Is a HEPA Filter Worth the Money?

In short, it depends on what you are trying to achieve or alleviate. For people with severe allergies, HEPA filters can help trap pet dander and other larger allergens. If you're simply trying to freshen up your air, the price may not be worth it. In other words, air purifiers are not a cure for everyone.


is good for removing larger particles, such as pet dander, pollen, and dust mites.

Unfortunately, mold, VOCs, viruses, bacteria, and small particles smaller than 0.3 microns cannot be safely removed from the air with a HEPA-based air purifier. Air purifiers using HEPA filters can capture coronavirus-sized particles. However, its real effectiveness in preventing someone from contracting the virus is still unknown, since the transmission rate may be faster than the air purifier can capture the particles.Therefore, we continue to recommend following CDC advice on the best methods to reduce the risk of transmission and avoid exposure to the virus in the best possible way. The ability to clean a HEPA filter saves money.

While filters are different and some are difficult to clean without damaging them, users can spend an additional few months or more cleaning a HEPA filter. For homes without central HVAC, or if you have pets indoors, a HEPA room air purifier may be beneficial.It is still important to take care of deposited dust deposits and keep pets out of the bedroom. The room air purifier must be suitable for cleaning the air in the room in which it is being used. Don't expect it to clean an entire house and remember: only particles that pass through the air filter will be captured.

Using a HEPA filter in your home can remove most airborne particles that could worsen allergies.But airborne particles aren't the only ones in your home. There's so much more to your carpets, bedding and curtains, and it rests on countertops and tables. That's why it's important to keep these areas clean. It is also important, where possible, to eliminate the source of allergens and irritants.

For example, the only effective way to keep tobacco smoke out of your home is to stop smoking.When indoor air is drawn into the air cleaner, it passes through a filter inside it. Filters capture air pollutants, such as dust, and then push clean air into the room. Some purifiers are designed to remove specific types of contaminants, and others eliminate gases. If you want to do your best, there are units with multiple filters to capture particles in the air, plus an activated carbon filter to eliminate odors.

The three most common appliances that use HEPA filters are whole-house filtration systems designed to treat complete HVAC systems, portable air purifiers, and vacuums. Some filters are reusable and washable, but require meticulous maintenance, so they are not normally found in the most effective air purifiers.If you have a central HVAC system, consult a reputable contractor about replacing the manufacturer's filter with an approved oven filter (the right size for your unit and the size of your air ducts) with a minimum efficiency rating (MERV) value of 11 or 12, and then configure the fan to work continuously. In addition, there are other things happening in your home that can affect effectiveness, such as ventilation (windows open or closed) and new particles that constantly emerge, so the air may not be as filtered as the claims lead you to believe. The filter also becomes less effective as contaminants build up, posing an additional threat to the air quality inside your home.A HEPA filter is a type of mechanical air filter; it works by forcing air through a fine mesh that traps harmful particles such as pollen, pet dander, dust mites, and tobacco smoke.

By purchasing a HEPA air purifier that contains additional filters, such as a carbon filter and pre-filter, the unit will remove a maximum amount of contaminants in the air. But May says HEPA filters help create a healthy home environment, even for those who don't have allergies or asthma. Not all air purifiers clean the air equally; some are more efficient than others; some are designed for large or small rooms; and others can be hazardous to health.Residential and home HVAC systems will most likely need to be modernized with new ducts and new equipment; perhaps even an improved HVAC system that is powerful enough to work with and pass through a dense HEPA air filter. In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) warns that the functionality of air purifiers is limited in terms of filtering gases and that you should replace filters frequently for optimal functionality; usually about every three months or more.

A professional HVAC company should install a whole-house HEPA filter; it should be the right size for your air handling unit to protect the life of the equipment and ensure that air passes through and not around the HEPA filter.