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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Having recently gotten a puppy which i outlined here .. it turned out i have an asthma type reaction to her, requiring me to at least use an inhaler a few times a day to keep any sudden breathing issues at bay..

I've tried several types of air purifiers.. maybe not enough of them at once..

We have a 2 story house, with a large 17x15 ish living room, dining maybe 15x12, kitchen 18x15 on first floor, all carpet except kitchen, 7.5 foot ceilings.. 2nd floor with 3 medium bedrooms (avg 12x16).. we keep the puppy downstairs as a rule and off the couches.. (i think the whole house might be 1200 sq foot)

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Initially I had this combo..
Winix HR900 Roughly $300, unsure on replacement filter cost and unknown CADR cfm rating but 300 sq foot rated

and

$210 Winix WAC9500 rated for instance of CADR of 182 cfm for dust and 283 sq feet, possibly impossible to find replacement filters

I placed the big unit in the living room and the other in dining.. i think "mostly" asthma was under control, well at least to the point of only needing the inhaler evening and night otherwise flare ups or morning coughing to get it all "out"..

I tried eliminating the more expensive unit, leaving only the the one in the dining room and my level of asthma issues went from say a 4 on scale of 1-10 to an 8 by middle of the night.

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So at this point i'm thinking of replacing the above with this unit:

$140 Winix 5300-2 rated at 360 sq foot and dust at 243 CFM
(only about $3/month in filters cost)

Putting one unit in the dining and maybe buying 1 more for upstairs..

Or getting this unit or two of these as well:

$199 Aeramax 300 rated at 196 cfm on dust and 300-600 sq foot
(i would think the winix unit for $140 might actually do better with better cfm)
(cost is only about $5/m in filters here) asthma asp-08-01 certified (important?)

There is also a bissell air400 (300-400 sq foot) at $399 but the cost of the filters is quite high and it sounds like the above units arent far off for less.

This is a last ditch effort at completely controlling this before we have to go the route of giving up our dog.. (doc also recommended daily steroid inhaler waiting on this till try these units, tried singulair for 10 days with no effect)

I also thought maybe it were possible to add a filter like this to the furnace, though ours is 20 year old furnace, unsure. EDIT: seems i already have an merv 13 aprilaire 213 filter in place, but they also make one for 2x the cost that says allergy filtration (unsure what the difference is as both are merv 13)


Has anyone gone through this and can comment on suggestions?

Thanks in advance
 

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Other than what you are doing already, make sure your furnace filter is changed monthly, if you aren't already doing that.

Also, giving the dog a bath helps with allergies. Vacuum more than normal, like every other day. Use an upholstery tool on furniture, because even though you don't let the dog on the furniture dander can settle there. Dust more than normal. Basically become a neat freak. Clean the dog's bedding weekly, as lots of dander settles there and every time the dog lays in it she will be spreading that dander around.

I'm sorry you're going through this, allergies and the like suck.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Other than what you are doing already, make sure your furnace filter is changed monthly, if you aren't already doing that.

Also, giving the dog a bath helps with allergies. Vacuum more than normal, like every other day. Use an upholstery tool on furniture, because even though you don't let the dog on the furniture dander can settle there. Dust more than normal. Basically become a neat freak. Clean the dog's bedding weekly, as lots of dander settles there and every time the dog lays in it she will be spreading that dander around.

I'm sorry you're going through this, allergies and the like suck.
Yeah its a little rough at times, trying my best to get this in order before bailing though.

Technically the furnace filter is every 6 months.. even the merv 13 one i have in there is about $35 a pop.. i was going to try switching to the #216 allergy merv 16 model but its $95... monthly is kinda hard on that.. i think maybe with the 216 and the two $140 units once both here might do the trick.

I have a hoover steam cleaner with wand, maybe at least with hot water i should run that over the couch weekly, maybe monthly on the floors with or without the actual detergent in it.

On the bedding, yeah thats true i guess if the bed is washable maybe in the wash weekly (though i worry about dander spreading to other clothes if done in our washer)?
 

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I agree to change your furnace filter more often. With the dog you might find the filter clogging up faster than it used to. We change ours every 3 months and it's pretty dirty by then.

Do you own your home? Maybe you can get rid of the carpet and put in laminate or something that won't collect the dust/allergens?

