Allergies aren’t just a spring thing! Fall allergies can cause a lot of discomfort, and they aren’t just an outdoor problem. Learn how you can prepare your home for fall allergies by taking care of your HVAC system.
Common Fall Allergens
First, let’s discuss a few fall allergens. While spring allergies are primarily caused by pollen in the air, fall allergens include the following items.
Ragweed pollen pops up in the fall months and takes quite a toll on its victims. Watery and itchy eyes, sneezing, coughing, and sinus problems are common symptoms of a ragweed allergy. Ragweed can also trigger breathing problems in people who suffer from chronic lung conditions such as asthma.
Mold and Mildew
Mold and mildew are common allergens all year long, but piles of damp leaves make them especially annoying during the fall season. Be careful to control the humidity level in your home to avoid excess mold and mildew.
Have you ever turned on your heater for the first time in the fall and been greeted by the unpleasant aroma of burning dust? Dust and dust mites settle within your vents and cycles through your home when you turn on your heater. Before you turn on your furnace for the first time, it is a good idea to perform a thorough cleaning.
Most people don’t think of pet hair as being an allergy specific to colder months. After all, pets mostly shed during the summer. However, once it gets cooler outside, many homeowners move their pets primarily indoors. Even if your pet sheds only a little, the hair can build up in carpet and upholstery or become trapped in your air vents and filters. Your furnace circulates the hair through your home, causing itchy and watery eyes.
Can Fall Allergens Affect Your Indoor Air Quality?
Again, most people do not associate “allergens” with their personal home. However, allergens can enter your home through numerous avenues, including your shoes, ventilation, windows, and doors. Once inside your home, allergens have the power to negatively affect your health, as you constantly ingest them.
Preparing Your HVAC System to Fight Fall Allergies
Fortunately, you don’t have to be an unprepared victim of fall allergies. Fight against poor indoor air quality by taking these preventive measures with your HVAC system.
1. Change your air filter.
Your air filter’s only purpose is to prevent allergens from circulating through your home. You should change your air filter every month or two, or as often as recommended by the filter’s manufacturer.
2. Clean your ducts.
You should clean your ducts right before turning on your furnace for the first time each year. Likewise, clean them before turning on your air conditioner for the first time each year.
3. Invest in an air purifier.
An air purifier is a great way to clean the air within your home and improve overall indoor air quality.
4. Clean your home often.
Particularly if you have lots of carpet, make sure your vacuum and dust several times a week. It might be beneficial to schedule a professional carpet cleaning every so often to ensure that all allergens are removed from the carpet pile.
5. Inspect your HVAC system.
Once a month, check your HVAC system to ensure that everything is running smoothly. Listen for strange noises that may clue you in to hidden problems.
6. Schedule a professional HVAC tune-up before the season changes.
A professional inspection by a licensed technician is the best way to nip HVAC problems in the bud. Talk to your HVAC company about scheduling a tune-up before turning on your furnace.
How Can We Help You?
If you have any further questions, contact Indoor Air Quality today. We serve homeowners in Highlands Ranch and throughout the Denver Metro Area. Our highest priority is the comfort of your home.