Use An Air Purifier, Not An Air Freshener

Use An Air Purifier, Not An Air Freshener

Depending on the cause of the odor you are experiencing, the fix may be as simple as air freshener or as complex as installing an air purifier in your ductwork. Before you choose a solution, you’ll need to figure out what is at the root of the odor.

Air purifiers come in three basic types: expensive, more expensive, and OUCH. So how do you separate out the hype and bring a breath of fresh air to the subject? It’s called caveat inhalator, or, breather beware! There seems to be an inverse relationship between the amount of research done and the money wasted.

The UV Air Purifier

Odor-causing bacteria, such as bathroom, diaper, and garbage odors, cannot be filtered out with common household air purifiers. For smells caused by bacteria, the air purifier you’ll need is one with a UV light. There are a variety of these available.

A UV air purifier can be installed directly into your air ducts. These air purifiers work by radiating the bacteria, as well as viruses and other germs.

They are, however, only effective when air is circulating. This is because the UV light in the air purifier can only kill contaminates that are very, very close to the light bulb. In fact, a UV bulb is only 60 percent efficient at .4 inches from the bulb and only 20 percent effective at 2 inches from the bulb.

Other UV air purifiers are available in combo units that typically include an added HEPA filter and sometimes ionization. These will not only remove odors (the UV and ionizing does that) but also will help reduce the allergens and dust in the air. Air fresheners cannot remove allergens and dust.

There are some spray air fresheners that have an effect similar to that of a UV air purifier. If you decide on a spray air freshener, look for one that says “disinfectant.” While they kill bacteria and viruses that may cause odors, they only work where sprayed.

Therefore, reapplication will be needed if the odors reoccur. For this reason, air purifiers are generally a better option because they are capable of purifying entire rooms and homes rather than just one area.

The Ionizing Air Purifier

Ionizing air purifiers are another great alternative to air fresheners. These air purifiers help take care of both odor and smoke in a room – something spray air freshener cannot do.

One of the most well known ionizing air purifier systems is the Ionic Breeze air purifier. This air purifier costs about $300, but is worth the price when it comes to removing odors.

Ionizing air purifiers send negatively charged ions into the air. These ions are attracted to the positively charged ions in the air, which include odor particles and smoke. As a result, the particles become too heavy to stay in the air and they plummet toward the ground. The ionizing air purifier collects these heavy particles in a special plate, which you can easily clean off with a rag.

Air fresheners, on the other hand, do not remove particles from the air. Instead, they just mask the smells.

Low Ozone Air Purifiers

Low-ozone air purifiers work by oxidizing pollutants, leaving behind breathable oxygen and purified air. Air fresheners, however, do not create purified air. Instead, they simply disguise odors while leaving pollutants behind.

Levels of contaminants in the air increase every year both inside and outside the home. Every year more people who have been taking breathing for granted seem to want to breathe something a little less toxic. An air purifier eases your breathing and your mind.

Low-ozone air purifiers can be harmful, however, if they are turned up too high. This is because they increase the ozone levels in the home to above .05 part per million, which is considered to be poisonous. In addition, ozone systems are sometimes associated with a metallic smell.

Nonetheless, when low-ozone air purifiers are used correctly they provide clean, breathable air unlike what is offered by air fresheners.

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