Is Your Air Conditioning Unit a Health Hazard?

Air conditioning units can be a fantastic addition to your home in the warm, balmy months. However, have you ever stopped to think that running an AC unit constantly might be doing you more potential harm than good? If you’ve been worrying about the health effects from running an air conditioning unit — not to mention high utility bills, take a look.

Environmental Issues
All air conditioning units utilize refrigerants to keep your home cool. If you have a particularly old model, it might contain CFCs that harm the ozone layer. With our entire society focused on eco-friendliness and saving the earth, these units are best not to be used. Also, if you’re thinking of getting rid of one, check the EPA site, as improper disposal carries a hefty fine of as much as $25,000.

Respiratory Illness
As AC units are dehumidifying, they can cause the mucus coating inside your nose to dry up, potentially enabling airborne viruses to enter your system. In fact, a study printed in 2004 by the International Epidemiological Association discovered that women working in air conditioned offices had more upper respiratory infections that those working in places without air conditioning.

Allergy Issues
When the unit draws in air, it deposits moisture on its cooling coils. If dust gets into the mix, this creates the perfect environment for mold-growing spores. If you don’t thoroughly clean your unit and filters on a regular basis, this can allow mold into the air, triggering symptoms like a runny nose, watering eyes and a cough. If you suffer from asthma, this can also trigger an attack.

Worsening Existing Conditions
Following on from the allergy issues mentioned above, the allergens released into the air by your air conditioning unit can make allergic conjunctivitis worsen, particularly when the filter is unclean or is poor quality. If this is the case, animal dander and dust mites will be blown through, thus polluting your air. Other eye conditions that are affected by air conditioning include blepharitis and dry eyes, as air constantly blowing into a room can make your tears evaporate far more rapidly.

Your AC unit is a bit like a vacuum cleaner. You need to keep it working efficiently by constantly cleaning it and ensuring the filters are in good working order. If they become clogged, whatever gunk and debris they’re clogged by is then blown throughout your home.

It’s much healthier, therefore, to aerate and cool down your home using a whole house fan that draws in cool evening air from outside to cool down your home effectively and safely.

To learn more about the benefits of adding a whole house fan to your home, give us a call at 1.888.229.5757.

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