Air Quality – Air Conditioning
Based on the number of issues that can result from breathing in unhealthy or unsafe air, improving your air quality is one of the best things you can do to improve your health.
Who is Affected by Poor Air Quality?
If you are one of the over 50 million Americans suffering from a breathing disorder such as asthma or allergies, consider the efficiency of your air conditioning unit and the level of potential poor air quality.
Especially if you are indoors a lot due to soaring temperatures or outdoor allergies, the link between indoor air quality and air conditioning can make or break relief from breathing issues.
If you live in a hot and humid region, it’s nearly impossible to get away from poor air quality if the A/C unit isn’t functioning properly. Improperly functioning air conditioning can make breathing, allergies and overall health issues far worse.
All A/C Units are Not Created Equally
Older A/C units can cause more harm than good if they aren’t running at optimal efficiency. If much needed repairs are put off, the filters are dirty, or the unit is running constantly, it can all spell trouble for anyone suffering from breathing issues or allergies.
The trouble with older units is that they can distribute even more harmful allergens throughout the home, which settle on everything from furniture to pillows and carpets. Breathing in even more allergens like dust, dander and mold spores make symptoms get worse.
If you have an older air conditioning unit, call to schedule service for a complete check of the system. If it’s just an easy tune up or cleaning that will make a difference in air quality, it’s a simple fix. However, something more seriously wrong with the A/C unit can really have a negative impact on breathing problems.
Signs that the A/C Unit Needs Service
Here are some indicators that it’s time to call for service:
- A lot of dust settling around the house when you’ve been running the air conditioner
- If the A/C unit is extremely dusty or dirty on the outside, it’s probably the same on the inside
- If the unit is running constantly or the air doesn’t seem to be as cool as it should be
- If the A/C is making loud or unusual noises such as a knocking or grinding noise
- If you discover freezing or blockages in drainage tubes
- It’s been a while since the unit has been serviced
Another area to check are dusty, dirty air vents. As the A/C blows air through the dirty vents, it distributes the dirt/dust around the home.
A/C Service Basics
Calling in an HVAC professional to perform a more complete analysis of the A/C unit can pinpoint any potential malfunctions or whether replacement parts or other repairs are required. It’s best to nip the repairs in the bud before they snowball into large service bills or more expensive/extensive repairs.
The HVAC professional will check to make sure the A/C unit is running at optimal efficiency levels and will typically replace the air filter and vacuum accumulated dust and dirt. All these things will help you breathe much easier.
Repair or Replace?
With older model A/C units, there will come a day when a service call reveals more serious issues.
Perhaps a lot of parts need to be replaced. It’s possible that an undetected broken part caused damage to other internal mechanisms or parts. It may just be more cost prohibitive to replace parts and try to put a band-aid on serious issues than to just replace the A/C unit.
If the SEER rating is low and/or the A/C is not running or cooling sufficiently, it may just make more sense to replace the system entirely.
Another issue with older model A/C units is that as time goes by, it may be increasingly difficult to find replacement parts depending on the age, make and model of the unit.
These scenarios indicate that it may be time to make a purchasing decision. Keep in mind that there is a definite link between air quality and air conditioning
If you are suffering from breathing disorders due to excessive dust or other allergens, a new A/C unit can provide much needed relief and much more comfort.
- Visually inspect the A/C unit every 2-3 months, especially if you have an older model.
- Keep the vents and air ducts clean. Wipe down with a damp cloth to prevent dust from circulating through the home.
- Change the air filter frequently is you find a lot of dust settling throughout several rooms in the home.
- Contact your local HVAC company for a professional and thorough cleaning and service call.
To improve the level of air quality by air conditioning, the unit must be running at optimal efficiency. If it’s not, call for service as soon as possible to receive a complete service report. From there, plan for the possibility of replacing your air conditioning unit. Your air quality depends on it.