Levoit Blog

Air Quality on the 4th of July

  • 1 min read

Do you know what happens at 8 pm on the 4th of July? As we light the sparklers and splash brilliant colors across the night sky, our spirits lift right along with the smoke particles and our nation’s air quality average worsens by over 40% over the next 24 hours.

To help keep your 4th of July as fresh as it is fun, we’ve put together some helpful data and tips.

An Interesting Study

In 2015, researchers published a study on the “Effects of Independence Day fireworks on atmospheric concentrations of fine particulate matter in the United States”. These researchers measured the air quality of 67 sites during the 4th, then compared their findings to the air quality of the days preceding and following the holiday. What they found may surprise you:

  • Air quality worsens the most between 9–10 pm and usually diminishes by noon the next day.
  • Sites next to fireworks can show up to 370% increases in 24-hr PM2.5 (Particulate Matter 2.5 micrometers or smaller).
  • The effects on air quality seem to be similar regardless of whether the holiday falls on a weekend or weekday.

Negative Effects of Poor Air Quality

The quality of the air we breathe matters. According to the EPA, there have been various research studies linking small particle air pollution to the following effects:

  • Nonfatal heart attacks
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Aggravated asthma
  • Lung irritation
  • Coughing and difficulty breathing

What You Can Do

Whether you partake in fireworks or not, your air quality will likely be affected by them. Here are some simple ways to help protect your home’s atmosphere:

  • Limit your time outside and keep your doors and windows closed
  • Run an air purifier to help improve your home’s air circulation and to trap airborne smoke particles
  • Avoid indoor activities that might lower your home’s air quality, such as lighting candles, indoor grilling, and using gas stoves
  • Avoid using products that will draw in air from outside, such as window AC units

 

We hope this post was insightful and helpful, and wish you a fresh and fun 4th of July with your friends and family!

 

Important Note

The information provided here is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be used in medical emergencies or for diagnosing or treating any medical condition. It's crucial to consult a licensed medical professional for diagnosis and treatment. External links are for informational purposes and do not constitute endorsements. No warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied, is made as to the products and/or the accuracy, reliability, timeliness, or correctness of the information provided herein.

 

Sources

Health and Environmental Effects of Particulate Matter (PM) | US EPA

Effects of Independence Day fireworks on atmospheric concentrations of fine particulate matter in the United States - ScienceDirect

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