Fighting Common Allergens with Furnace Filters
Pick the Right Filter, Change It At the Right Time, and Say Goodbye to Sniffles
It happens every year. Spring rolls around and we’re so happy to say goodbye to the cold and nasties that we don’t see the other shoe dropping until the allergy sufferers in our households start sniffling. Well, actually, let’s revise that. It happens every year, but not this year. This year, we’re going to take a few super easy steps to cut down on the indoor allergens and say goodbye to the sniffles for good!
How? Furnace filters.
Pick the Right Filter
Even at their most basic, all furnace filters are designed to pull particulates out of the air. So, if they’re all designed to do that, then they’re all created equal, right? Well. No.
Those standard, thin-weave cartridges you slide into your furnace do stop large particles from entering your furnace, but the key word there is “large”. Many air filters are designed to prevent damage to the inner workings of your furnace, not to the inner workings of your nostrils.
So, what do you need? Well, you could digest the National Air Filtration Association’s full guidance on the topic: https://www.nafahq.org/understanding-merv-nafa-users-guide-to-ansi-ashrae-52-2/ or, you could take our word for it and look for a “MERV” 11+ rated filter. Every filter will have a MERV rating which is a basic measure of its effectiveness against different size particles. Higher ratings are more effective, but also generally more expensive and prone to clogging. Stick in the 11 to 14 range, and you should be golden.
It also goes without saying that you must use the size of furnace filter specified for your furnace. This should be as easy as getting the same size replacement filter as your previous filter. If this is for some reason not possible, it’s best to consult either the manual for your furnace or a furnace professional (and get the furnace serviced at the same time!).
Change Your Filter at the Right Time
Now that you’ve got the right filter picked out and ready to slot in, surely you’re done? Well, not quite. As with many things in life, timing is everything, and this filter will need to be replaced at the right time.
How frequently you need to replace your filter will vary, based on how much your heating and cooling system is being used. A generally agreed service limit is 3 months for most filters before they absolutely have to be changed. However, it’s advisable to switch off your HVAC system, slide out the filter, and check for visible deformation or dust contamination on the filter monthly.
Follow those tips, and your HVAC will be primed and ready to be an allergen solution instead of an allergen spreader.
Say Goodbye to Sniffles Permanently
Just when you thought you were safe, now comes the –duh-duh-duhhhh–hard part. Making your HVAC system an ally instead of an enemy by choosing the right furnace filter and replacing it frequently is only part of the equation. A good furnace filter can stop allergens from circulating, but there are already allergens in your home. Guaranteed.
To say goodbye to sniffles permanently, deep cleaning is going to be required. Dust, germs, and allergens lurk anywhere and everywhere–even in those “perfect” Insty influencers’ houses.
A good, thorough, spring cleaning should handle 90% of the problem which should be enough to kiss most sniffles goodbye. If not, though, or should you find yourself without the time to do a thorough deep clean (who has time?), you can call Cleaning Cents to get you 100% of the way there.
So, to sum up, pick a furnace filter with a MERV rating of 11+, change it at least every three months, and keep your house as clean as you have time for to say goodbye to sniffles permanently.