Air conditioning is essential in every home. They stay on to keep the house cool or warm. But more importantly, they refine and release the air we breathe. If the air is not filtered, we get to take in bad air, and this can cause health problems. Inhaling contaminated air is said to trigger allergic reactions in most people.
Allergic reactions can be very discomforting. The reactions can range from mild to severe, and in some cases, hospitalization or medication is necessary.
Most allergic reactions are due to airborne contaminants. As air moves through our air vents at home, in offices, and in schools, we must ensure it is safe. Air conditioners draw fresh air from the environment, filter, cool, or heat, and pass it on to us. This is the function of the HVAC system in the air conditioner. When the air conditioner is faulty or inefficient, it can give off contaminated air leading to allergic reactions.
How Can Air Conditioners Cause Allergies?
1. Poor filtration
When air comes in through the AC unit, they first go through the filters. The filters are installed to rid the air of harmful particles, germs and bacteria, dirt, dust, and any other pollutant that may try to find its way in. Whatever is responsible or able to trigger allergic reactions is filtered, and you get to breathe fresh air. Most people hire technicians to come to help them replace filters or get them cleaned. You can also get the filters cleaned or replaced by yourself. There are stores accessible online like filterbuy.com/resources/can-you-be-allergic-to-air-conditioning/ where you can get affordable and durable filters for replacements. Air conditioning with poor filtration allows contaminated air in, and this can cause allergic reactions.
2. Lack of servicing
The filtration and cooling systems complement each other to produce fresh air. When one is clogged or overworked, both systems suffer. It is thus not enough to clean or replace filters; you must service the air conditioners periodically. A thorough servicing would help revamp the entire filtration and cooling system. It would rid the system of hidden dirt and debris that may be in the system.
3. Excess mold
Ever wondered why the air coming from your air conditioning unit is stuffy? And even with clean filters, the air still isn’t as clean and fresh as it should be. It is the effect of molds in the HVAC system. The cooling process produces moisture, and you can see it leaving the system through the outdoor unit as steam or water droplets. This moisture sometimes mixes up with dirt and dust in the system to form molds. When molds are stuck to your filters, their particles merge with the filtered air from your unit. It can lead to allergic reactions like sneezing and stuffy nostrils. These molds can occur around the home when the cooled air settles on some surfaces. Most people purchase dehumidifiers to help with this problem.
4. Untidy Environment
Personal hygiene is necessary around the home. The air filtered and released by the AC unit is an extract from your environment. When the environment is clean, the air is also clean. In tidy environments, your AC filters have fewer microbes and dirt or dust to contend with. It makes it easier to get clean and fresh air through the system. More so, it is necessary to vacuum your carpets and furniture as often as you can.
Pets like cats and dogs drop strands of hair when they move around, and these can also trigger allergic reactions for many people. So, make sure to vacuum and clean surfaces for dust like the tables and electronics.
When you leave food mess around, you provide a comfortable atmosphere for insects and microbes to breed in your home. Most of these organisms love to take shelter in cooling units. So, beware and maintain a hygienic lifestyle.
5. Leakage or Fault
Allergic reactions can be due to a fault in your ventilation system. When there is a leakage, all forms of dirt and dust particles gain entrance into your AC pipes. After you have done your servicing but the problem persists, you might want to check for leakage. A leakage can allow in so much dirt, germs, and bacteria enough to harm. Leakages are common and need to be identified, so repairs can be done.
Air conditioning units are a blessing to man, but they can mess your health up. If you leave issues with your unit unattended, allergies can worsen and lead to hospitalization. Research has shown that people develop hives and skin reactions as a result of airborne contamination. Can air conditioners cause allergies and worsen symptoms? Yes, they can, so you need to make sure your unit is in proper condition.