With winter gone and spring in full effect, many residents are thrilled to open their windows once again and let in the gentle and fresh spring air. Birds are chirping, flowers are soon to blossom, and the temperature is much milder. It definitely smells like new beginnings — but alas, the same spring air can also trigger allergies due to the pollen it carries. And just like that, it’s allergy season yet again.
Seasonal allergies affect millions of people around the world. However, it’s fair to say that spring isn’t the only season associated with allergies. In Canada, for instance, seasonal allergies can also occur in summer and during fall. What makes spring stand out, however, is because this is the season that arguably releases pollen at scale — since the pollen particles are coming from trees.
In summary, here are the pollen culprits in Canada along with their peak months during allergy seasons:
- Tree pollen - peaks from late April to May (spring)
- Grass and weed pollen - peaks from late May to July (summer) as well as mid-August to October (fall)
Pollen-carrying breeze can readily go through open windows during allergy season. Furthermore, not having the right window treatments can make pollen stick, ready to activate an allergy at any point. So if you’re looking to allergy-proof your windows for allergy seasons, we’ve got helpful window tips for you.
What Are Seasonal Allergies?
Seasonal allergies, also known as “hay fever” or seasonal allergic rhinitis, refers to a condition wherein allergy symptoms appear when trees, grasses, and weeds release pollen into the air.
The symptoms of seasonal allergy include the following:
- Stuffy or runny nose
- Itchy sinuses
- Itchy and watery eyes
- Coughing and wheezing
- Shortness of breath
As mentioned earlier, in Canada, seasonal allergies can occur during spring, summer, or autumn. For seasonal allergies during Spring, the culprit is usually tree pollen; meanwhile, the culprit for Summer and Autumn seasonal allergies is usually pollen from grass and weeds.
There are certain trees and plants that release allergy-triggering pollen — these include:Trees That Cause Seasonal AllergiesOther Plants That Cause Seasonal Allergies
- Box Elder
- Lamb’s quarters
- Jasmine vine
- Bermuda grass
- Timothy grass
So if you ever find your home located near these plants or trees, make sure to take added precaution.
How Do I Allergy-Proof My Windows for Allergy Season?
Windows are typically the main source of airflow for every home. Therefore, allergy-proofing your windows can provide a significant amount of relief regarding seasonal allergy since you will be able to lessen the amount of pollen being wafted into your house.
1. Clean Your Windows
First of all, it’s important to regularly clean the windows and the window sills. Pollen and even allergy-causing dust and dust mites can accumulate on this part of your home. All it takes is an appropriately-timed wind to blow these particles in. By regularly cleaning the windows and window sills, using a mild cleaning solution and rag, you are a step closer to feeling more comfortable during allergy season.
2. Place Air Purifiers Near the Windows
As we will discuss later, it’s important to know when to close your windows during allergy season. However, for the times you’d like to keep your windows open, you can safely do so by placing air purifiers near the open windows. Air purifiers with HEPA filtration will be able to trap air contaminants like pollen as they enter your home.
3. Fix Up the Caulking or Cracks
Broken caulking or any cracks around your window can easily trap air contaminants like pollen as they are carried by the breeze. Then, all it takes is another strong breeze to blow these trapped contaminants into your home. By fixing up the caulking and cracks around the window, you will be able to reduce the likelihood of seasonal allergies.
4. Use Easy-to-Clean Window Treatments
If you’re looking for window treatments that are best for allergy season, you would want to choose those that are the easiest to clean. Furthermore, it’s best to opt for window treatments that allow fewer air contaminants to collect.
A few options that are best for allergy season include:
- Vertical blinds
- Roller shades
- Composite shutters
It would be best to AVOID dry-clean-only drapes and small-slatted blinds because these are more difficult to clean but trap pollen easily. Once pollen is trapped on these hard-to-clean window treatments, it can easily waft into the home in large quantities after a strong gust of wind or if the window treatments are adjusted.
5. Try Out An Effective Window Screen Pollen Filter
Special window screens can act like pollen filters, trapping around 96% of pollen carried by the wind. This is an ideal option for folks who want to leave their windows open for most of the time during allergy season to experience the fresh spring air. However, before purchasing these, make sure that they are compatible with your window types and window sizes.
6. If All Else Fails, Close Your Window
If you easily suffer from allergies during allergy season, it would be advisable to keep your windows closed most of the time and rely on air-conditioning, especially during early morning hours — this is typically when plants, weeds, and trees release pollen. With the windows of your home shut tight, pollen-carrying wind cannot enter the home. No wind, no pollen, and less likelihood of seasonal allergies.
What Else Can I Do Allergy-Proof My Home?
On top of window-proofing your home, here are a few additional tips:
- Vacuum clean on a regular basis (at least once a week)
- Consider removing rugs and carpets where pollen can be trapped
- Launder your sheets and clothes at least once a week
- Remove clutter where dust and pollen can easily accumulate
This ends our article on how to allergy-proof your windows for allergy season. We here, at Clera Windows + Doors, are passionate about bringing comfort to every home, one window at a time. So if you’re in need of replacement windows that can shut tight and keep pollen out during allergy season, check out our collection of energy-efficient, durable, and customizable windows. We can also install the windows for you so that it is sealed tightly and finished in no time at all.