Three HVAC Tips For People With Dust Allergies

Posted on: 13 February 2016

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Does dust leave you sneezing and tending to watery, itchy eyes? One of the biggest culprits for dust allergies in your own home is your HVAC system. Every time your furnace or air conditioner kicks on, it has the opportunity to blow dust around and right into your face. Thankfully, there are some things you can do to minimize this problem.

Upgrade to a HEPA filter.

Those flimsy fiberglass air filters might be okay for some people, but as someone with a  dust allergy, you need a better filter. Look for an air filter that is labeled "HEPA." This stands for "high-efficiency particulate air." This type of filter will remove smaller particles, like dust and dust mites, that might make it through a less stringent filter. You'll pay a few dollars more for a HEPA filter, but the extra cost will be worth it when you're sneezing and itching less. Consider buying a few filters at a time so you have them on hand and are less likely to forget to change them. Experts recommend changing your furnace air filter every one to three months.

Have your ducts cleaned.

Dust can settle into your ducts, and then it is blown out every time your system kicks on. There's really no way for you to clean deep inside your ducts with equipment that's available to you, so you'll need to hire a professional to do this for you. Then, after your ducts have been cleaned, you can keep them cleaner by doing the following:

  • Remembering to change your air filter every 1- 3 months. (Set a reminder in your phone!)
  • Vacuuming out the vents and cold air returns on a weekly basis.
  • Dusting your furniture before the dust has a chance to make its way into the HVAC system.

Have a humidifier installed.

When your air is dry, dust particles float through the air more easily. When your air is a bit more humid, these dust particles become heavier since they get saturated with water vapor  -- so they don't blow through the air as easily. Having a whole-home humidifier added to your HVAC system is a therefore a good step towards reducing your allergy symptoms. This type of unit integrates with your furnace and air conditioner and adds moisture to the air as it is needed. Most HVAC companies offer humidifier installation services and can recommend a unit that is right for your home. Contact a business, such as Erickson Plumbing & Heating, for more information.