I don't have any advice on air purifiers, but you could try Himalayan salt lamps too, just make sure to get the genuine ones (product of Pakistan).
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I agree to change your furnace filter more often. With the dog you might find the filter clogging up faster than it used to. We change ours every 3 months and it's pretty dirty by then.

Do you own your home? Maybe you can get rid of the carpet and put in laminate or something that won't collect the dust/allergens?

I don't have any advice on air purifiers, but you could try Himalayan salt lamps too, just make sure to get the genuine ones (product of Pakistan).
Yeah we own the home, but the wife doesnt really want to go hardwood and if we did mainly only in dining room area would we do that.

I hadnt heard of these salt lamps, do they actually help with pet dander though and wouldnt you need quite a few for a whole floor level, interesting though?
 

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I hadnt heard of these salt lamps, do they actually help with pet dander though and wouldnt you need quite a few for a whole floor level, interesting though?
There are mixed feelings on how much they actually work. Some people love them and some don't. I have 2 in my house. I did notice that the one in the bedroom seemed to make a difference to the air quality. The one in the main room is probably too small for the area, so I haven't noticed much difference there. So to answer your question - yes you would need several lamps.
 

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Yeah its a little rough at times, trying my best to get this in order before bailing though.

Technically the furnace filter is every 6 months.. even the merv 13 one i have in there is about $35 a pop.. i was going to try switching to the #216 allergy merv 16 model but its $95... monthly is kinda hard on that.. i think maybe with the 216 and the two $140 units once both here might do the trick.

I have a hoover steam cleaner with wand, maybe at least with hot water i should run that over the couch weekly, maybe monthly on the floors with or without the actual detergent in it.

On the bedding, yeah thats true i guess if the bed is washable maybe in the wash weekly (though i worry about dander spreading to other clothes if done in our washer)?
I just use the "stair and upholstery attachment" on my vacuum to do the furniture. It's got rotating brushes and connects to the vacuum hose so it actually sucks up dirt and dander quite well. A steaming would probably help, too.

If you wash the bedding separate from your other clothes, it shouldn't, really. I have a front load washer and I guess I always find quite a bit of hair that I need to clean from the seals and whatnot, but I never feel like that transfers to any loads I do after. I do all the dog bedding separate from everything else in hot water, with bleach. I do an extra rinse to make sure the bulky bedding isn't trapping detergent. My dog has fleece blankets in his crate which I wash weekly (or at least try, lol) and the covers come off his beds which I try to wash every few months. Otherwise, I try to at least vacuum them weekly with my stair/upholstery attachment.

We also just got a Roomba which helps mitigate the time I have to actually spend vacuuming. It's not a complete replacement, but then I don't feel like I have to do it all the time.

I have a very, very mild sensitivity to pet dander, of course, and that's what I have to do to feel 100%.
 

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I have professional experience with indoor air quality- as far as something you buy from a store, stay away from the cheap purifiers. They just put a static charge on air particles....it gets the particles out of the air by causing them to stick to furniture and other surfaces. The ones with electric plates and filters are better. The best thing if you have the money is to find a heating and air contractor that will install a whole house filter/purifier in your ductwork next to your furnace. Depending on your area you can get a pretty decent one installed for 800-1000$ maybe less. The price goes up from there- there are some that generate ozone which gets distributed throughout the house via furnace ductwork. The good ones are like a smaller version of what is used in some hospitals. Has a good pre-filter which gets replaced every 6 months to a year, electric plates that dust and dander stick to, these plates are removed and washed once or twice a year, and a UV light that sterilizes and kills organics ( dead skin, some viruses, bacteria, mold, mildew, pollen etc ). The filter and plates can be maintained easily by the homeowner.
Most people dont actively notice a difference with these, but people who have allergies and other breathing issues generally tell us they make a big difference.
If you have anybody who is mechanically inclined these units are usually pretty easy to install on your furnace yourself depending on furnace location.
 

