How Much Pollen is in Your Home?



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If you have even the mildest seasonal allergies, chances are you’ve been suffering from sinus congestion and watery eyes. Spring is coming, and the many local trees, plants, and grasses have taken notice. While it’s obvious that pollen is in abundance in the great outdoors, are you aware of how much pollen is blowing into your home?

Keeping your home closed up won’t keep pollen out. Pollen particles are so tiny–only about 1/2000th of an inch across–that they can easily slip around closed doors and windows. And once pollen gets in your home, it’s difficult to get it out.

Indoor pollen levels don’t go down when outdoor pollen levels decrease.

Several years ago, a research study was conducted to find out just how much pollen could be found inside residential spaces. As it turned out, homes contain a great deal of pollen. But what was truly surprising was that during a period in which outdoor concentrations of pollen fell by 74%, indoor pollen levels increased by 67%. Like many unwelcome house guests, once pollen particles made it in, they didn’t want to leave.

There are two key consequences of this indoor buildup of pollen. First, your allergy symptoms may actually worsen when you’re in your home. Secondly, even as the season changes and pollen stops being produced, you may continue to suffer from allergies because of the pollen trapped in your home.

Unfortunately, vacuuming and dusting won’t fix the issue, as these actions simply stir up pollen.

Indoor pollen can trigger serious health effects.

The most common allergy symptoms are the watery eyes and sneezing that many are all-too-familiar with. But according to the EPA, indoor exposure to pollen can trigger more serious health effects, such pneumonitis (inflammation of the lining of the lungs) and asthma.

In order to avoid serious health consequences, it’s necessary to remove the pollen particles that are trapped in your home.

Installing a media air filter can capture almost all airborne pollen particles, reducing indoor pollen levels.

You may be familiar with HEPA filters (high-efficiency particulate arrestance filters), which are extremely fine filters used in vacuum cleaners and other appliances to capture extremely small particles, such as dust, mold spores, and pollen. While HEPA filters are excellent when it comes to trapping pollen, they aren’t appropriate for use in HVAC systems. HEPA filters are simply too dense to allow sufficient air to pass through, resulting in extreme stress on the air compressor, which ultimately results in early system failure.

However, media air filters are compatible with forced air systems, and do an excellent job of capturing even extremely tiny pollen particles. Media filters are essentially extra large filters with additional pleats that increase the likelihood of capturing pollen particles as they pass through. Installing a media filter can substantially reduce indoor pollen levels, greatly reducing allergy symptoms.

If you can’t shake your indoor allergies, call the indoor air experts at Gilmore. We can find a solution to your indoor pollen problem, so that you and your family can breath easier and more comfortably.