Many of us here in the South are no strangers to allergies—thanks in part to the region’s longer growing season. It comes as no surprise then that Nashville has been ranked one of the most challenging places to live for seasonal allergy sufferers by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. In its 2015 Spring Allergy Capitals Report, Nashville has higher than average pollen counts and a higher than average use of allergy medications.
But it’s not just the outdoors that trigger sneezing and watery eyes. The average U.S. home contains twice the levels of pollution that are found outdoors. With the Spring season in full swing, local carpet and upholstery cleaning experts TNT Chem-Dry has identified the common places in the home that—surprisingly—contribute to allergy symptoms and tips on how to clean them.
The Area – Upholstery & Carpets
We sit on our couches and chairs every day, but how often do we think of cleaning them? Dust and dirt particles settle on these surfaces and get pushed deeper into the fibers the longer we let them go without a proper cleaning. Carpets, especially in high traffic areas, also accumulate dirt and particles—including pet dander and dust mites—deep within their fibers over time.
Quick Fix: Weekly vacuuming with a HEPA filter and an annual professional cleaning service is recommended to maintain the health of upholstery and carpets. If you have pets or children, then it is recommended to use a professional service two to three times a year. TNT Chem-Dry uses a green-certified solution and a proprietary Hot Carbonating Extraction process that is proven to remove an average of 98.1 percent of common household allergens from carpets and upholstery. When combined with their sanitizer, it also removes an average of 89 percent of airborne bacteria. In addition, consider adding a protectant for furniture and carpets which prevents stains from attaching and setting deeper into the soft fibers.
The Area – Blinds & Ceiling Fans
Because blinds are next to windows, they quickly collect dust and dirt particles. Ceiling fans do as well, and when we turn them on, the accumulated dust and dirt gets re-distributed throughout the house.
Quick Fix: Develop a weekly habit of washing blinds and wiping off ceiling blades. For less maintenance, consider replacing blinds altogether with window shades.
The Area – Hardwood Floors & Area Rugs
Many people wrongfully assume that bare floors are cleaner and healthier than carpet, but this is not so. Similar to ceiling fans, unhealthy particles settle on hard surfaces, are more easily stirred back into the air, and re-distributed throughout the house when there is activity in the room.
Quick Fix: Throw down an area rug or add a doormat. Especially in high-traffic areas of the home, area rugs act like big filters just like carpets and upholstery do—trapping dust and dirt particles in their fibers and holding them until you vacuum or fully refresh them with a deep cleaning performed by a professional cleaning service. According to TNT Chem-Dry, nylon and wool best withstand high traffic.
The Area – Tile, Grout, & Stone
Over time, soil settles and builds up on tile, grout, and stone. In the bathroom, especially, moisture acts as a breeding ground for mold and mildew. Because grout is porous, it is also a hotspot for bacteria, fungus, and mold.
Quick Fix: Freshen the look and health of tile, grout, and stone with a cleaning and sealant. It is generally recommended to reseal the rooms with most activity once a year and other rooms (like guest bathrooms) every 4-5 years. TNT Chem-Dry utilizes specialized cleaning solutions and suction equipment to effectively clean and seal tile, grout and stone, restoring its look and improving home health.
The Area – Heating & Air Conditioning Filters
Home filters are designed to remove particulates like dust, pollen, and bacteria from the air.
Quick Fix: It is important to follow the directions on individual filters and replace them accordingly. This is especially essential after winter months.
We are pleased to announce that we are partnering with TNT Chem-Dry to give one lucky reader some allergy relief with a Healthy Home Cleaning Package (valued at $300)! Enter below for your chance to win.