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657 Indoor Air Pollution

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Air pollution increases the risk of breathing problems, which is why many cities alert citizens when ozone is high. But how safe is the air inside your home? Better insulation may mean that people are exposed to more indoor air pollution from cleaning products, carpets, candles or even air fresheners. Mold and fungus can also pose hazards.

Guests: David B. Peden, MD, Professor of Pediatrics and Medicine, Chief of the Division of Pediatric Immunology and Infectious Disease and Director of the Center for Environmental Medicine, Asthma and Lung Biology. He is also Associate Chair for Research in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Charles Gerba, PhD, microbiologist at the University of Arizona

Arnie Katz, Director of Training, Senior Building Science Consultant
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If any of the panel had ever lived in New York City they would know that all the spraying in the world never worked. Everyone had roaches until they invented "Combat."

Buying a couple of these small little "ant trap" type devises usually kept roaches at bay for 6 months but more likely a year or more at a time.

Good luck to all and forget the "professional" spraying.

We bought a high efficiency furnace that vents out the side wall and has a gas water heater. Are we at risk for CO via back-drafting since we did not reline the old chimney? We know the old furnace produced enough heated gases to create the necessary updraft and the water heater gases are not hot enough to make it out the chimney without the furnace gases. If this was not a problem with the old furnace during the spring, summer and fall when it was not turned on, why should it be a problem now? Does the colder temperature of upper Midwest winters create the problem and if so how?

Your show #657 about indoor air quality was very interesting. I attempted to phone in a question about smell or emissions from home furnishings, particularly the newer mattresses. Having never had a problem with using a new mattress from the day of delivery, I was completely surprised that mattresses made & sold after 7/1/2007 have to meet new flammibility US Product Safety Comm stds.

The odor affected my lungs and sinuses, we sent back the first mattress and a 2nd one from a different mfr has the same problem. The USPSC had no comment about this and interestingly both retailers & mfr's say nothing about the new chemicals used to meet the new stds.

What can the consumer do. Stearns & Foster told me to air it out for 3 wks before using. Can you imagine. After six weeks we still are having bothersome emissions. I have had others check out the odor and they confirmed what I was beginning to think was all in my head.

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