Air Purifiers: Everything You Need to Know
People generally believe that indoor air is cleaner than outdoor air. But that is not always true.
The air inside a closed place such as a house, office, car, etc. has more chances of retaining pollutants, germs, dust particles and other undesirable things in it than the outdoor air that is always moving.
Research also shows that some particular pollutants are found 2 to 5 times more in the indoor air than in the outdoor air.
Now you must be thinking what can be done to remove such pollutants? How can you breathe safe and pollutant-free air?
To breathe in the quality air, you need air-purifiers that are specifically designed to meet your air quality needs.
To learn how they perform this activity and a lot more about air-purifiers, we have written this full of information in-depth article that you must read to decide whether an air-purifier worth your money or is it just the market hype?
What is an Air Purifier?
Air-purifier is an appliance that is particularly manufactured with the sole purpose of cleaning indoor air and removing unwanted impurities such as germs, smoke, odor, dust particles, and pet dander, etc.
Till now, different types of air-purifiers have been designed and all these kinds of air-purifiers come with different features and various benefits.
How exactly does an Air Purifier Cleanse the Air?
The internal system of an air-purifier is developed in such a way that a fan draws in the impure air first, then with the assistance of filters (different filters in different types) all the impurities such as harmful particles, pollens, bacteria, dust, and smoke, etc. are wiped out from the air. This clean air is then dispersed back into the room to give impurity-free air to inhale in.
The filters used in it are constructed of different materials. To keep an air-purifier functioning, its filters should be replaced regularly with the new ones. Regular replacement of filters makes air-purifiers a bit expensive as you will have to pay for the maintenance even after buying them.
Who Needs an Air Purifier?
Breathing in clean air can save you from many problems that may happen if you inhale pollen, bacteria, or dust particles with it. Depending on the level of your needs you can decide whether you should have it or not.
We have mentioned here some of its great benefits that can help you decide whether it is worth your money or not.
- We all enjoy the company of pet animals and love sheltering them at our home. But other than affection, pets also give us pet dander and a lot of furs. To protect yourself and your loved ones at home, air-purifiers tend to remove such particles from the air before they even have the chance to settle down.
- Smoking is not only bad for the one who does it but also for others who inhale its smoke. If you have someone at home who smokes or smoke from any fireplace is often found at your place then you can remove it with the help of an air-purifier before it disturbs your normal breathing process.
- Air-purifiers can provide great breathing comfort to those who suffer from seasonal allergies such as asthma. Pollen grains and other such particles in air trigger this allergy. Air-purifier can easily trap particles like pollens to help asthma patients enjoy life like other normal people.
- Air-purifiers also claim to remove microscopic germs from the air that can make you sick if inhaled. Different bacteria, viruses, and molds are always present in the air. You never know when will they go inside your system or affect your furniture or any other thing that you want to keep safe.
- Companies produce air-purifiers in different shapes and sizes. So you can choose which fits your needs the best. Car air-purifiers are smaller in size to fit in less space on the other hand room air-purifiers are larger.
- It removes bad odor from the room and makes sitting more comfortable.
- Breathing in clean air will give your lungs freedom from impurities and you will become more confident about your lings health.
Most Common Types of Air Purifiers:
Many people believe on the myth that all air purifiers work in the same way. This is not true at all. Their working largely depends on which type of purifier you are using. Most common types of air-purifiers are mentioned below:
- HEPA Filters:
HEPA stands for High-Efficiency Particulate Absorption. This is a kind of filter that is well known for its ability to eradicate 99.97% pollutants from the air that are larger than 0.3 microns in size. This means other than capturing dust particles etc. it can capture notorious molds and bacteria as well.
They are made up of thin-fiber like material that traps larger to smaller particles. But it cannot remove smell and gases from the air. For which any other filter is used along with it to create an ideal air-purifier. It needs replacement after 2 to 4 years.
- UV Light Filters:
Some air purifiers use UV light to filter air. UV light is a great weapon against bacteria and viruses and can provide good protection against them. It not only damages their cellular structure but also their genetic structure. When DNA of microbes gets damaged due to UV, they kill themselves due to a self-destruction mechanism.
But UV filters are not used alone in an air-purifier. Other filters such as HEPA filter, activated carbon filter are also used with it because UV lamp is unable to trap particles present in air so other filters are used to do what UV cannot do. UV lamp kills bacterium and other microbes in less than 10 seconds.
UV light comes in 3 types (UVA, UVB and UVC) based on their wavelength. Out of all these, UV-C (wavelength 100-280nm) is used in air purifiers. But before buying it, make sure you buy a purifier that does not produce ozone (a harmful gas). UV-C of 160-240nm range produces ozone in the air.
- Activated Carbon Filters:
Unlike HEPA filters, carbon filters are known for removing gases and odors from the air. Activated carbon filters are activated carbon atoms that have very tiny holes in them which make them able to trap particles and form bonds with unwanted molecules present in the air.
It has a large surface area due to which it can eliminate a large number of particles at a time. But it is less efficient as compared to other filters. Different chemicals (such as potassium permanganate) are added in it to boost its effectiveness.
- Electrostatic Filters:
Electrostatic filters remove particles from the air by electrically attracting them towards an opposite charge. In such filters, the air is passed through stationary fibers that have static charges. When air particles pass through the pores of this filter, charges attract them towards themselves and separate them from the air. Air gets purified and is eliminated from the air-purifier while unwanted particles stay behind on the collector plate. From the collector plate, they can be removed easily.
What is amazing about this filter is that it does not need replacement after some time. The reason is that it uses electric charges to separate impurities and these impurities do not stick to filter but get separated in a collection plate from where they are removed. To maintain the performance of this filter it is recommended to not let particles gather on the plate and remove them after some time.
More Ways to Increase Quality of Air:
The quality of air that you breathe can be improved with the help of various other ways. Some useful and effective ways are given below:
- To stop the smell from kitchen and bathrooms from reaching other areas of the home, it is better to implant exhaust fans there. Before going to the bathroom or kitchen, turn them on and let them remove the bad odor from the air.
- When air-purifiers are at rest, open windows of your home to let the air circulate throughout the home and remove pollutants that have been in the home for hours.
- Maintain the air-purifiers regularly. Take extra care of the filters and read the guidelines provided with the appliance to know when the filters need to be replaced with the new ones.
- By taking extra precautionary measures, you can prevent damaging the air quality. For example, you can politely stop whoever smokes in your home to do the activity outside the house, and you can avoid unnecessary burning of fuel such as coal or wood, etc.
The Bottom Line:
Now that you have learned everything about air-purifiers you can easily decide which air purifier you need. They are safe to use at home unless no harmful by-product (ozone gas) is produced.
Remember that poor quality air can harm you in one way or another. With the gradual increase in pollution globally, indoor air is no longer free of impurities and pollutants. Respiratory problems are rising and demand for better quality air is also growing every day.
To meet your better quality air needs, air purifiers can do a lot! So decide wisely and choose a healthy life.