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Allergens and Your HVAC

Allergens and Your HVAC

allergiesWhen it comes to industrial heating and cooling systems in St Louis near Sunset Hills, American Service has your commercial needs covered.  We also like to take some time to hit on subjects that may be of interest to the average homeowner in their own personal HVAC systems and life surrounding them.  Today, we will talk briefly on the subject of Heating and Cooling your home near Sunset Hills with allergies. We will begin with what is NOT true.

“There are nearly as many myths floating around regarding the hazards of HVAC systems on allergy sufferers, as there are allergens in the air. We are paying far more attention to indoor air quality than ever before, so now is as good a time as any to dispel the myths associated with the HVAC in your home and how it affects your allergies. The fact remains that your properly maintained HVAC system can help lessen the effects the ‘sneezing season’ has on your allergies.”

There are definitely things you can do to help prevent the cycling of allergens throughout your home via your St Louis Heating and Cooling Service near Sunset Hills MO.  “Prevent allergens from cycling in your home by doing the following:  Use high quality filters with a MERV 8 rating as a first line of defense in the protection of your indoor air quality.”  You will want to inspect or have your drains, ducts and drip pans inspected by the experts for mold.  You will want to do this every few weeks believe it or not.  This is the best way to get on top of it should you have a mold spore issue in your heating and cooling system at home.  Also, clean the area and keep it clean outside the unit so that extra dust and dirt are not sucked into your heating and cooling unit.  When it comes to allergies, keeping things clean is your absolute best defense.

Efficient Heating and Cooling 101

Efficient Heating and Cooling 101

Stay cool stampWhen you are exploring your heating and cooling options for your personal or business space, at some point it becomes pretty important to do what you can in the way of achieving the most efficiency you are able, right?  Well, here at your American Services heating and cooling in Bridgeton near Hazelwood, we are writing with a bit of advice compiled from a multitude of articles and sources online as well as our own personal experience from the world of commercial cooling and industrial heating.  “Whether you own or lease your building, you typically need lighting, heating, air conditioning, power for office equipment, and other services to stay in business.”  We are going to spend this and the next two article on the subject of how to make the most of the energy you spend in the above mentioned categories.

You may wish to enlist someone, such as your Bridgeton Commercial heating and cooling company, in order to ‘Tune-up’ your heating, ventilating and air-conditioning (HVAC) system with an annual maintenance contract.  Maintenance is often times the key to avoiding big trouble down the line.  The same thing goes for many adult purchases.  Like a new car, if you fail to have it inspected and the oil changed, tires rotated, etc, then you are asking for bigger problems down the line.  Your heating and cooling system, both private and commercial is no different than this.  At American Services in Bridgeton MO, we are happy to assist you with routine maintenance.

“Even a new ENERGY STAR qualified HVAC system, like a new car, will decline in performance without regular maintenance. A contract automatically ensures that your HVAC contractor will provide ‘pre-season’ tune-ups before each cooling and heating season. You save energy and money, and your system may last years longer with minimal costs for yearly maintenance fees.  Also, change your filters!  “New filters usually only cost a few dollars. Dirty filters cost more to use, overwork the equipment and result in lower indoor air quality.”

Indoor Air Quality Hazards – VOCs

Indoor Air Quality Hazards – VOCs

ndoor air pollution

Did you know that every time you use certain household or commercial products you are releasing potentially harmful compounds into the air?  These compounds are referred to by the EPA as VOCs or Volatile Organic Compounds and can be reeking havoc on your indoor air quality.  Today, the team at American Services wants to give you some facts about VOCs and also some ideas on how to eliminate them from your indoor environment.

Facts about Volatile Organic Compounds or VOCs:

  • VOCs can be found in cleaning products, paints, chemical strippers, waxes, pesticides, candles, and many other common products around your home and workplace.
  • VOCs can also come from floor coverings, furniture, electronic equipment, air fresheners, and dry-cleaned clothing.
  • The VOCs from these products are not just emitted into the air during use.  They are also releasing potentially harmful VOCs while simply being stored due to natural evaporation.  This makes the source of VOCs harder to pinpoint.

