Do you contend with asthma, allergy reactions, or breathing issues? You’re probably wondering whether True HEPA air purifiers are the best air purifiers on the market. But thenyou’ve come across glowing reviews of other kinds of purifiers such as ionizers.
And that’s not made your shopping journey one bit easier.
This piece seeks to describe what True HEPA air purifiers are and what they can do for you. You’ll also understand why the world and their mother keep praising True HEPA purifiers.
What are True HEPA Air Purifiers?
True HEPA air purifiers aren’t a product line made by a specific company. Rather, they’re a bunch of air cleaning devices that feature certain laudable capabilities. If True HEPA air purifiers were people, we’d praise them endlessly for their competence in allergen removal.
True HEPA air purifiers got their name from the fact that they use specialized filters called HEPA filters. HEPA means High Efficiency Particulate Arrestance.
Why are these filters referred to as “True” HEPA filters? It’s because not every HEPA purifier actually uses authentic HEPA filters. Such filters may demonstrate HEPA-like characteristics, but they don’t perform quite like True HEPA filters.
True HEPA Air Purifiers Eliminate Almost 100% of Pollutants
Frankly, it’s not nearly 100% of all pollutants. True HEPA air purifiers eradicate up to 99.97% of particulates not bigger in diameter than 0.3 microns.
And that’s all good. But there’s a little problem.
Some particles can be as small as 0.01 microns. So how big is a micron?
One micron = (1 /1,000,000) meters.That’s 1 micron = 0.000001 meters or 0.0001 centimeters.
Now that’s quite small.
To put that into perspective, human eyes can’t see anything smaller than 40 microns. Unfortunately, the smallest particles are the most deadly. Still, having a purifier around is a lot better than not having it.
Common Household Particles
Let’s talk about how big the particles darting across the air in your room are. Indoor air contains a vast arrange of particles. And while not all of them are dangerous, some can cause deadly diseases.
There’s human and pet hair in the air. Also, there’s face powder particles and dust mites. Indoor air also carries dust particles, pollen, human sneeze, mold, oil smoke, insecticide dust, and pet dander.
But that’s not all.
Indoor air may also contain human skin flakes, textile dust, tobacco smoke, viruses, antiperspirants, and bacteria. These probably aren’t the only particles floating in your indoor air.
17 Common Household Pollutants: How Big Are They?
- Bacteria: 0.3 – 60 microns
- Skin flakes (you didn’t know humans shed, did you?): 0.5-10 microns
- Viruses: 0.005 – 0.3 microns
- Tobacco smoke: 0.01 – 4 microns
- Paint pigments: 0.1 – 5 microns
- Pollen: 10 – 1, 000 microns
- Pet dander: 0.5 – 100 microns
- Particles emanating from burning of fuels: not larger than 2.5 microns
- Mold: 3 –12 microns
- Mold spores: 10 – 30 microns
- Insecticide dusts: 0.5 – 10 microns
- Household dust: 0.05 – 100 microns
- Dust mites: 100 – 300 microns
- Hair: 5 – 200 microns
- Smoke from natural materials: 0.01 – 0.1 microns
- Cement dust: 3 – 100 microns
- Asbestos: 0.7 – 90microns
Note: True HEPA air purifiers are designed to remove particles not smaller than 0.3 microns.
Do True HEPA Purifiers Remove Wildfire Smoke?
On the list above, can you spot any particles your Honeywell HPA300 can’t handle? True HEPA air purifiers may not effectively remove smoke that emanates from natural materials.
However, users of True HEPA air purifiers keep saying these devices help them deal with all kinds of smoke. And it’s hard to argue with someone who presents anecdotal evidence.
That said, the data above indicates that True HEPA purifiers aren’t great at sucking wildfire smoke.
Do True HEPA Purifiers Eliminate Tobacco Smoke?
The data above indicates that these purifiers can remove tobacco smoke particles. But it’s also clear they can’t remove 100% of these particles since some tobacco smoke particles are as small as 0.01 microns. Many consumers claim that their air purifier helps them get rid of tobacco smoke. But evidence from evidence suggests otherwise. While these devices may partly remove tobacco smoke, they may not eliminate carcinogens found in it.
Do They Eliminate Viruses and Bacteria?
Look at the data again.
You’ll see that viruses are pretty small.
But since some viruses are as big as 0.3 microns, a True HEPA air cleaner may tackle them.
By comparison, the smallest bacteria are about 0.3 microns. That means True HEPA air purifiers can effectively remove bacteria from indoor air. Evidently, True HEPA air purifiers are great to have when the flu season materializes.
What about Household Dust, Dust Mites, Mold Spores, Pet Dander, and Pollen?
With the exception of household dust, all of the particles named in the subtitle above are bigger than 0.3 microns. That means a True HEPA purifier should help you handle these particles without a problem.
But some household particles are as small as 0.05 microns. Which means this device may not eliminate up to 99.97% of household dust.
But looking at the size range (0.05 – 100 microns) for household dust particles tells you something. It’s that lots of dust particles are much larger than 0.05 particles.
A True HEPA purifier, therefore, would be a good enough solution for household dust. If you dust and vacuum-clean your home regularly, dust shouldn’t bother you.
The Carbon Prefilter in True HEPA Air Purifiers
Pretty much every True HEPA purifier also features a carbon-activated prefilter. The prefilter picks relatively larger particles from the air before it (air) passes on to the True HEPA filter (s).
The prefilter easily sucks pet dander, hair, fur, lint and other particles like that out of the air. These particles get trapped at this point in the purification process.
Manufacturers also say that the carbon prefilter helps remove odors as well as gaseous pollutants. Also, most consumers (judging from reviews seen online) believe that the manufacturer’s claim is true. However, the data above suggests that these devices may not be terrific at eliminating gaseous contaminants.
Washable vs. Non-washable Filters
Some HEPA air purifiers use washable filters. When the filters get clogged up, just wash them and that’s it. Using these air purifiers can save you money because you won’t need to replace filters. At least, you won’t replace the filters frequently.
But quite a few True HEPA air purifiers use non-washable filters. With these ones, you must replace the prefilter and the True HEPA filter (s) regularly. Typically, the prefilter is replaced once every 3 months. As for the True HEPA filter(s), you’ll in most cases replace themonce every 12 months. The good thing is that lots of models come with LED notifications that remind you to replace your filters. Replace filters when you should if not earlier; otherwise, they’ll start malfunctioning.
Running some True HEPApurifiers can be insanely expensive in the long run. Actually, some air purifiers cost less than what replacement filters for some of these non-washable True HEPA options cost! Luckily, you can always pick a budget-friendly option.
Looking for a True HEPA Air Purifier?
Usually, it’s best to choose a True HEPA air purifier. That’s because these devices remove over 99.9% of particles measuring 0.3 microns in diameter or bigger. These machines can remove dust, pollen, dust mites, mold spores, pet dander, skin flakes, bacteria and a lot more.
But when it comes to dealing with gaseous pollutants, air purifiers including True HEPA ones aren’t very effective. If you’re a cost-conscious person, you’ll want to pick HEPA purifiers that use washable filters.
There’s one more thing.
Don’t hand over the money before you’ve read a few air purifier reviews. You can startyour shopping off with this Winix WAC9500 review.
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