Smoke haze is one of the major causes of air pollution in Singapore today. The haze problem Singapore suffers from is an annual feature, resulting from the mid yearly burning of forest land in Indonesia by farmers, who practice slash and burn agriculture. Haze causes major discomfort, including breathing trouble and other respiratory diseases. Children and the elderly are especially susceptible to problems associated with it.
Normal working life in Singapore is greatly disrupted by the haze. It becomes impossible to step outside without a mask or spend much time in the open air, because the risk of developing a serious respiratory disease is extremely high. Staying indoors becomes the only option for clean air. However, it is unhealthy to stay in the confines of a room without proper ventilation for long periods of time. In such a situation, air conditioners come in handy.
Can air conditioners protect us from haze?
Yes they can. Even though face masks can protect us from haze, they are not the best form of protection as they do not filter out all the disease causing pollutants in the atmosphere. If you are stepping outdoors in a haze filled environment, a face mask is necessary. However, the most effective way to protect yourself from haze is by staying indoors with all doors and windows closed as far as possible. An air conditioner can work as an effective form of ventilation, as this machine can filter the noxious air and ensure that the air indoors remains pure and pollution free. It is also useful to install additional air purifiers for extra protection. However, using air cleaners should be avoided as they generate ozone, which pollutes the air inside.
An air conditioner usually comes equipped with an air filter, which purifies haze and circulates clean air inside a room. However, for an aircon to have maximum effect, it is important to take good care of it.
How to take care of your air conditioner
It is imperative to regularly service your air conditioner, especially in Singapore, because of the heavy pollutants. Even though air conditioners are extremely sturdy and durable machines, regular servicing not only prolongs the life span but also, makes them function optimally. An average air conditioner will lose up to 5% of its efficiency every year. Regular servicing can reduce this loss of 5% and increase efficiency for a longer period. Increasing efficiency of an air conditioner leads to better purification as well as, conservation of electricity.
In a country like Singapore which suffers from serious haze problem, air conditioners are used widely and for prolonged periods of time. Air filters in the air conditioners must be replaced and cleaned regularly for better purification. If not serviced properly and frequently, an air conditioner might fail against haze, leading to pollution of indoor air as well.
Haze is an extremely serious problem and can have potentially devastating consequences. We should take adequate preventive measures to protect ourselves and our loved ones from the various health complications which can arise from it. Clean air is a precious necessity, and we should do our best to preserve it.