5 Ways to Prevent Springtime Allergens and Pollutants

Spring brings blooming flowers, warmer weather, and an abundance of life wherever you look. Unfortunately, springtime allergens and pollutants often make an appearance, ruining all the fun.

Allergens are antigens (molecules that induce an immune response in the host), which kick in when the body detects a foreign invader. Allergens find their way into the home by means of airborne dust particles, mold, and the dander and droppings of various animals and insects.

Once allergens have invaded the house, it’s not too long before you and your family members are affected, especially those who already have respiratory difficulties. Springtime pollutants can cause new symptoms as well as aggravate existing ones.

How to Prevent Springtime Allergens and Pollutants

A well-maintained HVAC system is known to dramatically reduce the ill effects of allergens by keeping indoor air pristine during the warm spring season. The beauty of a properly functioning HVAC system is that it constantly recycles and filters stale and contaminated air. The better your filtration system, the less airborne contaminants you have to worry about.

Springtime HVAC maintenance is necessary to remove the existing allergens as well as prevent new allergens from entering the home, and these 5 simple HVAC maintenance tips will help you to rid your house of allergens altogether:

Purchase High-Quality Furnace Filters

First things first—replace your air filter. It’s essential to purchase a high-quality furnace filter (minimum MERV 8) to keep your HVAC system and indoor air as healthy as possible. The filter acts as the first line of defense against airborne contaminants. Make sure you check your air filter every 30 days to see if it needs to be cleaned or replaced. Not only does a dirty air filter worsen indoor air quality, it also restricts airflow, leading to many operational problems. If the filter gets dirty enough, sometimes the unit will turn itself off to prevent any further damage.

For heavy duty air cleaning, consider an air cleaner such as Air Scrubber Plus.

Get Rid of Indoor and Outdoor Debris

Make sure the outdoor AC condenser unit and the surrounding areas are clean in terms of dust and other debris. Maintaining a clean and clear condenser unit will increase energy efficiency and prevent breakdowns. Similarly, check the area around your indoor air handler. It should also be cleaned and cleared every spring. While it’s important to regularly inspect and clean the indoor and outdoor HVAC units, remember that a professional tune-up from Service Champions includes a full cleaning of the entire system.

Remember to schedule your tune-up before the first heat wave, when everybody and their mother will be calling for air conditioning service.

Check for Mold

As we all know, indoor mold is unhealthy, since it increases the chances of respiratory problems as well as a wide range of other health problems. Some people are especially susceptible to moldy environments. According to the Institute of Medicine (IOM), exposure to moldy indoor environments is linked to upper respiratory tract symptoms, cough, and wheeze, as well as worsening asthma and allergy symptoms.

Mold is primarily formed from spores of fungus, which grow wherever there is moisture. Since your cooling system produces condensation (which exits the home via a drain pipe), it’s important to make sure there is no mold in your drain pan or anywhere near your air handler. If there is mold in your HVAC system or ductwork, those mold spores will be infiltrating every square foot of your home. You may detect a faint smell, you may not. The best way to inspect your HVAC system for mold is by contacting a professional technician.

For more information, learn how to take control of mold and moisture problems followed by how to prevent mold from forming in the first place.

Clean Duct Registers and Return Vents

Clean your supply and return grilles at least twice a year, in the fall and spring. Simply vacuum around all of your vents and wipe any remaining dirt and dust with a damp rag. If you can unscrew the grille, you can conduct a more thorough cleaning by vacuuming around the inside.

While you’re spring cleaning around vents and registers, make sure there is nothing blocking the airflow, such as rugs, furniture, and drapes. Additionally, take a peek inside the air ducts using your phone’s flash camera function. If the pictures reveal large dust bunnies and a lot of debris, schedule professional duct cleaning as soon as possible.

Cleaning around air vents and registers is an easy spring cleaning chore that will improve indoor air quality and energy efficiency.

Schedule Professional HVAC Maintenance

Spring air conditioning maintenance is essential for maintaining manufacturer warranties and optimizing comfort and efficiency. Don’t wait until it’s too late! The best time to schedule AC maintenance is before you start depending on it. If you wait until the hottest day of the year, companies may be swamped with service calls.

We highly recommend signing up for a Maintenance Plan. Not only will it guarantee you 2 tune-ups a year, you’ll also receive priority service, and exclusive discounts.

Contact Service Champions today to schedule your custom indoor air quality solution.

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