It’s 2018. Nothing is pure these days, it’s either adulterated or polluted. Including the air, you’re breathing right now. Did you know that Asia is the most polluted continent in the world? 30%-40% of world pollution comes from Asia. 8 out of 10 most polluted cities in the world are Asian cities. In this ruthless situation, it becomes very difficult to maintain a healthy living.
Breathing is automatic and you cannot stop it, and not breathing impure air is not an option. You should definitely buy air cleaner to not allow the harmful toxic gases reach your lungs. Unless you are living in a remote location of your country where technology and 21st century hasn’t taken over yet, you are breathing safe air. For others who are not breathing safe air, this guide on how to choose best air purifier is for you.
Before I tell you about best air purifiers, I want you to understand basics that will help you buy the best air purifier that suits your living conditions. Without taking any further let’s begin.
Why Should You Buy Air Purifier?
Considering the fact that air is part of the environment you live in, you cannot control it anyway. People say, having plants inside your house will be of great help to keep the pollution in check. But it might not help that much as the amount of polluted air around us is way too much than the plants you can have. However, if you can have a garden in your backyard on in front can dramatically change the story, but this is not possible with urbanization active.
Having said that, here are top reasons you should definitely buy air purifier for your house.
- The air inside your house in 10-30 times more polluted than outside. Thanks to various factors in physics and our living standards.
- Most of the contaminating elements being dust, pet hairs & dander, particulate matter, soot, smoke from cigarettes and microbes etc.
- Inadequate ventilation inside our homes. Most importantly, the kitchen. As most of the toxicity residuals are produced in a kitchen.
- Household products such as cooking appliances, deodorants, cleaning products, printers etc.
- Thanks to the concrete jungle, constructions are all over the city. The air quality is obviously inappropriate. In such case, opting to buy air purifier becomes very important.
- According to WHO, 4.3 million premature deaths happen due to poor ventilation and air-pollution inside a house.
- Considering the immunity levels these days, it becomes really important to consider the basic and inevitable activity a human does – breathing.
- ~50% of children under the age of 5 die because of the air pollution inside the house. Children barely go outside their home, thanks to mobiles & tablets. So what’s killing them? Pollution inside their home.
- 13 out of top 20 cities with poor air quality are in India.
- Tiny toddlers and old age people are mostly affected by the in-house air pollution.
- Clean air inside the house can increase the lifespan up to 5 years on average.
- Diseases like asthma, lung cancer, pneumonia, and allergies are avoidable with in-house clean air.
These are just a handful number of reasons why you should buy air purifier for your house. Obviously, you cannot build a tower to keep air pollution in control like China did. But this is the least you can do. That being said, let us help you understand how to choose best air purifier.
Things you should know before you buy air purifier
You’d be wondering why am I emphasizing on buying an air purifier. As the environment is degrading day by day, there are gadgets to manage the bad ambiance around us. To further support the topic, you need to understand how air purifiers work.
The core component of an air cleaner is the filter. It does most of the work. Air isn’t seen, but it matters. So this filter that is a mesh allows only the air to pass through it. This gives a clean air to breathe. Furthermore, this mesh blocks harmful toxins, particles, and bacterias. The machine inside the purifier takes care of air inlet and outlet, basically, it sucks the impure air and pushes the pure air outside. However, the capacity of suction depends of the air purifier you choose. This depends on the area you want to use the purifier in. It’s an add-on which will be discussed in the subsequent sections.
#1 Types Of Air Purifiers
There are basically four types of air purifiers that are available in the market for domestic and commercial use. There are different types of filters inside air cleaner that purify the air. The list below is based on these type of filters:
- HEPA Filters
- Activated Carbon filters
- Ozone purifies
- Air Ionizers
Out of these four types of filters, two are strictly not recommended. Let’s explore more about it in detail.
#2 Avoid Ozone based filters
Ozone(O3) is harmful gas for humans as it’s one of the purest forms of oxygen. The purest form of O2 can damage central nervous system, imagine the damage ozone can create. There’s a reason why it is miles away from the environment we live in protecting UV rays from the sun to enter the planet. Ozone gas is lung irritant, effects eyes & human respiratory system and kills harmful bacteria & viruses at the same time.
Considering this property of Ozone, many companies came up with Ozone generators. Without having a second thought of damage it can create. These Ozone generators release O3 in the air to kill the bacteria and viruses immediately. Besides, it harms your health too. No sucking of impure air and pushing out pure air thing in this case. You can find more information about what damage Ozone can do to you from here.
Air Ionizers are not good too
Ionizing basically means charging the particles at atomic or molecular levels. When the air inside your house charges, it becomes less favorable for bacteria and viruses to sustain. Hence they move towards the less ionized environment. These are walls(behind curtains) ceiling(above fans) and under the bed. Technically, Ionizers are of no use. Furthermore, there is a Lawsuit that wasn’t in favor of Air Ionizers. The report that made this lawsuit go against air ionizers stated that they are ineffective and harmful to humans.
