The quick answer to the question is, yes, air conditioning units with filtration systems can be good for allergies. The allergens and other pollutants are trapped in the filters to avoid circulating inside your home. If the air conditioning filter is well-maintained and in good condition, triggering an allergic reaction can be avoided and most symptoms can be alleviated.
People often stay inside their house thinking that their allergies can be triggered when they go outside. This may be true for people with seasonal or pollen allergies. However, indoor air can be more contaminated than outdoor air because the allergens have nowhere to go but just circulate inside the house.
Even in the largest cities, the air inside homes and buildings can be much more polluted than outdoor air. This can be alarming especially with the Australian government recognising that Australians spend at least 90% of their time inside buildings or their homes.
A way to enjoy clean/healthy air inside your home, especially for allergy sufferers, is the use of well-maintained air con units with effective air conditioning filters.
Air Conditioning helps to maintain temperature
It can be difficult to determine whether you are suffering from allergies or nonallergic rhinitis as they have the same symptoms. Thankfully, air con is designed to provide a comfortable atmosphere with stable temperature, which helps prevent the triggering of nonallergic rhinitis, despite the sudden fluctuations of outdoor temperature due to weather conditions.
Additionally, an air conditioning unit can help maintain humidity at a stable level. Too much humidity will turn your rooms into breeding grounds for mildew, mould, and other allergens.
Many allergens are water soluble
The proteins that trigger an allergic reaction when released by the pollens are water soluble. There are various types of pollens, and each one may affect one person but not the other. For example, a person may suffer from allergy with grass pollen but not with cedar pollen.
People with seasonal allergies can have peace of mind that air conditioning units work by taking away water from the atmosphere to give you a cool environment. This means the water-soluble allergens are taken away when your air conditioning is working running. In essence, the removal of allergens in indoor air is a natural byproduct of the cooling process of air conditioning units.
The right air conditioning filter provides even more protection
You can achieve relief from allergies with the cooling process of your air con units. If you suffer from severe allergies, however, installing the proper filter on your unit is vital in ensuring breathing clean and healthy air. You should choose High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters, which trap allergens as well as particles that are as small as 0.3 microns. They have a fine mesh that can trap ultrafine particles such as dust mites, pollen, pet dander and even tobacco smoke.
Change old/outdated air conditioning units
Old units, such as the window types, may not be well-equipped to properly dispose of the humidity that they collect from your house. As a result, the water may accumulate on the cooling coils and in some cases they can leak on your floors or seep through cracks on the walls. When this happens, the moisture and dust can create the perfect breeding ground for mildew and mould. The spores and other allergens can then be brought back to the house and can trigger allergic reactions.
Poorly operational units, especially outdated models, should be replaced with more efficient, reliable air conditioning ones. There are various types of air conditioning units you can choose from.
- Ducted air conditioning has a central unit that delivers cool air through a network of ducts and into each individual room. Ideal for large homes and offices.
- Evaporative air conditioning has a water reservoir, a thick pad and a fan that blows cool air to your house.
- Split system air conditioning has two units (indoor and outdoor) connected with a copper piping that works together to cool your home and is ideal for small houses or apartments.
- Multi-split system air conditioning is a split air con with multiple air outlets to cool several rooms at once.
Regularly clean the filters
An air conditioning filter may be able to trap allergens and other harmful particles, but if these filters are not regularly cleaned or replaced, the trapped particles can be redistributed to the room. Therefore, it is essential that the filters should be routinely replaced or cleaned. If you start to notice the air conditioner isn’t producing cool air, this is a tell-tale sign that the filters are blocked.
Having clean or new filters isn’t just good for your allergies. Having clogged or dirty filters will force your air con to use more power and energy to provide cool, quality air into the house.
Filters are ideally cleaned monthly or every few months. However, these should be cleaned more often when the a/c is constantly being used especially during summer. Cleaning should also be frequent when there are cats, dogs, and other furry pets in the room, as well as when the unit is subjected to dusty conditions.
Keep the unit in top shape with regular maintenance
To ensure that your air con remains in good condition, the entire unit must go through routine maintenance checks and cleaning. Just having a clean air conditioning filter is not enough. Each part of the air con is important in ensuring the efficiency of the entire unit. These parts include:
- Evaporator and condenser coils: Even with clean, well-maintained filters, the coils can still accumulate dust over time.
- Coil fins: These fragile aluminum fins on the coils can block airflow when they are bent. They can be combed back to their original shape.
- Drain channels: Clogged drains can be easily drained with a stiff wire. When left clogged, excess moisture will damage walls, floors, and carpeting, and create a perfect environment for mould, mildew, and other allergens to grow.
While you can do some regular maintenance tasks for your aircon, it’s best that you hire a professional service technician to ensure your air con will last a long time. Having a well-trained technician can help detect problems in your ducted, split, or evaporative unit and fix them before they get worse.
If you’re looking for air conditioning options for your home in Western Australia, especially when you have allergies, contact us here at Complete Air Systems today. We are Perth’s no. 1 choice when it comes to premium quality air conditioning services.