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How to Keep Your Home’s Air Ventilation Clean

 |  Blog, General Home Care

Proper home air ventilation should be high on the list of necessary tasks in your home. After all, it involves the air you breathe in every day of your life.

If your air ventilation system is dirty, family members can develop respiratory problems and disease more easily. More practically, your system can overload itself due to inefficiency when it’s needed the most.

Side by side dirty and clean paper air filterThe first source for poor quality air is clogged air filters. Improper filtration lets particulates build up, triggering respiratory discomfort and health problems. The EPA’s Indoor Air Quality resource says that a person’s exposure to many particles can lead to eye, nose, and throat irritation, and even heart/respiratory diseases or cancer.

In addition to short- and long-term health effects, the lack of a poorly maintained home ventilation system can also:

  • Reduce the efficiency of your A/C system
  • Increase the incidence of allergies
  • Allow airborne irritants, such as dust and pet dander, to collect and release into the interior air
  • Enable mold to proliferate, such as aspergillus, which thrives in home heating and A/C systems
  • Support an environment for microscopic bacteria and germs to grow and circulate once the system is turned on
  • Allow various forms of dust to accumulate, some kinds of which can be a fire hazard.

Clean Your Home’s Ventilation

A home’s poor air quality is up at the top of the list of harmful health hazards with asbestos, lead paint, and carbon monoxide. Clean air filters offer maximum effectiveness for improving living conditions.

One key way to avoid the problems mentioned above is to change A/C filters once a month during the seasons when they’re used the most. Certain filter types are even washable so you don’t have to purchase a new one every 30 days. Instead, simply give it a good hand washing to remove the dust buildup.

If not cleaned or replaced regularly, excessive buildup of contaminants on air filters can cause airflow resistance strong enough to damage ventilation and other air conditioning components.

Types of Home Ventilation Filters

Just installing any filter doesn’t do the job. There are various types of air ventilation filters available to effectively clean and freshen air within the home. These include:

High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) Filters

HEPA filters are the most effective filtration systems available, able to catch as many as 99.97% of microscopic particles. Particulates on the order of 0.3 micrometers in size can be captured. There are many ways HEPA filters can be installed in an HVAC system. One of their main advantages is the pressure sensors that indicate when maintenance or replacement is required.

When installing these filters in large HVAC systems, the ductwork must be adapted to accommodate the filtration mechanism. A drop in pressure is the immediate result but installing a more powerful fan compensates for this. Another concern is sealing. The airflow resistance increases the chances of leaks, so it’s important to properly install filter frames, holding components, and other system elements. And, be sure to check for air leaks more frequently.

Electrostatic Filtration

Electrostatic filters use static electricity to attract and capture airborne particles. The static charge keeps the particles on the filter until rinsing and washing dislodges the build-up. Static prone fibers maintain the charge, while some filters contain anti-mold and anti-microbial materials. These filters reduce dust, hair, and dander among other particles in the air, while improving airflow and reducing system maintenance.

UV Light Air Purification

An ultraviolet lamp can be placed near a blower unit where it can break down organic materials. The UV light can kill bacteria, viruses, fungi, and mold by damaging the cellular and genetic makeup of these micro-organisms. The result is better, purified air coming out of your ducts.

A 120-volt, 12 watt UV-C bulb lasts as much as 12,000 hours, while eliminating these airborne pathogens. The cleaner air is easier to breathe and allergic reactions to dust and other pollutants are greatly reduced.

Efficiency, Cost, and Health

It’s also wise to have your air conditioning system repaired and replaced when necessary from a trusted provider. Isley’s Home Service, Inc. provides A/C and heating repairs and installation, in addition to home automation system, pipe repair/replacement, water heater installation, and water treatment services.

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