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You can google in duct whole house electronic air cleaners/purifiers and buy one yourself and have someone install for you. Aprilaire and honeywell make some good ones.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
I have professional experience with indoor air quality- as far as something you buy from a store, stay away from the cheap purifiers. They just put a static charge on air particles....it gets the particles out of the air by causing them to stick to furniture and other surfaces. The ones with electric plates and filters are better. The best thing if you have the money is to find a heating and air contractor that will install a whole house filter/purifier in your ductwork next to your furnace. Depending on your area you can get a pretty decent one installed for 800-1000$ maybe less. The price goes up from there- there are some that generate ozone which gets distributed throughout the house via furnace ductwork. The good ones are like a smaller version of what is used in some hospitals. Has a good pre-filter which gets replaced every 6 months to a year, electric plates that dust and dander stick to, these plates are removed and washed once or twice a year, and a UV light that sterilizes and kills organics ( dead skin, some viruses, bacteria, mold, mildew, pollen etc ). The filter and plates can be maintained easily by the homeowner.
Most people dont actively notice a difference with these, but people who have allergies and other breathing issues generally tell us they make a big difference.
If you have anybody who is mechanically inclined these units are usually pretty easy to install on your furnace yourself depending on furnace location.

Thanks for the info.. we have an old LivingAir XL-15 but i havent used it because of all the claims that the ozone production is bad and can actually cause more of an issue. In fact i think this company got sued at one point because of all this.. i'm surprised they still make units that produce ozone or maybe its on a low level on the newer ones? The in duct sounds like a good route though expensive, but i would have to guess the filters are expensive to change? And how often, compared to say one of the units i linked which is only about $3/m in filters if that (times however many are needed to cover enough area). edit: i see a whole house aprilaire 5000 unit, but it doesnt mention ability to filter dander (for around $550 shipped).. almost looks like it would just slide in where the existing filter box goes.

How does one of these in furnace units work compared to say using small units in the house and then maybe putting in an asthma #216 rated filter in the furnace combined?
 

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Go to aprilaire.com and look at the specs for 5000. Manufacturers website has all the specs. Looks like a decent unit. Claims removes 98% of pet dander. Removes particles as small as tobacco smoke. The website sells the filters for 75$ for a pack of six, but most people only need them replaced twice a year, and there's surely other places cheaper to order them.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
So far nothing has worked to clear my condition, which at this point is a weird vocal wheeze on exhaling, none of which shows up with stethoscope or lung xray, but might have shown restricted bronchial tubes with breathing test today.. None of my drs seem to be sure its definitely the dog (or an increase to a heart medication) or something else, but an allergy might cause the throat passages too, to constrict and sound like a wheeze on exhale.

3 purifiers all running on high now and regular cleaning too, no decrease in my issue and also the #216 asthma filter in furnace now.

Also wondering if anyone else has ever had this occur, the exhale wheeze and it was a dog that caused it (also causes at worst moments, feeling of not enough air, do an inhaler, helps slightly but never gone, even away from home at work).
 

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Update here, so unfortunately at least for now.. we've sent our dog to my brother in laws at least for a little while or maybe till she is 4-5 months old to see if her coat changes..

But.. i've changed one variable at a time so far and already i'm improved which has me wondering.

I opted to just clean the kitchen area, mopped it good and entire area, which is where she spends night time and sometimes peed/or pood in general there during the training phase so far..

I've left the air units running.. i havent vacuum the carpets (which turned out the vac had a clog and probably for weeks on the roller unit).. im still taking the singulair.

In the hours after she left and after cleaning the kitchen area thoroughly i felt fairly normal.. barely that "wheeze".. and up till bed time.

I woke up middle of the night though, with the feeling of short of breath, so opted to do the inhaler, though i think this was more mental and not an issue. In the AM no real coughing this time, barely any congestion.

I know dander takes months to dissipate and given this change, it seems unlikely it was just taking her out of the house that has so far cured things.. i think it might have just been the kitchen area (pee/urine reaction) this whole time, maybe not i dont know. In a few months we will likely try again, hopefully at that point fully trained.
 

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Maybe I'm too late to the party, but I've had a Austin Air B410B1 Standard Pet Machine Air Purifier for about 10 years now. Filters last five years or so. I've replaced it once. It's rated for 1500sqf but I've always just moved it to wherever it's needed most (right now the bedroom). If I put it in a large living room and turn it on, the living room will smell like a cleanroom within an hour. It's very loud though. It's secondary purpose is white noise to sleep by, but I'd say it'd be way too loud for a living room.

Edit: At one point I had an "Animal Room" that I kept at 85f and had several snakes, rats, roach colonies, lizards. crickets... etc.. I bought that originally to put in that room. It went from musty reptile exhibit smell to cleanroom in one day.
 
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