Here's How You Can Limit the Impact on Fall Allergies

Woman sneezing in autumn because of fall allergies - Williams Comfort Air Heating, Cooling, Plumbing & More

Fall allergies sometimes keep homeowners from appreciating the beautiful autumns in Cincinnati, Ohio. Outdoor allergens find ways inside your home, but HVAC systems take care of excess dirt, dust, and other allergens in the air to improve the indoor air quality. In more ways than one, HVAC systems and IAQ products reduce fall allergies and their troublesome symptoms.

Thomas & Galbraith covers all of the most important information to reduce allergens this autumn. We discuss which IAQ products remove particles from the air, how you maximize the HVAC’s potential, and what additional tasks aid in allergen removal. Homeowners of all skill level are able to use this post to keep their allergies to a minimum this fall.

IAQ Products & Fall Allergies

In homes, IAQ products increase the air quality. IAQ stands for indoor air quality, which means the higher the IAQ, the better the air quality. Allergens are removed from the air to increase IAQ. These products all have a hand in allergen removal. HVAC systems do this as well, but IAQ products increase the effectiveness of the unit.

For those with fall allergies, IAQ products decrease the opportunities for allergens to trigger symptoms. Listed below are the best IAQ products out there to fight allergies.

  • IAQ thermostat. Firstly, IAQ thermostats control the settings of all the IAQ products in your home. This ensures the settings are properly calibrated for the fall season. Plus, homeowners save money on energy because the IAQ thermostat responds to the environmental temperature and humidity levels. They only provide IAQ products with the power they need, which decreases utility bills. 
  • Dehumidifiers. Next, dehumidifiers decrease the moisture levels in the air. This improves air quality since mold and mildew grow in damp areas. Mold and mildew contribute to fall allergies because they release harmful particles into the air. Mold and mildew growth decrease significantly with a dehumidifier.
  • Air purifiers. Air purifiers improve air quality by sanitizing the air. Negative ions and UV lamps remove particles released by mold and mildew, which trigger allergy symptoms. Air purifiers don’t get rid of dust, dirt, and other similar particles, but they do remove more difficult mold and mildew particulates. 
  • UV treatment. Additionally, UV air treatments are used inside of HVAC systems to get rid of mold and mildew. They are installed directly inside the unit to prevent growth in the system. Condensation collects on and near units, so mold and mildew have many chances to grow. However, the UV treatment prevents development of mold and mildew, which keeps fall allergies caused by those substances low. 
  • Air cleaners. Like air purifiers, air cleaners take away particulates in the air. They remove the dust, dirt, and other small particles missed by air purifiers. This increases the IAQ in your home. On its own, the HVAC system also filters these particulates, but with an air cleaner the efficiency practically doubles.  
  • High efficiency filters. Filters collect dirt and dust in the system, so they are crucial when cleaning out allergens. All HVAC systems have filters, but filters with a MERV rating of 8 to 13 do a better job keeping allergens out of your home. Plus, they typically last longer than lower-rated filters. 

HVAC Solutions to Fall Allergies

Homeowners must maintain their HVAC systems in order to utilize the allergy-fighting components of the unit. Allergens are minimized with proper HVAC maintenance, so it’s important for homeowners to regularly practice these tasks. Without this maintenance, fall allergies remain a large issue for many homeowners across Cincinnati.

 

  • Regular service. Schedule regular maintenance visits from a licensed HVAC technician to promote the long-term health of your system. Fall maintenance checks ensure the system functions at its best, which means it efficiently removes allergens from the air. Without service, preventable problems become costly repairs and replacements. 
  • Change HVAC settings. Settings on the HVAC system must change with the seasons. Autumn weather necessitates a higher temperature as well as more dehumidifying to reduce fall allergies. Doing this keeps the system aligned with the needs of the homeowner, and it ensures your utility bill stays low.
  • Mold and mildew. HVAC systems collect condensation over time and this contributes to mold and mildew growth. These allergens decrease the IAQ, so check the system for wet spots often. Wipe away excess water and keep the area cool and dry. UV treatments, air purifiers, and dehumidifiers also aid in mold and mildew prevention. If you do find mold or mildew, wash the area with warm water and soap. 
  • Clean the unit. Fall allergies thrive when the HVAC system collects dust and allergens in the unit, so cleaning the system ensures no excess particles circulate through the space. Clean by wiping away any dust, dirt, pollen, or other allergens on the unit. Focus your attention on the fans and vents to ensure no dirty air circulates through your home. 
  • Clean the area. Additionally, clean the surrounding area to ensure no environmental particles enter the unit. These particles float through the air and into the system when left alone. Sweep or vacuum the floor around the unit and dust any surface near it. This keeps the unit itself cleaner and that improves the overall indoor air quality of your home.
  • Change air filters. Air filters need to be replaced according to the manufacturer’s schedule, which can be every month or several months between changes. Check the filter once every few weeks to see how much dust has collected. Seasonal changes often bring about a higher number of air pollutants, which means the filter fills faster. To reduce fall allergies, check the filter more frequently when the season changes to ensure high IAQ.

