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What Is The Best Way To Keep My Air Clean

If you have ever suffered from seasonal allergies or breathing related disorders such as asthma, or chronic sinusitis, you have undoubtedly heard of the necessity for better air filtration than what is provided standard in homes by air conditioning contractors. Understand that air-conditioning contractors are interested in promoting clean indoor air, but are very limited by people who sometimes consider better air filtration to be an unnecessary expense, or builders who desire their new home to have better fixtures and appliances than clean air.

A flood of air cleaners is available today in the market spanning from high technology that is proven to lower airborne particulates and technology that is simply mass marketed to the public. What filter is best? Is my iconic breeze really suitable for my allergies? Is my investing in a high-end electronic air cleaner, or a true HEPA air cleaner, or simply better filters such as electrostatic filters or pleated filters, going to improve substantially the air quality in my home?

While all of the above mentioned air cleaners can have an impact in improving air quality they vary tremendously in the degree of efficiency. For many years electronic air cleaners led the forefront as being cutting edge for their removal of small particulates from the air stream including even particles as small as pollen and micro particles less than .3 microns (Вµ) in size. What was not well discussed about these forms of air cleaners is although they had a 99% or greater initial efficiency rating within 30 days their rating plummeted because it was extremely important to keep the collectors cells clean for them to continue with a high efficiency. The same holds true today for any type of air cleaner that requires electrostatic charging of particles.

The vast majority of homes built today still feature what the air-conditioning industry humorously calls "boulder catchers" for filters. These blue disposable filters are good at best for the removal of large chunks of air debris such as pet dander, hair, or carpet fibers, and only increase in their overall efficiency when they become thoroughly clogged creating a resistance for smaller particles but at a sacrifice of the operating efficiency of the cooling system.

So the question is what air cleaning system should I use? The answer is complex and is really based on what you want to remove from the air. Pollens because of their light airborne nature have a tendency to stay suspended in air longer and thus are more effectively removed by air cleaners than particles of dust that may be of larger size and heavy enough to fall from the air without ever even reaching any type of air cleaner. This is one reason why room air cleaners such as stand alone HEPA filters are much more effective in homes with allergy sufferers because the removal of heavier particles from the air can be concentrated in an area before the particles fall to the ground and are no longer able to reach the return air grill of the heating and cooling system.

One of the concerns with the quality of indoor air is can the pollutant even be removed by an air cleaner? If you are allergic to certain types of molds than the probable culprit is not the mold itself but what the mold gives off as part of its lifecycle which are called mycotoxins. These off gassings of mold are not typically caught by indoor air cleaners and as a result can be a source of irritation even though you may invest in one of the highest quality air cleaners in the market. If you have mold related allergies other strategies are needed other than just air filtration.