Residential Air Purifiers: How They Help Your Home’s Air Quality

The average American spends 87 percent of their lives indoors. If you spend this much time indoors, you want to ensure that the air you and your family breathes is as clean and pure as possible. For many families, purchasing an air purifier is the best solution.

Here is some valuable information about air purifiers, including the common pollutants that can affect your home’s air quality and tips for choosing the right model for your home.  

Common Factors That Impact Your Home’s Air Quality

Several pollutants from both indoors and outdoors can reduce the quality of your home’s air. They include:

  • Volatile organic chemicals. VOCs are a variety of organic chemicals you find in a variety of household products, including disinfectants and other household cleaners, paint strippers, dry cleaning solvents, and office supplies and equipment.
  • Home upgrades and maintenance. Your beautiful new carpeting, wood flooring, furniture, and other materials inside your home release chemicals that impact air quality.
  • Outdoor contaminants. Pollen and industrial by-products are two of the many outdoor pollutants that will enter your home.
  • Humidity and standing water. Moisture from both inside and outside of your home harbors mold and mildew, which are major pollutants.
  • Carbon dioxide. If you have a stove or HVAC system that runs on natural gas or park your car inside an attached garage, you will have some level of carbon dioxide in your home. In large concentrations, carbon dioxide is very dangerous and potentially deadly.

Your HVAC system’s efficiency is also a major factor in your home’s air quality. In addition to growing and proliferating mold and other contaminants inside the ductwork, if your HVAC system does not run smoothly, it cannot circulate clean air through your home. Scheduling yearly HVAC maintenance and addressing any issues immediately is the best way to ensure the unit does its job.  

Benefits of an Air Purifier

The basic idea of an air purifier is simple: the machine uses a series of fans to pull contaminated air through a series of filters. The newly filtered air recirculates back through your home. As long as the purifier is on, it will continue this cycle to ensure your home’s air is as fresh as possible. In addition to eliminating pollutants, several other benefits exist to putting an air purifier in your home. For example, if you have pets, a smoker, or a teenager who will not pick up their dirty socks, the air purifier will help eliminate these smells and many other unpleasant odors. During cold and flu season, an air purifier can help eliminate the airborne bacteria that makes your family sick. Purifiers can also extend the life of your HVAC system by eliminating the dust and microbes that will clog the ducts and the unit’s filters. This investment will save you a lot of money on future issues and repairs. Seasonal allergies impact an estimated 50 million Americans. If you or a loved one deals with sneezing, runny noses, and itchy eyes during allergy season, an air purifier can help eliminate both indoor and outdoor allergens, including pollen and pet dander.  

Residential Air Purifier Options

Several types of air purifiers are available. The one you choose is dependent upon your home’s size, budget, and needs. Here are a few of the most popular types available:

  • Activated charcoal filter. The activated charcoal filter is very porous and will pull in several types of contaminants from the air. The activated charcoal traps the contaminants and doesn’t release them back into the air. This filter is the best option for people who want to pull odors, VOCs, and other contaminants from the air.
  • HEPA filter. High Efficiency Particulate Air, or HEPA, filters are made from a fine material that traps a variety of irritants, particularly allergens. These filters are less effective in trapping odors and people often use them in conjunction with activated charcoal filters.
  • Antibacterial filter. These filters are not as effective in eliminating bacteria or other germs from the air. Some people use this filter in conjunction with HEPA filters.
  • UV air purifier. This effective purifier removes bacteria from your indoor air. People use this with a HEPA filter to provide indoor air that is virtually free of allergens and bacteria.

If you own a small apartment or only want an air purifier in a specific room, such as the bedroom at night, a portable purifier is the best option. For people who want to eliminate allergens and contaminants from their whole house, you can have a professional fit one on your HVAC system. Purchasing a whole house or portable air purifier is the best way to eliminate the indoor and outdoor pollutants that impact your home’s air quality. If you have any additional questions, contact the professionals at Magnolia Plumbing, Heating & Cooling. We are happy to help in any way we can.