Indoor air pollution is being studied extensively. There have also been a number of reports suggesting the impact of indoor air pollution on health. However, have you ever given a thought to the air pollutants that may be present in your car cabins? Thanks to congested roads and traffic jams, you spend quite a lot of time inside the car cabin. The toxic air in the car cabin can do a lot of harm to your respiratory system. Children are at a higher risk of suffering from the harmful effects of air pollution in car cabins. In this blog, let’s discuss in detail in-car air pollution and how a car air purifier can help you stay healthy. Read on.
What Causes in-Car Air Pollution?
Whether you have a new car or an old one, there is always a type of smell in the car cabin. What you smell in your car are volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which cause the weird greasy fog inside the windshield. Your car cabin may have a mix of more than 100 chemicals such as poisonous benzene or formaldehyde.
VOCs are one of the main indoor air pollutants that lead to many health problems. VOCs in your car cabin is present in the car foam in the seats, carpets, dashboard, or glue used in the car to keep the things in place. Apart from VOCs, particulate matter released from the car brakes and aromatic hydrocarbons from various interior components can lead to a number of health problems. Lingering smells of cigarette smoke and other sources also lead to in-car air pollution. Some of the common sources of air pollution in your car are:
- Pet dander
- Carbon dioxide
- Cigarette smoke
- Exhaust fumes of car
- Dust, mold, pollen, and bacteria
Why is Air Pollution Inside Car More Dangerous Than Outside?
Pollution inside a car cabin is high as they take in emissions from the surroundings and recirculate them in the car cabin. In fact, half the pollutants inside the cars come from vehicles that are immediately ahead. Levels of some air pollutants and toxic compounds are almost ten times higher inside the vehicles and the overall air quality is fifteen times worse. Air vents and other openings in the car provide an easy way for the pollutants to enter the car cabin. According to the Atmospheric Environment, air pollutants are higher at traffic intersections in both urban and suburban areas. Some of the findings include:
- Stopping at red lights increases air pollution exposure
- Traffic signals have approximately 29 times higher concentration of particulate matter as compared to open roads
- Passing through intersections accounted for 25 percent of pollution exposure
Air pollution is quite high at intersections as drivers tend to accelerate, decelerate and idle their vehicles.
How Does it Affect Children?
As children generally sit in the back seat of the car, they are more vulnerable to the harmful effects of in-car air pollution. The fans of the car suck in the exhaust or fumes that come out from a lorry or car behind you. This affects the under-developed lungs of children and they are exposed to the increased risk of sensitization leading to asthma and breathing problems. According to a study in Barcelona, car air pollution also reduces the ability of children to concentrate and also slows down their reaction time.
How Bad is In-car Air Pollution?
Studies have found that the quality in your car cabin can be 5 times worse than the air in your home or office. In-car air pollution can lead to a number of health problems. If you experience headaches, nausea, or sore throat every time you use your car, it is a symptom of in-car air pollution. Constant exposure to in-car air can also lead to cancer and disorders in the immune system. In addition, the place where you live also increases the impact of in-car air pollution on your health. In some cases, children may also become vulnerable to DNA damage because of in-car air pollution.
How can Car Air Purifiers Help?
Here are some easy and effective ways to improve the air quality in your car.
Use a Car Air Purifier
One of the effective ways to deal with in-car air pollution is by using a car air purifier. HEPA car air purifiers are ideal for removing particulate matter, fine particles, and toxic gases present in the indoor air. The air purifiers also come with carbon filters that neutralize the unpleasant odors present in the car cabin. The best part of the car air purifiers is they operate without making too much noise.
Maintain a Safe Distance from Vehicles
Most of the air pollutants come from the vehicle ahead of you. So, make sure when you are at an intersection, you maintain a safe distance from vehicles, especially if there is a truck or bus waiting ahead of you.
Avoid Car Air Fresheners
Air fresheners or deodorizers make your car smell fresh; however, these are a storehouse of germs and harmful VOCs. The presence of VOCs makes the air quality in the car cabin worse.
Close the Windows
Make sure you close the windows of your vehicles and put your air recirculate when you are at a stop sign.
Keep Your Car Clean
Pollutants present in the car mix with the dust particles. When you inhale this polluted air, it leads to breathing problems. This is the reason why it is necessary to keep your car clean and dust-free.
Last Few Words
While indoor air pollution is something that a lot of people are aware of and concerned about, many of us ignore the conditions in the car cabin. As you spend a lot of time in the car, it is necessary to take install an air purifier to breathe safely. KENT provides highly efficient car cabin air purifiers that effectively remove PM 2.5 pollutants from the indoor air. If you want to find out more about KENT Magic Car Air Purifiers, visit https://www.kent.co.in/air-purifiers/hepa/kent-car-air-purifier
To know more about indoor air pollution read our inside story.