible, do things remotely, drive, or take the train.

AA Homepage Articles | News |

Experiencing the Fight For Air Climb

2 minute read

Before the Fight For Air Climb

Entering the US Bank Center for the American Lung Association’s Fight For Air Climb was a rush of energy.

This seemed less like an arduous trek up 1,000 stairs and more of an indoor festival. There were volunteers ready to greet you and pump you up for the ensuing climb and people from different companies sitting at tables ready to hand out souvenirs.

They were probably also there to distract you after you just got done instinctively looking up toward the top of the 47-story US Bank Center in downtown Milwaukee becoming a little uneasy at the prospect of your journey upward.

Before you made your climb, you gathered as a team and took several escalators down to the basement level before getting warmed up with a quick aerobic routine. Then you took a long and winding tunnel where you greeted by more volunteers who were cheering you on. It was hard not to feel inspired and excited.

During the Fight For Air Climb

One-by-one people took off up toward the top of the US Bank Center to begin their Fight For Air Climb. I, like most, started off confidently and quickly. I took the first six flights easily, but then by flight eight, I began to fight for air. I now understand why they title this climb just that. My mind and my body were at odds. I couldn’t decide whether I wanted to continue at the same pace to get it over with as quickly as possible or to slow down and feel better. I went with the former.

Everyone in the stairwell was trudging onward with the same dilemma. We all were gasping for air as we kept pushing up each step and each flight toward the top of the Fight For Air Climb. At several points, I wondered if I was actually making any progress.

Every 10 flights there was a group of volunteers handing out cups of water and words of encouragement. Both were sorely needed to help push me along.

With each passing flight, I kept a tally of how many flights I had left. Twenty flights down, 27 more flights to go; 30 flights down, 17 flights to go; Ok, 40 flights down, 7 to go. By the time I got to the 40th floor, I knew I could make the last push to make it to the top of my Fight For Air Climb journey.

After the Fight For Air Climb

Eventually, I reached the top after 9 minutes and 31 seconds. At the top of the stairwell, I was met by volunteers who were cheering me on and by other climbers who were also catching their breath and taking in the picturesque views of Milwaukee and Lake Michigan afforded to us by the tallest building in Wisconsin.

As I grabbed a water and walked around soaking in both the views of the city and my accomplishment, it was really cool to watch teams taking pictures together or greeting other climbers with high-fives and smiles. There was a certain camaraderie found in a common struggle.

Despite the lingering soreness, I cannot wait for next year’s climb. No matter if I beat my time from this year or not, it’s about fighting for air together and helping those impacted with lung disease.

To join an upcoming climb in a city near you, visit www.lung.org/aprilaire.

Healthy Air | News |

Aprilaire Partner Contractor Joins Fight For Air Climb

2 minute read

“What can you do or say when your family is suffering such losses? It’s devastating,” said Christopher Ciongoli, HVAC salesman/estimator with Aprilaire partner Whalen & Ives.

Chris is participating in the NYC American Lung Association Fight For Air Climb on April 4, 2020. When he heard that Aprilaire was the national Healthy Air sponsor of the event he signed on to the Aprilaire team.

“An opportunity to make difference just appeared to me on Jan 10th in an email from Aprilaire informing me about the Fight for Air Climb. This was it. This is how I would help make a difference and support my wife as well as so many others that are impacted by lung disease”.

Lung disease became an all too familiar fixture in Chris’s life last year when his brother-in-law, mother-in-law, and father-in-law all died from lung disease.

As of February 7, he’s raised 90 percent of his fundraising goal. Not only is Chris excited to help raise funds and awareness, he told us he’s already reaping the benefits of training for the 849-step climb.

“My blood pressure has dropped, my pants are getting loose, and my dog Crosby is getting back in shape too!”

Every morning he goes out with dog Crosby and strengthens his legs and increases his stamina to make sure he can make it to the 44th floor of the 1290 Avenue of Americas building in New York City.

Read more of Chris’s incredible journey by going to his page. Thank you for your efforts, Chris and we cannot wait to hear more.

For more information about the Fight For Air Climb and to find an event in your area, go to https://www.lung.org/aprilaire. To learn how to train for your own climb, head to our page where we share training tips to help you prepare for your own Fight For Air Climb.

It’s Time to Care About Healthy Air
Breathe a sigh of relief.

Learn More

News |

Aprilaire Partners with Wellness Within Your Walls

2 minute read

Aprilaire is the exclusive Presenting Sponsor for 2020 for Wellness Within Your Walls.

Wellness Within Your Walls (WWYW) is an award-winning education and certification organization which supports reducing and eliminating toxins in living environments to improve overall health and wellness.

The organization’s one-of-a-kind education and certification process enables consumers and professionals to increase awareness about toxins in building materials and furnishings and guide them toward making homes healthier.

Wellness Within Your Walls partnership for national campaign

WWYW will partner with Aprilaire to launch a national “Breathe Healthy” awareness campaign in 2020 to educate consumers, homeowners and the build/design community about the latest products and services that help improve air quality in homes.

“We believe everyone deserves to breathe healthy air, and we believe in the power of education,” said Dale Philippi, president of Aprilaire. “Our mission is to enhance everyone’s health by improving the air in their homes. We are proud to partner with WWYW– an organization building awareness with consumers and professionals about the importance of healthy air.”

“We are excited by our new partnership with Aprilaire. They offer products that solve multiple issues relating to affordable ventilation and humidity control for homes and we’re proud to work with Aprilaire to further elevate the dialog about health and wellness in living environments,” said Jillian Pritchard Cooke, founder of WWYW.

In addition to the “Breathe Healthy” campaign with WWYW, Aprilaire is the FY20 National Healthy Air Sponsor for the American Lung Association Fight For Air Climb events which support raising awareness of the importance of indoor air quality. The two initiatives will dovetail to further educate consumers and professionals alike about why healthy air – especially in the home, is vital for good health. Good air quality improves overall wellness, helps prevent irritating allergens and pests, and helps shield homes from costly damages.

About Wellness Within Your Walls

Wellness Within Your Walls® is an award-winning informational resource group created to provide education and guidance on chemicals commonly found in living and working spaces. With a goal to empower and guide consumers and professionals toward healthier living environments, WWYW certifies people, places, products and programs globally through education and health and wellness protocols. WWYW’s 10-step holistic approach, known as the Healthy Living System™, results in a legacy of health, harmony and sustainability in living environments. WWYW was founded by Jillian Pritchard Cooke, a 30-year industry veteran with experience as president of interior design firm DES-SYN and owner of the eco-living lifestyle boutique BEE. While designing Atlanta’s EcoManor in 2006, the first Gold LEED-certified single-family residence in the U.S., a cancer diagnosis became the catalyst for turning Jillian’s expertise into a passionate commitment to create healthier living environments by reducing toxins. Wellness Within Your Walls was born. The organization provides frequent and sought-after speakers at trade shows, educational opportunities, workshops, seminars and other industry events. For more information, visit: http://www.wellnesswithinyourwalls.com.