We spend a lot of time inside. In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has determined being indoors accounts for 90% of our schedule. However, the EPA also says your indoor air can be three to five times worse than outdoors.
That’s because our homes are tightly sealed to boost energy efficiency. While this is great for your heating and cooling bills, it’s not so great if you’re a part of the 40% of the population with respiratory allergies.
When outside ventilation is restricted, pollutants such as dust and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) may get trapped. As a result, these pollutants could worsen your allergies.
You can enhance your indoor air quality with crisp air and usual housework and vacuuming. But if you’re still having issues with symptoms during the time you’re at home, an air purifier could be able to provide relief.
While it can’t eliminate pollutants that have settled on your furniture or carpeting, it may help clean the air traveling across your house.
And air purification has also been scientifically verified to help reduce some allergic symptoms, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. It may also be appropriate if you or a loved one has a lung condition, such as emphysema or COPD.
There are two kinds, a portable air purifier or a whole-home air purifier. We’ll discuss the differences so you can learn what’s correct for your house.
Whole-House Air Purifier vs. Portable Air Purifiers
A portable air purifier is for a single room. A whole-house air purifier works alongside your HVAC unit to clean your complete home. Some kinds can work by themselves when your heating and cooling system isn’t running.
What’s the Best Air Purifier for Allergies?
Look for a purifier with a High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter. HEPA filters are used in hospitals and offer the greatest filtration you can get, as they trap 99.97% of particles in the air.
HEPA filters are even more powerful when used with an ultraviolet (UV) germicidal light. This mighty blend can destroy dust, dander, pollen and mold, all of which are general allergens. For the greatest in air purification, evaluate equipment that also has a carbon-based filter to decrease household vapors.
Avoid using an air purifier that makes ozone, which is the main ingredient in smog. The EPA cautions ozone may aggravate respiratory issues, even when discharged at small amounts.
The Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America has created a listing of questions to ask when buying an air purifier.
- What can this purifier extract from the air? What doesn’t it take out?
- What’s its clean air delivery rate? (A bigger amount means air will be freshened faster.)
- How regularly does the filter or UV bulb need to be replaced? Can I do that on my own?
- How much do replacement filters or bulbs cost?
How to Reduce Seasonal Allergy Symptoms
Want to receive the most excellent results from your new air purification unit? The Mayo Clinic recommends completing other procedures to limit your exposure to problems that can cause seasonal allergies.
- Stay in your home and keep windows and doors shut when pollen counts are heightened.
- Have other household members trim the lawn or pull weeds, since these tasks can worsen symptoms. If you have to do these jobs on your own, you may want to consider wearing a pollen mask. You should also shower immediately and change your clothes once you’re completed.
- Avoid stringing up laundry outside your home.
- Run your air conditioner while at your house or while you’re on the road. Consider adding a high-efficiency air filter in your residence’s HVAC system.
- Balance your home’s humidity percentage with a whole-house dehumidifier.
- Hardwood, tile or linoleum are the best flooring types for decreasing indoor allergens. If your home has carpet, add a HEPA filter on your vacuum cleaner.
Let Our Pros Take Care of Your Indoor Air Quality Needs
Want to take the next step with adding a whole-house air purifier? Give our specialists a call at (616) 669-3961 or contact us online to schedule an appointment. We’ll help you find the right system for your home and budget.