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Overview

It’s been now that even the blue sky doesn’t appear any blue but just all the smog wrapping the whole nearby distances. It not only makes the city seem hideous and ghastly but this is a serious health hazard and needs some thoughtful consideration.

How should we overcome such a continuing peril without hampering one’s health? It is health emergency and should be dealt with some earnest approach. As an individual you can take care of it temporarily by making use of air purifiers. Unlike televisions and smartphones, they are not easy to shop for.

As you are reading this, then you are definitely planning to look into buying one, so here’s a buying guide that will give you basic information of air purifiers and its features.

To begin with, first let us give you a brief idea about what exactly air purifiers are.

Air Purifiers are just like air-coolers, they draw air in and push through filters drenched in water to make it cooler. The air purifier works the same but instead of making the air cool, it pushes the air through finer filter to remove the particulate matter. Once air is made clean of particulates, it is again circulated back into the room. The time required to clean the air in any given space depends upon the size of the room capacity of the air purifier.

Types of Air Purifier Filters

Every air purification technique has its pros and cons. In such case, it is better to own an air purifier with multiple technologies in order to combine the advantages and eliminate the disadvantages of each air purification technique.

1. HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) Filters – HEPA air filters are most efficient known air filters available and are effective in removing 99.9% of particulates as small as 0.3 microns

Pros:

  • Removal of dust, mold spores, dust mites, pollens and other allergens.
  • Removal of many particulates and bacteria.
  • Solid particles caught are not released into the air again.

Cons:

  • Difficulty in removing airborne particles from across the room, since they must be wan through the filter.
  • Does not remove chemical fumes, cigarette smoke, gases or odours.
  • Does not capture ultra-fine particles, germs or viruses.
  • Micro-organisms captured in filter can reproduce and/or breed, can result in increased micro-organism population.

2. Air Ionizer – An air ionizer creates negative ions that changes the polarity of airborne particles making them attract to each other, magnetically. As a result, they become too large to remain airborne and get removed out of the air, which you breathe in. The most effective ionizers used are stainless steel “needlepoint” to yield negative ions.

Pros:

  • Removes particles from the air, including ultra-fine particles (0.01 microns)
  • Neutralization of bacteria, viruses, chemical fumes and cigarette smoke.
  • Able to circulate throughout the room to remove airborne particles that are away from purifier from where it stands.

Cons:

  • Does not amass many or most of the airborne particles are removed from the air.
  • Does not kill fungi, germs (although it does eliminate them from the air), and not all viruses.
  • Does not remove all chemicals and odours.

3. Germicidal UV Lamp – Ultraviolet (UV) lamps successfully destroy micro-organisms that pass through the bulb, including bacteria, germs, viruses and fungi.

Pros:

  • Ability to rescind micro-organisms, such as germs, fungi, bacteria and viruses.
  • Helps prevent disease and illness.

Cons:

  • No affect on particulate matter, including allergens.
  • No affect on odours, unless intended to produce ozone, which may not be desired under all conditions.
  • No affect on chemical gases, fumes or cigarette smoke.

4. Activated Carbon Air Filter – Activated carbon air filters consist of a vast system of molecular-sized pores. These pores are highly adsorbent, forming a strong chemical bond to gaseous, odorous and liquid contaminates.

Pros:

  • It is the most absorbent filter available and highly effective as it is able to capture chemical fumes, gases, odours and cigarette smoke.
  • Does not release bagged contaminates back into the air.

Cons:

  • Does not effectively remove or capture dust, micro-organisms and other allergens.
  • Has a difficulty in eradicating contaminates from across the room.

5. Ozone Generator – Ozone is a highly responsive oxidant that destroys certain chemicals and bacteria. Ozone being very effective does not always be needed or wanted under normal conditions. It can be completely turned off if not desired, in best case scenario.

Pros:

  • Highly effective against odours, including cigarette smoke and gases.
  • Helps to destroy bacteria and certain chemicals.

Cons:

  • The smell of it can be incommodious to few.
  • It may cause irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat if released in high enough concentrations.
  • No affect on solid particles (allergens) or neutralize any chemicals.

Other Factors for Consideration

  1. Particle Collection and Removal – Certain purifiers may have little effect in separating solid particles from the air. UV purifiers or ozone air purifiers, without a separate ionizer (such as needlepoints) and/or a HEPA air filter, are not capable of removing dust and other allergens from the air; which are the most common threats of airborne pollutants people want removed. Ionizers, without a filter, can remove solid particles but does not actually collect much of the particulate matter. HEPA air filters captures allergens and other particulate from the surrounding, removing them from the environment and preventing their re-entry the air.
  2. Removal of Chemicals, Smoke and Gases – Created by construction, household cleaners, cigarettes, etc. are impossible to be treated by other air purification technologies. Activated carbon air filters are the most absorbent and effective type of filter for chemicals, while HEPA air filters have negligible effect on these types of pollutants.
  3. Destruction of Micro-Organisms – Ozone and negative ions have capability to destroy certain kind of micro-organisms, but UV (ultraviolet) light is the most effective at destroying the maximum variety of micro-organisms. UV light destroys viruses, germs, bacteria, and fungi and helps in prevention of disease and illness.
  4. Coverage of a Room – Multiple Units are the most effective way, and sometimes even the more economical way to purify the air throughout the room. Some companies claim their portable air purifier is capable of purifying more than one room or an open space, which is inaccurate as purifiers can hardly purify one room at a time. Even an air purifier that uses ozone purification and negative ions (ionizer) cannot efficiently circulate the ozone and ions throughout a home.Negative ions have a short life of about 30 seconds and can cover an area of up to about 500 sq. ft. Ozone can reach extra feet further in the room before breaking down to oxygen, but still is not effective against most common and annoying indoor air pollutants (except for odours).The other option for purifying the air in as home is by installing an in-duct air cleaner.
  5. Odour Riddance – The most efficient air purification techniques for removal of odours are activated carbon air filtration and ozone purification. Activated carbon is the most effective absorbent type of filter for removing odour-causing agents, while ozone is a highly reactive and powerful oxidant capable of getting rid of odour-causing bacteria. Ozone is great for environments where strong odours are domineering, but can be bothersome when they do not, since it has its own scent. Therefore, it is important to be able to control the ozone productivity, or even to be able to turn the ozone release off completely.
  6. Sanitization of Filter – Air filters become breeding ground for micro-organisms as they get attached to trapped dust particles to breed or reproduce. That is why, it is utmost important that an air purifier (such as a HEPA filter) equipped with sanitizing device located next to the filter, if not so the growing populations of microbes will be circulated into so-called purified air. A UV lamp, ozone generator or ionizer can be used, although a germicidal UV lamp is most efficient at destroying variety micro-organisms.
  7. Noise – Air filtration units with a high wattage rating are capable of drawing large volumes of air through the unit, which means noisy machines. Hence, you trade air pollution for noise pollution.

Above mentioned are the most important factors and points that needs your attention before purchasing an air purifier. There are many air purifiers available in market from premium range to affordable ones, but sometimes the low-range machine works far better for your needs compared to the premium ones. In such case, go for your needs rather than the price range.

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