Indoor air pollution is a serious problem. Based on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), air pollution levels are two to five times higher indoors. In certain buildings with deficiencies in proper ventilation, the indoor air may be 100 times more polluted compared to the air outside! The reason being modern buildings are constructed with energy efficiency in mind. However, the tight seals that make a property energy-efficient also trap pollutants inside. Along with that, the typical American takes nine out of ten breaths indoors, so it’s imperative to be sure that your indoor air is free from allergens and other impurities.
Air purifiers eliminate allergens, toxic chemicals, and other dangerous pollutants. This information explains why people use air purifiers, how they work, which air purifiers you must avoid, and how to choose the most effective air cleanser for your needs.
Common Indoor Air Pollutants
What’s the origin of indoor air pollution? With regards to organic pollutants, mold and dust mites are everywhere – and they are the two most typical reasons for year-round allergic rhinitis (hay fever). Pollen can also be a pervasive allergen that always finds its way into your property since it is so small and sticky. If you have pets, they will surely spread their dander to every nook and cranny of your home. Many viruses and bacteria may also be airborne.
Although they are not organic allergens, Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) cause many people to have allergies and other health problems. VOCs include formaldehyde, fragrances, pesticides, solvents, and cleaning agents. VOCs can enter the air through chemical off-gassing from furniture, new carpets, adhesives, plastics, and various building materials. Furthermore, many VOCs are known carcinogens (cancer-causing agents).
Environmental contaminants like cigarette smoke, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, and nitrogen dioxide are often within your indoor air, as well 辦公室空氣 as toxic heavy metals like airborne lead, mercury vapor, and radon.
How Air Purifiers Work
HEPA air purifiers work with a HEPA air filter, that was produced by the Atomic Energy Commission in the 1940s as a way to filter radioactive contaminants. HEPA filters set the standard for air purifiers: to be classified as HEPA, a filter must capture at the least 99.97% of pollutants at 0.3 microns or larger. Top-selling HEPA air purifiers are the Austin Air purifier, available with a HEGA (High Efficiency Gas Adsoprtion) filter, along with air purifiers from IQAir, Allerair, Blueair, and Honeywell.
Activated carbon filters remove gases, odors, and chemical toxins. The carbon is “activated” when it’s treated with oxygen, which opens up countless tiny pores to attract and adsorb chemicals. Impregnated carbon filters have already been treated with an additional chemical, normally either potassium iodide or potassium permanganate; these chemicals, called chemisorbents, enhance the carbon filter’s capability to trap VOCs and other chemically reactive gases.
Electrostatic filters use an electrostatic charge to attract pollutants and trap them on collector plates. These filters are great for those who don’t want to concern yourself with changing HEPA filters, but if the collection plates are not cleaned frequently, they quickly lose efficiency. Also, beware that some electrostatic filters emit ozone, that is regarded as a robust lung irritant and can be extremely irritating to some individuals with asthma or allergies. The Friedrich air cleanser is, by far, the most effective electrostatic air cleanser, as well as the overall top-ranked air cleanser in previous Consumer Reports rankings.
Charged media filters give pollutants an electrostatic charge before collecting them in a conventional filter. Charged media filters are generally quite effective, but like electrostatic filters, they lose efficiency rapidly-and they might require frequent and expensive filter changes. Some charged media air filter units also emit ozone. The benefit of charged media filters is that they’re quieter and more energy-efficient than HEPA air purifiers. The Blueair air cleanser is the greatest charged media filter, and it does not emit ozone.
Where and How exactly to Use an Air Purifier
If you suffer with allergies (especially if you’re allergic to dust mite allergen), then the most effective place for an air cleaner is your bedroom. It’s essential to possess climate in your bedroom because you spend about a next of your lifetime there. If you’re allergic to animal dander and have pets, then you might want to place an air cleaner in the space where your pets spend most of the time-and keep carefully the pets from your bedroom! Also, you shouldn’t place an air cleaner in the corner of an area; it ought to be at least a few feet away from the walls for maximum air flow.
You need to run your air cleanser continuously for optimum performance. Most air purifiers have high and low settings. Even although you go on holiday, we recommend that you keep your air cleanser running on low. Otherwise, you’ll come back to a residence packed with polluted air! If you should be concerned about your electric bill, discover how much energy an air cleaner uses before buying it. Typical HEPA air purifiers may use anywhere from 50 watts on low to 200 watts on high. For comparison, a typical lamp uses about 60 watts, while a typical computer uses about 365 watts.
Air Purifiers to Avoid
Avoid ozone generators and ionizing air cleaners. These air purifiers create ions that attract pollutants; however, lots of the pollutants are released back to the air, sometimes leading to dirty spots on nearby walls. Besides the fact that they don’t execute a good job of cleaning the air, ozone generators and ionizing cleaners also emit ozone. Ozone, a primary part of smog, could potentially lead to a critical asthma attack.
Moreover, David Peden, researcher at the Center of Environmental Medicine and Lung Biology at the University of North Carolina, has examined how ozone exposure might exacerbate the allergic response of people who are allergic to dust mites, and his results claim that ozone worsens the asthmatic response. The EPA has warned consumers against using ozone generators, and Consumer Reports recommends against the most recent Ionic Breeze Quadra, regardless of the addition of OzoneGuard, a tool meant to eliminate a few of the dangerous ozone emitted by the Ionic Breeze.
Consumer Reports points out: “Our air-cleaning tests reveal that the Ionic Breeze with OzoneGuard does an unhealthy job of removing smoke, dust and pollen particles from the air when new and after 500 hours of continuous use” and “the Ionic Breeze with OzoneGuard still adds ozone to the air.”
How exactly to Choose the Best Air Purifier
The air cleanser market is vast and riddled with confusing and often misleading advertising schemes. If you’re buying an air cleaner, then you should first consider what type of pollutants you’re attempting to eliminate. For instance, in the event that you have problems with cigarette smoke, then you’ll desire to ensure your air cleanser has the ability to eliminate fumes, VOCs, and other gases.