Did You Know Your AC Can Make You Sick? Here’s How to Avoid It

Air conditioning systems undoubtedly make our lives easier and more comfortable. There is a downside to staying inside with the AC on all day, though—it’s called “air conditioning sickness.” This post will cover the signs that your AC is making you sick and how AC companies in St. Louis, MO can help.

Symptoms of AC sickness

Not all sufferers of AC sickness have the same exact symptoms. However, here are a few of the most commonly reported ones:

  • Breathing problems: The most commonly reported symptom among people with AC sickness is trouble breathing. Air conditioner filters collect a ton of dust, pollen and other contaminants that irritate the lungs, especially for allergy sufferers. Air conditioners that aren’t properly cleaned can be breeding grounds for dangerous black mold that also cause respiratory problems.
  • Headaches and dizziness: Getting a headache after being in an air-conditioned space all day isn’t just random—it could actually be the AC causing it. A study in the International Journal of Epidemiology linked spending hours upon hours in a building with central AC with headaches and other neurological issues like fatigue and dizziness. If mold is present in the air ducts, these symptoms will only worsen.
  • Dry skin and nasal passages: Cold, dry air causes our skin to lose its natural moisture. Having dry skin in the winter is common since the temperature is constantly low. But if you notice that your skin is dry and damaged in the warmer months, AC companies in St. Louis, MO might tell you that you’re spending too much time inside with the AC running.

How to prevent sickness

If there’s any good news, it’s that AC sickness is avoidable. Follow these steps to keep yourself and your family safe at home:

  • Schedule regular maintenance: The easiest way to prevent AC sickness is to call your HVAC technician for annual AC maintenance in St. Louis, MO. During your routine service appointment, your technician will clean out your entire unit, eliminating any mold, mildew or other contaminants. He’ll also perform a thorough inspection to ensure every component of the system is working properly.
  • Replace filters: In between your annual service calls, it’s up to you to replace your air conditioner’s filters. Swapping out the filters every month helps ensure clean air and blocks dust and other contaminants from entering your AC system. If you’re still experiencing breathing problems even after changing the filters regularly, consider upgrading to a higher-quality filter.
  • Have the air ducts cleaned: We cited mold and mildew growth above as causes of respiratory problems and/or headaches. The scary part is that mold often grows in the air ducts, so we can’t see or remove it until it’s too late and it’s already spread. The best way to keep your air free and clear of any mold particles is to have your ducts cleaned every few years.

The beginning of summer is the perfect time to schedule AC maintenance in St. Louis, MO. In addition to preventing AC sickness, regular maintenance prolongs the lifespan of AC systems and helps reduce energy costs. Give our team at Ashley Brothers Heating & Cooling a call today to schedule an appointment.