Cheap Air Purifiers
Did you know that the air outside is generally healthier than the air inside your home. Wouldn’t it be great if you could open all the windows to allow the fresh air in? Unfortunately it’s never a constant 72F outside. And what about the days when the pollen count is high?
Dust mites, formaldehyde, VOCs (paints, benzene), refrigerator smells are some of the pollutants locked up in your house. In fact your home can be up to 100 times dirtier than outside air.
The health effects of indoor air pollution are staggering. Polluted air can lead to respiratory infections, asthma, sinus issues, headaches, ear infections, allergies and dizziness.
Cheap Air Purifiers Buying Tips
Before you buy any Air Purifier you must know the main purpose or the requirement of Air Purifier for you. Like are you looking for purifier to remove tobacco smoke from room then go for smoke air purifiers. If you are allergic or suffer from asthma then consider air purifier which is expert in removing allergen particles from air. If you want to get rid of bad odour or chemical fumes then you must go for air purifier which removes chemical and cleans air. If you are looking for air purifier in general then should consider other factors like coverage area, brand, warranty, filter types, noise level, power consumption, colors and other features.
Coverage Area- Room Size
One of the most important criteria to select the best air purifier for you is the coverage area and the room size. Our suggestion is to buy an Air Purifier with at least 350 sq ft coverage area. Anything below that may not give optimum performance considering typical indian room size. We find Honeywell Air Touch HAC35M1101G Air Purifier as one of the best Air Purifier in the market with 450 sq ft coverage area.
If you browse through various Air Purifiers of different brands you will realize almost all the brands have their own patented technology for air purifiers.
- Philips VitaShield Intelligent Purification System
- Atlanta iCluster Technology
And they may call it with different names however I find underlying technology some what similar in all the purifiers. It is good to know about different technologies used for Air Purifiers. Some Technology may work very good in removing allergens while other may work well to remove smoke.
High-efficiency particulate arrestance (HEPA) is perhaps the best air filter so far invented for home air cleaning and with no surprise most of the air purifiers comes with HEPA filters. So make sure that Air Purifier you are buying has True HEPA Filter. Beware of HEPA type Filter Air Purifiers. True HEPA filters follow the standard and can remove 99.97% of airborne pollutants of size upto 0.3 microns. This mean that any pollutant which is of even smaller size than 0.3 microns may not be filtered out with HEPA. Philips 3000 Series AC3256 AeraSense Air Purifier has one of the best True HEPA filter in the market today.
Clean Air Delivery rate (CADR)
In very simple words we can say that CADR reflects how fast the Air Purifier works. CADR measures how much clean air can be produced by the air purifier. Higher the value means more the clean air purifier shall produce per minute. CADR rating is measured for 3 most common indoor pollutants: tobacco smoke, pollen and dust. Also CADR is applicable only for portable air purifiers and not for whole-home air purifiers. It is also recommended to buy an air purifier with CADR rating of at least 2/3 of room size. SHARP-Air Purifier (FU-A80E-W) has one of the best CADR rating in its class.
We have seen that many companies are selling Ozone Generator as Air Purifier. Ozone is a very reactive gas and reacts with chemical fumes and works like magic when it comes to removing bad odour or tobacco smoke from room. However inhaling Ozone may result in some health hazard. And many organisation strongly oppose use of Ozone generator for residential homes. You can use it in closed room when no one is in it and then open all the windows and doors for sometime before occupying the room. If you really want to buy an Ozone Generator then you can go for Kent Ozone Room Air Purifier. But it is not like regular Air Purifiers.
There are other features which you must also consider like Noise level, Sleep mode, Power consumption, Portability, Weight of the Air Purifier, Warranty and of course the Brand and customer support. Also one must consider the availability of Filters in the market and what should be the recurring cost of replacing filter every 6-12 months.
The solution – a cheap air purifier.
There are several types of air purifier to choose from:
- HEPA Filtered Air Purifier
- Ionic Air Purifier
- Carbon Air Purifier
- Ozone Air Purifier
- Ultraviolet Air Purifier
We will explore the pros and cons of each type and how they work to clean the air. Click on the links above to learn more.
HEPA AIR PURIFIERS
HEPA stands for “High Efficiency Particulate Arrestor.” It is an advanced type of air filter used in air purifiers and in top-of-the-line vacuum cleaners.
Most HEPA Air Purifiers will separate out airborne particles down to 0.3 microns in size with 99.97% efficiency. They are effective in removing tiny allergens such as mold spores, dust mites, animal dander and pollen.
HEPA filtered air cleaners are used by companies who specialize in asbestos removal, and clean up of potentially deadly chemical spills. The contaminated air is circulated though the HEPA filter, which traps the miniscule particles and returns clean air back into the indoor environment.
For best efficiency the air is circulated many times through the HEPA filter to increase air quality.The higher the air exchange rate per hour, the cleaner the air will be in that room. HEPA air cleaners should service one room at a time. It is far better to have several small units – one for each room or area – than one large unit.
