Another hot OKC summer is just around the corner, (though the triple digit temperatures we’ve recently experienced make it feel like it’s already arrived). The oppressive heat and humidity outside ensures that people stay indoors for the majority of the day. This helps keep the indoor air quality just as compromised as it was during the chilly winter months when our homes were locked up tight. It also keeps the utility bills high as we run the A/C for the majority of the day (if not all day) to stay comfortable. But there is a unique solution to keeping the indoor air clean and cool throughout another hot, sticky summer.
You’ve probably heard about how certain houseplants can help clean indoor air. Garden mums, ficus plants and fig trees, just to name a few, are ideal for helping to purify stagnant and/or contaminated air. Many of these same plants can also help bring down ambient temperatures in the home. Plants absorb carbon dioxide and emit oxygen, but they can also help control the humidity through transpiration (moisture evaporating through the leaves).
A collection of well-chosen houseplants will definitely have an effect on your home’s overall temperature – and will also help with airborne allergens as well. We’ve compiled a list of the most effective plants for lowering the ambient temperature in your home.
Aloe Vera – Most people have heard about the medicinal properties of Aloe Vera as a topical treatment for burns and other skin conditions. But the Aloe Vera plant is useful in several ways including removing formaldehyde from the air and bringing down the ambient temperature in the home.
Areca Palm – This palm is one of the more common indoor plants, featuring airy, arching fronds that produce up to 100 leaflets. It’s great for helping to humidify a home – and also removes carbon dioxide and other airborne toxins from the air.
Fern –There are over 10,000 known species of fern, most of the domestic variations require little water or light. This Boston Fern is one of the most effective at purifying the air and also cooling the ambient air.
Ficus Tree – Known primarily for improving indoor air quality, this plant includes a large number of species including the rubber tree and fig fruit tree. But the most popular in the species is also known as the weeping fig (or simply ficus). A ficus will not only improve air quality, but it will also help keep the room temperature down.
Golden Pothos – This flexible, fast-growing vine is a hardy plant can stay green even in dark rooms and cool temperatures. However, it thrives in bright, indirect light and with minimum watering. Not only is it known for ridding the air of carbon monoxide and formaldehyde, it also helps to cool the air.
Snake Plant – Also known as Mother-in-law’s Tongue, this indoor plant is ideal for the bedroom. Unlike most plants that take away oxygen at night, a snake plant emits oxygen throughout the night while keeping the indoor temperatures cool. These plants can live in low light and can withstand irregular watering, which makes them a popular choice for indoor use. It is suggested to keep about 6-8 waist-high plants per person for optimal oxygen output.
Indoor plants make sense for a number of reasons – including healthier air, pleasant room decor and cooler temperatures (through transpiration). Your local nursery will be able to help you choose the appropriate version of the plants listed – or alternatives that will achieve the same results. If you ever have indoor air quality issues, remember that Interstate can help you with our comprehensive IAQ service. Call us today at 405-794-8900 to schedule an appointment!
For information on HVAC efficiency, give Interstate Heating & Air Conditioning a call at 405-794-8900.
Don’t forget to schedule your air conditioning tune-up for summer! Schedule service online or give us a call!