Hiram M. Hamilton graduated university with a BA in Journalism but became a trusted employee at his father’s HVAC company. With 20 years of experience under his belt, Hiram is a specialist in the industry and a self-thought plumber. However, his passion for journalism prompted him to pick up the pen again. Now, he is writing informative articles related to HVAC issues, home services, and plumbing tips and tricks to educate the public and help people become more self-reliant.
Got Allergies? It’s Time to Clean Your Air Ducts
People who are allergic to airborne substances are most exposed at home. Even if you keep your house very clean, allergenic particles can get trapped in your air ducts, and once you activate the system, these will spread toward your home, triggering allergic reactions.
Given the current global pandemic, allergy symptoms triggered by inside airborne allergens could be mistaken for COVID-19 symptoms. What is more, the approaching spring is a risky period for people who suffer from airborne allergies.
The Heating System, Part of the Medical Conversation
The heating system, especially the air ducts, has become part of the medical conversation regarding airborne allergies. When inside, one can consciously avoid contact with chemical and food allergens but staying away from particles in the air is more difficult.
While keeping the house very clean helps keep the environment safer for allergies, it is not enough. Allergens in the air can be dispersed by turning on the heat or activating the air conditioning system. The circulation of the air will spread these particles throughout the home.
What is more, the allergen particles can settle in the air ducts over time. When inhaled, these will trigger allergy symptoms. Below are some of the allergens that can be found indoors and are often trapped in air ducts:
People who are allergic to mites commonly found on dust particles are most exposed when indoors. These tiny organisms are invisible to the naked eye. Dust mites feed on the moisture found in the air.
People who are allergic to pollen suffer most during spring, summer, and fall. Even if you limit outside exposure, you also need to make sure that there is no pollen build-up in the air ducts at your home. This is especially important now that the only safe season, winter, is ending.
Allergy to the spores released by mold can also worsen symptoms for people with asthma. The best action you can take in this case is to limit your exposure. Medication can also help to some degree.
Allergies to cockroaches are a year-round type of allergy. This is also a common trigger for asthma attacks. Cockroach saliva, shed skin, and waste could be found in your air ducts and then dispersed throughout your home.
Some periods of the year present a bigger threat for people suffering from allergies than others. Spring is the nemesis of many for this reason. The transition between seasons in combination with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic should make it a priority for all to take the necessary steps to keep their homes a clean and safe environment.
Whenever you spend the majority of your time inside, you must keep the air ducts and the whole heating system in good shape through regular maintenance. If not cleaned properly, air ducts can pose serious threats to your health. Schedule your service appointment to make sure that you can welcome spring without any worries.
Also, during these at-risk periods, try to keep your home as clean as possible. It is perfectly normal for allergy symptoms to lash out during or immediately after sweeping or vacuuming. This is because the actions set the air and dust particles in motion.
If you are experiencing flu-like symptoms while indoors, these might be triggered by the allergen particles trapped in the air ducts. Here are some of the most common symptoms:
- Frequent sneezing and coughing
- Difficulty breathing
- Irritation of the throat
- Runny nose and watery eyes
- Headaches and fever
Beyond these physical symptoms, lethargy and general irritability may also occur. Another thing to keep an eye on is your energy bill. If you pay more than you used to, it can mean that something is wrong. This is a good time to call an expert to check your devices and detect the issue that is causing your bills to plummet.
The Importance of Periodic Air Duct Cleaning
For all of the reasons listed above, it is essential to make a habit out of cleaning your air ducts regularly. Considering how much time we spend at home, we should make sure that we have the proper conditions to stay healthy.