While air filters are primarily intended to protect the health of your HVAC equipment, they can play a foundational role in keeping allergens out of the air in your home. Some air filters are designed to trap microscopic particles that can cause an allergy attack or make your allergy symptoms worse. These air filters come in all shapes and sizes for use in both HVAC systems and standalone purifiers.
Which air filters for allergies should you use? Let’s take a look at the options.
Furnace Air Filters for Allergies vs Air Purifiers
There are two primary ways to purify the air inside of your home from allergens: HVAC air filters or an air purifier.
The biggest difference between the air filters and air purifiers is the area that they cover. Furnace air filters for allergies are a part of the HVAC system. They will help purify air throughout the entire home quite effectively, because they reduce the number of allergens.
An air purifier is a good option if you want extra air purification in a specific room, such as a nursery or the room of a person with allergies. They are highly portable, and you can find quality purifiers for as little as $50.
The other upside to air purifiers is the use of HEPA air filters for allergies. High-efficiency particulate air filters are considered the best room air filters for allergies. They can clear 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 microns from the air. By contrast, a MERV 13 air filter (which is the highest rating that works with typical HVAC systems in a modern home) will capture 98% of particles between 0.3 and 1 micron in size. Although they offer superior purification, most HVAC systems will be negatively impacted by HEPA filters because of restricted airflow. However, they work just fine in an air purifier.
If you have a central HVAC system, using air conditioner filters for allergies is the first step. It’s a relatively low-cost solution that can provide instant benefits. If you don’t have a central HVAC system, then an air purifier is going to be your only option for clearing allergens out of the air.
READ MORE: Air Filters vs Air Purifiers
How to Choose the Best Air Filters for Allergies and Asthma
At Filterbuy.com we have thousands of air filters in stock because you never know what type and size will be needed. Below are the points that need to be covered before you purchase house air filters for allergies.
Measure the Size of the Room
Size is going to be a significant factor when you’re choosing an air purifier. The first thing you’ll need to do is measure the room where you plan to use the purifier so you know how powerful the purifier needs to be.
Check the Clean Air Delivery Rate
The clean air delivery rate (CADR) tells you how large a space the purifier can treat. It should be at least the size of the room, if not larger.
Make Sure It Has a HEPA Filter
Most air purifiers have a HEPA filter but that isn’t a given. Always verify that the purifier has a HEPA filter that can easily be replaced.
Other Ways to Allergy-Proof Your HVAC System
Using home air filters for allergies isn’t the only way to clear allergens out of the HVAC system. There are a few other things you can do to lower the HVAC allergen count.
Maintain the HVAC System
In addition to increasing the life of your HVAC system, proper maintenance is the key to minimizing allergens circulated in your home:
- Cleaning the air ducts, vents and registers regularly.
- Always changing your air vent filters for allergies as recommended.
- Checking the ductwork for leaks. Ductwork leaks not only reduce the efficiency of your HVAC system they also allow unfiltered air in.
- Having the HVAC system professionally serviced at least once a year.
Add a Humidifier and/or Dehumidifier
The humidity level has a big impact on air quality. When the relative humidity is below 30% or higher than 50% it creates an environment that encourages mold growth and increases the number of dust mites. Dry air can also aggravate allergy symptoms like sore throat and congestion.
A whole house humidifier can be installed within the HVAC ductwork to treat an entire home up to 6,000 square feet in size. The most common type of whole house humidifier is a bypass humidifier. During the summer a dehumidifier may be needed depending on where you live.
Other Ways to Allergy-Proof Your Home
There are some additional things you can do outside the HVAC system to allergy-proof your home, or at least come as close as possible:
- Periodically open a few windows or doors to let fresh air circulate in on days when the allergy count is low.
- Keep long-haired pets groomed, especially in the summer when they are more likely to shed.
- Never smoke inside the house.
- Use air vents while cooking on the stove.
- Vacuum frequently, including upholstery and curtains.
- Wash bedding frequently.
- Remove shoes before coming inside.
Ready to get started taming the allergens in your home? Start with finding the perfect air filter. Click here to get started!