Our four-legged friends fill a special place in our hearts. For pet owners, it’s hard to imagine a home without them! However, despite how much we love them, that doesn’t mean their fur and dander can’t be problematic, especially if someone in your home suffers from allergies.
That’s why it’s important to take some extra steps to make sure that your furry friend’s fur doesn’t negatively affect your air quality or your HVAC system. Because no matter how much you vacuum, pet fur and their natural dander will get into the air.
During an HVAC inspection or routine maintenance visit, we can certainly evaluate how much pet hair is affecting your systems. Until then, here are a few tips on how to take care of your HVAC system if you’re a pet owner.
Change Air Filters More Often
The usual recommendation for when to change your HVAC system’s air filters is every 1–3 months. However, when there’s a source of materials such as pet hair and dander that can really clog the filter, it’s safe to assume your air filters will fill up faster and need to be changed more often.
A simple, visual inspection can help you determine how often to change the filter. If it’s visibly clogged with dust, dirt, and pet hair, it’s time for a replacement if it’s a disposable filter, or time for a cleaning if it’s re-usable.
Use High-Quality Filters
Air filters are measured with Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value ratings, or MERV for short. This measures the efficiency of a filter with a lower MERV rating meaning it filters out fewer particles, and a higher rating meaning it filters out more. If you’d like to reduce allergens, look for filters with MERV ratings of 10–12. These trap small particles such as pet dander and prevent the allergens from filling your HVAC unit as dust or coming back into your home air through the vents.
Vacuum and Brush Your Pets Regularly
You’re probably already doing this, but brushing your pets and vacuuming on a regular basis should be high on the priority list, especially if you have long-haired pets or if they shed a lot. Brushing their fur and disposing of it in the garbage means less fur floating around and potentially clogging the air filter. If you have dogs, brushing them outside is optimal when the weather permits it.
In addition to brushing your pet regularly, be sure to vacuum your home 1–2 times a week to pick up all the fur, dander, and shedding that can settle into your carpet and furniture. Also, if they have a favorite blanket they like to sleep on, wash it on a regular basis.
Protect Your Outdoor Unit
If your pets spend time in the backyard, be sure to protect your condenser, the part of your AC system that resides outside. The last thing you want is for your dog to urinate on the condenser! Urine is acidic and corrosive and pet urine can cause significant damage that will shorten the condenser’s lifespan, and the condenser is the most expensive component of the system. If possible, place a small enclosure around your outdoor unit that will still allow for adequate airflow but will keep your beloved pup away from it.
Contact Premier Heating & Air for HVAC services in Vidalia, GA and Experience the Premier Difference.