Air conditioning systems ensure you are comfortable in your home. However, many homeowners may get that comfort at a price. Among the usual complaints about an AC unit is that it gives some people headaches. But can it really give you a headache? Unfortunately, for some people, the answer is yes. An AC malfunction may give you both literal and figurative headaches. For literal headaches, you might not even realize that the cause might be your air conditioner. There are several reasons why an AC unit may give you a headache. In addition, you can do a few things to reduce the effects. Read on to find out.
The main task of an air conditioner in your home is to cool down the indoor air. In the process, it also extracts excess moisture from the air. This is good because too much humidity can lead to various problems, such as mold growth. High humidity levels can also make your home feel warmer. You might end up turning down the thermostat more than necessary to feel comfortable.
The AC unit removes excess humidity from the air by collecting condensation that forms on the evaporator coil and draining it. The ability of an AC to remove humidity from the air depends on various factors, including its size, condition, type, and age. If you have properly maintained your air conditioner, it should effectively lower humidity levels.
Unfortunately, problems arise when the unit draws too much humidity from the indoor air. Breathing in dry air can dry the sinus cavities. This can lead to headaches and nosebleeds. When the air gets drier, it can result in dehydration, as the dry air can suck the moisture from your body. Even mild dehydration can contribute to headaches. Some people are sensitive to a small drop in humidity, which may lead to severe headaches, especially when sleeping.
To combat this, you should drink a lot of water to keep up with the dry air. However, the best way to curb this effect is to run a humidifier together with your AC in your home to make sure there are constant levels of humidity.
Another possible explanation for why your AC might be the source of your headaches is the noise it emits. The truth is that all AC units emit some noise, although some are noisier than others. When your AC makes loud noises or sounds on a frequency that disturbs you, it may give rise to headaches.
Some units may produce sound levels that reach up to 70 decibels (dB). Normal speech is usually about 60 dB. For some, this can disrupt sleep. When the noise interferes with your sleep quality, you may have headaches. In addition, sound levels itself can sometimes trigger migraines. The greatest culprits are old and inefficient AC units. If you suspect that the AC compressor noise is causing your headaches, you should see if our technicians can repair the issue or install a new model. Newer models are relatively quiet and could relieve your headaches caused by excessive noise.
An efficient and well-functioning unit should not be noisy and should not give you a headache. Nevertheless, there are various reasons that could explain why your unit is noisy. One of the main reasons is that debris and dirt may have clogged the unit, so it struggles to keep your home cool. Noise could also result from broken or loose parts that hit each other inside the unit. The motor could also be struggling to run and on the verge of failing. It is crucial to schedule an appointment with an HVAC professional once you notice unusual noises emanating from your unit, which could save you literal and figurative headaches.
3. Extreme Temperatures
If you set your air conditioner too low, it could lead to headaches. When you go inside a room unreasonably cooled down by an AC, the sudden temperature drop may lead to the swelling of your sinuses, leading to a feeling of pressure in the eyes and pain in your head. To curb this effect, you can try drinking lots of water or sleeping with your head slightly elevated by using a pillow. You can also turn up your thermostat a few degrees to give your head a break. Cold temperatures can also be responsible for triggering the trigeminal nerve, which can cause your brain’s blood vessels to constrict. The result is that you get a headache.
It is important to understand that some AC malfunctions can trigger poor temperature control. These can include things like a failing AC motor, dirty air filters, low refrigerant, leaking air ducts, and damaged AC coils. In addition, loose wiring or a failing thermostat can cause it to register incorrect temperatures. This may cause the air conditioner to run longer cycles than usual, leading to unusually low temperatures.
4. Air Contaminants
Contaminants present in the air can also be a cause for your headaches. The AC is designed to filter out harmful air pollutants for healthy indoor living. However, when the air filters are not cleaned or changed for a long time, your AC may circulate dirty air. Pollen, dust, bacteria, and other pollutants can easily accumulate inside your AC if it is not maintained properly. These contaminants will be circulated in your rooms once the air conditioner runs.
In addition, if you do not have enough ventilation and use harsh cleaning chemicals in your home, the AC will blow the contaminants into the indoor air again and again. These contaminants are responsible for irritating your nerves, which can manifest as headaches. The best thing you should do is thoroughly clean your AC. If it persists, consider adding an air purifier. You should also schedule professional maintenance and duct cleaning.
The Bottom Line
Do not worry if you are one of the many people who suffer from headaches when using an air conditioner. You can use the above information to help ease the headaches that your AC may cause you. Nevertheless, if your headaches are persistent, they could indicate an underlying condition, and you should seek immediate medical attention. Investing some time and money to find the source of your headache is also advisable. Your health and peace of mind should always be a top priority.
Call the Professionals
If you notice one or several of the above reasons for your headache, you should schedule emergency maintenance for your AC unit. Residents of the Twin Cities area can rely on us at BWS Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning to provide exceptional AC maintenance services. We are available for 24/7 emergency services. You can also depend on us for all your heating and plumbing needs. We will always treat you and your home with ultimate care, no matter the job you assign us. Give us a call at BWS Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning if you have any questions or would like to schedule a service.