How Effective Are Air Purifiers Really? We Find Out

How effective are these air purifiers really and how many do you need in your house? Find out.

2 min read

Air quality has plunged again in the national capital. The city's air quality slumped to the "severe" category due to a dust storm in northwest India.

So as air pollution continues to haunt our health, air purifiers and pollution masks seem like the best friends we desperately need by our sides. So how effective are these air purifiers really, how many do you need in your house and do they really protect us from this toxic air?

To clear all doubts and answer all our questions, I decided to speak to an expert.


How Effective is an Air Purifier?

Anupam Mathur, Sales Director, Honeywell explains that there are a lot of myths in the market about what an air purifier actually does.

A high quality air-purifier arrests larger particles, stops the PM 2.5, and gives fresh air immediately.
Anupam Mathur, Sales Director, Honeywell

How Can Air in Large Spaces Be Cleaned?

Can something be inserted into air conditioners in offices that can clean the air?

For big spaces like offices, I suggest ‘electronic air cleaning’ which can be installed into any of the air-handling units (AHU). It is more cost efficient than buying air-purifiers for every room. 
Anupam Mathur

He adds that adding filters to air-conditioners, however, can obstruct not just the air but the process of air-conditioning itself.

How Effective Are N95 Masks?

Mathur labels the N95 masks as the ‘gold standard on PM 2.5’. The particle filter built into them prevents basic pollutants and PM 2.5 to pass through, ensuring inhalation of cleaner air.


What Steps Can Be Taken To Reduce Pollution?

Air pollution caused by vehicles, construction, diwali firecrackers and crop-burning, needs to be attacked in a structured and singular manner. Even then, changes on the ground will only be seen in the next three or four years. In the short term, the pollution is not going away. 
Anupam Mathur

Will Installing Filters in ACs Help?

Not many people own hot and cold air conditioners in India so installing a filter will work in summers but not in winters. And the moment you put anything that obstructs the flow of air, then the air conditioning also drops down. 
Anupam Mathur

Final Verdict?

And as for air purifiers, my Air Quality Monitor questions their impact when they are kept at even a little distance away from the air purifiers. They lure you with a false sense of security.

But with the paucity of options available, they might be here to stay.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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Topics:  Air Pollution   Air Purifiers   PM 2.5 

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