HEPA Filtration: Upper Echelon of Indoor Air Quality Options
It’s no secret that high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filtration offers the best results when it comes to improving indoor air quality. Commonly used in whole-house air cleaners and a variety of other HVAC products, true HEPA filters are capable of filtering out up to 99.999 percent of airborne particulate matter, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
HEPA filtration differs from ordinary mechanical filtration methods in many ways. For starters, HEPA filters feature unique fiberglass filter media that trap particles through interception, impaction and diffusion. The randomly woven fibers that comprise the HEPA filter media are capable of trapping particles as small as .3 microns with an efficiency ranging from 99.97 to 99.999 percent. A true HEPA filter can easily remove pollen, dust, dander, bacteria and other airborne pollutants from indoor air. For this reason, HEPA filtration systems are common in hospitals, clean rooms and other facilities where clean air is critical.
In spite of its advantages, homeowners should be aware of HEPA filtration’s limitations. Since HEPA filters focus primarily on particulate matter, gasses and other types of pollutants may pass through the filter media undisturbed. For this reason, it’s best to supplement HEPA filters with an activated carbon filter.
HEPA filters also cost more than ordinary filters due to their unique makeup and the need for professional installation in large air cleaners. Air movement is also an issue with HEPA filters given their dense fiber structure. HVAC and air-cleaning systems that aren’t designed to handle HEPA filtration may better benefit from regular air filters with a Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) ranging from 7 to 13. (HEPA filters run from MERV 17-20.)
Contact the professionals at Sobieski Services to learn more about how HEPA filtration can help keep your home comfortable and free of airborne pollutants. Our goal is to help educate our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC & plumbing systems).
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