Your complete guide to buying air filters online.

Your Complete Guide to Buying Air Filters Online

As the cold months of winter become a distant memory and we plunge ever further into hay fever season—especially when it's warm, humid, and windy, it becomes increasingly more crucial to keep the air in your spaces devoid of irritants, allergens, pollen, and even dust that might have an unfavorable impact on our quality of life and wellbeing.

Our spaces have become almost airtight with the advent of air conditioning and heating systems, combined with an increased awareness among the general population about the need to save energy. Even though this is beneficial for reducing energy consumption and maintaining an optimal temperature within a building, it also means that irritants may be trapped inside—which is where air purifiers come in.

What is an Air Purifier?

An air purifier is a device that eliminates pollutants from the air in a room to enhance the air quality inside the space. These devices are very useful to asthmatics and allergy sufferers and may reduce or eliminate the effects of second-hand smoke. Commercially rated air purifiers come in either stand-alone or bigger units that can be attached to an HVAC or AHU. They are often found in the medical, industrial, and commercial sectors.

What is an Air Filter?

An air filter is a device used to remove solid airborne particles that, if breathed in, may be detrimental to a person's health. Dust, powder, pollen, mold, fibers, bacteria, viruses and other microscopic organisms are all examples of potentially harmful particles. There is an additional need for air filters in locations where air pollution runs rampant. These locations include buildings, public transit, public places, and industrial settings.

Air Filter vs. Air Purifier

Many people use the word "air purifier" as an umbrella term defining any device that eliminates airborne toxins. An air filter can be thought of as the motor function necessary to keep an air purifier running. The best air purifiers utilize three or four different types of air filters to create highly effective air purification systems.

Most Common Types of Air Filters

Common types of air filters

 

The capacity to remove different kinds of airborne contaminants from the air in your house is the fundamental distinction between various filters, which changes depending on the composition and arrangement of the materials. For instance, a closely woven and layered material will filter better than thinner material. Therefore, to choose the filter type most suited for your residential or commercial area, you need to have a solid understanding of the capabilities of the various filter materials.

There are seven primary kinds of air filters in the filtration industry, each with a unique set of benefits and drawbacks. The following is a list of the different types of air filters accompanied by their MERV ratings. MERV rating stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value.

Spun Glass or Fiberglass Air Filters

These filters, also known as flat-paneled filters, are made up of strands of glass spun together and then strengthened by a metal grating. Their use is widespread due to affordability, but these filters do not significantly improve the air quality inside your home. Judging by their MERV rating, they can only filter around twenty percent of particles ranging in size from three to ten microns. Simply put, fiberglass air filters are suitable for those looking only to keep the most common debris out of their homes, such as dust or lint.

Pleated Filters

A fabric material that might be either polyester or cotton is used to construct pleated filters. The cloth is folded and folded again to make the filter's surface area as large as possible (Filters with a greater number of pleats are more effective). These filters land at a price that's slightly higher than fiberglass filters. Their MERV rating suggests that they superior in their ability to combat pollutants. They can remove even very tiny airborne contaminants, such as pollen, pet dander, and mold spores.

HEPA Filters

HEPA filters, also known as high-efficiency particle air filters, are the most effective. They can remove up to 99.97 percent of your house's airborne pollutants and allergens, including dust, viruses, mold, pet dander, pollen, and smoke particles. People who suffer from allergies or other respiratory conditions will most likely benefit from their high level of effectiveness.

 Air purifier system using HEPA air filters.

UV Light Filters

The ultraviolet (UV) light embedded inside these filters emits germicidal radiation, disinfecting the air as it moves through the system. These filters are wonderful for cleaning the air in rooms with potentially hazardous bacteria like mold spores. Obtaining an air purifier that combines HEPA technology with the power of Ultraviolet Light air filters can be a powerful addition to your home or office.

Electrostatic Filters

Cotton and paper fibers are combined in these filters, resulting in the generation of static electricity. The static then acts like a magnet, drawing contaminants into the filter screen where they are captured. Electrostatic filters are highly recommended for individuals who suffer from allergies since they prevent allergens from spreading throughout the house. Electrostatic filters often use carbon filtration to achieve greater productivity levels, available in washable and disposable varieties.

 

Guide to Buying Air Filters Online in 2022

As more people are working from home now than ever, the demand for filtered air has skyrocketed. An air filter has the capacity to remove most airborne pollutants. Additionally, certain air purifiers use air filters that are capable of catching particles carrying the COVID-19 coronavirus. Consequently, there are now an unprecedented number of air filters and purifiers available on the market. But how exactly can one differentiate between the many versions of these products?

This article will cover everything you need to know to make an informed decision when purchasing an air filter, including determining which models will make it easier for you to breathe and which models are appropriate for your room size. Regardless of your financial constraints or the requirements of your building, you will be able to locate a suitable air filter for your commercial or residential space. Ready to dive in? Read along.

Quick Tips for First-Time Buyers of Air Filters

 Tips for first time air filter buyers.

 

  • Determine where you would want to set up your air filter.

