what Is Air Purifier And How It Works

What is air purifier and how it works? Do you know? The air purifier has been trending recently worldwide but many have not yet known what the device called air is all about, what it does and how it works. No worries, we shall be answering all these questions today. Stay tuned!

According to the U.S Environmental Protection Agency that the air quality indoors can be two to five times more polluted than the air outside? Many a time the indoor air we thought is pure air is not any pure at all.

They contain tiny microbes sized items that can cause you numerous health issues like pet dander, hair, odor, combustion products, mold, pollen, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), lead dust, asbestos, dust mites feces, etc. Hence, the purpose of Inventing Air Purifier.

What Is Air Purifier And How It Works

Do you live in Europe? Kindly check our articles on best air purifiers for allergy and asthma UK, and Winix air purifier UK.


What is Air Purifier

Air Purifier, also known as air cleaner is a device that removes contaminants from the air in the room to improve indoor air quality. It is most beneficial to people suffering from allergens and asthma.

Air purifiers also help in eliminating second-hand tobacco smoke.  Aside from using an air purifier at home or offices, they can also be used in the industries to remove impurities from the air before processing.

An air purifier helps to capture air pollutants that contaminate the indoor air quality you inhale into your lungs like pet dander, pollen, dust mite VOCs, gases, ash, tobacco smoke, unpleasant odors, etc. that may cause you and your household ill health or trigger asthma.

By removing particles from the air, these contaminants don’t have the opportunity to get inside your lungs as you breathe. The less bad particles you inhale, the healthier you stay.

Why Air Purifier Is Important

There are so many reasons why an air purifier is important and you need at least one air purifier in your home. Look at these statistics:

  • Indoor air pollution is the 8th most important risk factor for diseases and is responsible for an estimated 2.7% of the global burden of all diseases.
  • Between 1.5million and 2million deaths a year could be linked to indoor air pollution
  • Around 50% of the world population (about 3 billion people) is exposed to indoor air pollution from open fires and wood-burning cooking stoves.
  • In the USA, between 2,100 and 2,900 cases of lung cancer in non-smokers are linked to radon exposure.
  • Radon is the second biggest factor in lung cancer.
  • Dampness and mold increases the risk of asthma-related problems by 30 to 50 percent

How Do Air Purifiers Work?

The air purifier does a good cleaning job by sucking in all the poor quality indoor air into the air purifier, then this dirty air is made to pass through various filters incorporated in the air purifier, which after the purification of air inside the air filters, the purified air is pumped out into the room.

The air purifier keeps repeating these processes to keep the indoor air clean and well-circulated in the room.

Of which when the filter is oversaturated with this air pollutant, you either remove the filters and replace them with a new one or you vacuum them and replace them back. But it all depends on the brand you purchased.

Let’s look at various stages air purification goes through before coming out clean:

5-stage air purification system

Stage 1: Pre Filter

This is the first stage of all air purifiers no matter the type you bought. As soon as the air purifier encounters contaminated air in the room as its first line of defense it captures bigger particles like dust, animal hair, mold, pollen, dust mites from the polluted air.

It also reduces the pressure on the filters behind, thus increasing their efficiency.

Stage 2: Customize Filter

At this second stage, the purifier captures and cleans the air of yellow dust, NOx, pollen, SOx, bacteria, pet allergens, exhaust fumes, mold, Influenza, legionella, and VOCs. It is called filters of different needs.

Stage 3: Deodorization Filter

Air purifier manufacturers have actually conquered the warning Environmental Agencies to consumers that air purifiers are not effective at capturing gases and volatile organic compounds by making air purifiers with deodorized filter.

This filter traps and cleans the air of gases and VOCs, Noxious gas, the smell of foods, the smell of animals, the smell of cigarettes, H2S, and odors.

Stage 4: HEPA Filter

A HEPA filter is the core technology of air of all air purifiers. They are the best powerful filters made form minuscule glass fibers.

These fibers are then tightly woven to trap 99.97% of the air pollutants with a size of 0.3microns or more. As many times as the air passes HEPA filters, the cleaner the air becomes.

HEPA filters clean the air of particles such as mold, pet dander, fine dust, cigarette fumes, dust particles, dust mites, smoke, pollen, and allergies.

Stage 5: Activated Carbon Filter

The main work of this particular filter is to trap and eliminate odors, formaldehyde, chemicals, smoke, VOCs, cooking odors, household odors, tobacco smoke, etc.

These are the five stages of air purification passes through before coming out cleaner but note that not all air purifiers in the market have these five stages, No. Some air purifiers are three-stage filters, some are four stage filters while some are five stage filters depending on the type and work it meant to do.

The effectiveness of your air purifier depends on the number and types of filters it is constructed with. The basic air purifier in the market has 3-stages filters, which are pre-Filter, True HEPA Filter /(HEPA Type or HEPA like), and Activated Carbon Filter. While the higher air purifier has a 5-stages air filtration system.

Caution!

Air Purifiers labeled HEPA type filter or HEPA like filter are not as effective as the air purifiers labeled True HEPA filters. Bear this in mind when choosing your air purifier. Always buy an air purifier that has a True HEPA filter.

Should You Really Get Air Purifier?

Air Purifier is the greatest device that helps to promote good health. But if you ask me this question in person I would say Yes and No with the reasons below but the choice is yours:

Yes, you need air purifier if :

  • You’re like other 50 million Americans that suffer from allergies or have asthma. You will notice a big difference once you start using air purifier even your use of inhaler will reduce drastically.
  • You always get sick or have someone in your home that gets sick often or prone to infection.
  • You have little children in your home because pollution harms their health more and very fast due to their tender lungs.
  • You have a furry pet so as to get rid of their hair roaming in your air.
  • You have a car.
  • You smoke, leave with someone that smokes, or has chain smokers as neighbors.
  • Lastly, you need an air purifier to ensure that you stay free form airborne toxins and stay as healthy as possible.

But No, you don’t need air purifier if you:

  • None of the above cases is you because you may not notice the difference if you’re always healthy.

What Are Air Purifier Purifying Techniques?

As long as air purification remains, there are only two ways indoor air can be purified, which are Passive and Active purification techniques.

Passive air purifiers are more efficient than active air purifiers. Reason being that they remove all dust and particulate matter permanently from the air and collected in the filter.

And the most common types of air purifiers under this category are Air Purifiers that have High Efficient Particulate Air (HEPA) filter, Activated carbon filter, and Ultraviolet Germicidal Irradiation (UVGI) filter.

Whereas Active air purifiers release negatively charged ions into the air, causing pollutants to stick to surfaces, which can be redistributed into the air, causing health problems. Such air purifier type is the Ionizer air purifier.

Air Purifier Pros and Cons

Pros

  • It helps you breathe clean air and with ease.
  • Removes all types of dust particles.
  • It captures all allergy and asthma triggers from the air, 99.97% airborne contaminants are captured.
  • It helps you get better skin and slows down aging.
  • It reduces skin dullness

Cons

  • It requires maintenance to work well.
  • Most air purifiers do not work as advertised.
  • Some air purifiers produce ozone which may be dangerous to your health like Ozone generator air purifiers and ionizer air purifiers.

Conclusion

Having an air purifier worth it seriously. Ensure to purchase according to your needs. If you have an allergy or asthma patient in your home, please do not buy an ionizer or ozone generator air purifier because ozone can get their health challenges worst. Go for those with True HEPA filter.

Then if it is chemical, odor, or smoke that are your challenges, then go for air purifiers with an activated carbon filter. But if your challenge is dust and dry skin air, go for air purifier humidifier combo.

Reference(s)

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