Natural Air Purifiers
Air purification has rapidly become a multi-billion dollar industry. Three distinct types, each with many variations, are promising to return the new air of Eden into your home. How do you choose one for you and your particular environment? Read, read, read.
If you live in suburbia, near a busy street, or experience seasons you don't want to feel in your living room, opening your doors and windows to let out bad smells and let in fresh scents may not always be a viable option. Of course, you don't want to live in a home permeated with the smells of steamed cabbage, shoes and socks, and rubber cement, either. An air purifier could be just what you need.
Why Airing Your Home Out is not Enough
Airing out your house will stir up the odours in your home a bit and take some of the minor ones with it, especially on a breezy day. But airing out the house won't get rid of odor caused by cigarettes, bacteria, molds, or dirt. What's more, the breeze may actually enflame allergies even more. In addition, opening windows does not purify the air or kill harmful bacteria and viruses. To accomplish these feats, you will need to purchase an air purifier.
Using a Low-Tech Air Purifier
Many homeowners already use low-tech air purifiers. But, if you are not, you need to get started. Low-tech air purifiers have been shown to do a great job in purifying the air in both offices and homes. Even better - it's simple! All you need to do is change the air filters in your air conditioning and heating system once a month. This will help cut the allergens, pet dander, and dust in your home by half. As an added bonus, this type of air purifying system is silent and it costs very little, about $20 every three months. While this is better than kicking up pollutants with an outside breeze, your HVAC system isn't really an air purifier - especially if you live with odours. So, you should consider getting a more advanced type of air purifier in order to really improve the air you breathe.
The Ionizing Air Purifier
Ionizing air purifiers are good systems for smoke filled rooms or for those with odour problems, which are the two main reasons most people run to the window to push it open. Ionizing air purifier systems like the Ionic Breeze air purifier perform in an interesting way. They send out negatively charged particles, which combine with the positively charged particles in the air. These positively charged particles include smoke and odour. When the particles combine, they become too heavy to remain in the air. As a result, they are drawn to the collection plate within the air purifier. Then, all you need to do is wipe them away with a clean cloth. It really is that simple! This particular system costs about $300.
Consumer Reports, however, has found that these air purifiers do not really work against removing dust particles and allergens, so it may not be the best choice for you if that is what you are looking for.
Low Ozone Air Purifiers
Low-ozone air purifiers work by oxidizing pollutants. They then leave behind breathable oxygen and purified air. Opening your windows doesn't purify the air. In fact, it can just stir up allergens and other pollutants, making them more irritating to your respiratory system. One word of caution, however, low ozone air purifiers do emit ozone. While the levels of ozone emitted by these air purifiers are considered to be safe, it is important to monitor the levels to ensure they are not dangerous.
UV Air Purifiers
The most complex air purifier systems are based on ultra-violet light (UV) technology. UV air purifiers will kill bacteria and viruses they come in contact with, so they're ideal for bathroom and rubbish odours. Since you don't always know the source of the odour in your home, opening your windows may not be enough to truly get rid of the problem simply because opening the windows does not kill viruses and bacteria. In fact, you could actually create an environment that helps these germs grow when you open up your window! UV air purifiers are obviously a much better choice.