  • Look for an air filter that effectively filters out the contaminants.

  • Calculate the costs of operation, maintenance, and power consumption.

  • Check out the CADR ratings, which show how quickly it can clean the air.

  • Check the product specifications for the noise levels, usually given in decibels.

  • Ensure your device has a HEPA filter—the gold standard for indoor air purifiers.

Benefits of Using Air Filters in a Commercial or Residential Space

Air filters designed for commercial or residential spaces.

 

Air filters come in various shapes and sizes, and although they all aim to accomplish the same general goal, each model has a star feature. Some are designed for residential homes, while others perform exceptionally well in commercial spaces. This raises the obvious question: who will gain the most from using an air purifier? Literally, everyone! Choosing a machine that uses the correct air filters provides many advantages and does much more than just make the air cleaner. Let's dive in.

  • They may lower the risk of diseases spread via the air.

  • They may be able to filter potentially hazardous substances.

  • They have the potential to alleviate the symptoms of asthma.

  • They reduce the number of allergens that are present in the air.

  • They can help with dust, allergen, bacteria, virus, and pet dander.

  • They are effective in removing mold spores from the surrounding air.

Types of Technology Used in Air Purifiers – Overview

 Technology used in air filters.

 

HEPA Technology: Every good purifier revolves around HEPA technology. It filters particles as fine as 0.3 microns (Fun fact: human eyes can only see air particles bigger than 10 microns!).

Active Carbon Technology: Usually combined with HEPA, these filters are lined with carbon, a highly absorbent material that effectively traps air pollutants and harmful gases.

UV Light Technology: Instead of getting rid of the airborne particles like other technologies, a UV-based air filter targets germs and other microorganisms and air particles.

Ionized Technology: Ionized technology is quite rare, generally used to clean the air by magnetically attracting the pollutants and causing them to drop to a solid surface.

HEPA Technology

High-Efficiency Particulate Air is what the acronym HEPA stands for. This filter has been used for years and serves as the industry standard for all effective air purifiers. At least 99.97 percent of all particles with a size greater than 0.3 microns should be removed by a conventional HEPA filter (The human eye can only detect particles at least 10 microns in size 0.01 mm).

Due to this, it is an excellent choice for filtering small airborne particles such as germs and viruses. It also filters VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) such as adhesives, cleaning chemicals, and paints. HEPA filters are created using very thin fibers that are folded and unfolded in a back and forth motion. This back and forth folding motion creates a fiber arrangement particularly suited for improving air filtering effectiveness. It also generates a wide surface area through which air may flow.

The amount of particles retained by a filter as a measure of effectiveness is directly proportional to the volume of air it processes. An efficiency of 99.97 percent indicates that just three particles out of 10,000 can evade capture. However, HEPA filters are ineffective in removing odors from the air, even if they are quite good at removing airborne particles. As a result, most genuine HEPA filters have some odor-removing technology based on activated carbon.

Active Carbon Technology

The technology behind activated carbon has been around for more than a century. In the beginning, it was used to clean water, but when it was put into gas masks to protect troops during World War II, its potential to clean the air was discovered. Filters made of activated carbon contain millions of pores on the molecular scale and have great chemical bonding characteristics. As a result of these capabilities, they are very effective in removing pollutants such as aromas, gases, smoke, and chemical emissions.

People who suffer from Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (also known as MCS), which is a condition that causes allergic-like responses when chemicals are present in the body, would benefit greatly from using air purifiers that use this technology. This technology helps make the air easier to breathe by filtering out formaldehyde, fragrances, or cleaning chemicals that may be present in wood paneling, upholstered furniture, or carpeting. Individuals with asthma may also benefit greatly from this.

Even though purifiers with carbon filters are excellent at eliminating airborne toxins, they are not particularly effective at eliminating dust and allergies. On top of that, they are also ineffective in removing air particles located at great distances, which reduces the effectiveness of using them in larger spaces, such as commercial or industrial establishments.

UV Light Technology

UV technology, also known as ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI), is excellent in eliminating viruses and bacteria. These purifiers have a UV light that destroys germs' cellular or genetic features as they pass through the device. Since it cannot effectively remove air particles, ultraviolet (UV) technology is often combined with other filtration technologies.

Most businesses begin removing airborne contaminants by using a HEPA or carbon-activated filter and then move on to using ultraviolet light as the third and final step. The light's wattage and the exposure length determine how effective ultraviolet light filtering is. This indicates that the microorganisms are more likely to be killed by UV light if exposed for longer periods.

Some UVGI purifiers convert water and oxygen molecules into hydroxyl and ozone in the process of cleaning the air. Afterwards, these active molecules mix with the air pollutants and transform them into more benign substances such as carbon dioxide and water.

Ionized Technology

Ions are particles that have either a positive or negative charge, depending on whether they have gained or lost an electron. Ionizers and other purifiers that use negative ions function by magnetically drawing in dust and other airborne particles (which are positively charged).

Despite how advanced it may appear, the air purifying qualities of this technology is not nearly as effective as other technologies. Because of this, we recommend combining this technology with others by using an air purifier with multiple air filters and multiple steps.

