How outdoor pollution impacts on IAQ

Although we all spend around 90% of our time indoors – working, resting and playing – we’re not immune from the contaminates that are swirling around outdoors.

In fact, outdoor air pollution plays a significant role in indoor air quality (IAQ).

Air exchange

Every time you open a window, door or ventilation slot, there’s continuous air exchange between the outdoors and the building you’re in.

Many studies have proven that particulate matter (PM) impacts on us and our health and wellbeing more than any other form of pollutant.


Indoor air exposure to fine PM originates mostly from outdoor air, especially in urban areas where the traffic can be heavy. This is the most likely source of contamination.

Heating & eating

The second most important source of exposure comes from the indoor combustion of solid fuels, where present, for cooking and heating.


The outdoor fine PM originates mostly from combustion sources, nearby and distant, in particular where the levels exceed rural backgrounds.

What is often not acknowledged is that in strongly polluted areas, e.g. heavy industry zones, city centres with heavy traffic, without air filtration, more than 90% of ambient PM levels monitored outdoors, occur indoors too.

Reduce PM exposure

Applying correctly selected, efficient air filters in ventilation systems can significantly reduce the impact of PM exposure and the burden of disease (hyperlink to March’s BoD blog) (BoD), which is a measure of life expectancy and the quality of life you can expect.

Get our expert help

Call us for a FREE, friendly chat about your system, or to find out more about us, on 01278 452277, or email, no strings attached. We can help you ensure you have an efficient air filtration system that not only helps boost good IAQ but also is energy efficient and saves you money too.

You can also purchase our energy rated products online via our e-store (link to – when putting on this website change this wording to suit).

The facts and information for this article were supplied by and with thanks to Eurovent AISBL / IVZW / INPA (2022). Eurovent 4/23 - 2022 - Selection of EN ISO 16890 rated air filter classes - Fourth edition. Brussels: Eurovent ©. – this is the citation Eurovent suggest when using info from their documents JFYR.

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