COLUMBUS, Ohio — Air filters of all different kinds are in demand this week at local hardware stores.
“Quite a bit of people coming in,” said Sylvia Spoor, assistant manager at Schreiner ACE Hardware in Grandview Heights.
Although the air quality improved in Columbus on Thursday, experts are warning now is the time to check the air filter in your car and your home.
Matt Tyner from Buckeye Heating Cooling and Plumbing said making sure your filter is changed out often enough could prevent you from having to call them for help. He said a clogged filter could cause costly problems.
"That causes a lot of stress on the system,” he said.
Air filters for your home come in a variety of prices from just under $3 to upwards of $50. Each one lasts longer the more you pay, but in times like these, experts say they all need to be changed out more often.
“So there are particles of different sizes in the air and the ones that we are really dealing with now when you go outside are PM 2.5 or they are called fine particles and the HEPA filters will actually filter those out,” said Dr. Loren Wold, professor at the Ohio State University College of Medicine.
Wold has been researching the negative effects of air pollution for years.
“Those higher particle levels are known to cause issues with the lungs, issues with the heart, and now [there is] some newer literature on brain health,” he said.
Experts say to get the most out of your HVAC system inside, stay up on the filter and circulate the air.
"Cooling systems can be set up with fresh air intake, and a ventilator to actually draw in fresh air from the outdoors and bring it into the home. If you have the ability to turn that off and just be able to put that in recirculate mode, that is very, very much recommended,” said Tyner.
Some people are making DIY home air filters. You'll see many options pop up in a simple Google search. But according to the EPA, right now there is minimal information on how effective these are.