Windows Open Or Closed?
In places like Chicago where you can smell the air as you approach the city, it is wiser to keep your windows shut. You can’t breath the industrial “soup” all day and night and expect to stay healthy. Of course, it all enters the houses anyway. Central air conditioning and a plain carbon filter at the furnace location (see Sources) may be the best solution in spite of blowing dust around the house. Keep the vents to the bedrooms closed to reduce the air turbulence there but leave the cold air return open. Clean the vents in other rooms each week along with floors and carpets by pulling up the grating and reaching down the passage as far as possible.
If you believe the air is free of highway exhaust and industrial smoke open the windows every day. This will let some of the indoor toxins blow away. Asbestos, fiberglass, freon, radon and plain dust can be reduced to a minimum by keeping windows open. If you are ill, sit outdoors (on the porch) as much as you can. Escape to a suitable climate that makes this possible.
Just a few decades ago, many people had summer living quarters that were different from winter living quarters. Gone was all the accumulated infectious dust of half a year of habitation.
Fig. 57 Moving into the summer kitchen got you away from the accumulation of filth from winter!
Don’t have a basement where you stockpile toxic items. Basements invite mold, mice and radon besides toxic things. Fumes travel upward where you live! Keep your toxic things in the attic. If there is no attic, store them in the utility room. Close off the ventilation between utility room and the rest of your house. If you have none of these, perhaps because you live in a senior citizen community or condominium, don’t keep any toxic things stored anywhere. Don’t save any leftover paints, solvents or cleaners. Buy such small quantities that you can afford to throw it all away when you are done with them.
Live on top of the earth as was intended by nature.
Never have a basement room “finished” for actual living space. Don’t buy a house that has a “lower level” built into the
earth. This will be the most polluted and dangerous room in your house. If you are ill, move out of such a room. There is no way that it can be “cleaned up”. Move to the other end of the house and furthest away from an attached garage door.
What Kind Of Heat
The worst is coal. The best is none. Breathing coal fumes during the beginning of the industrial age may have brought the new lung diseases: tuberculosis (TB), and pneumonia. It may also have worsened alcohol addiction (beryllium toxicity). Choose electric heat if possible. Even though electricity is based on other fuel consumption, you don’t have to breathe those fumes directly.
Wood stoves can be made safe by making sure the chimney works properly. Never use a lighter fluid. Don’t fill the house with smoke when stoking.
Minimize your use of fossil fuels in every way you can.