Do you have asthmatic children in your home? Here’s how your heating and cooling system can help:
Asthma is effecting todays youth in alarming numbers. Yearly, asthma causes 10.5 million missed school days. Any busy household contains a number of asthma triggers: mold growing in the shower, dust mites in pillows, blankets and stuffed animals, and cat and dog hairs on the carpet or floors are some of the many. Older homes rely on cracks at window and door joints to leak air inside and out. As newer homes are built tighter and tighter, the EPA is recommending the installation of ventilation systems. The air inside of your home, in most cases, can be more harmful than the outside due to the concentration of harmful particles.
There are several things that you can do with your heating and cooling system to help prevent allergy and asthma triggers. First, always make sure that you are replacing your furnace filter. Filters trap particles from reaching your furnace blower and eventually the air that comes through the air vents. Your furnace blower runs whether you are cooling or heating your home. Even though you are not heating your home, the furnace filter still needs to be changed. If you are using a 1” filter (disposable) it needs to be changed once a month. A 1” pleated filter (higher quality, more expensive) can be changed once every 3 months. Second, companies such as Aprilaire and Honeywell also have whole house air cleaners that assist in trapping harmful particles. Essentially your 1” filter is a whole house filter. The type of filters and technology in air cleaners are much more equipped to trap smaller particles such as pollen and mold. These filters are between 4 and 5 inches thick and last 6 months to a year.
A whole house air cleaner can cost a homeowner anywhere between $700-$1200, yearly filters are between $40-$60 dollars. These air cleaners can capture up to 99% of pollen and mold spores, 98% of dust 1-3 microns, and 94% of virus particles .3-1 microns. Homes with asthmatic children or adults should consider installing an air cleaner in their home. The benefits definitely out weigh the cost.