If it’s been awhile since you’ve changed the air filter in your furnace, you may be shortening the life of your system while inhaling pollutants such as dust, mold, bacteria, viruses and dust mites. Your air filter protects your furnace from dust buildup and improves the air quality in your home. Check your air filter every month and change when dirty to save on energy costs and keep your furnace operating at peak efficiency.
Air filtration is frequently recommended as a component of environmental control measures for patients with allergic respiratory disease. Residential air filtration can be provided by whole house filtration via the home’s heating, ventilation, or air conditioning system, by portable room air cleaners, or a combination of the two. Appliances to filter the sleep breathing zone also have been developed. High-efficiency whole house filtration, high-efficiency particulate air sleep zone air filtration, and high-efficiency particulate air room air cleaners all appear to provide various degrees of benefit. Recent studies of various types of filtration, used alone or as part of more comprehensive environmental control measures, are reviewed.
In the past, the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) standards defined air filter efficiency as the percentage of airborne particles larger than 1 micron captured by a filter; for example, 30 percent, 80 percent or 95 percent.
The new ASHRAE Standard 52.2 — which defines the MERV scale — assigns a value for the filter’s minimum efficiency in capturing particles at six progressive stages of dust-loading with particles in the range of 0.3 to 10 microns. Comparing the new standard with the old, for example, a filter rated MERV 8 will capture roughly 30 percent of 1-micron particles at maximum dust-loading; MERV 13, 80 percent; and MERV 15, more than 95 percent.
In the past, air filtration systems in spaces such as offices and schools were designed primarily to protect HVAC equipment and reduce the need for facility cleaning. In recent years, people have become aware of the issue of indoor air quality as independent studies have focused attention on the deleterious effects of airborne contaminants and the relationship of “sick building syndrome” to higher absenteeism and lower productivity. In turn, facility executives have felt increasing ethical, legal and marketing pressures to provide a high-quality indoor air environment for their occupants.
Air filtration systems aim to capture, in a cost-effective manner, as many of the suspended particulates, biological materials and gases from the air as possible. An air filtration strategy depends on the building’s occupancy, location, specific air quality issues, and the type and operation of the HVAC system. For example, the strategy for an airport terminal, which is subject to high volumes of diesel and jet fuel gases, differs from that of a typical office building.
The HVAC filter is one of the most crucial components of a forced-air heating and air-conditioning system. Without a filter, dust would be blown all over the house, thwarting your cleaning efforts and spoiling indoor air quality. A neglected filter will clog with dust and debris, restricting airflow and reducing energy efficiency.A wide range of filters are available: fiber-and-paper filters, widely used because they’re inexpensive and easy to handle; models made of polyester or fiberglass; HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filters, for those with allergies or dust sensitivities; and even “permanent” filters that can be washed out and used repeatedly.
The most effective filters have a high Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value or MERV (a rating for mechanical air filters). MERV is detailed in a standard developed by the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE).
MERV is an acronym for "Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value".
The MERV rating on an air filter describes its efficiency as a means of reducing the level of 0.3 to 10 micron-sized particles in air which passes through the filter. Higher "MERV" means higher filter efficiency. The purpose of the MERV standard is to permit an "apples to apples" comparison of the filtering efficiency of various air filters.
Don't expect the thin washable plastic air filters used on window or split system or portable air conditioners (shown at left) to operate with the same efficiency as more sophisticated filters.
Al Veeck, executive director of the National Air Filter Association has pointed out that MERV includes a broad range of small airborne particles described in 3 ranges:
What is the best air filter for the furnace or air conditioner? Washable or disposable.
The purpose of a filter is to filter out dust, dead skin cells, airborne dust mites, pet dander, pollen and other allergens. Not all filters are capable of trapping these particulates and only one of these filters is capable of capturing particulates down to 0.3 microns in size.
Air pollution isn’t just car exhaust or factory smoke. Dust mites, mold spores, pollen, and pet dander in the air inside your home can cause problems if your family has allergies or asthma. Using HEPA filters can trap these pollutants and may help bring allergy relief.
How HEPA Filters Work
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Managing Allergies at School
Does your child miss school due to allergies? If so, you're not alone. Seasonal allergies are believed to affect as many as 40% of U.S. children. On any given day, about 10,000 of those children miss school because of their allergies. That's a total of more than 2 million lost school days every year. Even if your child doesn't miss school, allergies can get in the way of a productive school day, so managing allergies at school is an important part of caring for your child's health.
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HEPA stands for high-efficiency particulate air. A HEPA filter is a type of mechanical air filter; it works by forcing air through a fine mesh that traps harmful particles such as pollen, pet dander, dust mites, and tobacco smoke.
