I have asthma and severe chemical allergies that have been causing me problems at apartments I have tried to stay at in Bryn Mawr, PA. The first time it was because they had painted recently and the fumes were toxic to me. I ended up living in the dorms for a month before finding my new place. I moved in yesterday and bought a bunch of IKEA furniture (made from particle board) and believe it is giving off formaldehyde because I had problems sleeping last night. I have a HEPA filter in my room and we ran the A/C (it has central air) all night with the fan on. The intake is in the room with all the furniture boxes but it is passed through a 3M 2200 Ultra Allergen 16x20x1 Filter before entering the TRANE unit in the attic. All of this and I still have problems.
I was doing more reading on line and it seems like buying a bigger HEPA purifier (with a higher CADR rating) isn't going to make things better. The recommendation of the EPA on Indoor Air Quality emphasizes ventilation and establishing a positive pressure in the apartment or at least the room i spend most of my time in. It also mentions something called ASHRAE 62.1 spec.
As a student who lives in a rental unit I am trying to figure out the best method to do something like this. It would have to be some sort of device that is portable, that doesn't have to be installed and make intense modifications to the unit. Something that I might be able to take with me when I have to move to another place so that it can help me there too.
When I went up to the attic this morning to check on the 3M filter I installed in the TRANE unit I found out, with use of a super bright LED attached to my iPhone, that past the air filter (meaning where the air goes into the unit itself after being filtered by the 3M filter) in the unit there is a bunch of dust on the grates. I know the prior tenant used pretty cheap filters and figure that 3 years of this must have caused the built up. I sent an email to my land lord with an attached video and she is contacting a HVAC professional to come look at it. Is there anything I should keep on eye on in terms of being a customer who has asthma, severe allergies, and chemical sensitivities when an HVAC prof. visits?
I would appreciate any advice or opinions you all might have on this situation, I'm trying to figure out what to do next and for the future of my life as an individual with this health condition who is going to be in school for several years to come and has many apartments in his future.
One thing I was looking at was: