Evaluating your Air Purifier Choices
In preparing content for another webpage we developed a tool that we believe will be very helpful to consumers. This tool will allow you to quickly evaluate an air purifier by its specifications. To use this tool you should know a few things about the air purifier you want to evaluate.
You should know what size of a space you want to use this in. (room Length, width and ceiling height) You should also know the CADR (clean air delivery rate) or the units air output in CFM (cubic feet per minute) and filter efficiency usually some where between 99.97 and 85 percent.
- In the first line enter the name of the model you are evaluating. this way when you are comparing units you will be able to identify each
- In the second line enter the areas length x width x height. The square footage will be shown in the last column
- In the 3rd line enter the air purifiers CADR or Maximum CFM out put and Filters efficiency.
More Evaluating Tips
At LakeAir we take home air purifiers very seriously. We know that our home air purifiers are very good, but we also know that they are not what every person is looking for. It is our goal to inform and educate the customer. In the rest of this page we are going to point out some things that will hopefully help you make the best clean air choices for your home and family.
What's Really Important?
Being we are talking about air purifiers i am lead to believe that cleaning the air and cleaning it well is most important. The evaluating tool above shows you if a unit (based on manufacturers specs) will do a good job cleaning the air in a space of your choosing. According to consumerrating.org the 4 most important things to consider when buying an air purifiers are.
- How well does it clean the Air
- How large of an area will it cover
- Operating Noise
Evaluate (How well does your air purifier of choice, clean the air)
Lets face it, an air purifier is a box with a filter and a fan. That is what all air purifiers boil down to. So in this evaluation we will look at filters. Everyday companies are coming up with new filters. One filter for nitrous oxide, another specially for formaldehyde. While all of these specializations are nice, what we really need are products that remove a lot of bad stuff from the air. LakeAir is an old fashion company, one of my competitors said I haven’t updated the website since the 90’s “Ouch!” We believe in core values. Core values are still found in ASHRAE’s recommendations. When this leader in clean air standards changes its tune on air filtration, so will we.
Does your air purifier use tested (widely accepted) filter technology? If your air purifier use a good quality HEPA filter you are on the right track. We get questions from customers about competitor filters that off-gas odors. They want to be sure are filters are made in the USA. I am not certain that eliminates the possibility of off-gassing but it does seem to make a difference.
Electrostatic, MERV and Carbon filtration are also time tested filtration methods. None of these are as good at removing particles from the air as a HEPA filter but there is quality available in the filtration types as well.
The filters in your air purifier should be large and robust. a small filter will fill up with pollutants fast and the air purifiers performance will nose dive in a hurry. Look for large well built filters.
Evaluate (How large of an Area does your air purifier clean)
Air Purifier manufacturers love to claim large area coverage. Its not uncommon for a seller to claim 1400 square foot coverage, but at how many air changes per hour? The real experts (ASHRAE) will tell you 4 air changes per hour is the minimum standard for a normal home. Good filtration in a home is 6 air changes per hour. So that 1400 square foot unit better have a CADR of 1120 or its not making the grade. Look closer at the product claims. make sur you are evaluating at least 4 air changes per hour and better yet 6.
Evaluating (How loud is your air purifier)
I will tell you he biggest challenge as a air purifier designer I face is making n air purifier work well and do it quietly. We need to squeeze a lot of air through a tiny hole and that my friends make a bunch of noise. The best way to have an air purifier perform well with little noise is to oversize the blowers for the job. That’s how we are able to get great air purification with less noise from our MAX Guard Line. If you turn them all the way up they are noisy but they are so powerful you don’t need to run them on full to get amazing air purification. The MAX Guard has a sound rating from 40-70 dB (decibel) How loud is that? The next section speaks to comparisons of decibels and common everyday experiences.
How loud is a decible?
Sound is measured in decibels. The whole idea of decibels was started as a way to measure how well or poorly a telegraph or phone signal was transmitted. With refinement, a very accurate scale has been developed. The amount of sound generated by an air purifier is reported by decibels. This is the easiest way to measure the sound produced. The abbreviation for decibels is dB.
