Is Your Air Conditioner Making Your Allergies Worse? Here's What You Need to Do

Are you affected by seasonal allergies? It can be a highly unpleasant thing to have to go through, but when the season changes, you might find yourself sneezing uncontrollably and always needing to keep a packet of antihistamines nearby. While medication and even perhaps avoiding the outdoors on occasion can offer some respite, have you considered that the cause of your allergies might be being piped directly into your home? While your air conditioning unit is obviously not the cause of your allergies, it can perhaps be exacerbating the problem. Whether it's pollen, dust, or even dander, your air conditioner could be spreading it inside your home, potentially making your allergies worse. Fortunately, this is not a difficult issue to overcome.


How regularly is your air conditioner serviced? Whether or not you follow the manufacturer's recommendation with regards to the frequency of any servicing, it might be time to arrange for this service to happen more often. While regular servicing will keep the air conditioning unit running to the best of its ability, your allergies can also be soothed by regular cleaning of the air conditioner's ducts. Professional cleaning of these ducts will prevent the accumulation of dust and anything else that can gather inside, thus sharply decreasing the amount of irritants that are piped into your home.

MERV Rating

What type of filter does your air conditioning unit have? It might be time to upgrade it. The efficiency of an air conditioner filter (and the types of particles it can effectively filter out) is determined by its minimum efficiency reporting value (the MERV rating). Many home air conditioners will have a MERV rating of 1–4. You might wish to consider upgrading your filters to those with a MERV rating of 5–8, or even 9–12 if your allergies are particularly problematic. Of course, it's always advisable to clean your air conditioning filters on a regular basis as per the manufacturer's specifications.

Other Things to Consider

You need to consider other points of entry into your home for irritants. For example, you could consider buying an anti-allergen doormat, designed to capture pollen that would have otherwise been tracked into your home. However rigorous you might be, you can't be entirely effective at preventing irritants from entering your home. A vacuum cleaner equipped with a high efficiency particulate air filter (HEPA) will reduce the amount of irritants in your home more efficiently than a non-HEPA vacuum cleaner.

Seasonal allergies can be a major annoyance, so it's good to know that there are a few easy things you can do to make them better while at home. Click here for more info about air conditioning systems.