Dust particles in the air, whether they are visible or not, are officially called Particulate Matter (PM). The measurement unit is in microns. They can be in the form of solid or liquid scattered in the air such as particles, germs, dust, fog, and smoke.
Although our body has a self-defense mechanism for dust, the system can only capture large dust particles. The Environmental Protection Agency in the United States was interested in PM 10 and PM 2.5 particulate matter. Since both types of dust can penetrate the body through the respiratory system into the bloodstream and various cells, they cause subsequent diseases.
Therefore, using air filters and air purifiers is important. Nowadays, there are several models of air purifier in the market with different selling points. Many manufacturers offer different types of technology to purify the air.
The key point of an air purifier is its filters or air filters. Essentially, there are 5 types of filters or air filters currently used.
1.HEPA or High Efficiency Particulate Air. It is made from shaping Borosilicate Microfiber as a sheet, which is equivalent to a Fiberglass. With the techniques used during the manufacturing process, the HEPA filter has the ability to efficiently trap dust (fine dust) or what is commonly known as PM 2.5 dust, smaller particle, bacteria, and fungi.
However, the HEPA filter cannot store gases or VOCs due to the much smaller size. Another disadvantage is its fiberglass material, which absorbs moisture and may cause fungus to grow. If inhaled, it can cause cancer in the future.
2.ULPA or the Ultra Low Penetration Air. It is similar to HEPA, but it is superior as it can capture smaller particles than HEPA. However, it is more expensive, and the filter is clogged more easily.
3.Electrostatic system. It is a purification system that uses the principle of adding positive and negative electric charges (depending on the design of each brand) to dust and germs. When these particles flow through a negative charge filter (the electric charge at the filter is an electric charge that is opposite to the electric charge generated in the air), they will be pulled toward the filter. The maximum filtration efficiency is approximately 95%.
The disadvantage of electrostatic system - The efficiency in capturing particles is less than HEPA and ULPA. It only filters dust, odors, and fungi. Thus, it is necessary to have a filter that can filter viruses, bacteria, and fungi to work together in an air purifier.
4.Carbon filter. The carbon filter will help enhance the properties of the first two types of filter. It also helps eliminate odor and trap particles.
5.Filtrete. It is an electrostatic filter from 3M that can filter particles as small as 0.1 microns. It can filter out more particles than HEPA and ULPA.
It filters out small dust in your room, animal dandruff, bacteria, cigarette smoke, cooking fumes, particles, and viruses. It is highly effective for air purification.
Additionally, choosing the right type of filter for wind speed is also essential in maintaining the efficiency of the air filter.
Since various filtering processes have a direct correlation with the wind speed used. For example, in air filtration using the HEPA filter with 99.999% filtration efficiency to filter a fine 0.3-micron dust, it requires lower wind speed to make dust particles stick to the fibers of the filter better. It will result in better air quality.
Choosing an inappropriate type of filter for the wind speed may cause the filter to break as well.