Your Furnace Could Be Making Your Allergies Worse

Have you ever caught when you start your heat for the first time in the fall, you’re sniffling more frequently? While spring allergies seem to get a more severe reputation, fall allergies are still very common and many people struggle with them. For some, fall allergies can be even worse than spring because of colder weather impairing our immune systems and from winding up our equipment. This may leave you considering, can furnaces make allergies worse in Dallas, or even lead to them?

While furnaces can’t lead to allergies, they can make them worse. How? During the summer months, dust, dander and other allergens can collect in heating ducts. When the winter conditions hit and we flip our heating on for the first time, all those allergens are now circulated through the ventilation and travel through our residences. Luckily, there are things you can do to stop your furnace from aggravating your allergies.

How to Keep Your Furnace from Triggering Your Allergies

  1. Replace Your HVAC Filter. Frequently replacing your filters is one of the best chores you can complete to alleviate your allergies at any time of the year. Clean filters are superior when trapping the allergens in your home’s air, helping to keep you breathing easy.
  2. Freshen Up Your Air Ducts. Not only do pollutants gather in your HVAC filters, but in your ventilation as well. An air duct cleaning could help ease allergy symptoms and help your HVAC system run more efficiently. When you request an air duct cleaning, repair techs check and clean components like your supply/return ducts and registers, grilles and diffusers.
  3. Keep Your Furnace Well Maintained. Quality HVAC maintenance and periodic checkups are another good way to both increase your home’s air quality and keep your heater performing as effectively as possible. In advance of switching your furnace on for the first time, it tends to help to have an HVAC technician complete a maintenance checkup to confirm your filters and air ducts are clean and everything else is in working shape.

Allergies and recurring illness can be frustrating, and it can be difficult to learn what’s leading to or aggravating them. Here are some extra FAQs, including answers and suggestions that could help.

Is Forced Air Harmful for Allergies?

Allergy sufferers are typically told that forced air heating could irritate your allergies even more. Forced air systems can push allergens through the air, leading you to breathing them in more regularly than if you used a radiant heating system. While it’s accurate forced air systems can make your allergies worse, that is only if you ignore proper maintenance of your heating equipment. Other than the practices we mentioned previously, you can also:

  • Dust and vacuum your house often. If there aren’t dust, dander or mold spore particles to clog your air ducts, your air system can’t circulate them into the air, and you can’t inhale them. Some additional cleaning tips are:
    • Ensure your vacuum has a HEPA filter.
    • Dust prior to vacuuming.
    • Clean your curtains regularly, as they are a frequent hiding place of allergens.
    • Remember to clean behind and under furniture.
  • Keep an Eye on your residence’s moisture levels. High humidity levels can also contribute to worsening of allergies. Humidity causes mold growth and dust mites. Installing a dehumidifier with your HVAC system keeps moisture levels in check and your indoor air quality much fresher.

What is the Best Furnace Filter for Allergies?

In general, HEPA filters are a strong option if you or someone in your family suffers from 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 type. This rating illustrates how well a filter can remove pollutants from the air. As a result of their high-efficiency filtration performance, HEPA filters are deep and can limit airflow. It’s smart to contact Levy & Son Service Experts to make sure your heating and cooling system can operate correctly with these high efficiency filters.

Can Clogged Filters or Air Ducts Make Me Sick?

Old filters can hold on to particles and allow poor quality air to recirculate. This also applies to dirty vents. If you inhale these particles it can trigger sneezing, coughing or other asthma-related issues, depending on your sensitivity.

It’s beneficial to switch out your HVAC filter after 30-60 days, but here are some signs you could need to sooner:

  • It’s taking longer for your system to cool or heat your home.
  • You notice more dust in your home.
  • Heating and cooling expenses are going up with no obvious reason.
  • Your allergies are getting worse.
  • Signs your air ducts need cleaning include:

  • The metal is coated 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 starting.
  • Your house is always dusty, despite continuous cleaning.

Your health and comfort are our top priority at Levy & Son Service Experts. Whether it’s furnace repair now.

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