Another winterizing tip: carpet your floors. While carpet may not always be the best option for homes with pets, young kids, and people with environmental allergies, it is great if your household does not fit into any of the above categories. Good quality carpeting can last a long time and provide significant thermal benefits in cold New England winters. There are also many sustainable options available on the market today if you are concerned about formaldehyde or other off gassing substances. Wool, though more expensive, is one of the best carpeting materials simply because it has unparalleled thermal properties, is naturally water repellent, and is a natural material. By their very nature, wool carpets and rugs are good for the indoor environment. That's because wool, unlike synthetic fibers, rapidly absorbs common contaminants in indoor air like formaldehyde, nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide. Not only does wool keep the air free of many harmful pollutants, it will not re-emit them, even when heated. In fact, it has been estimated that wool carpets can continually purify indoor air for up to 30 years!
There is actually evidence that wool carpeting might help with allergies. It is not immediately apparent, but hard flooring lets the dust freely and constantly move around, which might trigger allergy attacks unless kept absolutely dustless everyday. Carpeting on the other hand can trap allergens and not let them escape, prohibiting the movement of particles in the air, and when regularly cleaned with a HEPA and CRI Green Label vacuum that does not release allergens back into the air it can create a more controlled environment for people with allergies.