The air circulating through your home may contain pollutants, including dust, mold, pet dander and chemicals that could be harmful to you and your family. In fact, Indoor air could be 2 to 5 times worse than outdoor air. Pollutants continually flow through the house as the AC unit pushes air through the vents. Constant exposure to these pollutants can lead to allergies and even serious health problems. Your unit depends on air filters as a way of controlling indoor air quality and reduce exposure to pollutants. Read on to learn more about the most common indoor air pollutants - and what you can do to maintain good indoor air quality.
Most common indoor air pollutants:
Dust – Particles flowing through the air remains invisible until it starts accumulating on surfaces in your home. While dust flies visually undetected through the air, it can easily cause havoc on the respiratory system. Since dust contains mold particles, pollen and dander, it acts as an asthma and allergy trigger.
Mold – Mold regularly releases spores in the air as a way to continue growing throughout its current environment. The microscopic spores float through the air until they are caught by a filter or inhaled into your lungs. With regular contact, the mold spores can cause allergic reactions, lung infections or other serious health effects. Since these spores stubbornly remain in the air space, you must continually process the air through a filter long after eliminating the main source of the mold.
Pet Dander – Despite popular belief, fur from pets does not actually cause allergic reactions. Instead, the allergen is actually the dander; microscopic skin flakes, which are constantly shed off the animal and contain saliva and other organic material. It is so small and light that it can remain floating in the air for extended periods of time. Therefore, you must use a filter that pulls dander out of the air to keep from inhaling it each day.
Chemicals – Common cleaning materials, air fresheners and even building materials used throughout your home can linger in the air for long periods of time. These chemical particles affect the air quality in your home and, in some cases, can cause allergies and more serious respiratory problems. Regular exposure to these chemicals can cause eye, throat and lung irritation.
How to achieve better indoor air quality:
There is an easy way of fighting indoor air pollutants. A high efficiency air filter continually pulls dust, dander and debris out of your home, pushing clean fresh air back through the system. However, it is not a matter of setting and forgetting. The trapped dust and debris will build up in the filter and block the air flowing between the fibers, so for maximum efficiency, have your filters replaced every thirty to ninety days, depending on the filter you buy and manufacturer’s recommendations for peak and non-peak seasons.
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