How Your Furnace Can Spark Your Allergies

Have you ever noticed when you turn on your heat for the first time in the fall, you’re sneezing more frequently? While spring allergies seem to get a worse 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 colder weather affecting our immune systems and from starting up our equipment. This can leave you considering, can furnaces make allergies worse in Roanoke, or even trigger them?

While furnaces can’t lead to allergies, they sometimes make them worse. How? During the warmer months, dust, dander and other pollutants can accumulate in heating ducts. When the cooler temperatures begin and we flip our heat on for the first time, all those allergens are now circulated through the vents and circulate within our residences. Luckily, there are things you can do to prevent your furnace from aggravating your allergies.

How to Keep Your Furnace from Worsening Your Allergies

  1. Get a New HVAC Filter. Routinely replacing your filters is one of the best tasks you can perform to help your allergies at any time of the year. New filters are better at catching the allergens in your house’s air, helping to keep you in better health.
  2. Freshen Up Your Air Ducts. Not only do small particles harbor in your HVAC filters, but in your vents as well. An air duct cleaning can help minimize allergy symptoms and help your HVAC system run more efficiently. When you call for an air duct cleaning, repair techs inspect and clean components like your supply/return ducts and registers, grilles and diffusers.
  3. Keep Your Furnace Well Maintained. Adequate HVAC maintenance and regular checkups are another excellent way to both enhance your house’s air quality and keep your system running as effectively as possible. In advance of switching your heating on for the first time, it can help to have an HVAC mechanic run through a maintenance inspection to verify your filters and air ducts are clean and everything else is in tip-top shape.

Allergies and recurring illness can be discouraging, and it can be difficult to discover what’s causing or worsening them. Here are some common FAQs, including answers and ideas that could help.

Is Forced Air Harmful for Allergies?

Allergy sufferers are usually told that forced air heating can irritate your allergies even more. Forced air systems can circulate allergens through the air, resulting in you breathing them in more often than if you had a radiant heating system. While it’s accurate forced air systems might make your allergies more severe, that is only if you avoid suitable upkeep of your heating equipment. Other than the tasks we included 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 extra cleaning tips involve:
    • Check your vacuum has a HEPA filter.
    • Dust prior to vacuuming.
    • Clean your curtains routinely, as they are a common hiding place of allergens.
    • Remember to clean behind and under furniture.
  • Check your house’s moisture levels. Increased humidity levels can also contribute to worsening of allergies. Humidity enables mold growth and dust mites. Installing a dehumidifier with your HVAC system keeps moisture levels balanced and your indoor air quality much healthier.

What is the Top Furnace Filter for Allergies?

Most often, HEPA filters are the best if you or someone in your home struggles with allergies. HEPA filters are rated to remove 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 kind. This rating illustrates how well a filter can take pollutants from the air. Due to their high-efficiency filtration materials, HEPA filters are dense and can reduce airflow. It’s wise to talk to Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning to confirm your heating and cooling system can perform correctly with these high efficiency filters.

Can Dirty Filters or Air Ducts Make Me Sick?

Worn filters can harbor particles and allow poor quality air to move throughout your home. The same goes for filthy air ducts. If you inhale these particles it can trigger sneezing, coughing or other asthma-related symptoms, depending on your sensitivity.

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

  • It’s taking more time for your system to cool or heat your home.
  • You come across more dust in your residence.
  • Energy expenses are going up with no clear reason.
  • Your allergies are getting worse.
  • Clues your air ducts require cleaning include:

  • The metal is covered in dust.
  • Dusty supply and return vents.
  • Mold in your furnace, air conditioner, heat pump or air handler.
  • Dust flowing from your vents when your HVAC system is working.
  • Your house is always dusty, despite constant cleaning.

    Your health and comfort are our first priority at Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning. Whether it’s furnace repair, maintenance, replacement or you just need advice, our NATE-certified experts are devoted to you. Not to mention, all our work is supported by our 100% Satisfaction Guarantee* for the next year. We also have recurring membership plans to satisfy your maintenance needs and make your home comfort truly stress-free. Call 540-302-8645 or schedule an appointment online right away.

*Not applicable to the Advantage Program. See your signed Advantage program agreement for full details and exclusions. 100% Satisfaction Guarantee is subject to certain restrictions and limitations as set forth in the applicable Terms and Conditions.
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