Can an Air Purifier Clean a Whole House?

When it comes to cleaning the air in a single room in your home, a portable air purifier is usually enough. But if you want to improve indoor air quality throughout your entire house, a whole-house air cleaner or air purification system is the best option. These systems are installed in your home's HVAC system and work to clean the air as it passes through. If your home doesn't have air conditioning or central heating, portable air cleaners are the most practical option.

There are stand-alone units for the whole house, but they generally require installation in the attic and ducting to the individual rooms. A single purifier can properly clean 12,000 ft3 per hour. But to clean a 1,000 square foot house, we need to clean 32,000 ft3 of air per hour. That means we'll need more than one air purifier unless you buy one of Blueair's powerful models.

How Does a Whole House Air Purifier Work?A whole house air purifier installs directly into your existing HVAC system. When the HVAC system is turned on, the air cleaner works to remove contaminants like pollen, dust, VOCs, and other pollutants from the air. There are several types of whole-house air purification systems, and each purifies the air in a slightly different way. Electrostatic air cleaners are air filters that work by using an electrical charge to create negative ions on a set of metal plates that attract and trap air pollutants.

Other systems use activated carbon filters to absorb odors and gases from the air. Some air filters are hybrids that combine both methods, and some include activated carbon elements to combat malodor.

Where Should You Place a Whole House Air Purifier?

Your home system may not have been built to push air through something that has a lot of resistance, such as an oven filter. Any air leaks as a result of a poor installation will frustrate the purpose of your air purifier no matter how it is installed in your HVAC system. The most common places where the whole-house air purifier can be placed in your HVAC system are the attic, basement, utility room, ceiling, or even roof, depending on your home configuration.

What Are the Benefits of Whole House Air Purifiers?

An active air purifier focuses on the source of air pollutants, quickly and effectively eradicating them.

They remove particles from the air according to the type of air purification technology you choose to use. If you want whole-home coverage, your best option is a whole-house air purifier, but only if you have a central air conditioning or HVAC system. Whole house air purifiers typically work by being placed somewhere after or before your HVAC controller to clean the air your HVAC pumps before it is released down the duct into your home. They not only provide you with clean air but also protect your HVAC and extend its lifespan by preventing dust and contaminants from clogging up the ducts. While not best for people sensitive to air pollutants, whole-house purifiers will provide some level of relief for allergy sufferers, asthmatics, and other health reactions caused by poor indoor air quality. The most important difference between portable and whole house air purifiers is that portable units perform much higher per room. Your oven filter is there to protect you from dust and dirt, not to improve indoor air quality. When choosing an appropriate unit for your home, consider factors like CADR (Clean Air Delivery Rate) and MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) ratings. These ratings are useful for comparing different types of systems and filters.