While you cannot influence the air quality outside, you can create a cleaner and healthy environment inside your house. An air purifier is a good solution for cleaner air indoors.
You can find more information about the types of air purifies here
Sometimes it is possible to negotiate and get an air purifier included in the rental contract, it depends on the landlord.
It is not a problem to buy a good air purifier in Beijing. All the big chain stores carry a wide range of devices for different needs and budgets. Most of the international brands like Philips, Panasonic and Honeywell are available and offer quality units in the price range from 800 to 10,000 RMB. There are also Chinese brands like Yadu and Midea that generally offer good value for money. IQ Air and Blue Air are upmarket brands of air purifiers to consider. These high quality brands are rather expensive in Beijing and you may get a better deal in your country, check out the prices before moving to Beijing. There is also big second hand market for air purifiers you can find items for sale on the community boards at schools, club houses and supermarkets.
There are a few companies in Beijing which provide indoor air quality assessments and service in English:
- Pure-living www.purelivingchina.com
- Aquasana www.aquasana-china.com
This is another great resource for the air quality testing: www.bluepointenvironmental.com/indoor-air-quality-testing
On days with high air pollution you may see people wearing protective masks to filter the polluted air. The level of pollution when you would want to put a mask on will depend on your sensitivity to the pollution and your health conditions.
The most popular, easy to use and affordable protection masks:
- N95 particulate respirator by 3M
- protective masks by Totobobo http://totobobo.com/buy.html