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Is Your Air Conditioner Making Your Allergies Worse?

AC-filter-air-filtrationHopefully, you know by now that your central air conditioner has a filter that you should be changing regularly. (And if you don’t, check out our blog for more information.) A clean air filter helps your air conditioner run properly, but it won’t necessarily filter out the allergens that make you sick. The standard air filter is designed for the purpose of protecting an air conditioner. It should provide some level of filtration, but it may not be what you need.

Is your air conditioner making your air quality worse? We’ll investigate that issue here, and let you know what you can do to get allergies under control, starting with your indoor air quality.

How particulate circulates in the air

When your home is sealed up tightly, you don’t have to worry about air and heat leaking in or out of the house. Of course, if you had your air conditioner running with the windows wide open and the sun blazing down outside, your air conditioner would have to work extra hard to keep you cool. That’s why you close the windows and doors and try to seal up air leaks around the house.

Unfortunately, this can cause particulates, any airborne contaminants in the air, to circulate over and over again. Without any fresh air coming into the home, you lack any way to ventilate, which means that stale, contaminated air continuously circulates in your HVAC system and can make you sick.

Why a standard air filter may not help much

Your home’s HVAC system has an air filter so that it can stop larger particles from circulating in the air. That way, it cannot pummel the air conditioner or furnace and damage it. Some air filters are designed to block small particulate like pet dander that can aggravate allergens, but many of these pollutants can still pass through.

If the air filter were too airtight, it wouldn’t allow air to flow through properly. In other words, some contaminants pass into the air conditioner and continue to circulate because the standard air filter is incapable of blocking the smallest contaminants. If you upgrade to a more effective filter, you risk blocking airflow, which harms the performance and efficiency of an air conditioner.

What you can do to improve your air quality

If you do hope to improve your air quality, there are things you can do beyond replacing your filter. People with allergies or asthma symptoms, or even those with immune system disorders, can benefit from adding an indoor air quality installation to the HVAC system.

  • A UV light air cleaner is an excellent addition to any HVAC system. The light certainly won’t block airflow, and it helps protect you from germs. Bacteria and viruses are killed and sterilized upon passing the UV rays, which makes the air safe.
  • An air filtration system has a larger surface area than the standard air filter, and a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter can remove many allergens from the air.
  • An electronic air purifier charges particulate in the air so that it clings to a metal plate in the system, which you’ll need to clean every few months.

Bartels Heating & Cooling offers air conditioning and air filtration services in Hamilton, OH. Call our team today!

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