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Air Filter vs. Air Purifier: Which is the Best?

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A woman sitting on her couch breathing in fresh quality air in her home

Everyone wants to believe that the air quality inside our homes is the best it can be. But that may not be true. Especially in the winter, when windows are usually closed and air circulation is at a minimum.

Your home may need an air cleaning device to improve the air quality, such as an air filter or an air purifier. We can help you with that! Ace Plumbing will help improve your household’s air quality and ensure you’re breathing the best air possible in your home. Contact us to make sure your family’s always breathing the cleanest air possible.

Be Aware of Healthy Air

Human beings are a very visual species. For instance, if we see smoke inside we instantly know there’s something wrong. Unfortunately, the observable signs of poor air quality inside your house aren’t as jarring and easy to spot. The air inside your home can be full of microscopic pollutants like bacteria, allergens, and mould, even though you can’t see them. These pathogens can have lasting effects on your life quality and respiratory health.

To ensure the air you’re breathing daily isn’t harming you, the best course of action is installing an air filter, an air purifier, or both. The right choice varies case-by-case, but whatever your needs are, we’ll be there to help. Together, we’ll determine what type of air cleaning system is the best for your home. Contact us and let us help you breathe easy.

Technician changing the air filter on an HVAC system to protect the system from harmful contaminants

What is an Air Filter?

An air filter is a device, usually installed in your HVAC system, that filters out airborne particles. This can be accomplished in a physical manner, like a foam or pleated paper filter, or in a chemical manner, like a charcoal filter. These filtered harmful particles may include mould, fibres, dust, pollen, fungal spores and many others. Not all air filters are created equal, and different types of air filters perform differently.

HEPA Air Filter

High-efficiency particulate absorbing (HEPA) filters are filters that can remove up to 99.97% of airborne particles, like dust, pollen, mould, and even bacteria. These filters can filter out particles as small as 0.3 microns. These filters are very common and very efficient, and best employed in homes where residents suffer from respiratory issues such as allergies. 

Pleated Air Filter

These filters are made out of cotton or polyester and are very effective at filtering particles because of their larger surface area. This allows pleated filters to stop even the most evasive particles, like spores. 

Ultraviolet Filters 

A UV filter uses UV light to eliminate infinitesimal pathogens such as viruses and bacteria when they pass through your HVAC system. They work great against pathogens but aren’t as effective against particles like dust. This is why they’re usually installed in conjunction with another type of filter.  

Doesn’t My HVAC System Already Have an Air Filter?

A common misconception is that your home is protected from air impurities just because your furnace or air conditioning unit has a filter. The filter for your furnace or AC doesn’t impact air quality. That filter is designed to stop dust from damaging your HVAC system. If you want your HVAC system to actively eliminate impurities, you need to have air filtration installed.

What About an Air Purifier?

An air purifier is a device that removes pollutants, toxins, and allergens from the air, sanitizing it. The key difference between an air filter and an air purifier is that an air filter only removes the particle from the air. An air purifier can actively sanitize it. 

The particles sanitized by an air purifier depend on the type of air purifier you choose. This is why an air purifier is more effective when employed in conjunction with an air filter that complements it.  

Benefits of an Air Purifier

Air purifiers are especially recommended for households with residents that suffer from chronic respiratory conditions, like asthma or allergies. A properly fitted air purifier in conjunction with an air filter can help alleviate symptoms of these conditions.

So Which One Should I Choose?

The short answer is: It depends. There are different filters and purifiers for different needs. While some filters can do most by themselves, like HEPA filters, the most effective way to ensure your home’s air quality is airtight, is with a combination of an air filter and an air purifier. But this is always dependent on your individual needs and at Ace Plumbing we’re ready to help you decide on the best option for your household. Contact us to stop suffering from poor air quality.

Written by Jack Devetten

The company was built on dedication to quality services, skilled and experienced technicians, and competitive prices. Our owner, Jack Devetten, brings more than 45 years of experience with him. All our staff members are focused on delivering 100% satisfaction on every job they do – we guarantee it!
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