The perils of air pollution are no stranger to the modern world. It is now common knowledge of what kind of health effects air pollution has on human as well as animal lives. Even though we are aware of the permanent and irreversible ways to curb air pollution, the turnaround time would not leave much scope to restrain the ill effects of air pollution immediately. It is, therefore, the best to proceed with the dual ways to combat the dangers of air pollution:
- The first one is the obvious choice of planting more trees, which is a time-consuming affair
- The second one is the quick method that guarantees pure air in your surroundings within minutes, which is air purifiers or air cleaners
Understanding the differences between air cleaners and air purifiers
It is a common notion that both air cleaners and air purifiers essentially perform the same function of cleaning the air in its surroundings. However, these two kinds of devices perform different sets of functions with respect to the air in their surroundings. The primary differences between these two kinds of gadgets are:
- Air cleaners filter out the particulate matter before letting the air in the space defined for its function
- Air purifiers sanitize the air of the defined area of its function in order to get rid of allergy or disease-causing pathogens.
Even though both of them deal with providing pure and clean air in their immediate surroundings, the most important components for both of them are air filters.
Air Filters: Basic Features and Types
As the name suggests, the purpose of the air filter is to keep out particulate matters away from the area of the function. The composition of an air filter essentially either a porous or fibrous material capable of letting air pass through it but not any particulate materials like dust, pet dander, pollens, moulds, etc. Some filters are equipped with a catalyst or absorbent materials as well, like charcoal. They essentially help to get rid of odours as well.
With the advancement in technology, the types of air filters in the market are plenty. However, some of them belong to the classic categories, which are listed below:
- Paper filters
- Foam Filters
- Cotton Gauze filters
- Steel Jute filters
- Oil Bath Filters
- Water Bath filters
Each of the above types of filters listed above has its own way to filter out the contaminants. They all provide necessary shields against particulate contaminants from getting in as well as getting out.
Varied Uses of Air filters
While we are all aware of the very reason the air filters are put on use, the areas that benefit the most because of air-filter use includes:
- Industrial Area: This section covers all the use of air filters that are utilized on a commercial scale. The function can range from collecting fly ashes from the industrial furnaces to removing particle entries in commercial HVAC systems. The kind of filter used for such purposes is entirely dependent on the type of contaminants that are needed to be kept away.
- Residential Area: The usages of air filters in the residential area are of much less intense as the concentrations of contaminants are on a much lesser scale. However, the efficiency of the air filters should never be compromised in case of residential areas because the spaces are occupied by not only adults but also children and elderly people, who are more susceptible to lower immunities.
- Automobiles: The air filters of automobile areas are an extension of the industrial components of air filters. The only difference with respect to automobiles is that of the filter size. The filters for automobiles are kind of a combination of the best of industrial as well as residential parts in order to ensure seam vehicle function as well as protecting the immediate surrounding from the exhaust fumes.
Measuring the effectiveness of air filters
Just like any other cleaning component, air filters are also rated for their efficiencies and qualities. The measurements for the same are done via MERV ratings. MERV is the acronym for the Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value. The MERV ratings not only rate air filters but also helps in improving the efficiency in terms of health quotients and factors of cost reduction and energy savings. The list below gives a high-level view to understanding MERV ratings quickly:
- Rating 1 – 4: The filter captures contaminants of a size larger than that of 10.0 μm. These filters are used for residential AC units
- Rating 5 – 8: The filter captures contaminants of size between 10.0 μm and 3.0 μm. These filters are used for posh residences and general commercial and industrial spaces
- Rating 9 – 12: The filter captures contaminants of size 3.0 μm and 1.0 μm. These filters are used for general hospital areas and medium level industrial areas
- Rating 13 – 16: The filter captures contaminants of size 1.0 μm and 0.3 μm. These filters are used for hospitals catering to high end surgical and intensive care units
- Rating 17 – 20: The filter captures contaminants of size less than 0.3 μm. These filters are used for electronic and pharmaceutical manufacturing units or quarantine rooms
Only the best quality air filters
It can be quite confusing to choose the best material or product when one is embarking on a journey of purchasing any new item for your own needs, which can be either commercial or persona. The choice of air filters is not different at all. You need to look for a reliable company while buying an air filter.
It is of utmost necessity that understanding the requirements thoroughly and undergoing proper research is needed to get the filter that suits the needs. Good companies also provide customized solution, in case the filter type does not match up to the regular standard ones that are available in the market.