April 15, 2020

Although no air purifier can remove 100% of the germs in your Middletown, New York, home, you can significantly lower the number of bacteria and viruses circulating in your home’s air. An air purifier works with your home’s heating and air conditioning system in order to remove bacteria, viruses, mold, pollen and more. Here are some tips on how an air purifier can help you and your family stay healthy all year long:

How Long Bacteria and Viruses Survive in Droplets

When someone coughs or sneezes, they spray an aerosol of droplets. Those droplets contain bacteria or viruses that can infect another person. The aerosol sprays out at least 6 feet from the person’s mouth or nose. Those tiny droplets can remain suspended in stagnant air for three hours or even longer. In a home that is cool and dry, those viruses and bacteria may remain infectious for much longer.

What an Air Purifier Can Do

An air purifier is a small machine that either filters or irradiates the air that passes through it. The filter or UV irradiation beam either captures infectious particles or inactivates them, depending on the type of the unit. Air purifiers can work along with your heating, ventilation and air conditioning system to filter or irradiate your home’s air.

Types of Air Purifiers

There are several types of air purifiers. A room-sized air purifier is a freestanding unit that can filter the air of a room up to 400-square feet. This is a good choice for a bedroom, especially if you spend most of your day away from home. It’s also a good solution if one person in your household is sick and confined to the bedroom.

Another type of air purifier is a whole-house system. They work along with your existing or new heating, ventilation and air conditioning system. They can cycle along with the equipment. You can also set a whole-house air purifier to constantly cycle.

What an Air Purifier Does

The air purifier has a motor and fan. It draws in air from the room. The air that is drawn into the unit either passes through an activated charcoal filter or under the beam of UV-C light. The charcoal filters remove tiny particles, including viruses and bacteria. The UV-C lights are designed to inactivate bacteria and viruses. The system then blows the cleansed air into the living space. In the case of a whole-home air purifier, the cleansed air goes directly into your home’s air ducts and reaches your living spaces through the wall, floor or ceiling vents.

How to Choose an Air Purifier

If you have several people in your household or a medium- to large-size home, a whole-house air purifier is a wise choice. They filter or irradiate all the air in your house at least every 60 minutes. This eliminates infectious bacteria or viruses more quickly, so there is less of a chance of someone else in your home breathing in those droplets or getting the aerosol into their eyes.

If you do not want to deal with air purifier maintenance yourself, a whole-house air purifier is a wise choice. Our HVAC technicians perform the preventive maintenance for you.

What to Keep in Mind About Air Purifiers

Air purifiers work best in a narrow temperature and humidity range. They operate best at temperatures between 68 degrees and 75 degrees Fahrenheit and humidity levels of 40% to 50%, explains Wired. You will also need to ensure that your home’s HVAC system receives routine maintenance. If you choose an air purifier with an activated charcoal filter, you will need to replace the filter on a regular basis.

If you are interested in an air purifier because of the novel coronavirus causing the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s important to understand that there are not yet any research studies demonstrating the effectiveness of any particular make or model of air purifier against this virus. It is still important to cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue and to take other precautions, including regular handwashing.

At WK Mechanical, Inc., our dedicated HVAC technicians offer preventive maintenance plans, emergency repairs and installations of residential and commercial heating and air conditioning systems. We also offer water purification systems, boiler services, indoor air quality solutions, hydronic water heaters, whole-home generators and oil heating systems. Call us today for more information about how to fight viruses and bacteria in your Middletown, New York, home.

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