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Air Filter Home - How To Choose The Right Air Filter For Your Home

system particles filters microbes

Indoor air quality, especially inside homes, can sometimes be far worse than the outdoor air quality. There is a seemingly endless list of items in the home that could be adding contaminants to the air. Air inside the home that is full of pollutants could cause health problems, make respiratory problems more acute, and even spread illness to the household members.

There are ways to maintain a clean breathing environment in the home. The first step is to make sure that the home stays clean. The second is to look into purchasing an air filter appropriate for your house.

There are several different types of air filters on the market. Some are better at removing certain particles than others. One of the key things to investigate inside of your home is exactly what type of pollutant you are dealing with the most. This will help determine what type of air filter you will need.

There are three main categories of contaminants that are common in homes. The first is referred to as particulate matter, or particulates. These are very small chunks of matter, dust or other things, that are floating in the air. Most are too small to be seen by the naked eye.

The next category are microbes. These are germs, viruses, mold spores, and other biological materials that could cause illness in a person. Our bodies are usually able to fight off these microbes, but there are always occasions where a weakened immune system or a very powerful virus will lead to illness.

Finally, there are gaseous contaminates. Examples of these are vapors from nail polish remover or other beauty products, fumes from gasoline or home improvement supplies. Gaseous particles are not usually a large enough problem in a home settings to warrant purchasing a specialized air filter just to remove them.

Once you have determined what types of pollutants you will want to filter from your home, you will now need to decide if you want a permanently installed air filter or a mobile unit that can be moved from room to room.

For homes that have central air, it would be best to get a permanently installed unit that is attached to the air system. This way the entire house can be cleaned of pollutants while the air is running. This also lessens the problem of spreading particles from one room to the next when moving around.

A mobile air filer is convenient because it can clean out one room at a time, however they are not really powerful enough to clear out an entire home. For that purpose, multiple mobile units would have to be purchased and set up in different rooms.

The final step is to decide what cleaning process you would like to use to clean the air in your home.

The High Efficiency Particulate Air filter, or HEPA filer, is one of the more popular filters that is widely available. This air filter uses a physical barrier of very finely woven fabric to capture nearly all of the particles that are passing through it. HEPA filters are excellent at removing almost all particulate matter, however they will not remove most gaseous contaminants and will be ineffective against small microbial particles such as bacteria or some mold spores.

The primary drawback of HEPA filters is the cost of a replacement filter. They are often quite expensive, and the best air purifiers can require two to five of these at one time. Another problem, depending on the model purchased, may be the noise created. Some HEPA filtration systems are very noisy.

Another type of air filter for the home is called an ionic filter. This system will use a fan to draw air through a system which charges the particles that are passing through the device. These charged particles are then passed through oppositely charged metal plates which attracts them. The particles then stick to the plates and are removed from the air.

This system is very efficient. Replacement filters do no need to be purchased, the charged metal plates are simply washed off and replaced. One of the drawbacks of an ionic filter system is that the particles, particularly microbes and bacteria, are not destroyed. They are just stuck to a metal plate. The utmost care should be taken when cleaning the filter out.

A controversial subject about ionic filters is their production of ozone. Some ionic air filters produce a small amount of ozone, which is a lung irritant. For those with serious breathing problems, ionic filters may make some symptoms worse. But there is still debate about this topic.

The final air filter system is an ultraviolet filter. This is a system where the air is drawn under ultraviolet lights. This system effectively kills most of the microbes that are in the air. It will do nothing to particulate matter or to gaseous fumes. It is exclusively for filling bacteria, molds and other microbes. This system, when used in a home, is best employed with another type of filter.

The air quality in the home can affect so many parts of life, not the least of which is health and enjoyment of normal daily activities. An air filter system for your home is one of the best investments that can be made.

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