Alternatively, there are some air ionizers that emit ozone as part of the purification process. If you buy air purifier that has air ionizing purification, make sure it’s zero ozone emission. If you buy air ionizer with ozone emission, it will be calling the police station for fun, twice. Basically, you’ll invite more problems. I do not recommend, both air ionizers and Ozone generators.
You are left with two options now. HEPA and activated carbon filters. Let’s see why these two are the best.
HEPA & Activated Carbon filters
The combination of these two gives us three options for us to choose from.
- HEPA Filter
- HEPA + Activated Carbon
- Pre-Filters(Add-on filter to block large particles)
The disease like asthma, allergies, do not always happen because of the bad quality of air. Sometimes it’s inheritance that does this damage. Either Way, you don’t want to let these disease take over or belittle you. Using a true HEPA filter you can do away with almost all types of airborne diseases, viruses, bacterias, particles, dust, pet hair & dander. The true HEPA can remove particles as small as 0.3 µm and can clean 99.97% of the air. However, it cannot remove smells from the air around you. But wait, don’t we love an aromatic environment at home? Yes? Better avoid using air fresheners if you don’t want to inhale toxic gases in spite of having air purifiers.
If you are looking forward to eliminating toxic gases and odors, you can opt for air cleaners containing activated carbon filters. However, activated carbon filters are not powerful enough to single-handedly eliminate toxic gases and dust. Hence you should opt for HEPA+Activated Carbon filters.
In most of the air cleaners, you cannot block human hair, pet hair & dust granules. I’m not sure, how can someone inhale human or pet hair(pun intended), but still to avoid it you better have HEPA+Activated Carbon filters. That’s when Pre-filter comes into the picture. HEPA does the main job of stopping the bad guys, most importantly microbes, Pre-filter takes cares of the bigger particles.
Another important thing you should know while you buy air purifier is the CADR. This is an acronym for Clean Air Delivery Rate, which, as the name suggests is the rate at which the air purifier cleans the air. Obviously, higher CADR rate, the better. Pay attention to the ‘area covered’ on any air cleaner you intent you buy. Depending upon the area of space you want the air cleaner to function, the CADR consideration would vary. However, a good CADR for an average sized room ranges from 140-400.
ACH (Air Change Rate)
The ACH tells you how often the air cleaner purifies the air inside your room per hour. The readings depend on the level of impurity inside the room. If the ACH reading is 10, your purifier will clean the air 6 times per hour. Lower the number, impure is the air inside your room.
#3 Air Purifier for Bedrooms
Considering the size of bedrooms, air purifiers suitable for those rooms would vary. Here’s the guide on how to choose best air purifier for your bedroom. The guide is based on the size of your room with respect to the size of air purifier.
- Small Room(up to 155 sq. ft): Ideal for storerooms, nurseries, and balconies. You can go with Desktop or mini tower sized air purifier.
- Medium Room(up to 300 sq ft): Ideal for master bedrooms, office cabins, and dining rooms. You can go with Tower sized air purifier.
- Large Room(up to 500 sq ft): Ideal for living rooms, hall, kitchen and meeting rooms. You can go with Tower or console.
#4 Place of use of Air Purifiers
There are basically two types of air purifiers based on the area of use.
- Purifier for rooms: These are ideal for homes, offices, storage rooms etc. Basically for indoor use.
- Car air purifiers: Car being a prone to more pollution, with direct exposure to pollution you need an air purifier inside your car. You can keep the windows closed but sometimes, you might feel suffocated. In such situation, opening the windows is the only option. Hence a car air purifier, just enough to cover the entire space inside the car is a must.
#5 Operating cost of Air Purifier in India
Considering the air purifier as an investment on your health, you should understand the operating cost of an air purifier. If you opt for an activated carbon filter, which I highly recommended. In that case, you will need to spend around 1000 INR every three months to change the carbon fiber. Furthermore, the HEPA will cost 3000 INR. It’s a one-time investment, and you have to pay for activated carbon filter only.
You can call the manufacturer & book the regular service and cleaning. Depending on your usage, the damaged parts(if any) will need to be changed.
You don’t want a noisy environment while you are asleep. The silence air purifier is an important thing to consider before you buy air purifier. Most air purifiers have the noise of 40 decibels, and this is pretty low to fall asleep nicely.
#6 Features of the best air purifier you should know
So far so good. You know the types of air purifiers, why you should buy air purifier and the basic stuff. Now that you know this, it’s time I help you understand features before you buy air purifier for your home, office or warehouse.
The number of filters
A higher number of air purifiers will mean better air to breath. Depending on your budget, you can either buy specifically to the room or having it as a mobile air purifier and take it to the room you live in.
Based on user types, I’ve categorized the air purifiers:
- Allergy/Asthma patients – HEPA filters(avoid ionizers and ozone emitters)
- Living near construction area – HEPA, Pre-filter, & activated carbon filter.
- Living with pets and their bad odor – HEPA and Pre-filter with activated carbon
- People with bad immunity – HEPA with Pre-filter
- Bottom line, HEPA is the best filter you can have for your home.
This feature helps control the speed of the fan, suitable for different size of rooms and pollution level. Furthermore, there are some air purifiers that automatically adjust according to the size of the room and pollution level.
