Did you know the air quality indoors is ten times more polluted than outdoors? Many of the pollutants we inhale come from outdoors through windows, while others are from different sources inside our homes. Mold allergen indoor can trigger respiratory problems especially in children or senior citizens due to nasal congestion.

Do Air Conditioners Help Clean Up Indoor Air Pollution?

Air conditioners are misunderstood as one of the cleaning systems for indoor air pollution. Although air conditioners with air filters can provide clean air for a short period of time, air filters in an air conditioner are ineffective in cleaning small allergens from indoor air.

Some facts associated with health risks with air conditioners:

  • An uncleaned air conditioner spreads more allergens in the air that you breathe indoors while adding to your illness.
  • Air conditioners accumulate mold as it contains moisture which can trigger chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD) if left uncleaned.
  • Air conditioners clean various indoor allergens like dust and pollen from the air you breathe. The cooling system pulls these allergens inside of your home and recirculates within no time.

What does an air conditioner do?

The main purpose of air conditioners is to produce fresh air and reduce heat in a home. It’s important to prevent air conditioning breakdowns with air conditioner repair and maintenance. Air conditioners can remove different contaminants like dust and pollen from indoor air through their filters. These are pulled inside air conditioners by the cooling system which are pushed back to the room a short time later.

Some filters fail to clean tiny allergens present in indoor air. Therefore, changing these filters and replacing them with High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters will increase your air conditioner’s efficiency in eliminating the allergens from the air. However, it’s important to clean and change your filter every two weeks because dirt reduces the air conditioner’s ability to clean air as it decreases air flow through the filters.

How to choose the right air conditioning filter? 

Filters work for different pollutants depending on how tightly they are woven. The MERV rating of your air conditioner will help you look for the right filter designed to trap the pollutants of your choice and one that your air conditioner can manage.

Focus on the Minimum Efficiency Report Value (MERV) rating of your air conditioner to guide you in choosing a filter that works for you. The common residential filters range from MERV 8 to MERV 13. For example, MERV 8 can trap dust mites, mold spores and hairspray particles. MERV 9 to MERV 12 filters have finer and better filtrations to trap automotive emissions and flour in the air and eliminate dust particles.

An air conditioning system is one way to improve indoor air quality. There are other effective ways to clean air such as keeping your home clean, airing out your home regularly and eliminating sources of pollutants using plants. aKeep in mind the effectiveness of your air conditioner cleaning indoor air depends on your choice of filters and maintenance. Having clean air should be as important as having cool air in your room.