Monday, June 13, 2011

Allergy Relief With These Indoor Air Quality Strategies

As spring returns, so do allergies. All of the pretty trees and flowers in San Diego that make some people happy make others miserable.
Staying inside doesn't always help. The air quality inside most homes is worse than outside. But there are several things that allergy sufferers can do to help reduce the number of allergens that get circulated throughout their homes. Here are some of them:

• Replace the filters in your heating and air conditioning system. When the filters get clogged, regular airflow may become obstructed, and indoor pollutants get recirculated into the air. New filters are a quick and easy way to get allergy relief, and will help your system run more efficiently.

• Clean your windows to remove dust, cobwebs and other debris. Clean windows will give you more light and remove debris that is likely to trap additional pollen or other allergens.

• Park your car in your garage. Doing so means you won't have to go outside to go between it and your house, and you won't drag allergens in on your clothing.

• Use a high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) purifier to remove particles from your home's air.

Although HEPA filters are often more expensive than other filter options, they will offer the most allergy relief because they are capable of catching very small airborne particles. Air filters overall are given a MERV rating of between 1 and 20 (the MERV rating is a measure of the filter's efficiency), and true HEPA filters have a MERV of between 17 and 20.
There are HEPA air purifiers that will clean a single room, but some furnaces and air conditioners are also able to use HEPA filters, which would bring whole-house relief from allergens. Check your equipment's documentation or consult a professional to make sure your HVAC equipment has enough airflow to use a high efficiency filter.
Air purification is complicated, especially if you have health issues that are being affected by the air quality in your home. To find out more, contact ASI Hastings Heating and Air Conditioning. We can help you sort out the options and find the best solution for you.

Breathe Easy With a UV Air Purifer

Does your home suffer from air quality problems? Many homes do. In fact, the air quality in most homes is worse than the air outside.

Regular air filtration will help with catching airborne pollutants and preventing them from circulating through the air in your home. But air filters don't kill biological contaminants like mold, bacteria or viruses. A UV air purifier adds extra protection for the air in your home.

A UV air purifier uses ultraviolet radiation from UV lamps to kill biological air contaminants. This type of purification system can be part of your home's HVAC system. In this configuration, the UV lamps are located in your ductwork. Airborne pollutants are moved through the ducts via the air circulation created by your heating and cooling system.

There are some considerations to keep in mind with a UV system, though. UV radiation is effective in killing mold spores, and dead mold spores aren't able to grow new mold. However, they can still cause problems with allergies. A UV air purifier can kill biological contamination in your home's air, but things like dust and dead mold spores can still get circulated in the air. So the EPA suggests using a UV purification system in conjunction with a regular air filtration system and proper ventilation to get the best indoor air quality.
If you have questions about air purification, or other concerns about the air quality in your home, contact us at ASI Hastings Heating and Air Conditioning. We're always happy to help. We have the products and the services you need to keep the air in your home safe and fresh.

Changing Your Air Filter Saves You Money and Prevents Expensive Breakdowns

An entire agency is dedicated to protecting San Diegans from air pollution -- The San Diego County Air Pollution Control District. This organization endeavors to protect the public from the harmful effects of air pollution, improve air quality and implement cost-effective programs to meet these goals.

Changing your HVAC filters can help you achieve the same goals as this agency, only within your home or business. Filters are out of sight, so they are often out of mind -- until something happens. Dust and dirt entering your heating and air conditioning system can cause mechanical and safety problems. Filters were designed to prevent this; however, since we don't see them, we forget to replace them on a regular schedule.

Modern furnace filters save money by protecting HVAC equipment, but they perform functions far beyond the basics.

Energy Savings

Clogged filters cause the system to work harder to produce the same comfort results, which uses extra energy. Clean furnace filters provide the ventilation your system needs to operate effectively and efficiently -- and they minimize energy use.

Equipment and Repair Savings

Replacing heating and air conditioning systems is costly. Allowing dirt, dust and other particles to enter the system will eventually lead to expensive breakdowns. Semi-annual preventive maintenance and quarterly furnace filter changes will keep your system operating at optimum levels.

Health Savings

Pollen, pet hair and dander, mold spores, dust mites, mildew, smoke, odors and bacteria can travel through your home by way of your HVAC system. To combat the effects of those pollutants, you may spend hundreds of dollars each year on trips to the doctor’s office and medications for allergy-related symptoms. Using a high-quality or HEPA-grade filter can help stop those irritants in their tracks.

Other Savings

Airborne pollutants such as smoke, odors, mold and mildew travel through ductwork. They look like dark streaks extending from vents as a result of neglected furnace filters. You'll waste time and money trying to clean these up.

The professionals at ASI Hastings Heating and Air Conditioning can help you choose the filter that's right for your home or business. We're happy to help.