Have you ever felt when you run your heat for the first time in the fall, you’re wheezing more often? While spring allergies seem to get a harsher reputation, fall allergies are still very common and many people struggle with them. For some, fall allergies can be even worse than spring thanks to brisk temperatures weakening our immune systems and from winding up our furnaces. This can leave you thinking, can furnaces make allergies worse in Hilton Head Island, or even cause them?
While furnaces can’t cause allergies, they can intensify them. How? During the hotter months, dust, dander and other debris can accumulate in heating ducts. When the cooler temperatures begin and we switch our heat on for the first time, all those allergens are now distributed through the ductwork and travel through our houses. Luckily, there are things you can do to stop your furnace from aggravating your allergies.
How to Keep Your Furnace from Triggering Your Allergies
- Get a New HVAC Filter. Routinely replacing your filters is one of the best chores you can perform to minimize your allergies at any time of the year. Fresh filters are better at snagging the allergens in your home’s air, helping to keep you breathing easy.
- Clean Your Air Ducts. Not only do pollutants gather in your HVAC filters, but in your vents as well. An air duct cleaning could help reduce allergy symptoms and help your HVAC system work more efficiently. When you call for an air duct cleaning, repair techs check and clean components like your supply/return ducts and registers, grilles and diffusers.
- Keep Your Furnace in Good Working Condition. Quality HVAC maintenance and routine checkups are another good way to both increase your residence’s air quality and keep your furnace running as smoothly as possible. Before turning your heating on for the first time, it tends to help to have an HVAC technician perform a maintenance examination to ensure your filters and air ducts are clean and everything else is in excellent condition.
Allergies and continuous illness can be frustrating, and it can be hard to figure out what’s leading to or triggering them. Here are some common FAQs, along with answers and ideas that might help.
Is Forced Air Bad for Allergies?
Allergy sufferers are frequently told that forced air heating may affect your allergies even more. Forced air systems can carry allergens through the air, leading you to breathing them in more frequently than if you had a radiant heating system. While it’s correct forced air systems can make your allergies more severe, that is only if you ignore appropriate upkeep of your furnace. Other than the practices we mentioned above, you can also:
- Dust and vacuum your home frequently. If there aren’t dust, dander or mold spore particles to clog your air ducts, your air system can’t circulate them into the air, and you can’t inhale them. Some extra cleaning tips include:
- Confirm your vacuum has a HEPA filter.
- Dust prior to vacuuming.
- Clean your curtains regularly, as they are a frequent harbor of allergens.
- Make sure to clean behind and under furniture.
- Check your residence’s moisture levels. High humidity levels can also lead to aggravating your allergies. Humidity supports mold growth and dust mites. Adding a dehumidifier to your HVAC system keeps moisture levels balanced and your indoor air quality much better.
What is the Top Furnace Filter for Allergies?
Most often, HEPA filters are a great fit if you or someone in your family struggles with allergies. HEPA filters are rated to remove 99.97 to 99.99% of particles, such as dust, pollen and dirt. These filters have a MERV rating of 17-21, depending on the kind. This rating demonstrates how well a filter can take pollutants from the air. Because of their high-efficiency filtration performance, HEPA filters are dense and can limit airflow. It’s smart to contact Epperson Service Experts to make sure your heating and cooling system can work correctly with these high efficiency filters.
Can Dusty Filters or Air Ducts Make Me Sick?
Dirty filters can trap particles and allow poor quality air to circulate. The same goes for dirty air ducts. If you inhale these particles it can trigger sneezing, coughing or other asthma-related issues, depending on your sensitivity.
It’s smart to replace your HVAC filter after 30-60 days, but here are some indications you could need to more frequently:
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