Do you think about your home’s indoor air quality? You should, especially if you or your family members suffer from asthma or allergies. There are many asthma and allergy triggers both inside your home (think dust, bacteria, mold, pet dander, smoke and chemical odors) as well as outdoors. It is hard to believe, but the air inside your home can often be worse than the air outside!
Proper HVAC maintenance can make a huge difference in your quality of life and the quality of your home’s indoor air by helping control your symptoms and reducing the triggers inside your home. To neutralize airborne triggers, you need clean and healthy indoor air.
One way to do that is to clean your air vents and grilles. Just like a clean air filter, clean air vents and grilles will help with airflow and allow cleaner air to move throughout the house. Here’s what you do:
- Walk around your home and notice which vents and grilles could use some cleaning. Perhaps there is dust, pet hair or more visible contaminants on your vent covers and grilles.
- Turn off your HVAC system.
- Remove the vent covers and grilles and then use a duster, soft cloth, brush or vacuum to clean them well. You may even wash them with soap and water, but make sure you dry them completely before putting them back.
Another way to improve your home’s indoor air quality is by replacing or cleaning the air filter. You don’t want your HVAC system circulating dust and other airborne triggers throughout your home. A high-quality air filter will trap dust and other triggers, preventing them from moving around your house. Depending on the type of filter you use, you should clean or replace it every 30-90 days.
Keeping your home’s windows and doors closed also improves your indoor air quality. Not only does this increase the efficiency of your HVAC system and cost less since you’re not allowing air conditioning or heat to flow outside of your house, but it lowers the chances of outdoor allergens coming into your house and wreaking havoc on asthma and allergy sufferers.
An air cleaner is a great investment for better indoor air quality. Air cleaners neutralize bacteria, viruses, pollen, mold spores, pet dander, smoke and chemical odors, removing them from your airways. You can buy a portable air cleaner or have a HVAC professional install one in your home.
Finally, schedule regular HVAC maintenance appointments to improve indoor air quality.
Annual maintenance is important for every homeowner, especially for those with allergies and asthma. You want to be sure your system is working properly and as efficiently as possible and is clean of mildew, mold, dust and other contaminants that affect your indoor air quality. We recommend having your HVAC system professionally serviced twice a year (in the spring before using the air conditioner for the first time and in the fall before using the furnace for the first time). Preventive maintenance is important for the life of your HVAC system, addressing any issues before they turn into expensive repairs or replacements.
Check out our blog for even more ideas for reducing indoor air pollution in your home. And for more information on indoor air quality, see this “Care for Your Air” guide from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Your indoor air quality is important to you, and it is important to us. Stiles Heating & Cooling can provide an Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) evaluation to see how breathable your air is. We can inspect your ducts to see if cleaning is recommended and can perform the duct cleaning service if needed. Call Stiles Heating & Cooling for more information or to schedule an HVAC maintenance appointment.