Energy Efficiency & Indoor Air Quality

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Indoor Air Quality

Indoor Air QualityMaintaining good indoor air quality is critical for the health and comfort of a home’s occupants. Most air quality problems in homes originate from indoor sources of gases or particles that cause health problems at high concentrations. Inadequate ventilation, high temperatures, and high humidity levels can also increase the concentration of indoor air pollutants.

This section provides information on common indoor air pollutants as well as strategies to reduce pollutant levels and limit exposure to them. This section also discusses strategies to improve air quality throughout a house, including adequate ventilation and the use of air cleaning devices.

New homes can be built according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Indoor airPLUS construction specifications that include comprehensive measures for improved indoor air quality. This link provides information on Indoor airPLUS builders and partners across the United States.

For more information on indoor air quality, visit the following links:

For information on technical assistance resources regarding indoor air quality issues, visit the following links:


Indoor Air Pollutants

Common sources of indoor air pollution in homes include fuel-burning appliances (such as gas stoves, space heaters, and furnaces), building materials, furnishings, and household cleaning and maintenance products. The two main indoor air pollutants are volatile organic compounds and radon. Other indoor air pollutants include formaldehyde, carbon monoxide, lead, asbestos, nitrogen dioxide, and biological pollutants (mold, mites, bacteria, viruses, and other pests).

Fuel-Burning Appliances

Volatile Organic Compounds


Moisture and Mold


Whole House Air Quality Improvement Strategies

Strategies to reduce indoor air pollutant concentrations and improve indoor air quality throughout a house include improved ventilation and air cleaners.

Adequate Ventilation

Air Cleaners