How to control and eliminate VOCs from your environment:

  • Adequate ventilation needs to be in place when using VOC-containing product.  This includes when you are painting, using cleaning products, or any other activity that could expose you to VOCs.  The best way to ventilate in these situations is by opening windows and/or using exhaust fans.
  • Read the manufacturer recommendations for all products to make sure you are properly using, storing, and getting rid of these products.  For example, many cleaning products can not be mixed with other chemicals.  If the chemicals are combined you can cause a reaction that will cause harm to the user.
  • Ask your Maryland Heights area heating and cooling technician about adding equipment to your system that will clean the pollutants out of your indoor air.  These units can help tremendously in eliminating odors from your space and can even help to control allergy issues that may be of concern.

Contact the American Services team today for a free quote!

Indoor Air Quality Hazard – Radon

Indoor Air Quality Hazard – Radon

chemical element radon

When most think about indoor air quality they think of cigarette smoke, chemical exposure, or other common irritants often found within indoor environments.  Yet, there is one irritant that is often undetected although it’s side effects can be deadly and that is Radon gas.  Today, the American Services team wants to give you some information regarding Radon and how you need to go about making sure you keep this gas out of your workplace and home.

Facts you need to know about Radon:

  • Radon is a radioactive gas that can cause cancer.
  • Radon is odorless, colorless, and tasteless.
  • Radon is the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the Unites States today.
  • Smoking in the presence of Radon only increases your chances of being diagnosed with lung cancer.
  • Some studies indicate that children are more susceptible to the dangers of Radon gas.
  • Radon is naturally occurring and is not a commercial product.  Radon gas is produced during the natural breakdown of uranium that is found in igneous rock and soil.  In come cases well water has also been found as a source of Radon.
  • Humans are exposed to Radon when it’s decay products enter workplace or living spaces.  It is an inhaled hazard.
  • Radon exposure is most often much higher in underground work spaces like  mines.
  • There are no symptoms associated with Radon exposure.  Most often you only know if you have been exposed after a problem arises many years later.

Since elevated Radon levels have been found in all 50 states, it is recommended that all spaces be tested for elevated Radon levels.  The test it simple and if you find that that the levels are high, it can often be fixed at very little expense.

If you feel that your indoor air quality is not up to par, contact the O’Fallon area heating and cooling experts at American Services for recommendations on how you can fix the problem today!

Controlling Sources of Poor Air Quality

Controlling Sources of Poor Air Quality

AQI

Poor indoor air quality is something that can defiantly have an adverse effect on your business.  After all, no one wants to shop or eat in space that is uncomfortable to be in or aggravates their respiratory system.  Plus, many indoor air quality irritants are harmful to ones health and that is something that customers are not going to okay with.  For this reason the Overland area heating and cooling team at American Services wants to help you avoid and remove these irritants from your commercial space with tips on controlling them.  Let’s get started!

  • Poor Indoor Air Quality Irritant #1 – Air Pollutants from Combustion Devices: These pollutants from from sources such as a natural gas-fired furnace, oil-burning furnace, gas stove, space heater, wood-burning stoves, or dryers.  All of these units produce pollution particles that are sources for poor indoor air quality especially if the unit is not installed and maintained properly.  To avoid these pollutants, be sure that they are vented properly through an exhaust system or chimney as well as maintained on a regular basis.
  • Poor Indoor Air Quality Irritant #2 – Smoke: Smoke is actually one of the easiest indoor air quality irritants to control since simply not allowing it removes any chance of it getting in.  Smoking and its second hand effects cause cancer and can be especially harmful to children.  Avoid this irritants by never allowing anyone to smoke inside of your establishment.
  • Poor Indoor Air Quality Irritant #3 – Mold & Radon: Dark, moist environments are where mold love to live.  To avoid this irritant from creeping into your space, you will need to keep those conditions under control.  Radon is a naturally occurring irritant that comes from a degradation of uranium in the soil under a building’s foundation.  Radon can be indicated with a very simple soil test and mediated easily by professionals.  To avoid Radon, simply test your soil and take proper measures from there!