Best Air Filters for Home and Business

Air purifiers and air filters that are best for business.

An air filter may significantly affect the quality of life by removing allergens from the air and shielding it from smoke caused by different sources. However, for an air filter to be perfect for you, it must effectively clean the air in your desired area, such as your home. This is why we recommend using an air purifier that's easily moveable, quiet, and uses HEPA or activated carbon air filters.

It has never been more crucial to improving air quality, particularly in light of the current worldwide COVID-19 issue. As a company owner, ensuring the health and safety of the employees in the workplace is of the utmost importance. And one way to eliminate potential health issues is to ensure that the air quality is optimal wherever employees work. In situations like these, an air filter that can handle a large area will be the best option—and this is where the HEPA air filters can come into play.

Frequently Asked Questions

 Air filter frequently asked questions.

 

Whether you're looking to apply an air filter to a commercial or residential space, finding an air purifier that can use the air filters you need is always a first step. If you're still scratching your head, wondering which to choose, feel free to give us a call and we will gladly point you in the right direction. If you still have questions about air filtration, check out some of the answers below.

What is Air Filtration?

The removal of solid particles, including dust mites, pollen, mold, and germs, from the air is the function of a particulate air filtration device. This kind of filter may be made of fibrous or porous materials. Filters that include an adsorbent or catalyst like charcoal can eliminate smells and gaseous contaminants like ozone or volatile organic compounds. The market has many options with various efficient air filtration devices for people looking to make a change in their breathing health.

Do Purifiers Remove Odors?

An air purifier will not only help eliminate the smell from your leftover food but will also reduce regular odors from your kitchens. Purifiers do this by filtering and eliminating particles that might be the source of unpleasant odors. However, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), no air cleaner or filter can remove all unpleasant smells.

Are There Side Effects to an Air Purifier?

The short answer is no; nonetheless, you should exercise caution when purchasing any electrical item that promises to have a wide-ranging influence on the commercial or residential space. Also, if you're sensitive to airborne irritants such as ozone or chemicals, it is essential that you use your air purifier in a responsible way. The most common ways to do this irresponsibly are by waiting too long to get a new air filter, or waiting too long to wash your washable air filter.

How Much Does it Cost to Operate an Air Filter?

It depends on the level of energy efficiency that a device offers, even though the cost of power is a secondary factor in operating a purifier. Secondly, purifiers demand replacement air filters from time to time. However, if you spend your money on a high-quality HEPA filter, you can expect to have it replaced every 3 to 5 years. On average, using a purifier daily would set you back between $0.02 and $0.32. When in standby mode, the yearly operating cost ranges from 0 cents to 0.86 cents — an amazingly good cost when you consider how much it will be improving your health!

What is Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value?

MERV stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value. It is a measurement scale that measures a filter's capacity to remove bigger particles with a diameter of between 0.3 and 10 microns (m). The rating was obtained from a test procedure designed by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) in 1987. The grade of minimum efficiency reporting value is determined by subjecting a controlled testing environment to introducing particles ranging in size from 1 to 12. To calculate the minimum efficiency reporting value, a laser particle counter takes readings of the air both before it enters the test filter and after it exits the filter.

What to Consider Before Buying a New Air Filter

Before buying the right air filter, you might want to consider multiple factors. Let us give you some insights to make an informed decision in choosing the best air filter. Firstly, to pick the proper sized air filter for your needs, measure the square footage of the room you wish to purify. If you are searching for an air filter to aid your allergies, you should make sure the air filter you choose is effective at removing allergens.

Check which one has the best air filter efficiency and the best MERV rating. The efficiency and power input is related to the energy bills you will have to pay, so keep that in mind. Check where you will place the return vents for the impure air to filter your room. 

What is a Furnace Filter?

Not only are furnace filters, often referred to as AC filters, vital components that keep the air clean while using your air conditioning machine, but they also assist the life of your air conditioning and heating system by extending its lifespan. A furnace filter's main purpose is to protect your heating system, particularly the blower fan, from the dust mites, dirt, hair, debris, and other pollutants sucked into the system through the return duct. Your respiratory health may also benefit from the improved IAQ (indoor air quality) in your house, provided by a furnace filter.

What Are Replacement Filters?

A replacement filter is a filter element that may be purchased separately. When the filter element in your filter becomes worn out or clogged after a period, you will need a new one.

Conclusion

In a market flooded with different air purifiers backed by unique air filter technologies, not all filters are exactly alike. Different filters clean the air in different ways. Always start searching for air filters by looking at the minimum efficiency reporting value. This will give you an idea of how successful the air filter will be in meeting the requirements unique to your needs. Once you have found an air filter, find a suitable air purifier that uses that technology.

This brings us to the end of our complete guide to buying air filters online. Now it's time to hear from you. If you have any questions, or there's something we missed, feel free to leave a comment below. Enjoyed reading this article? Share it with someone who needs better air quality in their life.

Interested in improving the air quality of your home or office? Give us a call. Our experts will be able to point you in the right direction!

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