Although our winters are mostly pretty mild here in Raleigh, you’ve most certainly had to turn on the heat a few times this year. Have your allergies gotten worse since your heater’s been running? While your furnace isn’t going to cause allergies outright, it can aggravate them if you have a forced air system and haven’t taken preventative measures.
Why is that? During the summer, dust, pet dander or other allergens may start settling in your air ducts. Then during the first cold snap, your heater will sweep them up and blow them into your house. Other conditions in your home may also be contributing to detrimental air quality as well.
Thankfully, there are a number of measures that homeowners can take to alleviate allergy symptoms intensified by your home’s air quality.
Keep Your Heater From Aggravating Your Allergies
Air Filters – To begin, make sure you’re regularly changing your filter every 1-2 months (if you have pets, every month). This is one of the easiest and most effective ways to keep allergens out of your home’s air, and provide some relief to those in your home most severely affected. Dirty air filters not only impact air quality, it makes your HVAC system work harder and work less efficiently (which will cost you more over the course of the season).
Air Purifiers – Adding an air purifier to your air ducts can have a huge impact on the air quality in your home. There are many air purifiers available to purchase, but only a few that we actually recommend to install into your air ducts. An HVAC contractor can advise you on the best choice for your home.
Dust & Vacuum – The fewer dust particles and allergens collecting throughout your home, the fewer will be in the air and picked up by your forced air heating system. If you dust your home, followed by vacuuming (using a vacuum with a HEPA filter) on a regular basis, you’ll significantly reduce the amount of irritants in your home. Curtains are also culprits of collecting dust and dander, so be sure to wash or change them on occasion. Finally, the dust accumulating underneath your furniture – while a nuisance to clean – will also affect the air quality of your home.
Dehumidifiers – If the moisture level is too high in your house, it can lead to mold growth as well as dust mites which will certainly impact the severity of you or your family’s allergies. Having a dehumidifier installed in your HVAC system can help keep your moisture levels in check year-round and ensure higher air quality.
Professional HVAC Maintenance – If you’re getting regular maintenance checks from an HVAC professional (2 to 4 times a year), then you’re going to be in better shape in terms of the efficiency of your HVAC system, and the air quality in your home. That’s because even if you forget to take preventative measures on your own, an HVAC technician doing a maintenance check is going to have this on his list of things to evaluate while he’s at your home.
If you’re looking for a local Raleigh HVAC contractor to help you with furnace repair or maintenance, we can help. We’re a family-owned business and our goal is to make sure your family feels comfortable in your home.