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How to Improve Air Quality in Your Home or Business

air purifier

Remove Viruses, Bacteria, and Allergens from Your St. Louis Home

Breathing truly clean air should not be a luxury. That’s especially true today when airborne contagions and contaminants are such a hot, relevant topic.

Modern air conditioning systems and heating systems do a great job of circulating air throughout your home or business to efficiently and evenly cool or heat, but most don’t include components that fully purify air and remove viruses, including coronavirus, bacteria, and all types of allergens, even with higher-end filters installed.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says that the levels of indoor pollutants in our homes and businesses can be up to 100 times higher than those outdoors. These same pollutants continually circulate in ventilation systems because we have done such a good job of insulating and sealing up our buildings in places like Arnold and St. Charles.

Homeowners and business owners seeking to improve air quality in the St. Louis metro area have several options at various price points. Not all are highly effective, however.

Do Plants Purify the Air?

Houseplants beautify spaces and can be fun to care for and decorate with. At some point, someone determined that houseplants also purify the air, and that certain plants removed specific airborne toxins. We’ve seen these lists of beneficial houseplants all over the Internet, but current scientific studies show that indoor houseplants do very little to nothing to improve overall air quality. (Although they do turn carbon dioxide into oxygen!)

According to an engineering expert at Drexel University, in a ten-by-ten room, you’d need at least 1,000 plants to have the same air-cleaning capacity of a ventilation system — that’s changing over the air once every hour. Very few people have that kind of space to accommodate all those plants! Another air quality testing study by the EPA showed that house plants do not decrease the amount of ozone in indoor spaces. And plants simply don’t kill or remove bacteria or viruses in the air.

So, if plants bring you joy, absolutely fill your home with them — but don’t expect them to be a surefire air purifier for your home or office.

How Effective are Room Air Purifiers in Ballwin Homes?

For people with indoor and outdoor allergies, room purifiers can help capture dust and pollen particles floating in the air. In the literal definition of the phrase, this is air purification. However, the small, standalone air purifiers you can buy from your favorite big-box retailer likely do not filter the truly egregious things from the air, like bacteria, viruses, and other tiny particles or gases, like those that radiate from adhesives, paints, cleaning products, and certain plastics. These particles are so small, they slip right through the filters. Room air purifiers also do not prevent mold growth.

Air purifier manufacturers claim the effectiveness of their machines based on controlled conditions in a laboratory, which tend to be very little like your home or office. And that effectiveness also depends on things like where you’re placing the purifier, how long you run it, and the varying conditions in the space it’s placed in. The type of filter in your air purifier also can dictate how effective it is; some use HEPA filters, while others do not.

Do HEPA Filters Trap Coronavirus?

High Efficiency Particulate Air filters, known more commonly as HEPA filters, can capture up to 99.7 percent of all contaminants. You can find HEPA filters employed in vacuum cleaners and even in your HVAC system filters. We highly recommend HEPA filters for general air filtration of your home, especially if you suffer from allergies, and can install them in place of a less effective filter in your HVAC system.

However, the overall effectiveness of HEPA filters is fairly limited. They can only capture contaminants that are 0.3 microns or larger. To put that into perspective, the unaided human eye cannot see anything smaller than 40 microns in size. A single particle of pollen is 30 microns. In comparison, 0.3 microns is absolutely tiny. However, it’s still much larger than common viruses and bacteria. In fact, a single coronavirus particle averages 0.124 microns in diameter. Of course, other virus particles are much larger, and bacteria particles are ten to 100 times larger than viruses. Many will still make it through the HEPA filter and back into the air. HEPA air filters don’t always create better air quality because of this.

How Does the Sanuvox Air Purification System Work?

The Sanuvox Air Purification System is unlike any of the other air filtration systems we’ve discussed so far. This system uses ultraviolet (UV) light to purify the air, and it can be installed using your HVAC ductwork, or as a standalone system.

Twenty-five years of research has gone into producing and upgrading this equipment to be effective in household, business, and even medical settings. Sanuvox systems kill germs in the air, effectively removing 99.99999% of these harmful particles and preventing illness. It was shown to be that highly effective at killing the SARS virus identified in 2003.

Let’s take COVID-19 as an example to illustrate how well the system works. As we all understand by now, COVID-19 is a novel type of coronavirus that the world had never seen before 2019. Scientists sequenced the genome — or the genetic make-up of the virus — and found it was 98.4% identical to the aforementioned SARS virus. How susceptible microorganisms like viruses are to germicidal UV light is determined by its genome sequence. The science concluded that the required germicidal UV light to kill COVID-19 is the same as the SARS virus, within less than 1.6% variation — a truly negligible amount.

Sanuvox systems include two components: the UV lamp and the reflector chamber. Contaminated air enters next to the UV lamp, which first destroys chemicals and odors in the air. The UVC germicidal part of the lamp then destroys biological contaminants. Finally, the reflector chamber directs the UV energy where it needs to go for optimal purification. That treated, clean air is then recirculated throughout your home or business.

UV air purification systems provide the most advanced air sterilization on the market today and are used worldwide in residential, commercial, and medical applications. They are available in St. Louis through a reputable HVAC expert, like Meyer Heating and Air.

O’Fallon Air Purifier Installation

Meyer Heating and Air, your Chesterfield HVAC experts, carry and install the Sanuvox system you need to ensure the best air quality in your home or business. Call us today at 314-845-1929 to learn more about the system and air quality testing, and how you can breathe cleaner air every day.