What Is Stale Air and How to Get Rid of It

When a lot of people get together in a closed environment for long periods, stale air is sure to follow. You know…that stuffy, warm, grimy air you can almost touch.

At the same time, you need your air conditioner to do its job – especially in the often scorching Australian climate. Which means leaving one or more windows open 24/7 is out of the question.

The problem is: when people get exposed to trapped air for too long, their health could be at risk. We’re not just talking about COVID-19 (although it can still absolutely endanger our health) but about several issues stale air could cause.

Let’s discuss this in more detail. 

What is Stale Air?

Stale air is trapped air. In other words, it is air that has little to no fresh air circulating through it. 

It is common in closed office buildings and homes, particularly if windows need to be closed due to a running AC unit.

A number of factors could cause stale air, including:

  • Dust
  • Smoke
  • Carbon dioxide
  • Pet dander
  • Pollution
  • Mould and mildew
  • Toxins and chemicals

According to Selwyn Levine, MD, a pulmonologist at Holy Name Medical Center, toxins and irritants like dust or mould occur naturally in any space. Yet, they can still build up in closed environments. 

That buildup can result in the telltale signs of stale air:

  • Dry skin, dry eyes, dry nose
  • Coughing and nasal congestion
  • Frequent sneezing
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • A stuffy room
  • Unpleasant smells
  • Employees or family members getting sick more often

Pre-existing conditions may be responsible for the above symptoms – but stale air could worsen them.

How to Get Rid of Stale Air

Open Up a Window

You don’t have to open all the windows in the room. Just one will do, for as little as 5 minutes a day to help naturally fresh air to circulate. You – hopefully – won’t be running your AC 24/7, anyway.

Use an Air Purifier

Air purifiers help reduce contaminants and harmful particles from the air, consequently refreshing stale air. It pushes stale indoor air through a filter, which collects air pollutants and releases fresh air back into the room. For those suffering from asthma or allergies, this is a great solution.

Install a Ventilation System

Ventilation systems work by controlling the airflow in closed environments. In other words, they bring fresh, clean outside air into your home or office. They also promote healthier air circulation throughout the room or building, depending on where the system has been installed.

Replace Your Air Filter

If your AC’s air filter is clogged, you’re not only preventing it from running at full capacity. You’re also encouraging it to blow dust, dirt, bacteria, fungi, and all sorts of gunk through the ductwork. A clean air filter is essential to prevent stale air from becoming a health hazard.

You can either clean it yourself, ideally once or twice a month, or install a self-cleaning split system AC unit.

Get a Dehumidifier

Humidity revels in confined spaces. It can build up bacteria, mould, and mildew all across the room, including on your bed sheets and clothing! A dehumidifier decreases those humidity levels in the air, reducing musty odours and particles.

Concluding Thoughts

Stale air can be as sickening as it sounds. And while you need to watch out for it, you can do so without sacrificing the cooling comfort your AC brings.

As an Australian-owned and operated company, we at ActronAir know how much you value a well-ventilated space.

That’s why our products are 100% designed to perform in Australian climate conditions. Because if the outside is unpredictable, you can bring climate control inside.  

Check out some of our best-selling residential air conditioners licensed by Australian Made.

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