For all the changes wrought by the COVID era, one of the most lasting might be the attention we pay to the very air we breathe. Indoor air quality can make or break the comfort of a home or business, and science is promoting the idea of “sick building syndrome” alongside an ever-growing list of hazards Sacramento area homeowners should be aware of. Air filters may not be enough; for homeowners that want an added layer of security and comfort, an air purification system from Ace Plumbing Heating and Air Conditioning is an ideal complement to our other indoor air quality services in Sacramento CA.
Air Purification vs Air Filters
Your first thought upon reading this might be, “But my HVAC system already has an air filter, doesn’t it?” Yes, it does. But an air filter isn’t the same as an air purifier. They share the same overarching goal — cleaner air — but they take many different routes in getting there.
How Air Filters Work
Air filters work by taking the particulate matter out of the air. There are several types, including common fiberglass filters to pleated filters, electrostatic filters, and more. And some of these are very good at what they do, removing particulate matter down to the micron level. So why, you ask, might you need an air purifier?
How Air Purifiers Work
Some airborne contaminants are small enough to slip through even the best air filtration system. It’s one thing to get the pollen and pet dander out of the air, but what about the living organisms you’re also breathing in? Bacteria, mold, and mildew are present in your indoor air, too, and an air purifier uses additional tools — including ultraviolet light, ionization, ozone, or even heat — to address those microorganisms.
Do I Need an Air Purifier?
An air purifier or filter? Some homeowners find that a filter alone is enough. But a properly sized and installed air purifier can give you added protection and peace of mind. Our advice? If you find that you’re experiencing the following symptoms and a new air filter or duct cleaning doesn’t solve the problem, it may be time to consider an air purification system.
- Your home is clean and not that dusty, but your sinuses still don’t feel quite right
- You come down with respiratory issues more than you used to
- Your home always seems to feel or smell stuffy
- You have respiratory conditions like asthma, emphysema, or COPD
- Your spouse hasn’t slept a wink, or you find you’re continually tired and irritable, due to your snoring
Choosing Your Air Purifier
Given the diversity of sizes and types of air purifiers, it can be hard making a choice with which you’re comfortable. The right choice will be dictated by your needs, budget, and the kinds of problems you expect your air purifier to solve. While portable single-room units are better than nothing, a whole-house air purifier can work alongside an existing air conditioner installation or furnace installation, using the same ductwork.
Types of Air Purifiers
Every type of air purifier comes with its pros and cons, as well as different installation and use concerns (especially concerning home airflow). For help narrowing your options, call us.
- HEPA filtration removes up to 99.7% of particles larger than 3 microns; that’s handy for particulate matter, but it won’t address odors, volatile organic compounds, and other gases (like cigarette smoke) that may be present.
- Ultraviolet light will not address physical particles at all and should be used in tandem with a good filter. That said, this method is especially effective at killing bacteria, viruses, mildew, molds, and fungi with prolonged use.
- Negative ion purifiers use a negative electrical charge that works in much the same way as a magnet, attracting many common contaminants.
- Activated carbon filters trap a wide variety of organic and inorganic contaminants, but unlike UV light, will not render them inert.
- Ozone purifiers produce ozone (O3 ). This can be an effective decontaminant, bt can wreak havoc on those with respiratory conditions.
Indoor Air Quality Solutions from Ace Plumbing Heating and Air Conditioning
Besides air filters and air filtration, there are other IAQ solutions that you may find helpful or even necessary. Dehumidifiers are popular for the humid summer air. Humidifiers keep skin, sinuses, and belongings from drying out. Duct cleaning does its part to keep the air clean and comfortable, too. If there’s a problem with the air you breathe, Ace Plumbing Heating and Air Conditioning have a solution. Call us today!