Spring is the time of year people with allergies “love to hate”. Flowers and trees are blooming, grass is beginning to grow – It can be a beautiful time in the Northwest. It is also a time of great suffering for people with seasonal allergies. Pollens are blowing – leaving their yellow-green residue everywhere. You want to open your windows wide to let in some fresh air and to cool off the house on sunny days, but you suffer for it in the end with sneezing, and itchy, watering eyes. What to do?
Well an ounce of prevention can be worth a pound of cure. Here are some things you can do to help make the air in your home healthier:
- Reducing humidity decreases dust mite and mold growth. Air conditioners and heat pumps help reduce the humidity in summer months, as well as prevent the exposure of outdoor allergens. You can reduce the number of outdoor allergens such as pollen and mold from entering the home by keeping windows and doors closed and the air conditioner set on recirculate.
- A range of 40-50% humidity is good. Humidity lower than 35% can make breathing uncomfortable for some people with asthma or other respiratory conditions. You can pick up a humidity gauge at most hardware stores, or BelRed can install a programmable thermostat with a built-in humidistat.
- Vacuum once or twice weekly. Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter or special double filter bags if possible. If you have allergies, wear a dust mask while doing housework. Use a damp or treated cloth for dusting. Leave the house for several hours after cleaning it.
- Seal your ducts to reduce infiltration from crawl or attic space, or wall cavities. This will help to keep the air moving through your system clean.
- Once ducts are sealed, duct cleaning can be helpful as well for removing particulates form your duct system, and preventing them from circulating through your home.
- Add a quality central air filtration system. BelRed offers several options that effectively filter out allergens and other particulates from the air moving through your system. Filters in central heating and cooling systems and in room air conditioners should also be cleaned or replaced at least once a month during allergy seasons.
Contact BelRed for more information on many of these products and services, and enjoy the Spring weather!