Do you really need an air purifier in your home, office, or both? Is there a significant improvement to your breathing and lung function with the use of an air purifier?
Could there be drawbacks or side effects to using an air purifier? We look to answer these questions and possibly a few others as we take a closer look at the use of air purifiers.
Let’s take a look at what an air purifier can help you with, according to the manufacturers. Please keep in mind that there are many different types of air purifiers on the market today, and that can relate to what they can and cannot do, so do your research before you buy.
1. Remove Allergy and Asthma Triggers
These devices were designed to help reduce the pollutants in the air that you breathe and thus can help improve the quality of air and reduce the triggers for some allergies and asthma.
The multi-layer filters differ between units and manufacturers, but many can help reduce pollen, pet dander, and other airborne contaminants that could pose issues for those with allergies or asthma.
2. Reduce Odors from Household Chemicals and (VOC) Volatile Organic Compounds
Many allergy sufferers and persons with asthma find that smells can be a trigger to an attack. These odors could be from things such as cleaning products that have enhanced smells or common cleaners like bleach products.
The often-overlooked source for smell triggers is VOC, and this is the odor from compounds like house paints, automotive chemicals, perfumes, air fresheners, etc. These can all cause someone with these health conditions trouble, and many air purifiers are designed to reduce odors.
3. Help Reduce Bacteria and Viruses
Some air purifiers have coatings on their components and filters that can help to reduce the spread of bacteria and viruses in your home. They may use HEPA filters and other microbial types of filters in the multi-layer design to help reduce the spread of airborne illnesses.
4. Help Remove Smoke
Some air purifiers do a better job at removing smoke than others, and that is due to the types of filters used in the unit. Many air purifiers may help reduce smoke, but you will need to do your research on air purifiers and filters if this is your primary need.
If you live in a wildfire area, this could be extremely beneficial to the quality of your indoor air, or you may live with a smoker and wish to reduce the possible effects of second-hand smoke on your health.
No matter the reason you want an air filter for smoke reduction, you need to understand that not all air purifiers are designed to eliminate smoke, so do your homework.
5. Help Improve Your Sleep Quality
From the white noise that they produce to the reduction in carbon dioxide to an increase in air circulation, you may find having an air purifier in your bedroom improves your sleep.
If you need white noise in order to sleep well, then adding an air purifier may do the trick as most produce a minimal hum and can be soothing.
The filters used in an air purifier can help to reduce the carbon dioxide levels in your home and increase the circulation of air, both of these factors may help you to breathe a bit easier even if you don’t have allergies or asthma.
6. Understand Your Want and Need for an Air Purifier
Do you need the air purifier for a specific reason? Are you looking to reduce pollens, or chemical smells or smoke? The better you understand your wants and needs surrounding an air purifier, the better you are equipped to select the best model for your specific needs.
So, now that we have gone over some of the benefits that adding an air purifier to your home can help you with, let’s look at the other side of the coin the drawbacks.
While the sunny side of this article shows that an air purifier is designed to do all of these wonderful things, we all understand that there are often things manufacturers don’t want you to know, and air purifiers can have some drawbacks.
The manufacturer may present their product as a whisper-quiet, but you may have a different opinion about the volume of a whisper. While some units may put off a soothing mellow hum, others may be downright noisy and even disrupt sleep rather than improve it.
Pay attention to this detail as you may find you have bought an air purifier you won’t use regularly and thus not reap any benefits.
2. Lack of Performance
Many air purifiers promise you the moon but cannot deliver. They may lack the proper filters, or they may not circulate air fast enough to boost the air quality in your home.
The manufacturer may overstate the abilities of their products and boast larger room capacities or flow rates than the machine can deliver. This would be like using a small room unit to purify an entire home or large apartment; the purifier simply can’t keep up.
Also, a lack of proper filters can affect the performance of an air purifier, a unit that has only one or two stages of filtration can’t deliver the same air quality as a unit that has 3,4,5 or higher count filter system.
3. Expensive to Maintain
All air purifiers require that you change the filter periodically to keep the unit performing at its best. Depending on the brand and filter combination used in the air purifier, this could get expensive. Many manufacturers have designed their products so that you can only purchase replacement filters through them, and these filters can be quite costly.
Some have even found that replacement filters for the air purifier they have chosen are not available or extremely hard to find or just too expensive to continually replace.
4. Lack of Maintenance Germ Infestation
Yes, I said that an air purifier could spread germs into your home. If you do not regularly clean and change filters, the trapped molds, bacteria, etc. can grow and be propelled int the surrounding air.
Maintenance is key in keeping your air purifier producing clean air and not spreading germs.
5. May Produce Ozone
Some air purifiers use Ozone to help purify the air. The problem with using Ozone is the surrounding health-related issues that have been linked to the use of Ozone. Ozone is related to low-level smog, and we all know the associated health problems associated with smog.
There are also questions about the safety of the chemical reaction that occurs in the production of Ozone and the possibility that the Ozone doesn’t help purify the air.
6. May Contain UV-C lights
This is another possible addition to an air purifier that may have more drawbacks than benefits. We all know that you should limit UV exposure, so is it really a good idea to have it in your air purifier you run continuously in your home?
There are as many people in favor of using these types of lights in air purifiers as those opposed, so the decision is yours to make; you should weigh out the pros and cons before you decide.
As you can see, there are some health-related benefits to using an air purifier in your home or office but also a few drawbacks to consider.
If you are going to use the air purifier in an office setting, it might be best to avoid any that use Ozone or UV-C lights to avoid any complaints from coworkers.
Keep your air purifier clean and change the filters regularly to help reduce the possibility of contaminating air instead of purifying it.
Do some in-depth research on the units you have selected; You don’t want to get an air purifier and then return the unit as this can become expensive and time-consuming. Knowing all the details before you buy is the best way to get the best air purifier for your needs.
Weigh out the pros and cons for yourself, do you need an air purifier for health reasons? Is this just something you feel you want to add to your home? If you don’t need an air purifier for health reasons, is the cost going to outweigh any benefits? Look deep into your wants and needs before you spend money on an air purifier you’re not going to use as a decent air purifier isn’t cheap.
No matter your need or want of an air purifier doing a little product research could save you some time and heartache. You may sleep better and breathe easier, knowing you have made a sound choice, and this alone may be enough benefit for you to consider an air purifier a healthy choice.