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Air Filters: The Truth Behind Their Effectiveness

Now more than ever, there is a lot of misinformation out there. It is vital to educate yourself and do your research when something seems out of place. We wanted to help out concerning air filtration because that is our industry and what we know best. Here are some commonly asked questions about air filters and our honest responses.

What Air Filters Aren’t Able to Do?

Air filters fulfill a very specific and vital purpose. However, scammers may try to misrepresent the scope of their air filter products. A good rule of thumb is that if it seems to good to be true, it most likely is. Always approach these products with a skeptical point of view.

Particularly during this coronavirus crisis, the Federal Trade Commission has advised consumers to be wary of scams. We’ve seen scams related to air filtration pop up already. Don’t trust any air filter that claims to kill the coronavirus or any other disease reliably. It’s simply impossible to filter the air of particles as tiny as viruses completely.

What Can Air Filters Do?

You may be wondering what the benefits of air filtration are since they cannot protect you from diseases. There are real, scientifically heath benefits. It’s important to realize that polluted air can be a devastating health risk. The World Health Organization, or WHO, estimates that millions of people worldwide die from pollution-related problems. Even here, we have issues with air pollution. Ohio ranks near the bottom in pollution health risk. This is why air filters are necessary.

So how can air filters clean the air in your home? We use three main types of air filters — media, electronic, and UV. All three work differently and have their own  various pros and cons. We’ll explain below.

Media air filter

These filters work similarly to other filters you may be familiar with. These pleated filters capture more particles than the default that comes with your system. We measure this by MERV rating. The higher the score, the more selective the filter is.

Media air filters can be anywhere from 6 to 13 MERV rating with the low-end capturing pretty much just dust and pollen while the high-end can capture cigarette smoke and viruses.

A higher rating doesn’t necessarily mean it is the best for your home. Your system needs to blow air strong enough to get through the filter in the first place. If your HVAC unit isn’t designed for a filter that strong, you’ll get poor air circulation throughout your home. The technicians at ARCO can help you decide on the best media filter for you.

Electronic Air Filter

The filters utilize electrical charges to trap particles. These can be just as effective as media filters but have the added benefit of never needing to be replaced. They are easy to clean and can do the job well.

UV Filtration

Ultraviolet filtration is a newer technology that is exciting for the future. You may associate UV light with sunburns. The same idea makes it useful for killing viruses and bacteria. In this way, UV is more like air disinfection than filtration because it is effective against viruses and bacteria. While it can kill coronavirus, it’s not entirely effective. Remember that the primary mode of transmission is through direct contact.

We know that pollution impacts your respiratory health. While viruses can be caught by these filtration systems, it’s not 100% effective against coronavirus or any other disease.

If you need an Indoor Air Quality Assessment, fill out an online contact form or call us at (216) 230-5117 . We take the health of our technicians and customers seriously. We’ve taken steps to keep you safe while we work on your home.

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