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How Do 4th of July Fireworks Impact Indoor Air Quality?

kids watching personal firework display

American flags are flying high and being waved around during the day, and when nightfall hits on Independence day, the fireworks begin to boom.

For some, this is the best part of the 4th of July, but for others, it can pose danger to their health.

Health Impacts

Exposure to the fine particles let off by fireworks is linked to negative health implications, according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency.

The particles may exacerbate existing symptoms and cause coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, asthma attacks, and even heart attacks.

People with existing asthma or respiratory issues should avoid being too close to firework shows or try to watch them from inside.


The smoke, ash, sparks, and haze that are produced by a firework can pollute the outside air.

The pollutants can then travel inside from ventilation such as open windows and doors.

With other pollutants such as mold, bacteria, and other particles already inside, adding more to the mix can decrease your indoor air quality.

To help improve your indoor air quality during independence day weekend and year-round, consider installing IAQ systems, such as:

  • Humidifiers and dehumidifiers

  • Air filters and high-efficiency filters

  • UV light air sterilization services

Or schedule an air duct cleaning.

Pennsylvania Firework Laws

In Pennsylvania, anyone 18 years or older can purchase consumer-grade or class C fireworks.

This may include firecrackers, Roman candles, bottle rockets, and similar fireworks that contain a maximum of 50 milligrams of explosive material.

Safety Tips

If you choose to use legal fireworks, be sure to be safe while doing so.

Remember to never light them indoors, never use them while impaired, keep water nearby for emergencies, and never let young children handle them.

Also, avoid shooting them off around power lines or brush as it can cause power outages and fires.

Homer Nine and Sons, Inc., are experts within the Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania area and can provide top-notch assistance for all your HVAC and IAQ needs. Call us at (724) 241-8698 for all your HVAC needs!