Do your kids catch a lot of colds? Can’t seem to shake that runny nose? Got itchy eyes even after allergy season? Chances are the cat’s not the one to blame. Believe it or not, your indoor air quality can have a big effect on your at-home health. And the way you control your indoor air quality is to control your air filtrations system. That air filter in your furnace that you forgot about for a few months could be doing a lot of harm if you haven’t changed it in a while.


Air filtration is a very important aspect of your HVAC unit, and if you don’t know what kind of air filtration system your home has, or if you’re questioning the indoor air quality of your home, it might be a good idea to call the experts at Reaume Heating and Cooling.


Your indoor air is important. It’s what you breathe in every day, and if it contains a lot of pollutants and allergens, you could be doing yourself a major disservice. If you have questions about your indoor air quality, or are looking into some air filtration options, give the experts at Reaume Heating and Cooling a call. With more than 45 years in the industry, we can find a filtration option that works for your budget, and keeps your home and family safe and healthy. We’ll help you install your new filtration system, and we’re happy to answer any questions. Contact us today!

Types of Home Air Filtration Systems

The most effective way to ensure that your indoor air is as clean as possible is utilize air filters within your HVAC system. While all forced-air or central heating and cooling units come with an initial filter type, this isn’t always the one you should stick with. In fact, there’s quite a few options, each providing a different level of contamination control:

Flat Filters: This is what you generally start out with. It looks like a square picture frame full of matted fiberglass, usually blue. This filter was designed to keep your HVAC system up and running, so in terms of health it pretty much does the bare minimum. It will take out particles and dust that could be harmful to your heating and cooling system, but it doesn’t take care of allergens and other irritants. You should change this type of filter every month, to lengthen the life of your HVAC system and to keep major dust particles at bay.

Pleated Filters: One step up from flat filters, the pleats do a better job of collecting dust and other particles than a flat filter does. They only cost a few dollars more, and if you get the ones that are electrostatically charged, you’ll trap more of the bigger irritants like pollen and pet dander. A pleated filter needs to be changed every two or three months.

Extended Media Filters: These wide, boxy options do a lot in terms of air filtration, but you’ll need a professional to install them. They’re too wide to fit in your furnace’s existing air filter slot, so someone with knowledge of furnaces and air filtration systems should install the first filter for you by widening the slot, and making a few adjustments to your furnace’s motor. That being said, these filters are a very effective option for air filtration. Since they’re about 8 inches thick, and contain filtration media, they up the game by filtering out bacterias as well as dust and allergens. If you can stand the installation fee, it’s one of the cheaper ways to improve your whole home indoor air quality.

Electronic Filters: Another high-tech option, these will probably also require handyman help to reconfigure your system to accommodate them. When air passes through this type of filter, a high-voltage current charges the particles in the air electronically. Then when the charged particles reach the other end of the filter, which is oppositely charged, they are magnetically attracted to the filter, where they stick. The good thing about an electronic filter is that it never has to be replaced, instead the aluminum collector plates at the bottom of the unit have to be cleaned once every few months.

Ultraviolet Filters: Used in hospital tuberculosis wards, if you’re looking for germ control, an ultraviolet filter is the option for you. This is another system you’ll have to get installed by a professional, but if you’re worried about germs, you can rest assured with this model. An ultraviolet filter zaps airborne bacteria and particles out of the air, decreasing the amount of germs, and dirt in the air, and providing you with superior air quality.


Tips to Improve Your Indoor Air Quality

Still worried about your indoor air? You have plenty of reason, so here’s a few things you can do to keep your indoor air as fresh as possible.

Keep it Clean: Believe it or not, the more cleaning you do, the better your air quality is likely to be. Regular vacuuming and mopping will keep dust particles at bay. The vacuum will trap them within it, and mopping will pick up anything the vacuum left behind it. You might also put floor mats at every door that people enter through. Shoes pick up all kinds of chemicals from the dirt, including pesticides and pollutants, and a mat will help trap any extra particles that come off before they take their shoes off.

Ventilation is Key: No matter the time of year, our homes are sealed up pretty tight. In the winter you want to keep in heat, and in the summer you want to keep in the cool air. Unfortunately, that doesn’t leave a lot of room for regular air circulation, and fumes from kitchen appliances and cleaning supplies can get trapped in if there’s no ventilation. Make sure all of your big appliances like the oven, exhaust hood, and fridge vent to the outside, and open the doors and windows when weather permits, to let in some fresh air.

Control Moisture: Optimal humidity levels in your home are between 30% and 50%. You should aim to keep your home in that range, since dust mites and mold love moisture. Too much moisture could encourage their growth, and air that is too dry also encourages the spreading of cold and flu viruses. You can get a hygrometer to measure your humidity levels if you’re concerned about it. Humidifiers will add moisture, while dehumidifiers will keep your indoor air dryer.

Minimize Pollutants: There’s a lot of little things that we don’t think about that can contribute to poor quality indoor air. Cleaning supplies, paint, and especially smoking, can put all kinds of pollutants into your air, even after you think they’re gone. Just because you can’t smell paint fumes any more doesn’t mean they’re gone. If you don’t open up windows and let air circulate, those toxins can stay in your indoor air for an extended period of time. The best thing to do is avoid them in the first place, by choosing products that are low-emitting, and doing painting projects outdoors. If it can’t be avoided, make sure you do open a few windows to let the pollutants out of your home.

Do Your Laundry: Sure, you were gonna do it anyway, but there are some big pieces of fabric, like curtains and bedding, that can collect a lot of dust and chemicals if you’re not careful. Wash them regularly on the hottest setting they can stand to get rid of allergens, and absolutely make sure to wash all new fabrics that come into your home, since they can sometimes retain chemicals from the manufacturing process.


We have served the West Michigan Lakeshore for more than 45 years and are considered the areas
most trusted and experienced Marine Heating, cooling and refrigeration equipment contractor. Contact us today for a free quote.

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