Our home, our sanctuary… or is it?
Our home is our sanctuary. A personal space that provides us with a sense of belonging and safety. This is where we rest, spend time with our family and for some, it is even where we work. We do spend at least half a day at home or at least eight hours in the bedroom. However, there is a threat. Something we don’t see and it doesn’t mean it isn’t there.
We take for granted the air we breathe. Many indoor air pollutants are not visible to the naked eye.
Dust is something people speak about all the time. It is one major allergen, however, the more dangerous pollutant in the home are Volatile organic compounds (VOCs). VOCs are organic chemicals that have a high vapor pressure at ordinary room temperature.
Did you know that even common everyday items in the home emit VOCs that are hazardous to health? Plastics emit VOCs. Solvents – Household cleaners, degreasers, arts and craft supplies, glues, “off-gassing” from newly installed carpets, flooring, particle board, and furniture.
Get a good air purifier to protect us from this ever-changing world
Blueair is an air purifier designed in Sweden for better and cleaner air within the comfort of your home. Known as the world’s best air purifier, it is compact but powerful and it cleans 16 sqm five times per hour. Blueair features an intelligent sensor that scans the air quality in real time for you to breathe better with the power of clean air.
We live in an environment different from yesteryears. Another pollutant we need to be cautious with is carbon monoxide – An odorless, colorless gas produced by everyday household appliances or heaters that burn natural gas, oil, wood, propane, or kerosene. It is a major component of car exhaust.
As of 2010, there were more than one billion motor vehicles in use in the world, excluding off-road vehicles and heavy construction equipment. Furthermore, researchers estimate that the world’s fleet will reach two billion motor vehicles by 2020, with cars representing at least 50 percent of all vehicles. And again, although produced outside the home, once the front door is opened or you crack a window open, the air flows in and is stuck within the four walls.
Here are some tips on how to decide on a purifier suitable for you
Do not let manufacturer claims fool you. The Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) measure the volume of filtered air in cubic feet per minute (CFM) an air purifier on its highest setting delivers into a standard sized room. With CADR, it is easy to tell which room air purifier works best. The three key numbers for the most common indoor pollutants are tobacco smoke, dust, and pollen.
The higher the CADR number, the faster the rate of removing indoor air pollutants. CADR is independently tested and certified by the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) and is often the first step and one of the most important factors in buying a room air purifier. For best results, look out for the AHAM Verifide symbol alongside the CADR number.
A room air purifier can help mitigate health issues related to indoor air pollution. However, there are many different factors involved, such as the type of filter technology, contributing to efficiency. Be sure to identify the contaminants you want to eliminate and select your air purifier accordingly.
It is important to select an air purifier with the capacity to handle the total air volume continuously. Use some basic geometry to choose the right size- measure the length and width of the room and multiply to get the total area in sqm.
The AHAM recommended room size of an air purifier is based on five air changes per hour, meaning the unit filters the total air volume in the room every 12 minutes. Ensure the recommended room size on the AHAM label matches that of your room, but you can’t go wrong with an air purifier that filters the air in the room five times per hour. Which means you should look out for an air purifier that gives you a minimum of five ACH (Air Exchange per Hour).
The World Health Organisation’s (WHO) guidelines for acceptable levels of continuous background noise indoors is below 45dB during the day and 35dB at night.
To figure out how much electricity a room air purifier consumes, check the wattage- the higher the wattage, the more energy it uses. Look for the Energy Star label when you make your choice. Energy Star is synonymous with energy efficiency and energy savings. Here are the most reliable sources for unbiased information on performance and energy efficiency:
• AHAM, which publishes independent test results and CADR performance ratings and accredited as a standard developing organization by the American National Standards Institute (ahamverifide.org).
• Energy Star, a voluntary energy-efficiency programme established by the US Environmental Protection Agency and US Department of Energy (energystar.gov).
Before buying, be a smart shopper and verify the legitimacy of the company and performance claims. Most room air purifiers come with a limited warranty covering only what is specified.
Smart consumers would shop around for the best product and the best, long-lasting warranty available. Warranties are usually available at point of purchase, even online. Also, do not forget to submit the required forms to make sure your newly purchased room air purifier is covered.
Make the best choice of air purifier to suit your needs. You would have peace of mind knowing you and your family are well protected against the onslaught of pollution.