Can Air Purifiers Protect Against Coronavirus?

When used correctly, air purifiers can help reduce airborne pollutants, including viruses, in the home or in a small building or space. However, on its own, a portable air purifier is not enough to protect people from COVID-19. Filters are designed to improve indoor air quality by physically removing small particles of matter that may be floating, such as dust, pollen, and pet dander. These are all things that occur naturally, but they can aggravate people's allergies if they breathe them in. The most common type of household filters right now are HEPA filters.

Disinfectants are designed to kill bacteria, viruses, mold, or fungal spores that may also be floating. These things also occur naturally, but they can make you sick if you are exposed to sufficiently high concentrations of them. The most common type of disinfectant right now is ultraviolet light devices. Ozone generators alter the standard oxygen molecule to have three atoms instead of just two.

The three-atom molecule is called ozone, not oxygen, and it interacts differently with its environment than the normal air we breathe. Air purifiers that use HEPA filters, UV light, or ionizers are OK. However, inhaling ozone can cause coughing, throat irritation, shortness of breath, and other problems, even in healthy people. Ozone can even cause damage to the lungs, so local weather authorities sometimes issue ozone alerts.

Keep in mind that unless you have someone with an active COVID-19 infection in your household, you won't have any source of coronavirus to reduce or filter with any of these methods. Therefore, you will change the air quality inside your home in other ways. What do you want people to know about air purifiers? Air purifiers are not a magic formula. Therefore, it's important to think of them more as part of your plan than as part of your entire plan.

Let's say I visit him at his house and I still don't know if I have COVID-19. If I sneeze at you just two feet away and neither of you is wearing a mask, then your risk of exposure will definitely increase, even if you have an air purifier nearby. But if you live alone and you're the only one there, the chances of contracting coronavirus from the air in your own home are practically nil. Portable HEPA air purifiers can reduce exposure to simulated SARS-CoV-2 aerosols indoors, especially when combined with universal masking. Addition of two HEPA air purifiers that met the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommended Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) (reduced overall exposure to simulated exhaled aerosol particles by up to 65% without universal masking).

In this study, the air in the conference room was well mixed, which helped transport the aerosols to the air purifiers. The CADR reflects, in cubic feet per minute, the volume of clean air produced by an air purifier at its maximum speed. Using an air purifier at home can be a good idea at any time, to help filter indoor allergens and contaminants, such as fumes from kitchen and cleaning products. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says air purifiers “can help prevent virus particles from accumulating in the air in your home”.

The faster an air cleaner can circulate air through the filter, the better your chances of trapping virus particles. Combined with a manual timer and filter status update lights, this minimalist air purifier is worth it for a reason. As the name suggests, these filters are very good for taking things out of the air and holding them so they can't circulate again. The EPA also recommends choosing an air cleaner that is certified by the Clean Air Supply Rate (CADR) and that can remove most airborne particles smaller than 1 mm.

Do not touch the air cleaner while in use and when it is time to change the filter put on gloves and a surgical mask if you have one take the air cleaner outside and clean and disinfect the outside. The Alen BreatheSmart Classic is an air purifier made for large rooms but this stylish model can clean the air quietly and even faster when used in a small room such as a bedroom. When the filters were turned off the air in both rooms contained detectable amounts of other pathogens that cause infections in hospitals such as Staphylococcus aureus Escherichia coli and Streptococcus pyogenes.

Jo Burgey
Jo Burgey

Lifelong beer expert. Passionate music fan. Evil internet nerd. Passionate zombie nerd. Infuriatingly humble social media ninja.