Sneezing, wheezing, runny nose…we’ll just say it: indoor allergies are unpleasant. That may be an understatement, but a clean home is a home that doesn’t aggravate your allergies. Unfortunately, even the act of cleaning can set you off, unless you use these housecleaning tips that keep your indoor allergies at bay.
Vacuum with the right vacuum cleaner.
If you’re an allergy sufferer, add this criterion to your list next time you buy a vacuum cleaner: an allergy sensitive vacuum. For best results, choose a vacuum with a HEPA filter or double bag to ensure that you can vacuum the allergens away—without having an allergy attack. Once you have your new vacuum cleaner, vacuum often to rid your home of allergens.
Take precautions when you clean.
As you clean, make sure you use precautions so you don’t have an allergy attack. Wear a mask and gloves to get your home clean without sneezing and wheezing. If those precautions don’t help, or cleaning becomes a repeated allergy attack, hire a home cleaner to rid your home of allergens.
Get your ducts cleaned.
It’s bad enough to have common household allergens in your bed or on your floor. It’s another to have them circulated and re-circulated throughout your home. Fact is, indoor allergens like dust mites, mold, and pet dander (which can be present in your home even if you don’t have pets!) can circulate throughout your home through air ducts on a daily basis. To rid your ducts of these allergens, contact a professional to clean your ducts.
Buy a new furnace filter (or a new furnace).
A new furnace filter can be the answer to your allergy issues. Furnaces catch anything in the air, such as skin cells, pet dander, dust mites, and other small particles. Filters with a high Minimum Efficiency Reporting Values (MERV) do not allow these finer particles to pass, effectively removing allergens from the air. Be careful about purchasing the right furnace filter though. Filters with high MERVs (the max is 16) can put excessive pressure on your furnace fan and can damage your furnace. If you are considering a filter with a high MERV, contact your HVAC company so they can make adjustments to your system so it can accommodate a high MERV filter.
Get your carpets professionally cleaned.
A professional carpet cleaning goes above and beyond a regular vacuum or a rental carpet cleaner at your local hardware store. A professional carpet cleaning not only makes your carpet look new, but also removes allergens. To make sure you’re regularly removing the allergens, set a regular carpet cleaning schedule—an annual or biannual—that not only removes the allergens but keeps them out all year long.
Keep your home’s humidity low.
Mold is the allergy sufferer’s enemy. Rooms with humidity above 50 percent can breed mold, mildew, and dust mites, stirring up allergy symptoms and causing respiratory problems. Monitor your home’s humidity and use a dehumidifier to keep the humidity of your home low. Avoid drying laundry inside that can add moisture to the air.
Wash your linens in hot water.
Some of the most common indoor allergens can be found in your sheets and towels. Wash your linens in hot water to get rid of allergens, and change them out frequently. If just thinking about these cleaning tasks makes your eyes itch, hire a professional to clean your home of dirt and allergens.