Allergies and Dust

January 15, 2020

Allergies & Dust

We get a lot of calls about allergies and dust. Dust is the biggest trigger of allergies worldwide. Anyone who is allergic to dust reacts to either mite constituents or animal allergens with complaints such as sneezing, eye irritations or asthma. An often overlooked factor for dust control are indoor humidity levels. The indoor air humidity plays a major role in the extent of dust turbulence. Experiments show that the adhesion of “moistened” dust to smooth floor surfaces increases dramatically above 30 to 40 percent. In this area, the weight of the dust particles also increases drastically due to water condensation. They stick together, form clusters, and quickly fall to the floor again.

The optimal humidity range for minimizing allergy complaints is therefore between 40 and 60 percent.

Maintain 40-60% Relative Humidity

The most crucial way to protect electronics from dust build-up is to enforce consistent humidity control. By using a whole-house humidifier you can manage interior temperatures and humidity levels far more efficiently. Keeping your relative humidity (RH) between 40-60% is important, as it minimizes the amount of time dust can spend airborne, forcing it to settle more quickly. Additionally, proper humidity control can minimize brittle components, reduce de-soldering occurrences and mitigate instances of electrostatic discharge (ESD).


While it is not a cure-all, regular cleaning of your entire air duct system including the supply side ductwork, return side ductwork, blower, and components like your evaporator coil can have a dramatic influence on the dust levels you experience in your home or business. According to the National Air Duct Cleaners Association ACR Standard (Assessment, Cleaning, and Restoration) residential air duct systems should be inspected every other year and commercial systems annually! Our 50 years of experience show us that under normal conditions duct systems begin to show significant accumulations of dust and warrant consideration for cleaning in about 3 years. Remodeling/remediation work makes the need for cleaning immediate.

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