Toast is a surprising culprit in causing home pollution
New research into pollution in the home has revealed some unusual culprits.
The latest findings have shown that burning toast exposes people to more harm than standing at a busy road junction.
Scientists at the University of Texas at Austin in the USA have discovered that if bread is burnt in the toaster the level of fine particles emitted was more than up to 150 times the safe limit set by the World Health Organisation (WHO).
However, even those householders who allow their bread to turn only a light golden colour may be shocked to know that particles in the surrounding air surged to between 300 and 400 micrograms per cubic metre, up to eight times over the safe limit.
“This is very concerning,” said Midlands green energy expert Ron Fox. “Many people are worried about outdoor pollution, but perhaps they should pay just as much attention to indoor pollution.”
The WHO says air should contain no more than 25 micrograms of fine particles (PM2.5) or 50 grams of coarse particles (PM10) per cubic metre.
Researchers, who built a replica three-bed home equipped with dozens of monitors, also found surges of toxic particles and chemicals generated by household spray cleaners, scented candles and wood-burning stoves.
“Although the short exposures in the kitchen are nothing compared to long-term exposures in a city,” said Ron, of Noreus Ltd, “people need to rethink about pollution in the home as it is where they spend most of their time.
“Opening windows more often and using extractor fans will help,” said Ron on the University of Keele Science Innovation Park (www.noreus.co.uk). But he suggests a health check for your home by getting experts in to test the air quality and installing, if necessary, filters to ensure a good flow of fresh, clean air.
One high-tech solution is to have an advanced double-sided solar aerovoltaic panel installed on the roof, which not only provides green electricity, but is also a filter purifying the air inside a building.
It’s a single multi-purpose installation as the front of the panel harnesses the sun’s rays to generate electricity while the back captures heat from the atmosphere. It is then filtered through a module before being used to heat the home in the winter as well as purifying the air.
In the hot summer months, the aerovoltaic unit can be switched to ‘reverse’ using a modern thermostat – providing cool, fresh air and a more comfortable night’s sleep.
It’s effective all the year round, even on cloudy days and at night,” said Ron, “because it absorbs atmospheric energy, not direct sunlight, allowing householders to enjoy the many benefits of renewable technology, whatever the weather.
“It’s literally the green way to keep your home as warm as toast,” he added.
For more advice on reducing home pollution and aerovoltaic panels contact Ron Fox on 0845 474 6641.