Three Simple Steps to a Healthy Holiday Home

It’s time for Austin-area residents to deck the halls—but few realize their favorite holiday traditions may kick off winter coughs, runny noses and dangerous asthma symptoms. According to the National Center for Healthy Housing, studies show a rise in respiratory-related hospital visits during the holiday season—and experts report that home décor is a major contributor.

If your family suffers from allergies or asthma attacks during the winter holidays, start by scheduling Cool Experts’ heating repair services in Austin, TX. Our indoor air quality pros take your health seriously, and our IAQ services have helped hundreds of families breathe easier. Next, take time to revamp your holiday traditions. Start with these simple steps—and ask your doctor about more ways to snuff out allergy and asthma triggers.

Avoid synthetic air fresheners & paraffin candles.

There’s nothing like the sweet smell of cinnamon and spices to brighten your home during December. Unfortunately, most air fresheners contain esters and alcohols, petroleum distillates, formaldehyde and other volatile organic compounds that can trigger nasty symptoms in children and adults.

Candle pollution leads to similar problems since paraffin gives off carcinogens like soot, benzene and acetaldehyde. To step up the holiday cheer without risking your lungs, consider replacing old-school candles with pure essential oils. Ask your physician about other respiratory-safe air freshener and candle alternatives.

Take steps to curtail Christmas tree allergens.

After trekking through the woods to find the perfect Christmas tree, you may find it’s making you miserable. A SUNY Upstate Medical University study, published in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, found that Christmas tree bark and needles carried dozens of mold types. Two-thirds of the identified molds, which thrive in warm home environments, were tied to risk of respiratory distress, fatigue, sleep trouble and more severe conditions like pneumonia.

If fresh Christmas trees and wreaths heighten your family’s allergy symptoms, don’t give up on the holidays. Quick tips like these can prevent greenery from ruining your fun.

  • Wash off allergens. Before bringing a freshly cut tree into your home, rinse it off and allow it to dry in the sun. Some tree nurseries offer a tree-washing service, as well.
  • Decorate later than usual. The longer trees adorn your home, the more they decay. Mold spores increase as trees decompose, so it’s wise to decorate late and dispose of your tree shortly after Christmas Day.
  • Install a whole-house air purifier to decrease tree mold and home allergen symptoms. As experts in heating repair services in Cedar Park, TX, Cool Experts installs ultraviolet light purifiers and HEPA filtration systems that reduce allergy symptoms. When they visit your home, technicians can provide a discounted $59 heating safety inspection, which includes carbon monoxide and gas leak testing. Call 512.588.1452 to receive this exclusive holiday offer!

Switch cardboard boxes with plastic containers for décor storage.

The kids’ excitement is palpable as you lug in holiday decorations from the attic or garage, but did you know IAQ contaminants hitch a ride on those old boxes? Cardboard retains moisture, encourages mold growth and is a breeding ground for dust mites. Allergy specialists discourage the use of cardboard storage and recommend replacing boxes with plastic bags and bins. To avoid dust contamination, which adds to respiratory problems, wipe down containers before bringing them into the house.

Enjoy an Allergy-Free Holiday With Cool Experts

Don’t be a humbug this holiday season! Before sprucing up your home with fresh Christmas trees, holiday scents and family decorations, request an indoor air quality consultation. The NATE-certified technicians at Cool Experts provide five-star heating repair in Austin, TX, and install whole-home IAQ equipment that eliminates mold spores, tree pollen and other pollutants. To request an air-quality assessment, dial 512-588-1452 today.