HVAC Maintenance To Reduce The Symptoms Of Allergies
From itchy and watery eyes to a runny nose and constant sneezing, seasonal allergies can wreak havoc on your well-being. Managing these symptoms is possible with allergy medications, but reducing your exposure to pollen, dust, and dander inside the home is also smart. While surprising to hear, focusing on your home's heating and air conditioning system can reduce your exposure to these allergens. If you are part of the 50 million Americans suffering with nasal allergies, consider following simple steps to clean and maintain your home's HVAC system. Using these techniques to maintain your heating and cooling system, you can improve your indoor air quality and reduce your allergy symptoms.
Your HVAC equipment requires a filter to protect its function and efficiency. The filters trap dirt, dust, and other debris before it enters your home. If the filter is clogged up with debris, conditioned air will not move into and through your home properly. This will cause your system to work harder, reducing its efficiency and increasing your energy bills. Considering half of your home's total energy usage goes towards heating and cooling, making sure your filters are clean at all times ensures your system is running in an effective, efficient manner.
Of course, changing your filters will also improve your home's indoor air quality, reducing your allergy symptoms. Be sure to remove your old filter and replace with a new one each month. Use the following tips to locate your system's filters:
If you have a system with a horizontal unit where the return duct is connected to the air handler's side, the filter will be located on the side of unit's intake.
If your system's vertical air handler has the return duct opening on the top of the air handler, the filter will be located on the slot above the unit. However, if the vertical air handler's return is duct opening is located below the air handler, the filter slot will be below the unit.
In some cases, the HVAC filter will be located behind the grill on a wall inside your home. If you have a return in each room of your house, filters will be found behind each return grill.
Consider replacing each filter with a high-efficiency filter to remove up to 85 percent of pollutants from the air. While more expensive compared to traditional filters, high-efficiency models are most effective for improving efficiency and your home's indoor air quality.
You may notice debris inside the returns when replacing your filters. This surface debris is easy to suction away using your vacuum and an attachment, but a more involved cleaning will be necessary if you have excessive dirt and dust inside your ductwork.
Located in the walls, ceiling, crawlspace, and attic of a home, the ductwork is an imperative part of moving conditioned air into the home. Unfortunately, air is not the only element moved into the home. Even though a large percentage is hopefully trapped by your system's filters, dirt, dust, dander, and mold may flow into your home.
The ductwork is an elaborate system, so you will not be able to clean it entirely on your own. Hiring professional contractors for a duct cleaning service may seem costly, but it is a smart investment if you have mold and large amounts of dust in your ducts.
If you suffer with allergies and notice the following signs, your system's efficiency and your underlying health will benefit from a duct cleaning service:
- Dust, cobwebs, and debris blowing out of registers
- Visible mold on and in ducts
- Dead bugs/rodent droppings inside ducts
By maintaining your filters and ductwork, your heating and cooling system will work in an effective and efficient manner. However, these simple solutions will also reduce the amount of allergens inside your home. Using this guide, your system will heat and cool efficiently while reducing your allergy symptoms. For more information, contact a local HVAC company or visit websites like http://www.homesmartcolorado.com/.