Allergy symptoms in Anaheim, CA can be quite an annoyance. Itchy eyes, a stuffy nose, coughing, and sneezing are just some of the things that people experience when pollen levels are high. Your home should be a place where you can escape your allergy symptoms. Unfortunately, many people suffer from indoor allergies as well. Reactions occur from exposure to pet dander, dust, dust mites, mold spores, and volatile organic compounds. Your HVAC system can provide you with the ability to reduce particulates in your indoor air, as long as you’re using the right filters.

The Use of HVAC System Filters

Your HVAC system helps circulate warm or cool air throughout your home. This process includes removing particulates from the air that’s circulating, by way of a filter. HVAC filters range in quality and type, with many being able to remove particulates that are as small as 0.3 microns in size. For reference, 0.3 microns is roughly the size of a single particle of dust. Many homeowners try to save some money by purchasing a low-quality filter, which can reduce indoor air quality.

When shopping for a filter, you’ll want to look at the MERV rating. Minimum efficiency reporting value, or MERV, advertises the number of particulates that can be filtered out while also giving an indication of the kind of airflow that can move through the filter. A MERV filter that is about 13 will restrict airflow through your HVAC system. This can cause quite a bit of damage to your heating and cooling equipment. A knowledgeable HVAC professional can tell you what type of filter your system can handle while still improving your indoor air quality. Keep in mind that a very low-rated MERV filter won’t trap very much of your home’s particulate matter.

HEPA Filtration Technology Benefits

A HEPA filter, which stands for high-efficiency particulate air filter, is made from a material such as fiberglass or polypropylene. This type of filter can often trap as much as 99.97% of particulate matter. While a HEPA filter is usually too restrictive for use in an HVAC system, it’s a technology that works well with air purification devices at a whole-house level.

Using Activated Carbon Filters for Odors and Chemicals

Some filters come with a layer of activated carbon, which can remove particles, odors, and chemicals from your indoor air. Volatile organic compounds, VOCs, are commonly off-gassed from building materials, paint, chemical-based cleaners, and more They can cause serious health issues in addition to allergy symptoms. Traditional filters can’t remove these chemicals, but activated carbon can. If you’re concerned with pet odors or other smells that are aggravating your allergies, activated carbon is something to consider using with your overall filtration setup.

Electrostatic Filtration for Allergy Sufferers

Whole-house air purification often uses electrostatic filtration to reduce allergens in the home. Static electricity attracts particulates to charged collection plates that will need to be cleaned every so often. These collection plates aren’t thrown away and replaced like traditional filters, so they’re a very affordable and eco-friendly option for allergy sufferers. They also do a really good job of improving indoor air quality.

The Use of Washable Filters

If you’re intrigued by using filters that don’t have to be replaced every 30 to 90 days, washable filters are also an option. You may be used to changing your filter frequently because of allergies. If so, a washable filter provides you with the opportunity to clean away particulates as often as you like without costing you the price of a new filter.

A washable filter is made from a more durable material that can withstand water flow and light scrubbing. Just make sure that you’re allowing the filter to completely dry before it goes back into your unit. Otherwise, moisture can lead to mold growth, which is a common allergy. Some homeowners choose to own a couple of washable filters. You can swap one filter for another, allowing ample time for the recently washed filter to dry. You will still be able to keep your HVAC system and filtration equipment running in the meantime.

Unfortunately, some people find that their washable filters never really seem to come clean enough. While you can wash away many of the particulates on your filter, there may be some that will stay trapped in the interior fibers. People with severe allergies or asthma may want to consider something else for optimal particulate removal.

Using Filters and Air Purification Equipment

You can rely on your HVAC system and its related filters to improve your allergy symptoms to a certain degree. However, it’s a good idea to consider air purification equipment as well. This provides an additional layer of protection against allergies, including pollen, pet dander, and dust. Whole-house air filtration will remove more particulate matter, improve the smell of your home, and kill bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens while helping you feel your best each day.

Different filters are used depending on the whole-house unit you select. There are other features to consider as well, including UV-C light and ionization.

How Often Should I Change My Filters?

Most disposable filters are designed to last anywhere from 30 to 90 days. The frequency depends on the material used in the construction of the filter and how often you’re running your HVAC system and air purification equipment. During times of the year when pollen is very prevalent or you’re dealing with an influx of allergy symptoms, you will want to change your filters more frequently. Homes with pets should also consider more frequently changing out filters for new ones.

Other Changes You Can Make

In addition to optimal filtration, there are other changes that can be made to your home that will help you reduce allergy symptoms. For example, think about the overall ventilation that occurs in your home. Things like exhaust fans allow for the changeover of air, improving indoor air quality. There are other ventilation setups that can help circulate air better and allow for a healthy indoor environment. You may even find that improving ventilation in your home reduces your overall energy consumption. The air may feel more comfortable and cleaner throughout the home, reducing your need to overrun your HVAC system. This equates to lower utility bills and a reduction in HVAC repairs over time.

If you would like to learn more about the different air filter options that are available for your Anaheim home, reach out to the team at Sano Heating & Air Conditioning. Our goal is to help you find relief from allergy symptoms by using an air quality assessment to determine what your main indoor air quality concerns are. We can provide you with a recommendation for different filters and equipment that will improve your IAQ. We also install, maintain, and repair all heating and cooling equipment. Reach out to Sano Heating & Air Conditioning to find out more about air filter options or to schedule an AC maintenance appointment today.

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