Do air purifiers really work? Research has shown that filtering the air can help reduce the amount of harmful particles in indoor spaces, particularly allergens, smoke, and mold. However, air purifiers are most effective when used in combination with proper filtration and home cleaning techniques. HEPA air purifiers have been proven to be particularly effective at filtering out allergens from the air. Air purifiers are designed to remove contaminants such as allergens, dust, spores, pollen, bacteria, viruses, and odors.
Not all units will be able to do this, so it is important to choose the right one for your needs. If you want to keep the air in an entire room clean at all times, you'll need to choose an air purifier that's large enough to do the job. Ionic air purifiers work by emitting large quantities of electrically charged negative ions into the air. This type of air purifier uses the energy produced by ultraviolet light to initiate a chemical process to neutralize and destroy particles in the air.
The purpose of an air purifier is to filter and disinfect these indoor air pollutants, chemicals, and allergens and improve air quality. Some air purifiers use ionizers to help attract particles such as static negative ions that bind to dust and allergens and cause them to be deposited out of the air. A study found that portable HEPA-filtered air purifiers were effective in reducing secondhand smoke exposure among non-smokers. Air purifiers trap most pollutants and allergens, but some will always stay in the air.
The EPA and many doctors agree that air purifiers are useful, especially if outdoor pollution is high or if it's too cold to open windows and let in tons of fresh air. The lifespan of an air cleaner will depend on the particular make, model and level of air pollutants. Some filters are reusable and washable, but require meticulous maintenance, so they are not usually found in the most effective air purifiers. In one study, HEPA air purifiers significantly decreased the concentration of allergens (which were predominantly dust mites) in both air and bedding.
Air purifiers usually consist of a filter or several filters and a fan that draws in and circulates the air. If you can't get an air purifier, you can make your own with a box fan and a high-quality HEPA or filter. So if you're looking for a way to cool your space while also cleaning up old congested air during COVID or flu season, an air purifier might be just what you need.