Have Fresh Indoor Air During Cooler Months

Have Fresh Indoor Air During Cooler Months

open window

As the weather begins to cool, often times buildings become closed off and struggle to supply fresh air to those who inhabit them.  That’s why it’s important to have a plan regarding your indoor air quality ahead of time and to share the practices with those who you employ.  Today, the Fenton area heating and cooling experts at American Services will give you some top ways to provide fresh air during the cold weather months.

  • If you use a humidifier, be sure the system is cleaned regularly.  This will ensure that you are not letting old germs and toxins back into the air.
  • Consider investing in an air purifying system.  These systems can get rid of up to 99% of air pollution and provide clean air without much added effort.
  • Be mindful of chances to ventilate the air.  For example, if you experience an unseasonably warm day, open a few windows and let the fresh air in.
  • Get rid of aerosol cleaning sprays and consider using environmentally friendly alternatives like a simple water, vinegar, and dish soap solution to clean surfaces.
  •  Add exhaust fans in kitchens and bathrooms.  Be sure these units are sized to empty the space properly and are used regularly.
  • If you use a dryer in your business space, be sure that the unit is properly vented to the outside of the building and that the ventilation is clean.
  • Make sure that any vacuums being used have clean canisters and are sanitized regularly.
  • Consider having your duct work professionally cleaned.
  • Regularly replace furnace air filters with those that address your specific pollutant issues.
  • Get a quote on having antimicrobial treated door mats put at all entrances to your building to reduce outdoor pollutants from coming into your space.

The American Services team hopes these effective tips will keep your space clean and fresh during the upcoming winter months!

Tips To Keep Your Indoor Air Quality Safe During Construction

Tips To Keep Your Indoor Air Quality Safe During Construction

indoor air quality modelDuring a construction or remodel project many don’t realize that their building’s indoor air quality could suffer.  This disruption in satisfactory air quality can cause a number of issues including respiratory problems and other more concerning health issues. For this reason it is very important that all business owners who undergo a construction or remodel project consider the impact such a project can have on both their employees and customers.

So, what unhealthy substances do you need to be on the look out for in this situation? The most common of these irritants include hidden mold growth, excessive dust, bacteria, lead paint, harsh chemicals, and asbestos.  As you can see, some of these substances are simply irritating, while some can be very dangerous.  Let’s take a look at how you can keep your building’s air quality safe from these issues.

Tip #1 – Talk to your contractor before your project begins and voice your concern about keeping these irritants at bay.  Come up with a plan that tackles excessive dust, harmful substance removal, and other issues that may occur.

Tip #2 – Avoid spreading any contaminants to other areas of your building by sealing off all HVAC registers in the construction zone.

Tip #3 – Have your HVAC technician put a new filter in at the start of construction and then replace that filter once construction is complete.

Tip #4 – Use fans to remove irritants from the building during construction.

Tip #5 – Be sure that you and your contractor are mindful of any manufacturer instructions concerning harmful irritants in the materials being used.

Tip #6 – Call in a professional to make sure your ventilation system is able to handle the removal of irritants that may accumulate during the project.

Tip #7 – Don’t forget to protect your building’s existing systems during the remodel, especially your HVAC units.

If you have an upcoming project and need help understanding how to protect your Wentzville area commercial heating and cooling system during the construction project, call American Services.  Our team understands indoor air quality and can help you make sure your HVAC unit is ready and able to handle the project you have in mind.

Effiecient Heating and Cooling Starts With A Clean Air Filter

Effiecient Heating and Cooling Starts With A Clean Air Filter

Close-Up Clean Paper Furnace Air FilterAs your system’s first line of defense against dust, debris, and other contaminants a clean air filter can change the way your system operates.  Changing your air filter is also cheap and can easily done by you or another member of your staff.  Today, let’s take a look at some facts surrounding the importance of a clean air filter.

