Your home’s air can be as dirty as any doorknob, countertop, or any other surface. You might be concerned about allergens, pollen, pet dander, bacteria, mold spores, or viruses in your home’s air. If so, you can consider an air purification system to remove these contaminants. These systems aren’t air filters, instead, they provide a deeper clean to your air.
The Difference Between an Air Purifier and Air Filtration System
Air filters serve a few purposes. The air filter in your furnace protects the furnace’s inner workings from damage related to dust and other particles, but they aren’t intended to significantly clean your air. Other air filters actively remove some contaminants from your air, but they don’t catch the smallest particles, such as viruses, bacteria, cigarette smoke, odors and more. These things are simply too small and they flow right through an air filtration system’s filter. In order to capture those particles, you need an air purifier.
How Air Purifiers Work
There are two major types of air purifiers, which work in slightly different ways. The first uses an exceptionally fine filter to remove even the smallest contaminants from the air. In order to successfully remove these very tiny particles, the filter works like a strainer, but with very small holes. The fibers of the filter may actually be thinner than a single strand of human hair!
Other air purifiers use Ultraviolet (UV) light to remove odors and kill bacteria and viruses, instead of straining them out of the air. Specifically, these filters create ultraviolet light at a 254 nm wavelength. This light destroys the actual DNA of the bacteria and viruses, which stops them from reproducing. This wavelength can also oxidize chemicals, odors, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) found in furniture, carpets, bedding, and toys, that affect our home’s indoor air quality.
Overall, you can expect a UV air purifier to render harmless or remove:
- Mold spores
- Pet dander
- Cooking odors
- Cigarette smoke
- Diesel fumes
- Airborne adhesives
Using an ultraviolet light air purifier can fix sick building syndrome and dirty sock syndrome that is often present in ventilation.
Example on how air is purified with UV (Image from Sanuvox)
What is a HEPA Filter?
HEPA stands for High-Efficiency Particulate Air. These filters capture a huge percentage of contaminants in the air, over 99%. They achieve this by using a very fine filter that can capture particles 0.03 microns and smaller. HEPA filters perform three stages in order to get all of these particles:
- Impaction: The biggest particles simply crash into the fiberglass threads of the filter when air is drawn in.
- Interception: Smaller particles are drawn to smaller fibers and get attached to them
- Diffusion: The very smallest particles take a bit more time to get stuck, but they do get drawn to the fibers in the smallest part of the filter, where they can be trapped
HEPA filters do not typically use UV light technology to kill viruses and bacteria in the air. However, several air purification systems combine a HEPA filter with UV light, to provide better cleaning for your air.
Can Air Purifiers Capture Coronavirus?
Yes, but they aren’t enough to guarantee you absolute protection from catching the illness. HEPA-rated filters do capture viruses the size of the COVID-19 virus (which is 0.125 microns). So, you can use an air purifier to kill viruses. Once trapped, viruses in the filter do not multiply and do not remain infectious for long. On the other hand, if you are living with a contagious person, they may send too many virus cells into the air for the filter to keep up with. Using such a filter is never a guarantee that you won’t get an illness.
Why Choose a Sanuvox Air Purifier Treatment System?
Our air treatment systems combine HEPA technology with cutting-edge UV treatments to clean the air effectively. Here are a few reasons why you should choose one of these systems:
- In-duct installation
- Odor removal and elimination of contaminants
- Eliminates VOCs
- Eliminates germs
- Cleans up to 4,000 square feet (smaller models are available for smaller spaces)
Steri Mobile for your Air Purification System Needs
Steri Mobile is the Quebec representative for residential UV air purifiers and as such offers a multitude of air purifiers in a range of sizes. We offer installation of all our air purification system units around the greater Montreal area, as well as other regions from the Laurentians to the Eastern Townships and even more. Contact us today to learn more!