Air Purifier Buying Guide

Air Purifier Buying Guide

What are air purifiers for?

Air purifiers improve the quality of the air that we breathe, by reducing harmful airborne particles and allergens. Including:

  • Pollen
  • Bacteria
  • Dust
  • Mite faeces
  • Mildew
  • Mould
  • Cigarette smoke
  • Odours
  • Some viruses

This is particular benefit to those who are allergic to these particles, e.g. asthmatics, and those who suffer from hay fever and respiratory problems, and can even help cold and flu viruses from spreading, resulting in a healthier home, that is cleaner and fresher.

What are the different types of air purifiers?

There are four different types of air purifiers, and they all have the same purpose – to improve that standard of air that we breathe.

The four different types are as follows:

Air Ioniser

Air ionisers produce steam, consisting of negatively charged ions, which will cling to the positively charged ions in the air (airborne allergen particles and dust).

When these particles join, they become heavy, and sink to the floor.

An example of an Air Ioniser purifier is Cleanaer or Bionaire.

Cleanaer can drastically improve the quality of air and help with conditions like asthma, rhinitis, sinusitis, hay fever and other allergies.

The continuous release of liquid-ions ensures a constant flow to protect against the introduction of new particles, even from a sneeze! Once the particles are removed from the air, tests have proven that they remain locked down and do not recirculate.

HEPA Air Filter

HEPA is an acronym of High Efficient Particulate Air. To qualify as true HEPA, an air filter must remove 99.97% of all particles greater than 0.3 micrometer from the air that passes through. (Particles smaller than 0.3 microns are still trapped by HEPA filters but effectiveness is reduced to less than 99.97%.)

Most purifiers contain a HEPA filter (Highly Efficient Particular Air).  These filters remove 99.97% of pollutants in the air.

These filters are extremely useful for removing dirt, allergens, dust and mould particles, but do very little for removing bad odours or smoke.

If a HEPA purifier has an anti-bacterial pre-filter, larger particles will also be removed, and the filter should last longer.

Three HEPA filters offered are the Healthway, Bionaire and Blueair.

The HealthWay 20600-03 is one of the most advanced air purifiers on the market. This unique air purifier has been specifically designed to improve your indoor air environment by reducing airborne micro-organisms. It captures, holds and kills bacteria, viruses, mould and fungi.

A Blueair air purifier works efficiently, silently to remove 99.97% of allergens, asthma triggers, viruses, bacteria and other airborne pollutants.

Air sterilisation

Air sterilisation purifiers use technology to silently and effectively pull contaminated air in, by air convection. Contaminated air, such as pollen, pet allergens, viruses, fungi, mould, dust mites, odours and bacteria are all pulled in.

Once inside, air flow carries micro-organisms into the exclusive TSS sterilising chambers.

Inside these chambers, temperatures reach 400°F, incinerating all micro-organisms.

Sterilised air is then cooled and returned to the room.

An example of an air sterilisation air purifier is Airfree. Airfree air purifiers need no maintenance. There is no need to change filters or moving parts.

The TSS technology used in the Airfree air purifier is completely silent. With no fans or turbines, a good night’s sleep is guaranteed.  The Airfree air purifier uses less energy than a 40-60 w light bulb (dependant on the model chosen). It needs no maintenance or replacement parts and generates no waste.

The Airfree air purifier is easy to transport weighs less than 1.5 kg and takes up very little space.

Humidifiers

Humidifiers are an appliance used to add moisture to the air in a room of building.

Low humidity in a room occurs in hot or dry climates, or when indoor spaces are artificially heated.

Low humidity can cause a negative effect on your health, such as respiratory problems.

It can also have an impact on wooden furniture, leading them to shrink, and their joints to become loose or cracked.  Static electricity is heightened in low humidity, meaning dust and allergens will cling to surfaces, triggering asthma and allergies.

An example of a humidifier is Stadler or Bionaire.

Which model should I choose?

This depends on:

  • The size of the room
  • The level of air purification and cleanliness you want
  • Your budget

Other considerations:

  • How much space you have? – Some models can sit on a shelf.
  • How much the unit weighs? – Important if moving it from room to room.
  • Is it the correct size for the room – different size models clean different volumes of air?
  • The amount of times an hour the air is cleaned.
  • Other features you need such as remote control and speed settings.

Generally, the more levels of filtration and features a model has, the higher the price.
Air purifiers featuring HEPA filters are more expensive but are more effective than other filters at removing harmful bacteria and pollen that can affect allergy and asthma suffers.

Air purifiers can be in use continuously or for long periods, so it could pay off to think about their energy efficiency and the amount of noise they’ll make. Ionisers are almost silent. But some air purifiers make a low whirring noise, which you might want to take into account if you’re a light sleeper.

How many are needed for my room/building?

Generally speaking, one large air purifier is usually enough for a medium sized home which is open-planned, but both the size and layout of your property are important factors.

Ideally, in a less open planned building, there should be an air purifier in the bedroom (where most time tends to be spent), and in another room, such as kitchen or living room where most household traffic will be.

Where is the best position to place my air purifier?

Generally it is best to keep an air purifier in the centre of a room for optimum performance. When this isn’t suitable you can also place it in an area which is the source of the irritant, e.g. where your pet might settle, or where someone smokes.

It is best to not place the purifier against a wall, as it may hinder its ability to intake air efficiently.

What Benefits will I get from having an air purifier?

  • Air purifiers create a cleaner environment in your home for you and your family.
  • They remove smoke, dust particles and pollen from your home.
  • Mould spores, per dander and dust mite droppings are captured, and pulled away from the clean air.
  • Airborne particles which trigger asthmatic and allergic reactions are removed with air purifiers.
  • Air quality in the home will be greatly improved, as such activities as, dusting, hovering, cooking, smoking, and having pets can significantly lower the air quality by adding pollutants and allergens.

Should the purifier be switched on continuously?

To be as effective as possible, all air purifiers should be switched on all the time, as air pollution will return when it is switched off.

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