 

More Ways to Fight Fall Allergies 

Homeowners with allergies rely on their HVAC systems and IAQ products to alleviate their symptoms because they improve the indoor air quality. There are additional ways for them to further help ease their symptoms. Below are even more key actions to perform in order to fight off allergies alongside the HVAC system. 

 

  • Dander from pets. For those with pets, pet dander contributes to the IAQ and fall allergies. Brush your pet’s hair regularly to reduce the number of stray hairs collecting on the floor and other surfaces. Additionally, use moisturizing shampoo to bathe your pet because this keeps dry skin in check. Grooming once a week significantly improves the quality of the air.
  • Candles and sprays. In addition, strong-smelling items contribute to allergy symptoms because they irritate sensitive noses. Candles and scented air sprays are the two most common irritants to homeowners. Limit use of these items to reduce symptoms like a runny nose or sneezing. 
  • Cleaning. To reduce excess dust and dirt, regularly clean your home. Allergens hide in layers of dust, so frequently wipe surfaces to reduce allergens. Allergies disappear when HVAC systems are able to filter all the particulates out of the air, but without cleaning the system is unable to effectively complete this task. Clean all rooms once a week to ensure excess particles don’t get in the way of the system’s duty.
  • Windows. Windows must remain shut in order to keep out outdoor allergens. Additionally, open windows allow clean air to leave your home. For windows with drafts, use cushion draft stoppers to ensure all of the clean air in your home doesn’t escape outside. This also provides extra security from outdoor air coming in.
  • Clean bedding regularly. Fall allergies often get worse when homeowners neglect to wash their bedding. Comforters, blankets, pillowcases, and sheets all require washes once a week. Use hot water to kill the allergens present in the fabric. Allergen consumption decreases dramatically with diligent washing.
  • Pest allergens. Allergens are also carried by pests like cockroaches, mice, or bed bugs. To ensure these creatures stay away from the inside of your home, regularly take out the trash. Proper trash disposal decreases the chance of pests entering your home and keeps allergies caused by those pests away. Plus, smelly garbage triggers some symptoms like sneezing, so frequent disposal of trash helps your fall allergies in more ways than one.
  • Dry surfaces. Moisture collection contributes to mold and mildew growth. To combat this growth, keep all cloth surfaces dry. Make sure everything you wash gets completely dry before its next use. Mildew-ridden items decrease the IAQ of your home, which allows allergies to thrive. Additionally, check on damp, warm areas in the home for mold and mildew growth. Dry these areas once a week to keep development away.
  • Learn about the allergen. There are many causes of fall allergies, which makes it important to know what specifically triggers your allergies. Most homeowners experience hay fever because of the influx in ragweed growth during the autumn. Be sure to remove ragweed from your yard to reduce its impact on your indoor air quality. 

 

Contacts Us for Help with Fall Allergies and HVAC

Thomas & Galbraith’s tips on how to use your HVAC system to fight fall allergies are easy to follow and don’t take up too much of your time. We want homeowners to be comfortable in their home all year round, which means your allergies are kept in check through proper HVAC maintenance. We perform regular service checks to guarantee the longevity of your system.

Call us today to get in touch with one of our trained HVAC technicians. In Cincinnati, Ohio, homeowners trust our technicians to take care of their HVAC problems. On our call, we offer free service estimates and we schedule your annual visit. Call soon!

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