How to Enjoy Your Air Conditioner When You Suffer from Seasonal Allergies

Posted on: 31 August 2017


Pollen season can be a trying time for those who suffer from allergies. You might find that an over the counter antihistamine can be beneficial, and yet you'll want to minimise your exposure to pollen as much as possible. You might think that you're safe from pollen when you're sealed inside your home with your air conditioner turned on to keep you cool, but this is not necessarily the case. Your air conditioner has the potential to make the situation worse. So how exactly can you overcome this and ensure that the cool air being piped into your home is as clean as possible?

The Filters

It might not only be pollen, and your air conditioner can also be feeding dust mites into your home. These have the ability to exacerbate your allergies. There's something you can do about this. Remove the grilles in your wall (you might need a screwdriver) to gain access to the filter. When was the last time these filters were cleaned or replaced? They can be rinsed under lukewarm water and allowed to try before being fitted back into place, thus removing a significant amount of accumulated dust (that might have otherwise been gradually blown into the room). If your allergies are particularly accute, you might want to install a filter with a higher MERV (minimum efficiency reporting value). While most air conditioner filters will restrict pollen and dust mites, a filter with a MERV of 5 to 8 will be even more effective.

Servicing the Unit

When was the last time your air conditioner was serviced? This should occur periodically, and with greater frequency if you are particularly affected by allergies. It essentially cleans the unit in its entirety, removing pollen and dust mites that might have accumulated inside the air conditioner (which could then subsequently be fed into your home). Regular air conditioner service can be highly beneficial for all units, but can become even more important during allergy season.

Outside Your Home

You might think that you can somehow restrict a split system air conditioner's ability to draw in airborne pollen, but this is not really possible. You don't want to impede airflow to the external component of the unit, so don't be tempted to place any kind of barrier or covering over the unit. What you might want to do is relocate any flowering plants within the immediate vicinity of the external component of the unit. When these plants release pollen, this can certainly be drawn directly into the unit, so relocation of these plants has the potential to reduce the amount of pollen that is fed into your home.