Make your house more comfortable by reducing indoor allergens
If you're about to embark on a home remodeling project, consider ways that you can cut down on indoor allergens that plague people during the warmer months. For those who have asthma or allergies, there may be as many irritants inside your house as there are outdoors.
Along with increased house cleaning, incorporate hypoallergenic factors into a home improvement plan by replacing carpeting with wood or tile floors. Many homeowners may have hardwood floors already in place under wall-to-wall carpets, but just need refinishing rather than replacement.
An advantage to wood over tiling is that wood floors are easier to clean. Regular sweeping is typically all that's needed to rid the surface of dust and debris that's tracked into the house, and that can be reduced by laying mats next to exterior doors.
Reduce dryness indoors
Having a humidifier on hand to counteract the drying effect of air conditioning in summer is another help to those who have allergies. Sinus congestion goes hand in hand with allergies and the moist air generated by a room humidifier helps people breathe more easily. The added moisture also keeps your skin, lips, throat and nasal cavities from becoming uncomfortably dry if the air conditioner is on while you sleep.
To keep the dryness down, rely less on your air conditioner and more on electric fans, which can circulate cooled air from outdoors. Using more than one fan creates a cross breeze indoors that reduces the need to turn on the air conditioner every time the temperature rises.
Many of the allergens that cause health problems this time of year can seep into cracks and holes in your walls, floors and the weather stripping around your windows. Consider investing in an energy audit to find out where air is entering, and sealing up any spaces where allergens can come inside.
On super hot days when you find you need to use the air conditioner, make sure the filter is clean. A clogged filter forces the unit to work harder and use more electricity. Also, it isn't likely to catch airborne allergens as effectively.
People who love to garden should shed their shoes and clothes used during yard work as soon as they enter the house. Otherwise, they may bring in pollen and other irritants from the outdoors.
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