Spring Cleaning & Indoor Air Quality Solutions

Spring cleaning can churn up some unwanted surprises. Working our way down a list that inevitably shows us the dirt, dust, and indoor pollutants we've been living with we can't help but start Googling "my indoor air quality". There's a lot of information and misinformation out there, so let's break down what is useful and what isn't.

Do Indow Inserts Seal Out Dust and Pollen?

Finding "My Indoor Air Quality"

Learn how to find your current air quality and form appropriate indoor air quality solutions. Do you know what makes air quality good or bad?

Check Your IAQ IQ

Indoor air quality (IAQ) refers to the air quality within and around buildings and structures, especially as it relates to the health and comfort of building occupants. (EPA)

There are short- and long-term health effects from indoor air pollutants. Some, such as dizziness and throat irritation are solved as soon as you leave the environment. Others, such as respiratory disease and cancer do not show signs for some time. Reactions to indoor air pollutants depend on exposure and the individual.

Indoor air quality is determined by:

  • Building materials (asbestos, formaldehyde, VOCs)
  • Household cleaners (especially scented)
  • Heating, cooling, & humidification systems (more ventilation, less humidity)
  • Moisture in the building
  • Outdoor sources (ex. radon, pesicides, outdoor air pollution)

You can test indoor air quality yourself with a monitor. They cost between $150 and $200. But you can also check the manufacturer's labels on appliances and materials in your home, and the warning labels on cleaning supplies (indoor air quality safe list from EPA). Also, watch for signs of too much moisture, like black spots on walls or a musty smell. You should always have an active carbon monoxide detector & check for radon in your home at least once.

monitor to test indoor air quality yourself reading 39 (good) and 74 (not good)

If you feel you need help with indoor air quality solutions, get professional help. Contractors or realtors should be able to recommend someone to provide an assessment and plan.

By limiting indoor sources and sealing out outdoor sources, while maintaining proper ventilation, you should have good indoor air quality. Sounds easy, right? Well, let's look at indoor air quality solutions and how window inserts can help.

Indoor Air Pollution Solutions & Window Inserts

Some argue that by sealing your home, either to keep out pollution or for energy efficiency, you are increasing your risk of poor indoor air quality. That's because you are sealing in the sources created in your home. But, with window inserts, you are also sealing out the sources outside your home. There are pros and cons to using window inserts.

Pros

Indow window inserts primarily help by blocking outdoor air pollution. They create an airseal (where most windows have small cracks or leaks in their seal) to keep particulate matter out. "Particulate Matter (PM) is made up of particles that are small enough to be carried by the air and can be breathed in by people." (UCSF) Many customers who use Indow inserts are surprised to find a buildup of dirt and pollution behind their inserts when they remove them for cleaning.

Window inserts also stop condensation, which leads to mold and mildew. These are biological contaminants and once present, can spread to through the walls and home. Indow window inserts stop and prevent condensation by not letting any moist air touch the cold exterior glass.

homeowner installing window insert to block outdoor air pollution and stop condensation

Cons

Consumer Product Safety Commission suggests weatherizing your home can come with risk of poor ventilation, moisture condensation, mold and mildew growth. They warn that by adding storm windows, you are cutting down on outdoor air infiltration, thereby increasing indoor air pollution concentration.

It seems clear that a ventilation plan is needed before window inserts are installed.

What to Consider Before Installing Inserts for Indoor Air Pollution Solutions

  • Ensure you have proper ventilation so windows aren't your only source to outdoor air.

    • Have a working bathroom or kitchen hood fan installed

    • Add attic fans

    • Research air-to-air heat exchangers (available in new homes)

  • Decrease your sources of indoor air pollutants so you aren't trapping them in with you.

    • Remove building materials that release VOCs, have lead or asbestos in them.
Indow window insert installed around an a/c unit to block air pollution and increase air flow
  • Temporary and intermittent air quality issues.

    • There are some indoor pollution sources that are constantly emitting. Others become a source only when they are in use. Items such as space heaters or cleaning solutions are only a danger while in use and a short period afterward: Indow inserts can be easily removed and reinstalled to allow for venting during this time. You might also find yourself using your space heater less often because Indow inserts insulate and help regulate indoor temperature.

  • Plants that improve indoor air quality. None. Recent science has proven that absolutely no potted plants help with indoor air quality. Plants are not an indoor air quality solution.

  • Don't let cigarette smoke inside the house and be weary of any other habits that may produce fumes.

