Have you ever noticed when you run your heat for the first time in the fall, you’re sneezing more often? While spring allergies often get a worse reputation, fall allergies are still very prominent and many people are affected by them. For some, fall allergies can be even worse than spring because of colder weather weakening our immune systems and from starting up our heating. This could leave you thinking, can furnaces make allergies worse in Sharonville, or even cause them?
While furnaces can’t create allergies, they sometimes intensify them. How? During the summer months, dust, dander and other debris can build up in heating ducts. When the cold temps hit and we switch our furnaces on for the first time, all those allergens are now distributed through the ductwork and move through our residences. Luckily, there are things you can do to stop your furnace from aggravating your allergies.
How to Keep Your Furnace from Triggering Your Allergies
- Replace Your HVAC Filter. Regularly replacing your filters is one of the best tasks you can complete to minimize your allergies at any time of the year. Clean filters are superior when snagging the allergens in your home’s air, helping to keep you healthier.
- Dust Your Air Ducts. Not only do particulates collect in your HVAC filters, but in your ventilation as well. An air duct cleaning could help minimize allergy symptoms and help your HVAC system perform more efficiently. When you call for an air duct cleaning, technicians survey and clean components such as your supply/return ducts and registers, grilles and diffusers.
- Keep Your Furnace in Good Working Order. Quality HVAC maintenance and regular service are another easy way to both boost your house’s air quality and keep your heating performing as effectively as possible. Prior to switching your heating on for the first time, it could help to have an HVAC technician complete a maintenance checkup to ensure your filters and air ducts are clean and everything else is in excellent shape.
Allergies and continuous illness can be discouraging, and it can be hard to figure out what’s causing or triggering them. Here are some additional FAQs, complete with answers and ideas that can help.
Is Forced Air Harmful for Allergies?
Allergy sufferers are frequently told that forced air heating can irritate your allergies even more. Forced air systems can circulate allergens through the air, resulting in you breathing them in more frequently than if you owned a radiant heating system. While it’s correct forced air systems might make your allergies worse, that is only if you avoid proper upkeep of your system. Other than the tasks we included previously, you can also:
- Dust and vacuum your home regularly. 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 involve:
- Confirm your vacuum has a HEPA filter.
- Dust in advance of vacuuming.
- Clean your curtains periodically, as they are a typical hiding place of allergens.
- Make sure to clean behind and under furniture.
- Check your house’s moisture levels. Increased humidity levels can also contribute to aggravating your allergies. Humidity enables mold growth and dust mites. Adding a dehumidifier to your HVAC system keeps moisture levels under control and your indoor air quality much better.
What is the Best Furnace Filter for Allergies?
Most often, HEPA filters are the best if you or someone in your family struggles with allergies. HEPA filters are rated to filter 99.97 to 99.99% of particles, including dust, pollen and dirt. These filters have a MERV rating of 17-21, depending on the kind. This rating illustrates how thoroughly a filter can clean pollutants from the air. Due to their high-efficiency filtration construction, HEPA filters are dense and can restrict airflow. It’s helpful to talk to Knochelmann Service Experts to confirm your heating and cooling system can work properly with these high efficiency filters.
Can Dirty Filters or Air Ducts Make Me Sick?
Worn filters can trap particles and allow poor quality air to move throughout your home. This is also applicable for dusty ductwork. If you inhale these particles it can produce sneezing, coughing or other asthma-related symptoms, depending on your sensitivity.
It’s beneficial to swap out your HVAC filter around 30-60 days, but here are some signs you might need to more frequently:
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