Does My Air Conditioner Help With Allergies?
Does an air conditioner help with allergies? Yes, if you properly maintain the unit.
Air conditioners can help filter your home’s air and control humidity, and both of these things are important in the allergy world. It’s estimated there are now 50 million seasonal allergy sufferers in America. Properly maintaining your HVAC system is the difference between your air conditioner helping with those allergies and it aggravating them. Ben’s Heating & Air Conditioning specializes in air conditioners. Contact us with any questions you may have.
How Your Air Conditioner Helps
Whether you suffer from seasonal allergies or year-long allergens like pet dander or dust, your air conditioning can help you breathe easier. The air conditioner filters out irritant air particles and your indoor air quality is improved. These particles get stopped by the filter and aren’t allowed to continue through the system to make their way to your lungs.
Indoor air quality is also improved when your home’s humidity is being controlled. Higher levels of humidity breed additional allergens like bacteria, mold, and mildew. Your air conditioning works hard to balance your home’s humidity, thereby reducing the instances of these allergens and irritants.
When It Doesn’t
Your air conditioner can help in these instances, except when it’s not maintained properly. When the maintenance on your HVAC system is neglected, your indoor air quality is worse. Thus, your allergies may get worse.
If your filter continues to trap the particles flowing through the system and isn’t changed, those particles build up. With nowhere to go, they will blow back into your home.
The same applies to the other allergens resulting from higher humidity or dampness. If the humidity builds, or if there are leaks somewhere in the system, a damp environment now exists. Mold and bacteria have free rein to flow through your home’s air, adding to the allergens you’re breathing.
What You Can Do
To keep your air conditioning helping your allergies, take these steps:
- Have your air conditioner cleaned and maintained regularly, at least once a year
- Change or clean your air filters regularly
- Clean any debris or dust around both your outdoor and indoor air conditioner units
- Dust all indoor registers and returns on a regular basis
- Inspect your ductwork and HVAC unit (drip pan and drain, evaporator coils, air handler) for signs of leaks, corrosion, or mold
- Consider upgrading your air conditioner if over ten years old
- Keep doors and windows closed while your air conditioning is running
- Consider adding on an air purifier
Contact Us in Portland
Here in Portland, Oregon, allergies are a serious concern for many. Keeping your air conditioner properly maintained throughout the year can definitely help with airborne allergies.
Call our experts at Ben’s Heating & Air Conditioning at 503-233-1779 to speak with one of our professionals today to see how we can help you.