Whether due to damage or improper maintenance, your HVAC unit can quickly become a health and safety hazard. Here are a few HVAC-related safety and health issues you and your family must be aware of.
Carbon monoxide poisoning
The most common safety concern of an HVAC is carbon monoxide. Poisoning due to carbon monoxide can be serious, and in some cases fatal. Since carbon monoxide is odorless and colorless, it is impossible to identify until you or a loved one becomes ill. The first signs are normally similar to the flu —nausea, headaches, and fatigue — so they are often ignored. However, long-term exposure can be fatal and human beings with chronic health problems are specifically at risk.
A damaged heat exchanger is a common cause of carbon monoxide, particularly in older furnaces. One of the best ways to avoid the poisoning is to have your unit serviced and inspected by a trained professional. You must also place a carbon monoxide detector within your house for safety purpose.
Incorrect air filtration
Bad air filtration can also be a hazard to the health of your family. Low indoor air quality — because of allergens, dust, or airborne irritants – is a common contributor to respiratory illnesses and problems. People with underlying respiratory problems such as allergies or asthma are particularly vulnerable. Several health issues can occur due to poor air quality, ranging from minor headaches to serious breathing difficulties and allergic reactions. Regular replacement and preventive maintenance of air filters is important to keep the indoor air of a home safe.
Improper humidity moisture control
This has become an important consideration for an HVAC unit. Lack of humidity during dry climates or the winter months can lead to breathing problems, dry lips, cracked skin, sore throat and other such health issues. Dry nasal passages can leave a family prone to respiratory illness and infection, and can deteriorate flu symptoms. Apart from impacting your family’s safety and health, dry air also has the ability to damage your house. Cracking hardwood floors, furniture and molding are just a few expensive results of improper humidity. You can contribute towards your family’s health and to the longevity of your home by installing a humidifier that regulates the moisture levels inside the house.
Electrical issues can also pose several risks. A very common problem is a water leakage within the system. It is very common for the condensation drain of an A/C to become blocked. This can lead to water draining onto the system’s components, leading to equipment failure, and creating the hazard of electric shock. Therefore, air conditioner restoration is not something an immature homeowner should take care of. An experienced contractor will be aware of likely risks, and take the right precautions. Preventive maintenance on a regular basis is required to avoid electrical risks.
Your HVAC unit, if not properly monitored and maintained, can make you sick or further aggravate your health problems. Regular attention to air quality and professional maintenance are the best ways to avoid many safety and health risks posed by HVAC systems. However, the information provided is not meant to substitute for the medical advice and expertise of a healthcare provider. It is best to discuss any decisions about care and treatment of your medical condition with a healthcare provider.