Can air purifiers protect your home against COVID-19?
We inhale and exhale approximately 20,000 times a day. And since the Coronavirus pandemic started, we’ve all become more concerned about the air we breathe and if it’s safe.
As life gets back to the “new normal” and we start to mix with more people outside our household bubbles, it’s important to stay alert and take extra steps to keep yourself and your family safe.
Since more than 200 world-leading scientists wrote an open letter to the World Health Organisation in June asking that they do not rule out the airborne spread of Covid-19, interest in air filters has spiked around the world.
Home air purifiers have always been popular devices, but demand has spiked now that people are learning they can help catch and kill airborne viruses. Most of this attention has been on HEPA filters and the role they can play…
What is HEPA?
As an added line of defence, air purifiers, particularly those with HEPA (High Efficient Particulate Air) systems, use a fan to draw in and trap particles that are in the air. This includes pollutants like pollen, mould and dust, as well as bacteria, fungus and viruses.
According to a NASA study, HEPA filters can capture particles as little as 0.01 micron. To put this into perspective, the virus that causes COVID-19 has a particle size of 0.125 micron, well within the threshold.
How to pick the right air purifier for your home
Indoor air quality can often be worse than outside. Poor ventilation can mean pollutants like pollen, mould and dust become trapped and build up, and bacteria, fungus and respiratory viruses are free to spread.
Overtime, this can lead to long-term health complications and increase your chances of suffering from allergies. Installing an air purifier can stop the build-up of pollutants and fill your home with fresh, clean and safe air all year round. It can also help prevent the spread of airborne viruses, leaving you with peace of mind.
Not all home air purifiers are made equally. Whether you’re buying one to help stop allergies or protect your home against Covid-19, choosing the right type can boost its effectiveness.
The more layers of filtration the better.
The best air purifiers on the market will have multiple layers of filtration including a pre-filter to capture large particles like dust, dirt and hairs, followed by activated carbon to filter out formaldehyde, benzene and other poisonous gases, a HEPA filter to catch smaller particles like pollen, viruses and bacteria, and finally a powerful UV light to eliminate any remaining germs and odours.
Always check the distance range of an air purifier before you purchase one. Different models will have different capabilities when it comes to the amount of air it can clean. You can check this by finding the range of the device, usually measured by a room’s square metre size.
Some models will have digital displays which measure the air quality in the room, so if you’re keen to keep a tab on this, opt an air purifier with this built-in functionality. You may also benefit from a device that has different filtration settings, depending on the quality of the air in your home, an automatic or app-controlled timer so it can start before you get home, and a quiet night mode so it can carry on working while you rest.
Remember these safety tips too…
While HEPA air purifiers can help reduce your risk of catching COVID-19 indoors, it should be considered as a second line of defence. Official guidelines should always be followed in the first instance.
As well as installing an air purifier, there are also other steps you can take at home to reduce the risk. Clean all shared surfaces regularly with antibacterial products, particularly in the kitchen and bathroom, limit the number of people from outside your household visiting you inside your home, always wash your hands thoroughly when you get in, and encourage active airflow by leaving windows slightly ajar.
You can purchase the FitAir Zeus HEPA Air Purifier and Virus Killer here.