Frequently asked questions about air purifiers

We get a lot of question about air purifiers and how do they work, so we have put together the most frequently asked questions.

Frequently asked questions about air purifiers

How do I know which air purifier I need?

The first thing you need to decide is what problem you are trying to solve. There are 3 main uses of air purifiers

  1. Removing particles
  2. Removing chemicals
  3. Removing mould

Small HEPA air purifiers are ideal for bedrooms and can help relieve morning congestion.

A musty and mouldy basement needs a machine which can remove mould spores and odour.

A home with pets will need an air purifier that can remove dander; a home with a smoker will need an air purifier with lots of activated carbon.

Once you have identified the problem, tell us the size of the room and we can advise you on the correct type of machine.

How many air purifiers do I need?

It will depend on the size of the room and what the room is used for.

In a basement area, 2 small air purifiers may be more efficient than 1 large machine.

If the air purifier is being used to help ease respiratory issues, multiple air purifiers may be needed depending on the needs of the user. We would recommend placing 1 air purifier in the bedroom, as it particularly important to sleep in a clean room.  Depending on the needs of the user, the machine can be moved into the main living area during the day.  Some people find it easier to have 2 machines,  to save moving the machine in the morning and night time.

If the bedroom or main living area is large, 2 small machines may be more effective than 1 large machine.

How do I know an air purifier is working?

A day or two after you have installed an air purifier, the room should be cleaner. Breathing should be easier. Morning congestion and allergy symptoms should be lessened. The air in the room should no longer feel heavy. Some air purifier brands have electronic monitors which signal when the filter should be changed.  When the used filter is removed, it will be obvious how hard it has worked.

Are there side effects to an air purifier?

In a quality, non-ozone producing air purifier, there won’t be any side effects other than improved health. The air purifiers only emit clean air into the room. They do not emit anything that gives off an odour (such as ozone) or puts any chemicals into the air. The bad stuff is removed and clean air is exhausted. That’s it. For people who are chemically sensitive, it is important that the air purifier unit itself be constructed of materials which won’t off-gas.  Some low quality air purifier brands however, can have such insignificant filtration that they remove very little, or emit harmful ozone.

 Does an air purifier cost a lot to use?

There are two issues: power consumption and filter changes to this question. Generally, the high quality air purifier uses a minimum of electricity. They are engineered to be energy-saving. New very eco-friendly models are available which use extremely low wattage.

Frequently asked questions about air purifiers

Do I need an air purifier with filters or is filter-less okay?

Although a filter-less air purifier sounds like the best idea because it would be cheaper to operate, there are several considerations.

  1. They typically do not work nearly as well as an air purifier with HEPA filtration.
  2. People tend to procrastinate on cleaning the filters, thus their effectiveness is greatly diminished.

Filter-less air purifier’s use electrostatic precipitation technology.  This has limited use as faster moving air can prevent the particles from sticking to the charged plates inside the air purifier. Large particles such as dust and dander can be collected on plates that are kept clean. However this system does not work well with the smaller particles found in smoke, moulds, and chemicals.

Does your air purifier come with filters?

Yes, every air purifier we supply contains the filters.

When do I run the air purifier?

The air purifiers we supply are designed to run continuously. The air purifiers cleans most effectively and operate most cost effectively when left alone, rather than turned off and on.

Where do I place the air purifier?

If you have a place that is the source of a pollutant (such as an area where someone smokes or where the cat lays most of the time), place the air purifier near the source of the problem. Otherwise, it can be placed anywhere in the room .Most air purifier models should not be placed flat against the wall, but it depends on the model. It is generally best that the air purifier be open to the air all around it.

How do I know when to change the filters?

Filter changes depend on the brand and the model. Some air purifier brands have electronic indicators which tell you when to change the filters. Some manufacturers designate a time period that the filter is intended to last.

In general, the HEPA filters last a number of years, the gas and odour, or activated carbon filters will need to be changed sooner. It is important to change a pre-filter (which gets the larger pieces of dust and dander) according to the manufacturer’s recommendation.

Is it hard to change the filters?

The different brands vary in design, so it depends on the brand. In general, the air purifiers are designed for quick and easy filter change without tools. Replacement filters come with instructions. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding the filters.

Frequently asked questions about air purifiers

What is the best air purifier for mould?

We receive more questions about mould than just about anything else, other than seasonal allergy relief. Airborne mould spores are extremely small and can pass by the cilia in the sinuses. They are too small to be exhaled, so they can become lodged within the lung tissue of the body. Mycotoxins, the product of mould metabolism, are even more toxic. It is important to remove concentrations of mould in the home if possible.

Although an air purifier will remove the airborne mould particles, if the mould is embedded in surfaces in high concentrations, it should be professionally removed. An air purifier in the bedroom is very necessary if mould is causing a health problem. The musty smell in basements can be removed with an air purifier that is designed to remove mould. Fortunately, a good HEPA air purifier with activated carbon will remove the wide variety of toxins including mould spores.

How do I get rid of dust?

Although dust particles that can be seen by the human eye are aesthetically unpleasant, they are not as much of a health issue as the smaller particles which get past the body’s barriers. That is not necessarily the case when it comes to “dust bunnies” which can be composed of dust mites and their fecal material, skin cells, mould spores, pollen, and other nasty items. It is important to clean and vacuum regularly to get the dust bunnies and clumped dust particles. However, the minute you begin to clean, particles become airborne. It is helpful to run an air purifier on the high speed as cleaning progresses. Running an air purifier continuously will help keep the dust down too.

Will an air purifier help with my pets?

A quality air purifier will help reduce the pet dander and odour associated with pets. It will be especially helpful if it can be placed near where the pet spends a lot of time. Cats lick their fur and the saliva dries to a fine dust which becomes airborne, birds shake their feathers, and the super fine dust becomes airborne. Pets also track in allergens from the outdoors which can be removed by an air purifier. The odours associated with urine can also be removed by an air purifier with activated carbon or other absorbent media.

Are air purifiers loud?

The decibel level of an air purifier varies with the speed. Most are fairly loud on the highest speed. It is wise to run the air purifier on high when you’re not in the room. The highest speed will enable it to pull the air in from the farthest areas of the space. On the lower speeds, air purifiers are much quieter. Some brands are better designed for quiet operation than others. In general, silent air purifiers don’t move much air and don’t do much good.

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