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Comprehensive Air Purifier Buying Guide | Beilian

Air pollution is one of the significant factors that is contributing to climate change. Many cities worldwide have inferior air quality, and much of our air is laden with chemicals and smog. Polluted air undoubtedly has adverse health effects. Research by the University of Chicago Energy Policy Institute concluded that air pollution reduces life expectancy by 2.3 years. The air of your home environment is not clean either. A study by the Environmental Protection Agency declares that certain air pollutants have a higher concentration in indoor air rather than in outdoor air, so if you think that you are better protected indoors, then you are mistaken. 

All these studies show that air quality plays a vital role in our physical health and affects our lungs and blood circulation. It is better for us to individually take steps to keep our surrounding air pure, and the best way to do this is by investing in an efficient air purifier. In this blog, we will guide you through the process of choosing an air purifier that fulfills your requirements. 

 

Why Do You Need An Air Purifier?

If you are living in a closed environment like a centrally air-conditioned apartment or even a room with limited ventilation, an air purifier is particularly important. Portable air purifiers are suitable for single-room air purification. They are a separate category from whole-house air purifiers. Whole house air purifiers are integrated with a home's air conditioning or heating system. For pet owners, cat hairs and dog hairs can float in their home environment and contribute to inferior air quality as they are not exactly clean, and an air purifier can remove these. In wintertime, people light fireplaces, which release smoke in the surroundings, and an air purifier can keep the warm air clean. 

 

How Does An Air Purifier Work?

Air purifiers clean the air by removing dust and pollutant particles that float in the air. Their limitation is that they cannot remove the particles once they settle on the ground. For clearing ground-settled particles, a vacuum cleaner is more suitable. 

An air purifier is fitted with filters having an ultra-fine mesh that can trap 99.97% of very small-sized (0.3 microns) particles. Such a filter is effective enough to clear the air from most pollutants like cigarette smoke, pet hairs, and dust. 

 

Air Purifier Kinds

Air purifier technology has diversified a lot in recent years and browsing the markets you are going to see a variety of air purifier types using different mechanisms to purify the air. Let us explore some of the most popular air purifier types. 

 

Mechanical filter Air Purifiers 

These types of purifiers have fans that suck the surrounding air and pass it through filters made of fine fibers that filter these particles. These fine mesh filters are known as HEPA filters, named after a filter quality rating agency. These filters ideally remove tiny particles but can also remove larger particles if they are levitating in the air like mold fungi, pollen, etc. Such filters are not capable of removing odors or foul-smelling gases. Hence if you are cooking in the house then a purifier cannot remove the food odor. 

The negative aspect of these air purifiers is that the filter should be replaced after 6 to 12 months of operation and this maintenance cost adds up in the long run as mechanical filters do not come cheap and cost on average $80. 

 

Carbon Filters Air Purifiers 

Air purifiers featuring carbon filter technology make use of activated carbon to trap specific gases, which also include odors. However, some gases like ammonia, nitrogen oxide, and formaldehyde are unlikely to be captured by this filter type. Carbon filters are not designed to trap dust particles, so a good air purifier manufacturer will offer purifiers that incorporate both these filters to offer a comprehensive air purifying solution. A carbon filter gets contaminated even faster than a mechanical filter, so it needs to be replaced after three months. However, they are priced cheaper than mechanical filters at $50. 

 

What Not To Buy?

Several types of air filtering technologies can produce harmful chemicals not good for the environment even if they clear the air of particles. We recommend against purchasing these types of air purifiers. 

The most popular of these air purifiers incorporate ozone generation mechanisms. Such gadgets generate ozone gas that reacts with irritants to change their chemical structure. Many ozone generator-based purifier brands will claim that the ozone level generated by the gadget is below the hazard level once you step into the market, but that is a fake claim. These generators are also inefficient in purifying air since there is no 100% guarantee that the ozone will destroy all types of pollutants. 

 

Factors To Consider While Buying An Air Purifier

 

Filter replacement cost

Filter cost is a crucial aspect that you should not neglect before buying an air purifier. Since you will be replacing filters every 6 months in the case of mechanical filters and 3 months for carbon filters, you need to have a clear idea about the annual cost. Filter prices have a diverse range, and you need to ask the brand what kind of filter is fitted, i.e., whether it is a HEPA filter or non-HEPA, etc. 

 

Room Area

Determining the room size for which your filter will be effective for is no easy task. You will encounter countless brands claiming that they clear the air of large room sizes, but they will not be effective. To keep it simple, a purifier having the AHAM certification seal means that the rated room size claim is accurate. If there is no rating then fan speed and air purifier size can give you an idea about the air purifier cleaning area. A high-speed fan with a large purifier size can purify air in a small room with a lower fan speed.

 

Noise

Assess an air purifier not only based on its performance but also on how comfortably you can coexist with it. Since these devices are meant to operate continuously, they should emit minimal noise. Noisy fans can be particularly distracting in rooms where you normally study or work. 

 

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