The Dangers of Ionic Air Purifiers
By G Clark
For a while there, ionic air purifiers took the world of air purification by storm. People were drawn in by their quiet operation, the fact that they don’t use or require filters, and for their energy efficiency. It seemed as if HEPA air purifiers had some legitimate competition for the very first time. It didn’t take long, though, for news about the problems with ionic air purifiers to spread. The biggest concern that haunts the supposed benefits of these machines is their close association with ozone. Indeed, ionic air purifiers produce ozone as a byproduct – and ozone is a proven lung irritant that flies in the face of improving indoor air quality.
The Problem with Ozone
To understand the growing concern that many people have about ionic air purifiers, it is necessary to get a handle on why ozone is so problematic. Most of us are familiar with ozone due to the ozone layer, the much talked about protective bubble that envelops the Earth’s atmosphere. Nearly everybody knows about the ever increasing concerns about ozone layer depletion and what it means for the health and safety of people around the world. In that regard, ozone is a very important and necessary molecule in the Earth’s stratosphere; it’s when ozone gets into the air we breathe that it creates trouble.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued warnings regarding the dangers of ozone exposure. Basically, breathing in ozone can cause a laundry list of health problems. Chief among these health problems are coughing, shortness of breath, chest pain and an irritated throat. Breathing in ozone on a regular basis can exacerbate or worsen existing respiratory conditions including asthma and allergies. Without a doubt, all of us are better off avoiding ozone at all costs – yet an air purifier that is designed to clean the air we breathe produces it as a byproduct.
How Ionic Air Purifiers Work
Ionic air purifiers work in a completely different way than HEPA air purifiers. They release a continuous flow of negatively charged ions into the air. Those ions connect with airborne particulates, making them negatively charged as well. Over time, all of those negatively charged particles group together, become heavy, and fall to the ground or onto nearby surfaces. They are removed from the air, but not removed from the room. Instead, they create a film of sorts on things around a room and can even be stirred back up into the air.
Ozone and Ionic Air Purifiers: A Troubling Connection
As beneficial as ionic air purifiers may sound, they come with one very negative side effect: ozone production. In order to produce the negatively charged ions that they do, these machines must emit ozone as a byproduct. Considering that the American Lung Association (ALA) has issued stern warnings about exposure to ozone in the past, it stands to reason that using an ionic air purifier just doesn’t make any sense. Why introduce such an irritant into the air in your home if you can help it?
Controversy Swirls around Ionic Air Purifiers
Sharper Image – a popular retailer of unique, high tech gadgets – coasted on the popularity of their ionic air purifiers for quite some time. In fact, Sharper Image actually sued a consumer watchdog group that raised concerns about the health issues caused by ozone production. That suit was thrown out of court, and Sharper Image actually ended up paying damages. Ultimately, the negative press generated by the ozone production of their ionic air purifiers hurt Sharper Image’s sales considerably; they even had to file for bankruptcy when all was said and done.
HEPA Air Purifiers for Tried and True Indoor Air Quality
Despite their initial threat to the popularity of HEPA air purifiers, ionic air purifiers actually ended up cementing and proving the benefits of HEPA air purifiers in the end. Quality HEPA air purifiers do not produce ozone and do not introduce any contaminants into the air in your home. Unlike ionic air purifiers, HEPA filtration effectively removes 99.97% of all airborne pollutants, including mold spores, bacteria, dust, pollen and viruses, making it easier and healthier to breathe. HEPA air purifiers are the genuine article when it comes to superior respiratory health.
Order a HEPA Air Purifier from Clean Air Plus Today
It’s easy to take advantage of the many benefits of HEPA air purifiers; Clean Air Plus stocks an extensive line of superior air purifier systems by reputable manufacturers like IQAir, Austin Air and Amaircare. If you own an ionic air purifier, it’s in the best interests of the health of you and your family to toss it to the curb and order a HEPA air purifier from Clean Air Plus today. You can rest easy that the indoor air quality of your home is being dramatically improved – not worsened.
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