Posted by Tony on October 22nd, 2012
The leaves just started changing, but cooler weather is on its way—and in some places, it’s already here. High electricity costs and expensive, outdated heating systems can waste a lot of money this winter. Combine that with consumers’ desire to only heat specific rooms (the ones they actually use!), and it’s pretty clear why space heaters have become so popular across the country.
A space heater can save you money, energy, and provide spot heating to any area of your home. With a wide-range of heater types, capacities, and safety features, finding the right space heater is easier than you may think.
It’s a great time to buy one too, because many of our most popular models are 20% off during Sylvane’s Space Heater Sale going on now. Read More About Sylvane's Space Heater Sale!
Posted by Ivey on October 15th, 2012
Recently, I woke up with a stuffy head, congestion, and runny nose. My first thought: I seriously do not have time for this. My second thought: Where did this come from because I felt fine yesterday? If you’ve found yourself in a similar situation, take inventory of your symptoms before immediately reaching for cold medicine because allergies could be the cause.
Allergies and common colds have many of the same symptoms, but the causes are different and need to be treated differently. Colds are caused by viruses, which can be airborne or passed by an infected person through handshakes, food sharing, uncovered sneezes and coughs, and similar social gestures. Cold viruses can also live on countertops, computer keyboards, desktops, dishes, and other surfaces. For most healthy people, cold symptoms only last a few days to a couple of weeks. Read more about differences between a common cold and allergy symptoms.
Posted by Tony on October 9th, 2012
At Sylvane, we always stress the importance of indoor air quality and how it affects our health. After all, we spend most of our time indoors. Read more about IQAir's New Edition Air Purifiers.
Posted by Ryan on October 8th, 2012
Football season is a great time of year. In many parts of the country, people say it’s their favorite time of the year. Football season means friends, family, nostalgia, and of course tailgating.
After hosting and attending at least a hundred tailgates in my life, I’ve seen it all. Sports fanatics all around the country debate and argue that their way of tailgating is the best. But there’s one thing that all tailgaters can agree on: It gets cold in the winter! Especially when you spend hours at a time outside before and after the big game. Read some tips for staying warm at your next tailgate, without sacrificing your health.
Posted by Allison on October 1st, 2012
A true quest for knowledge never ends. We can tell ourselves we know it all, but what’s the point? The internet is full of information – some true, some questionable – and to ignore that would be a tragic waste.
Each month, we highlight some of our favorite blogs and websites that are good resources for discovering more about air quality. We call them Air Quality Evangelists. You may recognize them as you surf the web, as many sport the Air Quality Evangelist badge. See Air Quality Evangelists for September 2012.
Posted by Stephanie on September 25th, 2012
Summer has come to an end, and if you’re like me, you’re not quite ready to pack up your patio furniture, put away your grill, or move your decorations indoors.
Luckily, you won’t have to this fall! As cooler weather begins creeping in, adding an outdoor heater and colorful fall decor to your patio can help you enjoy your outdoor retreat – even on the chilliest autumn nights. See more tips for enjoying your patio this fall.
Posted by Ivey on September 19th, 2012
Are watery eyes, itchy skin, runny nose, or hay fever symptoms keeping you from relaxing at home? Chances are your home comfort could be compromised by allergens.
Here’s a quick rundown of five of the most common household allergens to help you identify the source and restore the health of your home. Read more about common household allergens.
Posted by Pam on September 17th, 2012
I’m an environmental consultant that specializes in air quality, so people are always surprised to hear I live in one of the United States’ major centers for oil refining. It’s known as one of the most air quality-challenged regions of our country, and needless to say, I get a lot of questions around town about air quality and the risks associated with where I live.
Here’s what I know:
Exxon Mobil’s largest North American petrochemical complex is in the middle of my town. This is where plastic ingredients and the specialty chemicals for foods and personal products come from. In fact, most of the other big oil and chemical companies are also within a half hour drive.
Find out more about this expert's take on air quality.
Posted by Ivey on September 10th, 2012
Have you noticed a strange pungent odor in your home lately? Perhaps you have been coughing, sneezing, or suffering from other allergy-related symptoms and can’t find the trigger? These can all be signs that your home has a mold problem. Before you condemn your home and call a demolition crew, here are a few tips for identifying a mold problem, treating it, and avoiding future issues.
Most mold experts agree that small amounts of mold are present in every home. However, large amounts of mold can cause hay fever symptoms and be particularly irritating to people with allergies, immune suppression, and asthma, according to the CDC.
