Allergies are a common occurrence, affecting over 50 million Americans each year, as noted by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. Unfortunately, an allergy to mold, pet dander, or dust mites cause annoying nasal symptoms, and these allergens may enter into your home and lurk inside your HVAC system. With these tips, you can reduce the allergens in your home’s system.

1. Change or Clean Your Filter Regularly

You want to make sure you clean or change your furnace filter routinely because dust and pet fur accumulate on it. Not only does the fur and dust hinder your furnace’s performance, but this collection of allergens can wreak havoc on your family’s health.

Generally, you should change a paper furnace filter at least once every four months. On the other hand, you want to change a fiberglass filter once every one to two months. If you have an electrostatic furnace filter, you’ll need to clean it at least every four to six weeks. Keep in mind that you may need to clean or change your furnace filter more frequently if you smoke or have pets.

2. Check the MERV Rating for Your Filter 

When you change your furnace filter, you should take a look at the minimum efficiency reporting value (MERV) of it. This rating identifies how effective the filter is at capturing particulate matter of varying sizes.

You’ll notice that the MERV of filters ranges between 1 to 20. As a general rule, you want to strive for a higher MERV value because these filters catch smaller particulate matter. Typically, you want to aim for a filter with a MERV value of at least eight, especially if you have allergies.

3. Clean Your Vents 

You also want to check your vents because dust and other allergens in your home will pile up in them. Therefore, whenever you clean a particular room thoroughly, you should take time to clean out the vent to avoid the particles blowing back into the air you breathe.

4. Schedule a Duct Cleaning 

Besides your filters, dust, pet dander, and fur also gather in your air ducts. Every time your furnace turns on, that dust and pet dander will enter your home for you and your family to breathe. In fact, you may even notice that your allergy symptoms flare up whenever your furnace turns on.

You may alleviate this problem with a routine duct cleaning. Usually, you want to consider a duct cleaning if you haven’t scheduled one in the last 10 years.

5. Use an Air Purifier 

In addition, you may want to reduce the number of allergens in your home with an air purifier.

You’ll need to choose the right one for the size of your room, though. For instance, as noted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), if the room you want to purifier for is 100 sq. ft., you want to aim for a purifier with a clean air delivery rate (CADR) of 60. On the other hand, if you plan to situate the purifier in a room that’s 600 sq. ft., you should purchase a purifier with a CADR of 390.

6. Vacuum Frequently

Allergens aren’t just in your HVAC unit. These nuisances are also in your carpeting and on other upholstered items in your home, which can end up in your HVAC system. Therefore, on a routine basis, you should vacuum your carpeting and furniture to reduce the allergens in your home.

If you take care of your HVAC filter and vents and take necessary steps to reduce the allergens in your home, you and your family can breathe comfortably at home all year long. Plus, if you need any help with the furnace filters or any other issue with your HVAC unit, your local heating and cooling repair company is available.

Schedule an appointment with Apollo Heating & Air Conditioning, serving Maplewood, MN, and the nearby region, if you have any issues with your HVAC unit or would like to book a routine maintenance call.