Besides inefficiency, there are a number of problems that can occur due keeping a dirty air filter in your HVAC system.  The most common of these problem is slowed airflow due to an excessive ice buildup on the unit’s evaporator coil.  All of the issues that arise from a dirty filter will cost you money and a loss in comfort throughout your space.

Along with saving you money on energy costs, a clean air filter will help to maintain better indoor air quality.  This is because a clean air filter not only helps with airflow, but because it can also easily clean dust and pet hair from your air as well.  To maintain both airflow and good indoor air quality, a basic fiberglass filter will work fine.  Yet, if you have a specific concern about pollen, tobacco smoke, or other irritants, simply ask your American Services HVAC technician for a recommendation.

The Ballwin area heating and cooling team at American Services wants you changing your air filter on a regular basis and can help you do just that!  Our unique approach to maintenance is one that will have your equipment running for a very long time. When you call American Services you will always be greeted by a professional customer car expert and your service will be performed on time and according to your liking.  Don’t put off having your HVAC system taken care of any longer.  Call the American Services team for a free estimate today!

 

Are These Indoor Air Contaminants Polluting Your Commercial Space?

Are These Indoor Air Contaminants Polluting Your Commercial Space?

Air PollutionSecondhand Smoke, Radon, Mold, and Pesticides.  Are any of these contaminants polluting your indoor air?  If so, you may not realize the hazard they actually bring to you and your building’s inhabitants.  Today, the Maryland Heights area heating and cooling team at American Services will tell you just how important it is to get rid of these pollutants!

We should all know by now the dangers associated with tobacco smoke.  Those who directly inhale this substance are at high risk of getting cancer and other diseases, but did you know that secondhand smoke can be just as dangerous?  This is why most businesses have eliminated tobacco smoke.  If eliminating this contaminant is not a possibility for your business, having the American Services team install a HEPA filter is highly recommended.

Radon can contaminate a space via the basement or crawl space.  This is a naturally-occurring substance that can be tested for and fixed fairly easily.  It is important to take radon seriously since it is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers.

Mold and mold spores are more than an annoyance for allergy sufferers.  Having mold in your space can also cause life-threatening illness when one is chronically exposed.  Keeping all leaks under control and having mold properly removed is a must when keeping your indoor air quality at healthy levels.

Pesticides are something that are used for good reason, but should also be used with caution.  If storing these substances, be sure they are outside of your working space and locked up away from those who could be harmed by them.  It is also important to properly ventilate when using them.

If you believe your indoor air quality is in need of an inspection, simply call the team at American Services for a free indoor air quality check-up today!

Three Reasons To Replace Your Heating System Now!

Three Reasons To Replace Your Heating System Now!

HVAC TechnicianIn the heating and cooling world, there are three big reasons why you should consider upgrading to a newer HVAC system.  These reasons include utility cost savings, indoor air quality, and and improperly sized system.  All three have undesirable consequences that can be avoided with the help of a professional analysis and system replacement.  Here is a quick explanation of each scenario.

Utility Cost Savings – If you have a system that is as little at ten years old, the technology used to make it energy efficient is out dated.  It’s hard to believe, but advancements in efficiency standards continue to happen and replacing your older unit could potentially save you a lot of money.  To determine how efficient your current unit is, simply have your local HVAC contractor assist you completing an audit on the unit in comparison to a new, more efficient replacement system.

Improved Indoor Air Quality – Thanks to advancements in both humidity control and contaminant removal, newer heating units provide a much cleaner indoor air quality rating.  Upgrading to a unit that will improve your indoor air quality can help alleviate ailments like allergies and also improve the comfort level of your space.

Proper System Size – If your current heating system wasn’t properly sized at the time of installation, you may be reaping the consequences and not even realize it.  Not only could your unit be too small for your space, but it could also be too big.  Both scenarios will create inefficiencies that can only be fixed with the installation of a properly sized system.

If you feel like your commercial heating system near Hazelwood could use an update, please give the team at American Services a call.  Our professional team can go over the areas where your current system is lacking and provide you with a free upgrade estimate.  Get your free estimate now!