5 Ways to Stop the Sneezing Torture of Allergy Season

It’s starting to get warmer out and trees are beginning to turn green again. Unfortunately, this also means it’s peak allergy season. Let the days of non-stop sneezing, watery eyes, and itchy throat begin!

We’ve all experienced that first sign of allergy season. You open your front door to a noticeable layer of pollen on everything from your car to porch chairs. It’s enough to make us sneeze for days.

We might not be able to completely get rid of allergies, but we can slow them down. Here are tips from reputable sources that can help you reduce allergens at home.

1. Vacuum Every 4 Days

WebMD suggests vacuuming once or twice every week. Obviously, it’s good practice to frequently vacuum your carpeting so that dust and pollen don’t linger in your home. But, using the right vacuum filter can actually make a world of difference.

Make sure your vacuum is equipped with a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter! These filters are built with fine mesh trapping harmful particles like pollen, pet dander, dust mites, and tobacco smoke.

You can find HEPA filters in home improvement stores like Walmart, Lowes, or Home Depot as well as online.

2. Allergy Proof Your Bedroom

Whether it’s taking a snooze or binging your favorite show, you spend a ton of time in your bedroom. Nothing is more miserable than getting cozy in bed and having to get up again because your nose is running. How frustrating is that!

Everyday Health recommends you wash your bed sheets and pillow cases at least once a week. The key is to wash in hot water and hot dry.

Now, you may be tempted to save energy by letting those sheets dry outside, but that’s only going to make things worse. Pollen and dander will stick to those sheets and your effort of washing them will go out the window.

3. Keep Your Shoes at the Door

There’s a reason parents always said to take your shoes off at the door. When you’re out and going about your day, you essentially become a walking chauffeur for pollen, dirt, and other irritants.

This Old House says always keep a doormat on the inside of your door as well as making sure shoes remain there can help reduce the potential for irritants to be tracked throughout your home.

After a day spent outdoors, the best thing you can do is wipe your shoes on a mat before entering your home, immediately take off your shoes, change your clothing and make sure those outdoor clothes go straight to the laundry room or hamper.

4. Mold Free Bathrooms are the Happiest

Seeing mold begin to form in a bathroom is one sure sign you need to get cleaning. Mold forms from built-up humidity left by showering. This is why it’s so important to keep your ventilation fan on during and after showering.

To keep mold from forming, wipe down your tub, sink, and around your toilet at least once a week. Don’t forget about under your sink, too! Usually what’s under your sink collects a ton of dust because it’s not a place we interact with.

Health.com also recommends you ditch the vinyl shower curtains because they’re known to emit lung-irritating compounds. Your best bet is using nylon curtains that can be washed when needed.

5. To the Windows

We get it. It’s summertime and there’s just something right about keeping the windows open. We aren’t saying you’re forbidden from opening the windows, but there are times where you really should have them closed.

Have you ever kept the windows open during the night only to wake up with a stuffy nose? Oh, the dreaded allergy-filled morning! This happens because pollen counts are at their highest in the mornings and during night time.

We all know how dirty windows can get. There’s a layer of pollen on the outer side. There’s dust built up around the edges, and oh my goodness, is that a dead fly?

The one and probably most helpful thing you can do is regularly wipe down your windows, and at Franklin West apartments, we’ll take care of the outer side of the windows.

You can also make sure the curtains you use are machine washable. If you don’t have curtains, use microfiber cleaning cloths or disposable dust wipes when you’re dusting off the blinds.

5 Tip Round-Up

  1. Vacuum twice a week using a HEPA filter for maximum cleaning
  2. Wash your bedding once a week with hot water and machine dry
  3. Avoid tracking dirt and pollen through your home by removing your shoes at the door
  4. Keep mold and mildew from growing in your bathroom by running your ventilation system during and after showering.
  5. Make sure your windows stay closed during the night and mornings.  

How to Avoid Destruction with Your Apartment Plumbing

Let’s talk about your toilet. Yes, you read that right. We said toilet.

More specifically, we’re covering what should and shouldn’t be going down the grand porcelain throne, a kitchen sink, or garbage disposal. Every now and again, one bad egg clogs the plumbing system causing the whole building to suffer.

Good plumbing practices mean a building full of happy tenants and that’s what Franklin West strives for.

Here is a list of items you need to think twice about putting through your building’s plumbing.

Garbage Disposal Don’ts

To keep your garbage disposal working efficiently, one good rule of thumb is to avoid shoving large quantities of things down it. The following items should never go down a garbage disposal:

  1. Coffee Grounds
  2. Pasta, Rice, Oatmeal, or other foods that expand
  3. Bones
  4. Nuts/Pits
  5. Onion Skins
  6. Egg Shells
  7. Pumpkin, Celery, or other Fibrous Vegetables
  8. Potato Peels
  9. Chemicals/Paint
  10. Corn Husks
  11. Trash

This list came from The Family Handyman, which you can read in greater detail on why these items can become a big problem.

If your kitchen sink doesn’t have a garbage disposal, you should not put anything down the drain. Please use a kitchen sink strainer basket to ensure that nothing other than water and dish cleaning soap goes through the drain.

Lavatory Don’ts

The following items should never be flushed down the commode:

  1. Baby Wipes (even those marketed as being flushable)
  2. Q-tips & Cotton Swabs
  3. Menstrual Products
  4. Condoms
  5. Diapers
  6. Dental Floss
  7. Paper Towels & Tissues
  8. Medication
  9. Cigarette Buds
  10. Kitty Litter
  11. Hair
  12. Gum
  13. Cooking Grease
  14. Fish
  15. Food
  16. Bleach

In short, only toilet paper should be flushed down the toilet. Read more about why these items are not good for bathroom plumbing from House Beautiful.

Spot the Problem… Before It’s a Really BIG Problem

How do you know if one drain versus your entire plumbing system is backed up?

Even if everyone in our apartments follows our guidance above, external situations out of our control can cause a sewage system to back up. So, what are the warning signs?  One sign of a sewer drain clog is when more than one plumbing fixture backs up at the same time. You may even experience unusual sounds coming from the fixtures in your apartment.

With plumbing problems, whether it be a slow drain, a clog or a potential sewage backup, please CALL our office at 412-661-1151 as soon as you notice a problem, no matter what time of day or night!