For all its beauty, spring and even early summer are often met with a sense of trepidation by the 36 million plus Americans who suffer from seasonal allergies. From pollen to dust and even spring colds, spring is full of outdoor triggers that can leave us feeling stuffed for days or weeks.
Unfortunately, the indoors aren’t always safe, either. Your HVAC unit moves air from outside through its system, cooling it before filtering it into your home. While in most cases, air filters and other components should block these allergens from getting in, if your HVAC unit isn’t working properly, it can have a negative effect on your indoor air quality. There’s also a chance that the allergens you carry in with you will begin to circulate through the house.
But there’s more than just hayfever to fear from poor indoor air quality.
Conditions that Mimic Hayfever
Sometimes what homeowners think is an allergy to pollen or dust could be something more serious. Black mold poisoning, for instance, has similar symptoms to hayfever: congestion, respiratory problems, coughing, and headaches. And since black mold often grows out of sight — and can even grow on your HVAC unit, you may not recognize it for what it is until it’s spread throughout the home.
Spring colds also have similar symptoms, although they have additional symptoms such as sore throat and increased coughing. But while hayfever isn’t likely to spread, a spring cold will, and if one person in the house is sick and that gets into the air, soon the whole house will be surrounded by kleenexes.
How Your HVAC System Plays In
During seasonal allergy season, your air filter can easily become clogged, blocking out dust and pollen. If it becomes too cluttered, the HVAC unit can’t work as efficiently as it would otherwise. This can be dangerous for your indoor air quality as less fresh air is circulated through the home. The allergens already in the air will begin to settle with less circulation, and if you stood any chance of avoiding seasonal allergies before, it’s certainly gone now.
What You Can Do to Help
In spring it’s more important than any other time of year to dust regularly and wipe down surfaces in your home. As far as your HVAC unit is concerned, monitor your air filters to make sure they haven’t become too clogged. In fact, it might be wise in future years to change your air filters right before allergy season begins so you can start the year off right. Opening windows and letting in fresh air will keep your indoor air from becoming too stale, although if you’re already in the grip of indoor allergies, this may feel like the last thing you want to do. You may also want to invest in an air purifier or UV lamp to eliminate the allergens already in your home.
At Air Solutions in Bryan-College Station, we offer air purifiers, air filters, and UV lamps to help improve your indoor air quality and lessen the chances of seasonal allergies affecting your home. Contact us today to learn which product will work best for your home.