Do Air Purifiers Help with Allergies?

April 10, 2020

We spend a lot of time inside. In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has determined being within a building makes up 90% of our days. Although, the EPA also has found your indoor air can be three to five times worse than outside.

That’s because our residences are firmly sealed to boost energy efficiency. While this is fantastic for your heating and cooling expenses, it’s not so fantastic if you’re amid the 40% of the population with respiratory allergies.

When outdoors ventilation is limited, pollutants such as dust and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) can get captured. Consequently, these pollutants can worsen your allergies.

You can boost your indoor air quality with crisp air and usual dusting and vacuuming. But if you’re still having problems with symptoms while you’re at your residence, an air purifier may be able to provide assistance.

While it can’t remove pollutants that have settled on your furnishings or carpet, it can help freshen the air moving throughout your home.

And air purification has also been scientifically proven to help reduce some allergic symptoms, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. It may also be useful if you or someone in your household has lung trouble, like emphysema or COPD.

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

Whole-House Air Purifier vs. Portable Air Purifiers

A portable air purifier is for a lone room. A whole-house air purifier works alongside your home comfort unit to treat your full house. Some types can purify on their own when your heating and cooling system isn’t on.

What’s the Best Air Purifier for Allergies?

Look for an option with a High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter. HEPA filters are placed in hospitals and deliver the best filtration you can get, as they trap 99.97% of particles in the air.

HEPA filters are even more effective when combined with an ultraviolet (UV) germicidal light. This powerful combination can eliminate dust, dander, pollen and mold, all of which are standard allergens. For the greatest in air purification, consider equipment that also has a carbon-based filter to eliminate household smells.

Avoid purchasing an air purifier that generates ozone, which is the main component in smog. The EPA warns ozone could worsen respiratory symptoms, even when released at minor concentrations.

The Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America has compiled a checklist of questions to consider when purchasing an air purifier.

  • What can this purifier remove from the air? What doesn’t it extract?
  • What’s its clean air delivery rate? (A higher amount means air will be cleaned faster.)
  • How frequently does the filter or UV bulb need to be replaced? Can I complete that without help?
  • How much do replacement filters or bulbs cost?

How to Reduce Seasonal Allergy Symptoms

Want to have the most excellent performance from your new air purification unit? The Mayo Clinic advises doing other measures to decrease your exposure to things that can trigger seasonal allergies.

  1. Stay indoors and keep windows and doors sealed when pollen counts are high.
  2. Have other family members trim the lawn or pull weeds, since these tasks can aggravate symptoms. If you are required to do this work yourself, you may want to consider trying a pollen mask. You should also shower immediately and put on new clothes once you’re completed.
  3. Avoid stringing up laundry outside your home.
  4. Use your air conditioner while at your house or while in the car. Consider adding a high-efficiency air filter in your home’s HVAC unit.
  5. Balance your home’s humidity saturation with a whole-house dehumidifier.
  6. Hardwood, tile or linoleum are the ideal flooring types for lowering indoor allergens. If your residence has carpet, use a HEPA filter on your vacuum cleaner.

Let Our Specialists Manage Your Indoor Air Quality Necessities

Want to take the next step with getting a whole-house air purifier? Give our pros a call at 319-208-3295 or contact us online to get an appointment. We’ll help you find the best system for your needs and budget.