To churn out the best out the air purifiers, you should have properly serviced filters. You should regularly change the filters. How would you know it? The service indicators will help you do that.
Children are as random as an atom in an excited state. They can do anything with any buttons they see. To avoid them dismantling air purifier system, you can opt for a child lock. They might even hurt themselves when you are not around, in such cases a child lock works like a magic.
We all have that lazy moment when we want to change something, but the lazy version of ourselves do not feel motivated to get up. Hence, an air purifier with a remote control is a good thing.
Airborne bacteria and viruses are more deadly in a dry atmosphere. Moisture makes their presence ineffective to a large extent. Having said that, you might face this issue because you are living in a dry area. In such places, you can buy air purifier that humidifies the atmosphere inside your home.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs) on the best air purifier
Do air purifiers really work?
Depending on the size of the room, the environment, and your own health, your need would vary. Not all types of air purifiers would really work for you. If you or any other family member is allergic, you should use go for HEPA air purifier. If you have pets, then HEPA and pre-filter with activated carbon is what you need. Knowing what exactly you need is, will help you buy the right air purifier for your need. Furthermore, if you find one, that air purifier will really work for you.
Do air purifiers really get rid of germs?
The basic concept of an air purifier is to circulate air several times per hour so this will. Air filters are capable of removing the smallest microbes in the air, reducing harmful airborne germs. Furthermore, it not only includes cold and flu viruses but also dust, pollen, mold spores, pet dander and smoke particles. This can aggravate allergies as well.
What’s better? Air Purifier or Humidifier?
Again, it depends on the purpose or your need. If you are living in a very dry environment and moisture-less space, then you need a humidifier. The humidifier does nothing to control polluted air inside your house, all it does it just add water to the air and keep it moisturized. On the other hand, the air filter cleans the air for you. It removes the harmful germs and airborne diseases so that you stay healthy.
How long does it take for the air purifier to clean a room?
For the first time, turn the air purifier to the highest speed for up to 2 hours. This is just for the first time, you don’t have to keep it on after that. Depending on your size of the room, you will have to keep the air purifier on. Generally, a 750 sq. ft. room is cleaned up to 90% within 60 minutes.
Can I use air purifier and humidifier at the same time?
I’ve been searching a better way to stay healthier inside your house, but I couldn’t find it. Having a humidifier & air purifier is the best way to stay healthy in this polluted atmosphere. If you have babies to take care of, I would recommend having both in around your baby. A humidifier will not let the air go dry (which has a negative impact on babies) and air filter will keep the air clean. If possible, have both in your house until a 2-in-one device comes to the market.
Do air filters work if doors & windows are open?
It is not a bad idea to have doors and windows open. If you do leaves them open, the air filter will clean the incoming pollutant and make fresh air, fresh in a real sense.
Best air purifiers to buy in 2018
|Category||Air Purifier||Dimensions||Room Size|
|Best Air Purifiers (Budget)
||Levoit Air Purifier||9.7 x 9.8 x 14.6 inches||Medium to Large|
|GermGuardian AC4825||7 x 10.2 x 21.5 inches||Medium|
|PureZone 3-in-1||13.8 x 12.1 x 8.3 inches||200 Sq. Ft.|
|Coway AP-1512HH||16.8 x 9.6 x 18.3 inches||528 Sq. Ft.|
|Honeywell True HEPA Allergen Remover||9.2 x 20 x 22.2 inches||465 Sq. Ft.|
|Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier||15 x 8.2 x 23.6 inches||360 Sq. Ft.|
|Best High-End Air Purifiers||Rabbit Air MinusA2||23.9 x 22.5 x 10 inches||815 Sq. Ft.|
|Dyson Pure Hot Cool Link||8.7 x 6 x 24.9 inches||Medium|
|Alen BreatheSmart FLEX –
|19 x 16 x 28 inches||700 Sq. Ft.|
|Best Air Purifier for Large Spaces||AIRMEGA 400S||14.8 x 14.8 x 22.8 in||1560 Sq. Ft|
Final thoughts on Air Cleaners
I totally understand that the air cleaners may sound as an expense. But the atmosphere you & I living in is not safe anymore. But, buying an iPhone worth $1000 sounds legitimate and this makes me think what’s more important. Health or Status?
Furthermore, these air cleaners are must-have for those living in northern India, which has frequent smog attacks during winters. Instead of complaining about the issue, why not spend for our own good. One would debate, having a garden or plants in the window would do. But what are those breathing? Polluted air? And what will it exhale? Polluted oxygen? More or less the same.
Sooner or later, air cleaner will be a daily part of our lives. Just like heaters for winters, these air filters will be found in every other house. Instead of buying a jar of fresh air I’d rather buy an air filter. If you are confused between the products listed, my money is on Honeywell True HEPA.
Honeywell True HEPA is not only best mid-range air purifier, but it’s also the best multi-purpose air purifier.
Over to you. What do you think of the air pollution in your city? Are you planning to buy air purifier? Let me know in the comment section below. Do you know someone who’s looking for this information? Share this with them and share in your social network too.