Air purifiers purify the air by eliminating dust, allergens, pollutants, contaminants, mites, smoke, bacteria, pollen, virus, molds, gas, odors, etc. With an ever increasing indoor air pollution, the necessity of having an air purifier has amplified. They are very useful for patients suffering from asthma and different types of allergies.
There are many brands with different specifications in the market place, making it difficult for consumers to choose the best one.
Types of technologies used in Air Purifiers:
The technology used in air purifying is categorized into two – Active and Passive. However, there are some purifiers which make use of both technologies.
1. Active technology
Active technology is technology, wherein air is purified outside the purifying unit by producing some kind of effect in the air. Active air purifiers are of two types:
• Ionizer purifiers produce ions, which attach to particles and eliminate dust particles, chemical compounds etc. from air
• Ozone generators alter molecules of oxygen and turn them into ozone; thus destroying micro-organisms and remove gases and odors from air
2. Passive technology
Passive technology involves purifying air by drawing it to the purifier. The air drawn passes through the filters, present in the purifier, thus purifying the air from micro-organisms, contaminants, dust particles, allergens, pollen, gas, odors, etc. Some of the passive technologies include:
• HEPA and generic filters – both used to filter solid particles from air
• UV filters – used to kill micro-organisms in the air
• Activated carbon air filters – used to remove odors and chemical compounds
• Electrostatic precipitators – used to filter very small particles
It’s compulsory that the purifiers using passive technology need to have filters.
3. Active and passive technologies
This is a combination of both active and passive technologies and the purifiers with this technology are more efficient than purifiers with each of the individual technologies.
Concerns They Address
Before buying an air purifier, one should be clear about the purpose of the purchase. There are various concerns, which an air purifier needs to address.
Asthma: Asthma is a chronic breathing disease, which exaggerates further on breathing air filled with impurities. Air purifiers should not only be able to filter air from impurities but also should be able to oxidize air.
Allergies: Most of the city dwellers are exposed to dusty environments. The dusty air consists of many tiny dusty particles like pollen of plants, tiny stones, sand etc, which are allergic to most people. Since most of the allergens are solid particles, air purifiers that have efficient enough to filter these allergens should be bought.
Smoke: Smoke is a major concern in houses on road sides or in the industrial localities. Other reasons for smoke indoors are burning, cooking etc. Smoke contains some degree of pollutants capable of affecting the a lot of people’s health. Air purifiers should be able to effectively clear all the thick solid particles found in smoke.
Odor: Modern day homes have very limited ventilation options. Hence, the circulation of air in the home becomes difficult. Due to the stagnation of air, odor may develop. Odors may also be due to various reasons like burning, cooking, painting etc. In such cases, air purifiers should be able to eliminate odor from air.
Flu, Virus and Cold: Now in addition to the natural pollutants and contaminants that are found in air, a good amount of micro-organisms are also present at any given place. These micro-organisms are generally viruses, bacteria and small germs. These are most commonly known to cause problems such as flu and cold. They are more rampant in some specific seasons. New air purifiers are now capable of killing biological organisms present in air. Opting for this kind of purifier generally is very beneficial to consumers in protecting their health.
Mold: These spores are among the main airborne contaminants. They usually cause many health issues such as allergy, sneeze, asthma, cough etc. They are sometimes poisonous and pose severe threats. Hence, one should make sure the purifier is able to combat these minute, yet threatening spores.
Chemicals: Chemicals are part of almost everybody’s lives today. Sometimes these chemicals release toxic gases that can cause an irreparable damage to the people’s health as they inhale. An efficient air purifier embedded with technology of purifying chemical contaminants should be given the highest priority.
Pet dander: Homes with pets have high chances of air contamination due to their dander. Some people may also be allergic to this. So as to keep the surroundings of the home free from dander, one should select a suitable air purifier.
Air purifiers, are basic necessities that should be purchased within every household. Today, current technologies abound that are effective for cleaning the air we breathe. Consider the above mentioned factors before you purchase your air purifier for healthy living.