Do HVAC Systems Filter Smoke From Wildfires?

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Do HVAC Systems Filter Smoke From Wildfires?

As they burn through the land, wildfires devastate the air around them. The smoke can make the air unbreathable, prompting many areas to issue stay-at-home advisories. However, you may not be safe inside as well. Smoke from a wildfire can enter your home through your doors, windows, and vents.


Fortunately, HVAC systems can filter out wildfire smoke, allowing you and your family to breathe comfortably. You’ll need the right filter setup, but you can turn your house into a haven from the hellscape outside. You can even create your own filters. While HVAC systems can filter smoke from wildfires, they cannot do everything. They are only effective when combined with other measures that you should also implement.


By taking the appropriate precautions for your location, you can ensure that the air in your home is as clean as possible.


HVAC Filters Can Remove Wildfire Smoke

While most people worry that wildfires may burn down their homes, there is a more pressing matter. A wildfire does not have to be close to you in order to kill you. Depending on the prevailing winds, its smoke can travel hundreds or thousands of miles.


Smoke, which contains fine particulates of wood, carbon, and other organic materials, can enter your eyes and lungs, causing bronchitis and other inflammatory illnesses, runny nose, burning eyes, and other ailments. They can also develop heart and respiratory diseases. Inhaling smoke can even result in death.


How Smoke Enters Your Home?

When there is a wildfire smoke advisory in the area, your best bet is to stay at home. However, you must ensure that it does not seep inside. Fine particles have the ability to pass through small gaps.


Some common gaps through which smoke can pass include:

  • Doors, chimneys, and windows should be left open.
  • HVAC systems that have not been filtered and have been improperly installed
  • Around closed doors, windows, and chimneys, there are cracks, joints, and openings.


HVAC Systems Filter Wildfire Smoke By Design

To keep the smoke outside, make sure there is no way for it to come inside. This entails caulking all windows and doors. Fortunately, you don’t have to be concerned about your HVAC system, especially if you have an outside unit. HVAC systems function as heat exchangers. There is no air passing through them. To transfer heat to the outside, they use closed tubes of coolant. The fans in the units push air over the tubes, but the inside and outside air flows remain separate throughout the process.


As a result, HVAC systems can be used even during the most severe wildfire warnings. The only way smoke can pass through an HVAC system is through holes in the ventilation heading into your home. The fans in the units push air over the tubes, but the inside and outside air flows remain separate throughout the process. As a result, HVAC systems can be used even during the most severe wildfire warnings.


HVAC Remove Indoor Smoke With The Right Filter

While HVAC systems can prevent outside smoke from entering your home, they can’t do anything about smoke that gets in through other means. Normal air circulation simply returns the air unaltered. Fortunately, most modern air conditioners include an air purifier. The air filter is the most important HVAC air purification component. Air filters come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and materials, but they are all rated for different levels of purification.


There are low-cost filters that can remove large particles but only last 30 days. Other filters can also remove chemicals and odors while completely eliminating smoke for months.

Commercial Air Hanlder

Are you Worried About Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) During Fire Season?

You don’t have to worry about your home’s IAQ this season if you call Superior Mechanical Services today for high-quality air conditioning service. We’re here not only during wildfire seasons but also after they’ve passed, so you can rest assured that we’ll take care of any concerns or problems while providing peace of mind knowing our team is onsite if needed in future years. As the effects of wildfire season continue throughout Northern California many homeowners find themselves feeling less comfortable due to smoke and other toxic particles that can enter through even seemingly tight structures. Superior Mechanical Services, Inc. began in 1948 as a family-owned business with a vision to provide value-minded service with a down-to-earth approach to customers throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. As the premier Commercial and Residential HVAC Service provider for Livermore, Dublin, and Pleasanton, Superior Mechanical can do it all, from heating and air conditioning services to boiler services, to plumbing services. Our technicians are certified professionals who will ensure every part of your project is done right using a careful checklist to guide and test each step. Contact us today for help ensuring your home’s IAQ stays healthy and clean every day of the year, regardless of the season!

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