With the pollution levels refusing to settle towards a safe range and limited ways to cope with the crisis, one of the ways to help you breathe clean air is by opting for an air purifier. Air purifier helps to get rid of harmful gases, chemicals, particulate matter and other pollutants. But which one should you go for? Read on to find out.
WHAT ESSENTIAL FEATURES SHOULD YOU LOOK FOR?
Here are the important features that you should look for when choosing an air purifier:
1 . HEPA
-The most important feature that you should look for is the HEPA ( high efficiency particulate air) filter.
-This filter comprises of multiple layers of fibers that are interlocked with each other. It mechanically separates the pollutants from the air.
-The HEPA filter clears out the small particulate matter (PM2.5 and less) that can go deep within the lungs and cause respiratory problems.
-HEPA filter need to be replaced periodically.
2 . Pre-Filter
-Opt for an air purifier that has a pre-filter. Pre-filter is a washable filter that traps larger dust particles, hair and other such pollutants.
-The good part about the pre- filter is that you can take it out every weekend and wash it.
-Pre filter helps in increasing the life of HEPA filter. So even if your air purifier does not have a pre-filter, you can get one and fix it in front of the other filters.
3 . Carbon Filter
-Look for the presence of a carbon filter in the purifier. Carbon filter helps to get rid of odors and dissolved chemicals.
4 . Activated Charcoal
-Look for the feature of activated charcoal when you are selecting your purifier.
-Activated charcoal removes harmful gases as well as bad odors.
ARE THERE ANY ADDITIONAL FEATURES TO CONSIDER?
In addition to the above mentioned essential features, here are some efficient features that you may consider:
1 . Fan: Most room air cleaners use a fan to suck in air for filtration. Prefer the ones with a fan.
2 . Servicing indicator: This features helps you know when you need to clean the unit and when your filter needs to be replaced.
3 . Programmable timer: These controls allow you to set the purifier to run a few hours before you’ll be using a room, or turn it off automatically.
4 . Humidifier: Some purifiers have humidifiers installed in them. These humidifiers use water stored in a tank to boost humidity.
5 . High “Clean Air Delivery Rate”: The higher the Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR ) , the more air gets purified. The number describes the purifier’s ability to remove all pollutants from specific amount of air.
6 . Number of speeds: The unit adjusts to your air-cleaning needs, lower when you are sleeping or working and need quiet, higher when it’s prime pollen time.
WHICH FEATURES SHOULD YOU AVOID?
-Avoid purifiers with negative ions, photocatalytic oxidation, UV lights. These features can potentially release ozone as a by-product.
-Ozone is harmful for the lungs and is known to lead to more incidents of asthma attacks and other respiratory problems.
WHICH SIZE SHOULD YOU PICK?
-Air purifiers have a rating for average coverage area which is usually in square feet.
-Assess the dimensions of your room and settle for one that has a high coverage.For example, if your room is 400 sq feet, get an air purifier that has a rating of 500 sq feet or higher.
-You can start with the bedroom.It also makes more sense to install one in the bedroom since you will be sleeping there for a good 7-8 hours.
-You can gradually invest more in your living room and decide on the number of units needed on the basis of size of the living area.
WHERE SHOULD YOU PLACE YOUR AIR PURIFIER?
-Placing your air purifier at the right area is crucial for its optimal functioning.
-Make sure you give the air purifier enough free space so that it can work efficiently.
-Avoid placing it under a table, against a wall or surrounded by furniture. Make sure your windows are closed for best results.