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September 14, 2020

Each year in the midwest region of the United States, the risk of wildfires becomes very high, especially between August and November. 2020 is no exception, marking a dramatic start to the wildfire season. Here we will discuss tips to remove wildfire smoke from your home.

Smoke and odor can affect not only the air quality outside, but indoors as well, even if the wildfires are not located near your home. Smoke can travel, and carry with it ash and fine dust. Microscopic smoke particles cannot be seen by the naked eye but can settle on virtually every surface.

You should be aware that some of the smoke from outdoors can enter your home and make it unhealthy to breathe indoor air, too.1

How smoke from wildfires gets in your home

Outdoor air, including fine particles from wildfire smoke, can enter your home through open doors and windows, fans that vent to the outside or heating and air-conditioning units. Smoke also finds its way inside through small openings, joints and cracks. 1

When smoke enters your home it’s important to take all possible measures to get rid of it quickly and effectively to maintain good indoor air quality.

8 tips to help remove wildfire smoke from your home

  • Reduce the smoke that enters your home by keeping the doors and windows closed.
  • Avoid activities that cause more airborne pollutants, such as wood-burning fireplaces, burning candles or painting.
  • Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter.
  • Wipe down or mop hard surfaces to prevent particles from getting back into the air.
  • Do not smoke cigarettes.
  • Refrain from spraying aerosols.
  • Use a portable air cleaner 24 hours a day on high. 1
  • When the air quality outside improves, open the windows to circulate fresh air.

When forest fire alerts are issued, you and your family should be vigilant and act quickly. Preparedness is especially important for the health of children, older adults, and people with heart or lung disease. 1

1 https://www.epa.gov/indoor-air-quality-iaq/wildfires-and-indoor-air-quality-iaq

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Post Author: Melissa Leslie