We spend lots of time inside. As a matter of fact, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has estimated being inside accounts for 90% of our time. Having said that, the EPA also has determined your indoor air can be three to five times dirtier than outside.
That’s since our residences are securely sealed to increase energy efficiency. While this is great for your heating and cooling costs, it’s not so great if you’re a part of the 40% of the population with respiratory allergies.
When outdoor ventilation is insufficient, pollutants including dust and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) can get captured. Consequently, these pollutants might aggravate your allergies.
You can boost your indoor air quality with clean air and routine dusting and vacuuming. But if you’re still having problems with symptoms while you’re at home, an air purifier may be able to help.
While it can’t get rid of pollutants that have gotten trapped in your couch or carpet, it might help purify the air traveling across your residence.
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 can also be useful if you or a loved one has lung issues, including emphysema or COPD.
There are two models, a portable air purifier or a whole-home air purifier. We’ll examine the differences so you can determine what’s correct for your residence.
Whole-House Air Purifier vs. Portable Air Purifiers
A portable air purifier is for a lone room. A whole-house air purifier works with your heating and cooling unit to clean your entire residence. Some types can clean by themselves when your HVAC system isn’t on.
What’s the Best Air Purifier for Allergies?
Seek a model with a High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter. HEPA filters are installed in hospitals and offer the most comprehensive filtration you can buy, as they catch 99.97% of particles in the air.
HEPA filters are even more powerful when combined with an ultraviolet (UV) germicidal light. This dynamic blend can eliminate dust, dander, pollen and mold, all of which are standard allergens. For the ultimate in air purification, consider a system that also has a carbon-based filter to decrease household vapors.
Avoid buying an air purifier that generates ozone, which is the primary ingredient in smog. The EPA cautions ozone may aggravate respiratory troubles, even when emitted at low settings.
The Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America has made a checklist of questions to ask when purchasing 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 better number means air will be cleaned more rapidly.)
- How often does the filter or UV bulb need to be replaced? Can I complete that on my own?
- How much do new filters or bulbs cost?
How to Lessen Seasonal Allergy Symptoms
Want to receive the most excellent performance from your new air purification equipment? The Mayo Clinic recommends taking other measures to reduce your exposure to problems that can cause seasonal allergies.
- Stay in your home and keep windows and doors shut when pollen counts are high.
- Have other household members trim the lawn or pull weeds, since this work can worsen symptoms. If you have to do this work alone, consider wearing a pollen mask. You should also rinse off without delay and put on clean clothes once you’re done.
- Avoid hanging laundry outside your home.
- Run the AC while at your house or while driving. Consider installing a high-efficiency air filter in your residence’s HVAC system.
- Equalize your house’s humidity levels with a whole-house dehumidifier.
- Hardwood, tile or linoleum are the ideal flooring materials for lowering indoor allergens. If your house has carpet, install a HEPA filter on your vacuum cleaner.
Let Our Professionals Take Care of Your Indoor Air Quality Needs
Ready to take the next step with adding a whole-house air purifier? Give our pros a call at 641-316-9803 or contact us online to request an appointment. We’ll help you find the best equipment for your residence and budget.