Since filters have an upper limit on their effectiveness, many homeowners wonder if they need an air purifier in addition to their furnace filter. The answer depends on the type of home you have and the level of air quality you want to achieve. Air purifiers can help remove the smallest particles that slip through a filter, and when combined with the right set of filters, they can remove more than 98% of contaminants. For those with severe allergies, air purifiers offer additional purifying power in rooms where they spend most of their time.
And since Americans spend about 90% of their time indoors, air purifiers can be beneficial for everyone. Some air purifiers use an electrical charge to attract pollutants, while others use germicidal UV (ultraviolet) light to remove impurities. If you have a heating and cooling system, then you already have an air filter that is part of your home's HVAC system. The filter is excellent for picking up large particles, such as animal dander, but it falls short in quite a few areas that can affect lung health.
Installed in the ducts of a home's central HVAC system, air cleaning devices are designed to provide a more sophisticated way to trap and remove indoor air pollutants compared to your standard box or pleated air cleaner. Air filters are built directly inside your HVAC system and allow air to pass through them to trap microscopic particles of contaminants. Every homeowner wants to have clean air in their home, so it's important to understand the difference between an air purifier and your HVAC air cleaner. An air purifier uses denser, stronger filters that effectively remove a wide variety of particles from the air.
Mechanical air cleaner-based air filters typically combine high-MERV rated filter cartridges with additional germicide for bacteria and virus particles. Air cleaning devices can use high-efficiency mechanical filters, ultraviolet light, or electrostatic force to remove microscopic particles, allergens, and even unhealthy gaseous contaminants in indoor air. It's important to replace the filter on a regular basis and follow a regular maintenance schedule to keep your HVAC system running smoothly. In conclusion, both an air filter and an air purifier are effective at removing pollutants from the atmosphere and improving the quality of the air you breathe.
However, an air purifier offers more thorough cleaning power than a standard filter and is beneficial for those with severe allergies or who want to ensure their home has the highest quality of indoor air possible.