How Your Furnace Can Worsen Your Allergies

Have you ever noticed when you turn on your furnace for the first time in the fall, you’re sniffling more frequently? While spring allergies usually get a more severe reputation, fall allergies are still very typical and many people are affected by them. For some, fall allergies can be even worse than spring due to weather impairing our immune systems and from winding up our equipment. This could leave you considering, can furnaces make allergies worse in the U.S., or even lead to them?

While furnaces can’t lead to allergies, they can aggravate them. How? During the warmer months, dust, dander and other pollutants can collect in heating ducts. When the colder temps arrive and we switch our furnaces on for the first time, all those allergens are now pushed out of the vents and move within our houses. Thankfully, there are things you can do to prevent your furnace from worsening your allergies.

How to Keep Your Furnace from Affecting Your Allergies

    1. Change Your HVAC Filter. Regularly replacing your filters is one of the best things you can complete to minimize your allergies at any time of the year. New filters are superior when snagging the allergens in your home’s air, helping to keep you breathing easy.
    1. Freshen Up Your Air Ducts. Not only do particulates collect in your HVAC filters, but in your ventilation as well. An air duct cleaning might help minimize allergy symptoms and help your HVAC system work more efficiently. When you schedule an air duct cleaning, repair techs survey and clean components like your supply/return ducts and registers, grilles and diffusers.
    1. Keep Your Furnace Well Maintained. Adequate HVAC maintenance and periodic service are another excellent way to both improve your home’s air quality and keep your heater performing as efficiently as possible. Before switching your heat on for the first time, it can help to have an HVAC tech perform a maintenance inspection to confirm your filters and air ducts are clean and everything else is in good working order.

Allergies and recurring illness can be annoying, and it can be hard to pinpoint what’s causing or triggering them. Here are some common FAQs, including answers and suggestions that might help.

Is Forced Air Detrimental for Allergies?

Allergy sufferers are usually told that forced air heating may irritate your allergies even more. Forced air systems can carry allergens through the air, causing you to breathe them in more often than if you owned a radiant heating system. While it’s true forced air systems may make your allergies worse, that is only if you don’t take appropriate care of your system. Other than the tasks we listed above, you can also:

    • Dust and vacuum your house frequently. If there aren’t dust, dander or mold spore particles to collect in your air ducts, your air system can’t transport them into the air, and you can’t inhale them. Some added cleaning ideas are:
    • Make sure your vacuum has a HEPA filter.
    • Dust in advance of vacuuming.
    • Clean your curtains routinely, as they are a typical harbor of allergens.
    • Make sure to clean behind and under furniture.
    • Keep an Eye on your house’s moisture levels. Increased humidity levels can also contribute to more severe allergies. Humidity supports mold growth and dust mites. Installing a dehumidifier with your HVAC system keeps moisture levels balanced and your indoor air quality much better.

H2: What is the Best Furnace Filter for Allergies?

Typically, HEPA filters are a strong option if you or someone in your home suffers from allergies. HEPA filters are rated to take out 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 type. This rating reveals how well a filter can remove pollutants from the air. Because of their high-efficiency filtration materials, HEPA filters are thick and can limit airflow. It’s beneficial to talk to Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing to confirm your heating and cooling system can operate properly 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 recirculate. The same goes for dirty vents. If you inhale these particles it can trigger sneezing, coughing or other asthma-related problems, depending on your sensitivity.

It’s beneficial to replace your HVAC filter every 30-60 days, but here are some signs you may need to more frequently:

    • It’s taking longer for your system to cool or heat your home.
    • You discover more dust in your house.
    • Utility bills are increasing with no clear reason.
    • Your allergies are acting up.
    • Signs your air ducts require cleaning include:
    • The metal is covered in dust.
    • Filthy supply and return vents.
    • Mold in your furnace, air conditioner, heat pump or air handler.
    • Dust emitting from your vents when your HVAC system is running.
    • Your residence is often dusty, regardless of continuous cleaning.

Your health and comfort are our greatest priority at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing. Whether it’s furnace repair right away.

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