Do you have more than a few furry family members in your home? If your cats, dogs, and bunnies shed constantly, take a look at what you need to know about AC repair and maintenance.
How Do Pets Affect AC Systems?
Your pet has fur. This means they shed. Some animals, such as dogs with exceptionally thick coats, shed year-round. The more your pet sheds, the more fur is in the air. As your home's central air conditioning system pulls the interior air in and re-circulates it, the AC unit also picks up your pet's fur.
In an AC system, pet fur can:
• Clog the filter. Every central AC system has a filter. This catches dirt, dust, and debris (such as pet fur) and stops it from re-circulating around your home's interior. The result is the need for premature filter replacement, potential damage, or decreased system energy efficiency.
• Increase allergies. The filter should catch most of your pet's flying fur. But this doesn't mean your AC system will completely remove the fur (or pet dander). Re-circulated pet fur can increase allergies in some people.
• Fill the ducts. What happens if your pet's fur makes it past the filter and into the rest of the system? It could land in the air ducts. While some flying fur won't cause a serious problem, years' worth of fur can clog ducts. This constricts the air flow and can lead to decreased energy efficiency.
• Clog the vents. The filter and ducts aren't the only parts of the AC system that can clog. Pet fur can fill air vents from both the inside and outside. Like constricted ducts, this can force the system to work harder and limit its overall energy efficiency.
Now that you know what pet fur can do to your AC system, it's time to take the next step and learn more about what you can do to prevent potential problems.
What Can You Do About Pet Fur in Your Air Conditioner?
You don't have to let pet fur overtake your home's air conditioning system. If you have multiple pets, you can make the most of your air conditioner and:
• Schedule air conditioning service. Contact an HVAC professional for service regularly. The technician can inspect, repair, and clean your system. This reduces the amount of pet fur in the filter, ducts, and everywhere else.
• Change the filter regularly. You may need to change the filter more often than a homeowner who doesn't have pets or someone who doesn't have pets with fur.
• Upgrade your filter. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), a HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) air filter can remove 99.97 percent of airborne particles. You may need a better filter to catch more of the pet allergens.
If you're not sure what type of filter to choose, talk to a pro. An HVAC repair tech can help you to select the right option for your pet-friendly house. Contact a company that offers air conditioning services to learn more.
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