5 Tips to Improve Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) During Allergy Season

The sneezing, the itchy eyes, the pollen in the air…allergy season is back in full force! For many, spring is a time when the only source of relief involves decongestants and afternoon naps. And while there’s not much you can do to reduce allergens outdoors, you can monitor and control your home’s indoor air quality.

Though it’s easy to overlook, indoor air quality, or IAQ, significantly impacts our health. This reality has much to do with the fact that we, on average, spend a lot of our time indoors. Per the EPA, Americans spend roughly 90% of their time inside, where concentrations of certain pollutants can be 2x to 5x higher than they are outdoors.

This article dives into five solutions to improve your home’s IAQ and overall wellness.

Consider Installing an Air Purification System

Dust, pet dander, bacteria, and even strains of viruses are all in most homes to some degree. These irritants can trigger asthma and allergies in the short term and contribute to lingering respiratory issues over time.

Air purification systems are installed directly into your heating and cooling ductwork and actively reduce the volume of pathogens and contaminants circulating in your home. Cutting-edge purification technology, like the Air Scrubber by Aerus, mimics the same process that the sun uses to cleanse the air we breathe through photolysis.

Understanding the Advantages of Whole-Home Dehumidification

Hot, sticky air becomes a breeding ground for mold, mildew, and other pollutants when temperatures and humidity levels increase each spring. If your home’s humidity levels exceed the recommended 40-60%, it’s time to consider dehumidification.

Nobody likes the “muggy” feeling associated with high humidity. But if your home’s residents have respiratory conditions, the problems go beyond discomfort. Store-bought dehumidifiers can be effective in small rooms, but unless you plan on spending all your time confined in one spot, investing in whole-home dehumidification is the way to go.

Schedule Regular HVAC Maintenance

HVAC systems have air filters that trap dust, pollen, and other harmful particles. However, if they aren’t replaced regularly, they will become clogged and ineffective over time. Replacing standard one-inch filters monthly is one of the easiest ways to improve your home’s IAQ effectively and affordably. If switching out filters every month seems like a chore, upgrading to a media cabinet filter is the solution.

Media cabinet filters have a surface area that traps 10x the particulates of standard one-inch filters. They capture 98% of pollen and mold spores, as opposed to 20% with a one-inch filter. Additionally, these filters need to be changed only once every six months, and our technicians can take care of this task on our six-month maintenance visits. That means you’re off the Hoock for DIY filter replacements!

In addition to air filters, your system’s evaporator and condenser coils also accumulate dirt and debris over time. During routine maintenance visits, our team will inspect and clean these components, instantly boosting your home’s air quality and system performance.

Keep Windows and Doors Closed

It would take an entire article to list all the causes of seasonal allergies. But one thing’s for sure – if you have them, you know it as soon as you open the door on a spring day.

When temperatures increase during March, April, and May, it’s tempting to open all the windows and doors in your home and let the fresh air in. The only problem is that fresh air might be full of irritants. If you invite them into your home, there’s a good chance they’ll be circulating throughout every room in no time.

We get it – keeping those windows closed on a warm spring afternoon is challenging, but it’s not worth compromising your health and comfort. Do yourself a favor and monitor the pollen count and outdoor air quality (you can find it in your favorite weather app), and wait until levels are low before opening up all the windows in your home.

UV Light Technology Offers Multiple Benefits

Ultraviolet (UV) light disrupts bacterial and viral DNA replication and is a powerful disinfectant (there’s never a wrong time for a quick science lesson). What does it mean for you? Installing a UV light over air conditioner coils helps control allergens in your home and creates a cleaner, healthier environment.

If you’re looking for an easy upgrade, UV light installation is relatively low-cost and highly effective. Not only will UV lights boost your home’s IAQ, but they’ll also increase the efficiency and longevity of your HVAC system. Now that’s a win-win!

Have Concerns About Your Home’s IAQ? Hoock’s Can Help

We’re all about comfort, but If there’s anything more important, it’s your health. The experts at Hoock’s Heating & Cooling are here to ensure your home is a space where you can find relief from pathogens and pollutants during allergy season. If anyone in your home suffers from seasonal allergies, it’s critical to take the necessary steps to ensure your HVAC system isn’t exacerbating the problem. 

To mitigate allergens in your home this season, contact a Hoock’s Heating and Cooling team member today and ask about our IAQ solutions.