Do Air Purifiers Help with Allergies?

April 10, 2020

We spend lots of time indoors. As a matter of fact, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has estimated being inside accounts for 90% of our days. Although, the EPA also has found your indoor air can be three to five times dirtier than outdoors.

That’s since our residences are firmly sealed to enhance energy efficiency. While this is fantastic for your energy costs, it’s not so great if you’re a part of the 40% of the population with respiratory allergies.

When outdoor ventilation is limited, pollutants like dust and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) might get captured. As a consequence, these pollutants may irritate your allergies.

You can improve your indoor air quality with crisp air and regular dusting and vacuuming. But if you’re still struggling with symptoms during the time you’re at your residence, an air purifier might be able to help.

While it can’t get rid of pollutants that have gotten trapped in your couch or flooring, it could help freshen the air traveling throughout your house.

And air purification has also been scientifically proven to help lower some allergic symptoms, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. It can also be helpful if you or a loved one has lung issues, like emphysema or COPD.

There are two kinds, a portable air purifier or a whole-home air purifier. We’ll go over the differences so you can figure out what’s correct for your residence.

Whole-House Air Purifier vs. Portable Air Purifiers

A portable air purifier is for a lone room. A whole-house air purifier accompanies your home comfort unit to treat your entire home. Some kinds can work on their own when your HVAC system isn’t on.

What’s the Best Air Purifier for Allergies?

Look for a purifier with a High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter. HEPA filters are installed in hospitals and provide the most comprehensive filtration you can find, as they catch 99.97% of particles in the air.

HEPA filters are even more effective when combined with an ultraviolet (UV) germicidal light. This mighty blend can destroy dust, dander, pollen and mold, all of which are general allergens. For the ultimate in air purification, evaluate a unit that also has a carbon-based filter to take care of household odors.

Avoid using an air purifier that creates ozone, which is the main component in smog. The EPA cautions ozone may aggravate respiratory issues, even when emitted at small settings.

The Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America has created a list of questions to ask when buying an air purifier.

  • What can this purifier extract from the air? What doesn’t it extract?
  • What’s its clean air delivery rate? (A higher number means air will be cleaned more rapidly.)
  • How often does the filter or UV bulb need to be changed? Can I finish that without help?
  • How much do replacement filters or bulbs cost?

How to Lessen Seasonal Allergy Symptoms

Want to receive the best performance from your new air purification equipment? The Mayo Clinic recommends taking other steps to limit your exposure to problems that can cause seasonal allergies.

  1. Stay inside and keep windows and doors closed when pollen counts are elevated.
  2. Have other family members mow the lawn or pull weeds, since these tasks can trigger symptoms. If you are required to do this work on your own, consider wearing a pollen mask. You should also shower immediately and put on new clothes once you’re done.
  3. Avoid drying laundry outside your home.
  4. Use your air conditioner while indoors or while driving. Consider adding a high-efficiency air filter in your home’s heating and cooling system.
  5. Equalize your house’s humidity percentage with a whole-house dehumidifier.
  6. Hardwood, tile or linoleum are the suggested flooring types for reducing indoor allergens. If your residence has carpet, use a HEPA filter on your vacuum cleaner.

Let Our Specialists Manage Your Indoor Air Quality Needs

Ready to move forward with adding a whole-house air purifier? Give our pros a call at 334-245-4748 or contact us online to get an appointment. We’ll help you locate the best unit for your family and budget.