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What You Need to Know About Air Purifiers


Need some help choosing which air purifier to get? Here is what you need to know.

What does an air purifier do?

An air purifier, as the name aptly implies, is a machine that cleans the air in indoor spaces by removing unwanted particulates. Different air purifiers use slightly different technologies and are designed to target specific pollutants in the air. To help you choose the air purifier best suited for your needs, consider what is essential to you when it comes to air purification.

What kind of air purifier do I need?

Allergies: Air purifiers meant for allergy sufferers use several different air filters, including a HEPA filter. HEPA filters are excellent for people with allergies and asthma, as they are incredibly effective at catching microscopic particles in the air. In fact, a HEPA filter can trap 99.7% of particles as small as .3 microns (four to five times smaller than the diameter of a single human hair!). So dust, pollen, pet dander, mold spores all become nonissues for you with this type of purifier. Some units have an advanced HEPA filter, known as a "super" or "hyper" HEPA, that can trap even smaller particles at an even higher rate.

Beyond the ability to catch such small particles, the benefit of HEPA filters comes from their ability to physically trap said particles and prevent them from ever getting released back into the air. Coupled with the fact that these filters maintain their efficiency over time, this makes HEPA filters a great long term solution.

Asthma: Purifiers made specifically for asthmatics are a combination of HEPA filter and a filter for odors and chemicals, often using activated carbon.

Smoke: Perhaps you have a beautiful fireplace you love to use or even a wood-burning stove. Smoke from a fire produces gases and chemicals, not to mention the soot that is left behind. An air purifier designed to deal with these smoke by-products will help combat lingering odors and possible respiratory issues.
While it is recommended that people no longer smoke indoors, this purifier is purported to work against smoke particles and the unpleasant odor of cigarettes or cigars. Because of just how unruly tobacco smoke is once it reaches the air, and the sheer number of toxins it contains, a budget air purifier will not suffice. Cleaning the air of smoke is a big job that is only effectively accomplished by an appropriately equipped heavy-duty machine.

Pets: Any pet owner knows some degree of anguish when it comes to maintaining a clean house with a cat, dog, or other pet around. Maybe you opted for one of those hairless or hypoallergenic creatures just for this reason, but fur and shedding aren’t the only issues when it comes to pets and air cleanliness. Most pets produce some dander, and pretty much all pets are responsible for some kind of odor. Air purifiers made for pet owners are designed to handle all of the above: pet hair, pet dander, and odors.

Chemicals: If you are one of those unlucky people who are naturally extra sensitive to the presence of chemicals in the air, there is a whole class of air purifiers made just for you. They are known as multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS) air purifiers. These purifiers come with even stronger odor and chemical filtration abilities. They are made of specially selected materials that will not produce any by-product gasses that would go back into the air and trigger your symptoms.

What additional features should I look for in an air purifier?

Once you decide the specific type of purifier that best meets your needs, there are still virtually endless models, brands, and versions to choose from. Something that can help you narrow it down and make the best choice is considering special features that may or may not be relevant to you. Such features could include:

  • "smart" or wi-fi capable units that can be tracked and manipulated from your phone, tablet, or computer
  • digital air quality indicators that show you valuable information on the quality of your air
  • energy efficient purifiers that have an EPA Energy Star rating
  • physical features like caster wheels, handles, remote controls, multiple settings, and a sensor that tells you when the filter needs to be replaced

Now that you’ve answered these questions for yourself, you have a better idea of what kind of air purifier is best for you. You know what special features are available and what factors to consider in making your decision. If you are still unsure quite which model will serve you best, call us at (636) 266-2290 or contact us here. The trained experts at Weis Comfort Systems will help you understand the specifics about air purifiers and will walk you through the decision-making process.

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