When we talk about cleaning, we often focus on the visible stuff:

  • Make sure the carpets are pristine, and the kitchen shines.
  • The bathroom needs to be more spotless.
  • The guest rooms are welcoming.

But have you ever thought about the air in your home? Yes, the air we breathe is often overlooked during our cleaning sprees.

The Invisible Challenge: Indoor Air Quality

It’s surprising, but according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, we spend roughly 90% of our time indoors, especially when it’s cold outside. Our homes are snugly sealed, which might feel cozy, but it also means tiny particles you can’t see hanging around in the air. These include allergens like dust, mold, pet dander, and microbes like bacteria and viruses. Even everyday activities like cooking, lighting candles, or using the fireplace add to this invisible mix.

Clearing the Air: Tips for a Healthier Home

Here are some practical steps to improve your home’s air quality:

  • Cook with Care: Always use your stove hood’s exhaust fan while cooking. It’s not just about removing odors; it also filters out particles from the air. Remember to clean the filter regularly for maximum efficiency.
  • Let Fresh Air In: Open a window or door if your home is bustling with cooking or guests. This simple act can dilute indoor air pollutants.
  • HVAC Filter Check: Your HVAC system’s filter is a frontline defense against airborne particles. Ensure it’s clean, and replace it if it’s dirty. A clogged filter isn’t just ineffective; it also strains your system.
  • Upgrade Your Filter: Consider a higher-rated air filter, especially if you have pets, allergies, or live near pollution sources like traffic or wildfires. 3M Filtrete™ Air Filters, particularly those rated MPR 1500 or higher, are certified asthma-allergy-friendly and can make a big difference.
  • Add Air Purifiers: Your HVAC system works for your whole house, but additional air purifiers can offer extra support in high-use areas like kitchens and bedrooms. Opt for units with True HEPA filters, like Filtrete’s, which can trap 99.97% of tiny particles, including viruses. Invest in the IQ Air purifier instead of installing an in-home system. The IQ Air can clean up to 1000sqft per unit and you can move the unit to different locations in your home.
  • Smart Purification: If you need help using an air purifier best, consider a smart model. 3 M’s Filtrete™ Smart Air Purifiers have sensors to monitor air quality and adjust settings automatically. Plus, their app keeps you updated on your home’s air quality.
  • DIY Solution: Corsi-Rosenthal Box: This low-tech air cleaner has gained a following online. It’s simple to make with a box fan, four high-quality air filters, duct tape, and cardboard. It’s cost-effective and fun to build, especially as a science project with kids. 3M has even tested and vouched for its effectiveness, with a how-to video available on YouTube.
  • Eliminate toxic chemicals in the home: Throw away the chemicals in your home. Switch to non-toxic cleaning solutions and buy trust-worthy brands such as BioKleen and Dr Bronners. Also think about switching your personal care products to fragrance free, natural brands.


By incorporating these air-cleaning tips into your prep, you’re not just cleaning your home but creating a healthier living space for your family and guests. Remember, clean air is as important as a clean home – it’s all part of making your space welcoming and safe for all times of the year.