Do Air Purifiers Really Work?
The good news is that most air purifiers do purify the air. The bad news is most people derive little to no benefit from their use. Using air purifiers as part of a multi-pronged attack against allergens or pollution seems to be the best route to take, but the effectiveness of air purifiers alone is considered by consumer advocates to be negligible. Considering the average price of high-end air purifiers offered through specialty outlets, other less-expensive air treatments should most likely be considered first.
Air purifiers work in a number of ways, but quite commonly the purification mechanism is an electrostatic charge on metal plates. The entire unit is placed in a inconspicuous location and air naturally circulates through it. As the air passes over the charged plates, any dust or spores or other floating debris should be captured by the electrostatic charge, much like salt crystals being attracted to a statically-charged comb. The air coming out of passive air purifiers should be much cleaner than the air going into the unit.
In 2008, The Pure Air Store set out on a mission, to find and affordably distribute the best Air Conditioner Air Filter for Allergies. After two more years of research and development, we identified a fibrous material that, when tested by AHAM industry standards, was rated MERV-13 efficiency. A filter that puts no stress on the furnace or air conditioning system, but rather, filters even small particulates like pollen, pet dander, hair, airborne dust mites and is proven to lower dust counts by up to 80%! Not only are these Air Conditioner Air Filter for Allergies they are also manufactured in the USA of 100% recycled paperboard.
Affordable? VERY! Only $10-$20 per filter that lasts 1-3 months and comes in over 500 different sizes.
Easy ways to reduce indoor air pollution
Even in cities, the air inside the home is often more of a problem than the air outdoors. Winter, when
many folks have no choice but to hunker down indoors, is a good time to become vigilant about
reducing indoor air pollution.
Sources are myriad: the smoky fire in your fireplace, air fresheners you use to mask various odors, your
shedding cat or dog, dusty furniture (and the aerosol spray you use to clean it), dust mites in bedding, a
poorly ventilated kitchen range, and so on. For checks to perform, see Five New Year's resolutions for
your house. But consider these easy steps, too:
Non-toxic, Biodegradable & Environmentally Friendly!.
Biodegradable, Odorless and Harmless if Ingested.
Nature's Air Sponge is a technological breakthrough in the world of odor elimination and odor control to enhance air quality. Nature's Air Sponge is an environmentally safe product that eliminates virtually all odors and pollutants from the indoor air in your home, office, car, RV or boat, as well as lingering effects in clothing, curtains, drapes, carpets and upholstery.
The Fridge-It Odor Eliminator uses advanced activated carbon technology in a clean and safe cube to eliminate refrigerator smells for up to 4 months! This innovative odor eliminator works against smells and offensive odors by trapping scent particles instead of just covering them up. The Fridge-it odor eliminator has been featured on many news programs as well as The Food Network as a leader in odor elimination!
Are you wondering how can I get rid of an odor or smell?
Looking for a natural, non-toxic, and 100% biodegradable way to get rid of the smell quickly? Odors should first be identified at the source, then removal of the odor causing contamination will leave only the airborne odor.
If you can't get remove the cause of the odor, these tips will still help, but they can't solve the airborne odor/smell. Affordable and eco-friendly... That's sensible odor removal.
There are many odors which trigger certain feelings in us; we associate the, either positively or negatively, with past experiences.
There are other indoor pollutants, however, which do not trigger a RESPONSE BECAUSE THEY ARE, IN FACT, FOREIGN OR UNDECIPHERABLE, OR SIMPLY UNDETECTABLE BY THE HUMAN SENSE OF SMELL. Many of these airborne "agents" contribute to the so called Sick Building Syndrome (SBS); and, although undetectable to our senses, they are nevertheless dangerous and insidious and should be treated as such, especially if we class The Bellevue Stratford"" and its "Legionnaires' Disease" as the first recognized case of Building Associated Illness (BAI).
Are you wondering how to clean and purify the air with simple tap water (H2O)?
Water-based air cleaners and air purifiers are filterless, natural, eco-friendly and most imporantly: an effective air cleaning process. We talk about the ideal design and even provide products available for purchase that use the water-based air cleaning process. Water-based air cleaners and air purifiers in combination with essential fragrance oils also make for a great aromatherapy. Water-based air cleaners are also reknown for their natural sound therapy or "whooshing" water ambiance.
Nature's Air Sponge Odor Absorber
Nature's Air Sponge eliminates unwanted odors and other air pollutants.
The air sponge is non-toxic, biodegradable, environmentally friendly, and harmless if ingested. Perfect for all types of odors: Body odors, pet odors, food odors, smoke odors, musty odors, gasoline odors, bathroom odors, and so much more. Nature's Air Sponge is not a deodorant; it actually absorbs and eliminates offensive odors and microscopic pollutants.