The best HEPA Air Purifiers will exchange the air up to 12 times per hour in a typical bedroom and up to 8 exchanges per hour in an open area or room of approximately 800 square feet. High quality units will use activated carbon or a blend of zeolite which quickly absorb and get rid of chemicals that out-gas from furniture or structural components of the home or office environment
Some HEPA air purifiers also have included a medical grade UV (ultra-violet) light system or EGF (Enhanced Germicidal Filtration) system. These systems can quickly kill bacteria, viruses and mold spores.
Most HEPA Air Purifiers will include a prefilter which will separate out the larger contaminants before the air passes through the HEPA filter. This helps prolong the life of the HEPA filter and thus reduce the operating costs.
- Removes tiny allergens such as dust mites, animal dander, mold spores and pollen.
- Will remove many bacteria.
- Particles are trapped in filter and not released back into the air.
- Will not remove gases, chemical smells, smoke or general odors.
- Will not remove germs or viruses.
- Filter can be a breeding place for micro-organisms
IONIC AIR PURIFIERS
Ionic Air Purifiers contain an electrically charged plate to produce negative gas ions that charge airborne particles like pollen, dust, smoke and pet dander. These particles in turn become attracted to room surfaces thus removing the harmful particles from the air. However, movement in the room may stir the particles and return them to the air. To combat this problem many Ionic air purifiers include positively charged plates to attract and contain the contaminants.
Ionic Air Purifiers don’t work on odors, but they can remove very small pollutants from large spaces. To increase efficiency, some ionic air purifiers are built with a small fan to increase airflow and remove contaminants at a faster rate.
Ionic Air Purifiers are quiet or silent thus making them excellent bedroom companions.
Ionic Air Purifiers are generally cheaper than other air purifier types and use very little electricity
CARBON AIR PURIFIERS
Carbon Air Purifiers are made with Activated Carbon. Activated Carbon is essentially charcoal that has been treated with oxygen in order to open up millions of tiny pores between the carbon atoms, resulting in a highly adsorbent material. It is the most efficient filter material available, making it highly effective in capturing chemical fumes, gases, cigarette smoke and general odors. Activated Carbon absorbs several thousand known chemicals and hazardous air borne pollutants, and can absorb up to 60% of its own weight before needing replacement. However, it does little to reduce allergens and dust.
Carbon Air Purifiers are recommended by the EPA to remove a multitude of hazardous and carcinogenic chemicals that may be found in the air circulating our homes. Carbon air filters are used to protect military personnel from poisonous gases. They are also routinely used in modern healthcare facilities, museums & libraries, and across a wide range of industry,
Activated Carbon is produced in powder, granular, canister & pellet form. Typical home-sized carbon air purifiers come in a range of sizes and designs. Thin pleated filters are used in cheaper designs while canisters as large as 15lb are used in more elaborate and expensive designs.
- Highly absorbent. Extremely efficient at removing smoke, chemical fumes, gases and general odors.
- Contaminants are trapped in the filter and not released back into the air.
- Not good at removing dust, pollens and other allergens.
- Not good at removing micro-organisms
OZONE AIR PURIFIERS
Ozone Air Purifiers produce ozone. Unlike ionizers, ozone generators are designed to produce significant amounts of ozone which can combine with and neutralize many hazardous chemicals. Commercial ozone generators produce large quantities of ozone and are used by clean-up contractors to remove smoke odors, musty smells, dead animal odors and mold from old or damaged buildings. It is not healthy to breathe ozone gas and caution is required when buying a room air purifier that also produces ozone.
Retail Ozone Air Purifiers are typically combined with Ionic Air Purifiers for general home use. The production of ozone from these units is kept low for health reasons. They are therefore only useful for small odors.
For severe cases of mold or odor, or to treat a very large area, a dedicated commercial-size Ozone Air Purifier is required
- Best at eliminating odors, including smoke and musty smells
- Will destroy some chemicals and bacteria
- Ozone is generally unhealthy in large quantities
- Has a smell that may affect some people
- Will cause irritation of the eyes, nose and throat in high concentrations
- Does nothing for solid particles such as dust, pollen and other allergens
- Not effective on most chemicals.
ULTRAVIOLET AIR PURIFIERS
Ultraviolet Air Purifiers use ultraviolet (or UV) light which is a natural component of sunlight. They utilize the process of Photochemistry to reduce contaminants in the home. Ultraviolet light transforms molecules of water and oxygen into subcomponents of ozone, hydroxyl and hydrogen peroxide.
Ultraviolet Air Purifiers are effective for eliminating viruses, bacteria, mold, fungi, pet dander and other small organisms. Most ultraviolet air purifiers use UV lighting in the range of 185 to 250 nanometers. Less ozone is formed with the lower wavelengths, while longer wavelengths produce more hydroxyl and the best cleaning. A broad spectrum ultraviolet air purifier is the most effective because it uses both short and long wavelengths.
In general, the higher the wattage of the bulb, the more effective is the unit. Care must be taken to keep the bulb clean for maximum efficiency because it is the direct ultraviolet light that destroys the contaminants. The bulb is in continuous use and will likely need frequent replacement especially if it is subjected to shock treatment.
- Great at destroying bacteria, germs, viruses and mold.
- Quiet operation.
- Little maintenance required
- Will not remove particulates such as dust and pollen.
- Will not remove gaseous contaminants such as smoke and chemical fumes.
- Will not remove odors.