Below we present a list of common occurrences to help you gauge just how loud a certain decibel reading is.
- 0 dB – The softest sound a person can hear with normal hearing
- 10 dB – Normal breathing
- 20 dB – Leaves rustling, a ticking watch
- 30 dB – A whisper
- 40 dB – Refrigerator hum, a quiet office
- 50 dB – Moderate rainfall
- 60 dB – Normal conversation, dishwashers
- 70 dB – Vacuum cleaners, traffic
- 80 dB – Police car siren, a noisy restaurant
- 90 dB – Hairdryers, blenders, power tools
- 100 dB – Motorcycles, hand dryers
- 110 dB – Nightclubs, sporting events
- 120 dB – Thunder, concerts, a jet plane taking off
An important thing to know is to loud of noise can damage your hearing. Your average exposure should be no louder than 70 dB (decibels) . NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health) has set a level or 85 dB for no more than 8 hours a day for work places. LakeAir air purifiers use variable speed controls and can be set to well within safe and comfortable sound level.
Evaluating Cost (Does Your air purifier cost too much ?)
Evaluating the cost of an air purifier is really a complicated chore. In the end you will need to make the evaluation yourself. In this section we will try to give you a some information to help you decide how valuable your air purifiers is.
First off lets look at average prices of different house hold appliances
- Refrigerators average cost in 2023 $1500.00 with models easily reaching $4000.
- Ovens average cost in 2023 $1150.00 with models reaching $3500 for some models installed
- Televisions average cost in 2023 $1000.00 and as much as $4000
- Air Conditioners Average cost in 2023 $7500.00 and as much as $22,000 depending on where you live.
- Air Purifier Average Cost in 2023 $1150.00 and as much as $3700. for some deluxe models
These figures were found using simple google searches. We listed many of our sources below. These results don’t reflect how cheaply you can buy any of these items if you search for deal. But they do provide a little scale. Air conditioning and refrigeration are more expensive, Televisions and Air purifiers cost a little less. These comparisons can help you decide just how much you should be spending. Use these along with the considerations below.
When evaluating the cost of a potential air purifier purchase the most important factor is performance. Through out this website we talk about performance of an air purifier. How much air a unit will clean and how well should be your first point in evaluating. However, if you can not afford a $1000.00 air purifier not amount of air purification is going to make the purchase make sense.
A products durability isn’t necessarily the number point to be considered in your evaluation, but it should be important. According to US Air Purifiers the average life span of an air purifier is 3-5 years. I would agree that is a good average. However I can tell you with certainty that LakeAir Air purifiers are built to last 15 or more years. We have models that have been in service for more than 30 years. Spending more money today for a product that will be around for more than 10 years has a value and you should consider durability of any product you buy.
Want is one thing, NEED is another. If you need an air purifier to help you live a healthy life, the importance and therefore budget should be larger than a product you just want. Need doe not add value to any product but it does increase its importance. So as you evaluate your air purifier choices. don’t be afraid to expand your budget if you can find a product that has both performance and durability.
Gadgets are wonderful. They make us want a product more. Most gadgets however shorten the life of a product. The more parts you add to ant product adds to the list of what can break. Air purifiers with monitors built into them will most likely fail sooner than one that does not. At this time sensors have a short life. According to EPA. GOV air sensors last one or two years. After that they can no longer be depended on. It is better to buy a good air purifier without a particle sensor and a particle sensor separately. The other gadgets in air purifiers are nice but they don’t make them work better. If this convenience is important to you, then you should give it extra weight. If you just need clean air put a little less weight to this aspect
The final and probably most important aspect to determining if a planned air purification purchase costs to much is whether it fits into your budget. Your budget is determined by the amount available money you have. You may decide the portion of your available funds to go to this purchase might be tempered by your need. But in the end if you cannot afford it, you shouldn’t buy it.
There are a couple of ways to possibly get the brand you want even if the checking account is a little short.