Home & Garden

Want to Open Your Windows for Fresh Air? What Homeowners Should Know First

When the inside of your home feels hot and stuffy, you may be tempted to open your windows to let more air into your living space. Opening the windows certainly has its advantages, but there are also some disadvantages that sometimes come with doing so. If you choose to leave your windows open to let in some fresh air and cool the inside of your home, you should be aware of the issues that could arise if certain precautions haven’t been taken.

Lack of Temperature Control

If your home feels stuffy or you want to take advantage of the nice weather outside, you may be considering opening your windows to let in the fresh air. However, when you open the windows, you remove the barrier that is keeping your air conditioning or heating system contained inside. Because of this, you should consider turning off the air conditioning unit while the windows are open. Additionally, turning on fans in the same room as the window can help pull air in from the outside. So keep in mind that though opening the windows can get fresh air in, it can also let cool or warm air out at a faster rate.

Possible Allergy Attacks

Pollen, dust, and other common allergens can get into your home easier if you open your windows, and these particles may trigger allergic reactions if you or anyone else in your home is prone to them. You might find yourself sneezing and coughing more often if you leave your windows open often and breathe in the allergens that are coming into your home. An air purifier may help reduce allergy attacks if you like to open your windows, or you can choose to use your air conditioner instead to cool your home’s interior. Since dust buildup is common in air conditioning vents, be sure to clean the vents a few times per year to minimize any allergens related to the dust. Otherwise, turning on the air conditioner can have the same effect as opening the windows.

Security Risks

Leaving your windows open could make your home more vulnerable to break-ins. Burglars and other intruders can get through open windows much easier than by picking or breaking door locks, and an open window might seem like an invitation to enter your home. Guardian security screens or similar window coverings can be placed over windows to allow fresh air to flow into the home while still providing protection against intruders. Typically these screens are made out of different materials such as stainless steel instead of aluminum or polyester. Since they are typically made to be knife or cutting resistant, they also usually have a special security release on the inside of the window screen to help with quickly releasing the screen in case of a fire. That way you can have the security from intruders while also being able to escape if needed.

Kid and Pet Safety Risks

If you have kids or pets or both living in your home, you should be aware of the risks of leaving your windows open so that you can avoid catastrophes. Pets and small children might fall out of open windows, and serious bodily harm and even death could result if your open windows are situated several stories above the ground. Safety guards that look like gates can be placed across the openings of windows to keep pets and children out of harm’s way while still allowing you to leave your windows open. Most screens for windows are not able to hold the weight of a child so keep that in mind if your child likes to lean against the screen. If they put enough force into the window screen, a normal screen can fall out or tare under their weight. With that being the case, if you want to use a screen as a safety guard, ensure that you get one that can handle a child’s weight such as a security screen.

Sudden Weather Changes

You might think that it’s okay to leave your windows open because of the current weather conditions, but sudden changes in the weather could make you quickly regret your decision to do so. A strong gust of wind could blow suddenly into your home and perhaps cause damage to some of your possessions. A rainstorm could also rush in with little warning and soak the inside of your home if you aren’t able to get to your windows quickly to close them. This tends to be more problematic in places where things like sand storms and severe rainstorms occur. If you live in an environment like that, just make sure that you are paying attention to the weather and don’t leave your home unattended with the windows open. That way, if a bad wind storm does occur, you can stop what you are doing to close up all of the windows. You may still need to clean spaces when this happens, but being at home and being able to close the windows quickly can help prevent anything from being permanently damaged.

Opening your windows to let in some fresh air can be a good or bad idea depending on different factors. You shouldn’t be afraid to open your windows, but you should still be aware of the possible issues that you might encounter if you choose to open your windows instead of using an air conditioner or a fan to make the inside of your home less stuffy.