Customer Reviews

Excellent

4.49 Average 1494 Reviews

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Paula S

From start to finish, we were very pleased with our rep, Reed, and the other staff at the PDX will call! The inserts themselves are stupendous! We purchased six total for the noisiest, road side(s) of our home. The outcome was beyond our expectations! Not only did the three rooms that bordered the road become at least 70% quieter, the other end of our home did as well! I cannot recommend Indow inserts more! The technology makes sense to add the inserts rather than purchasing new windows. Great results and thank you! Paul and Paula Spilsbury

Posted 4 weeks ago

JD

Brian was very helpful & informative. He helped me order the correct windows for my needs. They were shipped with the utmost of care & arrived ahead of schedule. Ultimately, the Indow Windows have been very helpful in muffling unwanted noises & they have helped save on our energy costs. Thank you, Indow Window!

Posted 1 month ago

Cynthia M

Very happy with the reduction in noise. Easy to install and use. Great customer service.

Posted 2 months ago

Juli E

We are thrilled with our Indow window inserts! I'd been on the lookout for a more permanent solution to leaky windows in our third floor living space. I discovered Indow on social media but since then have learned of friends who'd had Indow recommended to them by their rennovation contractor. The entire process went smoothly with friendly reps at hand to talk through questions during measuring, etc. They fit perfectly and help us to maintain the beautiful design of the windows on our 100 year old home! Highly recommend!!

Posted 3 months ago

Jen F

Worth the money!

Posted 3 months ago

Elizabeth H

For townhouse living, this solved my problem with noise from my neighbor's with my kitchen window. A considerable decrease of noise indeed! Measurements were a bit frustrating so I recommend using a laser measurement device and following directions to use a string for the diagonal. They look great and were easy to push into place. I highly recommend as an alternative to buying a new window.

Posted 4 months ago

Anonymous

Easy to install, and instantly stopped drafts and dampened outside noises very effectively!

Posted 4 months ago

Robert C

The process could've been smoother with the sending of the measuring kit. There was a delay with weather in Oregon but then it felt like my kit was still delayed due to other reasons. Most new homes (like mine) have textured paint and it can also be inside your window frames. I measured everything out but I still have little tiny gaps due to the texturing. Not indows problem but just be aware you made need to sand or fill in those gaps yourself to get a perfect seal. I did the acoustic grade inserts and they have reduced some noise but they will not completely block or significantly reduce road noise. This is most apparent with deep or lower frequencies like truck exhausts or modified street racing cars that are quite popular these days. Taking the inserts out to open your windows isn't an easy task. The little metal hook they provide needs to be either bigger or you can attach something to it as a way to leverage yourself. Overall the process was average. I think they're definitely a good option for weatherproofing and some sound reduction depending on the type of windows you have. I would purchase again.

Posted 4 months ago

Shelley C

The process for ordering and installing the Indow Widnow inserts was so easy. They sent the measuring information and it had great instructions. The inserts were delivered by UPS was crushed on one corner, but the company had packed them well, so there was no damage. We installed them the same day. It works best if you have two people completing the installation. We felt the results immediately and are glad we spent the money to make our home just a little more efficient.

Posted 4 months ago

Barry B

The insert fits like a glove and insulates the window! No more frost and condensation on the interior of the window! Thank you for an easy, effective and attractive fix!

Posted 4 months ago

Susan A

The support during the entire process was wonderful, thank you so much for the extra quiet space!

Posted 4 months ago

Volodymyr R

Very good good quality. Overall very satisfied with this product and service. Thanks

Posted 4 months ago

Jane H

Our home was built in 1913 and has beautiful old wavy glass single-paned windows. I’m so glad we were told about Indows and didn’t have to replace the original windows. We live in Canada but had no difficulty placing the order and were very impressed by how accurately the company met its deadlines, including cross border delivery. The Indows inserts blend in perfectly with our home and the existing window frames. You don’t see them unless you’re actually looking for them. But what we did notice was how much warmer the rooms feel the minute the inserts were installed! I can’t speak to any heating bill savings because they just went in this week, but our home feels much, much cozier. Our contractor who took all the measurements and installed the Indows says: “Excellent instructional videos: clear and informative. Very impressed with the design and the product. Overall, the ease of installation is quite impressive. Working with all the staff at the company was great – everyone was very helpful.” I’m already recommending this company to any of my friends who live in drafty older homes and want to reduce their heating/cooling bills and do some good for the environment.

Posted 5 months ago

Anonymous

Don't be afraid of buying an older home with single pane windows. This company has you covered. Their inserts are super high quality and fit well thanks to the laser measuring kit they send. Highly recommended!

Posted 5 months ago

Katie M

We purchased three Indows to reduce drafts and noise in our bedroom, which faces the street. The improvement was immediate. Our house was built in 1958 and although we have exterior storm windows we didn't want to replace the windows outright due to cost and architectural consistency. These were an excellent solution.

Posted 5 months ago