Find out where to look for mold, how to remove it, and more
Posted by Pam on September 6th, 2012
My mother, a long-time smoker, loves every product on the market that makes her house smell “clean” and “fresh”. As for me, I’m not so sure. The intellectual part of my brain eschews this whole concept of corporate fragrance, but those smells from a bottle do fill my heart.
“What’s the harm?” My emotional brain pleads with the intellectual brain.
For the longest time, Intellectual Brain could only argue that those fragrances were so strong and artificial, there simply had to be something wrong with them. Science will figure it out someday.
Well folks, that day is here. A recent study by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has linked dichlorobenzene, one of the chemical common to air fresheners, to early puberty in girls.
In the past 100 years, the age of a girl’s first menstrual cycle has decreased about 4 years, with the average onset now around 12 to 13 years. In the 1990s, nearly every American tested was positive for the presence of dichlorobenzene in their urine.
Read more about how we are exposed to this pollutant.
Posted by Tony on August 31st, 2012
Historically, Labor Day celebrates American workers, but we’re switching it up here at Sylvane by giving our customers great deals! Along with your day off on Monday, enjoy discounts on some of our most popular brands and products—including Dyson’s top-of-the-line products that are always consumer favorites.
Find out more about our Labor Day Sale!
Posted by Allison on August 30th, 2012
August has been full of excitement. Kicking off with the Olympic Games, spiraling into back to school madness, and coming to a close with America’s eyes locked tight on a hurricane named Isaac.
Some of you may be hoping August never ends. Others are glad it’s coming to a close. Either way, there are just a few short days left in the month of August. It’s time to give shout-outs to our favorite blog posts during the month, written by these new Air Quality Evangelists!
See this month's Air Quality Evangelists.
Posted by Pam on August 28th, 2012
Ever opened up a new toy for your kid, or a box of assembly-required furniture, and been knocked over by the smell in the box? After romanticizing about being the first person to breathe in that air since the box left its country of origin, my attention goes to a little voice inside my head that says, “Cough cough – run! Nobody should breathe that stuff in!”
But then I shrug it off, believing that if there really were a danger, my government would put a label on the box or run public service announcements warning me of the danger of breathing in factory air from China.
Turns out we should give pause when opening that box.
A recent study followed formaldehyde release from the unpacking and assembly of self-assembly furniture. Researchers found that unpacking and setting up a 2-door wardrobe increased the formaldehyde concentration in the home in a measurable way. And the formaldehyde levels differed with the finish on the wardrobe, with the unfinished models emitting higher levels of formaldehyde than the highly-lacquered glossy models.
Read more about surprising sources of formaldehyde in your home.
Posted by Ashley on August 17th, 2012
School is getting back in session. Whether you’re heading off to college, heading back to college, or sending your child off for the first time—there are some things that can make the experience go much smoother. Most dorm packing lists cover the basics, but they don’t take into account those things that can help you feel more comfortable in your home away from home. Plus, if you suffer from allergies or asthma, you have more to think about, not knowing what symptom triggers await you.
To help you (or your studious son or daughter) create a healthier, more comfortable dorm room, check out our list of must-have products.
Many dorms lack central air conditioning. Other dorms have it, but it might not be powerful enough to cool you during the late summer months and you might not have control over the thermostat. A great stand-in, a compact table fan fits easily on your bedside table, window sill, or desk to circulate a gentle breeze that cools you and keeps your space refreshed while you hit the books.
Our Pick: Weighing just under 4 pounds, the Vornado 573 Air Circulator features 3 cooling speeds, quiet operation, and a sleek minimalist design that looks great on your nightstand.
Read on for more dorm room essentials
Posted by Allison on August 13th, 2012
“Your child has asthma.” Four little words that have struck fear into the hearts of parents for decades. As a parent, your one wish for your child is to make his dreams a reality. Will asthma keep him from reaching his goals?
Ask Amy Van Dyken, Kristi Yamaguchi, or Laura Trott.
Amy Van Dyken was the first American female athlete to win four gold medals in a single Olympic games. Kristi Yamaguchi is an Olympic figure skater and two-time World Champion. Laura Trott is the reigning double European, World, and Olympic champion in track cycling.
All three women are diagnosed with asthma.
Asthma is the most common chronic disease among Olympic athletes. About 8% of Olympians have diagnosed asthma or airway hyper-responsiveness (AHR), according to a study by the University of Western Australia.
The study goes on to say that, despite their condition, athletes with asthma historically perform better in the Olympics than those who don’t suffer from it.
Find out how to prepare for the Games without jeopardizing your respiratory health.