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What is Indoor airPLUS?
 
EPA created Indoor airPLUS to help builders meet the growing consumer preference for homes with improved indoor air quality. EPA developed additional construction specifications to help improve indoor air quality in new homes.
 

Construction specifications include the careful selection of and installation of moisture control systems; heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning systems; combustion-venting systems; radon resistant construction; and low-emitting building materials. Ask about the Indoor airPLUS qualification for your next new home. Read EPA's Indoor airPLUS Better Environments Inside and Out (PDF, 5 pp, 807KB, About PDF) 

 
How Does a New Home Become Indoor airPLUS Qualified?
A builder must first design a home to earn the ENERGY STAR  label — the government-backed symbol for energy efficiency. The result is a home that is definitely more energy-efficient than a home-built to minimum code, helping reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
 
infiltration is the #1 source of moisture in your home – as well as pests, dust, and outdoor pollution. Our homes are built tight and tested to dramatically cut infiltration. That improves indoor air quality, reduces the risk of mold and rot, and also makes you more comfortable. Is that the kind of quality you’re looking for in a home? AirPLUS?
 
To earn the Indoor airPLUS label, the builder then adds up to 30 home design and construction features to help protect qualified homes from moisture and mold, pests, combustion gases, and other airborne pollutants. Before the home officially earns the Indoor airPLUS label, it's inspected by an independent third-party to make sure compliance with EPA’s rigorous guidelines and specifications.
 
Indoor airPLUS Features
Builders can use a variety of construction practices and technologies to reduce indoor air pollutants and improve the indoor air quality in your new home.

Moisture Control

Moisture leads to mold and other biological pollutants that can cause health problems. With Indoor airPLUS, builders use a

  • variety of moisture control features designed to minimize these risks, including improved control of condensation and better roof, wall and foundation drainage.
 
Radon Control
Exposure to radon, a naturally occurring radioactive, invisible, and odorless gas, is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States. Indoor airPLUS specifications include radon-resistant construction techniques (in areas with high radon potential).
 
Pest Management
Residue from pests, such as rodents and cockroaches, can trigger allergy and asthma attacks. With Indoor airPLUS, builders seal, caulk or screen where pests enter a home.
 
Heating, Ventilating, and Air-Conditioning (HVAC)
Poorly designed and installed HVAC systems can lead to comfort problems and reduce indoor air quality. Indoor airPLUS includes
  • properly engineered systems, improved duct and equipment installation, improved filtration, and whole-house and spot ventilation to dilute and remove indoor air pollutants. Builders also inspect air-handling equipment and ductwork to make sure they are clean and free of debris and provide adequate air flow.       
 
Combustion Venting
Poorly vented heating equipment can cause combustion gases to accumulate inside the home. Indoor airPLUS can help protect you from exposure to combustion pollutants by using properly vented heating equipment, installing carbon monoxide alarms in all sleeping areas, and taking steps to stop garage pollutants from entering your home.
Building Materials
The types of materials that builders choose and the way they manage them during construction can improve a home’s indoor air quality. Indoor airPLUS specifications reduce the sources of pollutants inside the home by protecting materials stored on-site from weather damage, using materials with less chemicals, and ventilating the home prior to move-in.
 
Homeowner Education
Educating homeowners on maintaining their Indoor airPLUS homes is key to good indoor air quality. Indoor airPLUS homeowners receive a checklist of verified indoor air quality features, and instructions for operating and maintaining equipment to continue minimizing risks of indoor air quality problems.
 
Indoor airPLUS Advantages
Indoor airPLUS qualified homes have numerous highlights:
 
Improved Indoor Air Quality
More than 30 additional design and construction features included in Indoor airPLUS homes to help protect you against moisture and mold, pests, combustion gases, radon, and other airborne pollutants in your home.
 
Minimize Pollutants
Moisture and pest control, among other things, can help protect your family by eliminating common allergens from entering the home, such as mold and pest residue. Your builder will offer a first line defense against pests like cockroaches and rodents, by fully sealing, caulking, or screening where pests enter your home. 
 
Improve Comfort
Your Indoor airPLUS home can offer a more comfortable living environment because it includes properly engineered HVAC system sizing, improved duct and equipment installation, improved filtration, and whole-house and spot ventilation to dilute and remove indoor pollutants.
 
Protect Against Combustion Pollutants
The home provides protection from potential exposure to combustion pollutants by the installation of heating equipment that cannot spill combustion gases inside the home and preventing pollutants in the garage from entering your house. Also, carbon monoxide alarms are in all sleeping areas.
 
Home Maintenance
After purchasing a home with the EPA Indoor airPLUS, you’ll receive a manual explaining your home’s indoor air quality features and how to operate your home to continue minimizing the risk of indoor air quality problems. In addition, your home will have a label as proof that it was built to the high indoor air quality specifications if you resell the home.
 
Energy Efficient
All Indoor airPLUS homes must first earn the ENERGY STAR  label. ENERGY STAR  qualified homes use substantially less energy for heating, cooling, and water heating thereby reducing your contribution to climate change.

 
Water
Water pollution can hurt our ability to use water in our homes, for recreation, and in commerce. It also harms other forms of life. We work to protect water in all its forms: on the ground, underground, and coming out of the tap.
 

Green Living

Concerned Citizens Resources - learn what you can do to protect the environment in your home, workplace, and community Water efficiency is the long-term ethic of saving water resources through employment of water-saving technologies and activities. Using water efficiently will help make sure supplies for future generations. Use the following links to learn how simple and smart to save water.

 
Why Is Saving Water Important?
Across the country, our growing population is putting stress on available water supplies. Between 1950 and 2000, the U.S. population nearly doubled while the public demand for water more than tripled! Americans now use an average of 100 gallons of water each day—enough to fill 1,600 drinking glasses! This increased demand has put more stress on water supplies and distribution systems, threatening both human health and the environment.
 
There's a reason that water has become a national priority. A recent government survey showed at least 36 states are anticipating local, regional, or statewide water shortages by 2013. But by using water more efficiently, we can help keep water supplies for future generations, save money, and protect the environment. WaterSense is making it easier to identify water-efficient products and practices. 
 
Watch two short videos to learn a little more about the daily impact your water use can have and how small actions can have a big impact.
WaterSense offers people a simple way to make product choices that use less water - water with no sacrifice to quality or product performance.
 
 
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