In our modern world, we’re socially aware about pollution and other negative environmental factors. But that awareness tends to focus on outdoor pollution sources and outdoor air quality. Politicians focus most of their energies on the outdoors, and the media puts the lion’s share of their attention there as well. The problem with this exclusive focus is that it undervalues the importance of indoor air quality and the problems we’re facing.
Consider this: Most people spend more than 65% of their time in their homes and as much as 90% indoors, including work and other activities. The air we breathe indoors comes from outside. But it’s less filtered and less circulated, which means it’s filthier and more harmful. There are also additional pollutants indoors, such as dust mites, mold spores and pet dander. Even pollen collects indoors where it’s more disruptive since it’s more concentrated.
1. An air purifier is needed because the air inside homes can be more polluted than outside the home.
An air purifier humidifier can reduce the pollution of inside air. Inside ventilation is a top environmental concern in the country, and most people spend most of their time indoors. Products that clean the ventilation can reduce indoor pollutants such as smoke, mold and dust that cause allergies and other sicknesses. Problems like asthma and other severe medical conditions can be caused by poor ventilation, making it very important to find a solution to this problem before these conditions become too severe.
2. HEPA stands for Heat Energy Particle Air Purifier.
An electronic air purifier removes allergens, toxins, and odors by working like a magnet to attract particles in the air and isolate them. Special collection plates trap dust, allergens, and odors leaving a clean and pure atmosphere. An electrostatic air purifier is designed to clean the air more efficiently than regular purifiers. Units are very low maintenance since there are no filters to change and no rigorous cleaning to be done. Instead the collection plates just have to be wiped off to keep them free from build up and then placed back into the machine. The popularity of electronic units is growing because of the convenience of not having to worry about filters. Other types of purifiers use different types of filters such as High Efficiency Particulate Arresting (HEPA), and activated carbon. They require more maintenance and the consumer has to be concerned with purchasing replacement filters. Not having to replace filters saves money and time
Residential air filters provide clean air to your family. Replacing and maintaining your filters is a great way for you to increase the quality of life of those who live at your residence.
Air filters in homes have long been an air conditioner/furnace upkeep type device. This started with the basic fiberglass filters (you know, those blue colored filters that are probably caked with dust in your home right now). They were designed for one purpose; to keep your air conditioner free from dust, thus extending its life and performance.
Things have changed and today residential air filters are designed with people in mind. The newer styles are designed to not only trap dust particles, but to stop them from circulating through your house.
4 simple ways to allergy-proof your home
As we prepare for an allergy season that’s expected to be even worse than normal, Lou Manfredini, host of “House Smarts,” is here to help you purify the air in your home with his four allergy-proofing tips.
Allergies, Asthma, and IAQ
You might think you are protecting yourself from all the pollen and allergens outside by staying inside your home, but what about the threats your indoor air quality presents to your health? While it is true that the outside is filled with allergens and substances which can trigger asthma attacks and irritate your allergies, what is inside your home can too. There are steps you can take to reduce these indoor threats and you will read about many of them here. Asthma is a serious issue concerning IAQ and along any medications you currently take, these steps will help. As well, allergies can be averted while indoors relatively easily.
At last, the first warm days of spring! Time to open the windows, pack away the winter coats, get out in the garden -- and head to the pharmacy to stock up on allergy medications.
If you greet the arrival of spring each year with a stuffy nose and watery eyes instead of a happy heart, it's time to take a new look at your seasonal allergies. You may have been struggling with spring allergies for years, but that doesn't mean you can't learn a few new tricks about coping with them.
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Allergies affect more than 50 million people in the United States -- the poor souls who sniffle, sneeze, and get all clogged up when face to face with the allergen (or allergens) that set them off. For many, allergies are seasonal and mild, requiring nothing more than getting extra tissue or taking a decongestant occasionally. For others, the allergy is to a known food, and as long as they avoid the food, no problem. But for legions of others adults, allergies are so severe it interferes with their...
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With the help of one of the nation's top allergy experts, WebMD has put together some tips for managing seasonal allergies that can help you enjoy spring instead of just suffering through it.
Sick Building Syndrome – Is It a Joke?
Before you ask yourself “what is sick building syndrome?”, I want you to take a personal inventory of what your is health like? Right now. If, after your personal health inventory, you acknowledge that you have been sick often, and you spend the majority of your time within the same building, then chances are it’s SBS and not the common cold. Before you click to another blog post or another website altogether because you find it so hard to believe, please ask yourself this, “What is sick building syndrome?”