Living in a clean environment means fewer triggers for several diseases like respiratory infections, allergies, and even some neurological disorders. Adopting an air purifier can significantly reduce all these risks and keep you and your loved ones in good health.
In this article, we’ll answer some common questions that air purifier users frequently ask. How long should you leave it running? Is it okay if you leave it on all day long? What to do to protect it from possible damage resulting from prolonged use? These are the things you're about to find out!
The Short Answer
Yes, if you want to take full advantage of your air purifier and get the best results possible, you should keep it on even when you’re not home. While this might sound like such a waste of electricity, we’ll let you in on the best way to get away with it with the least drawbacks possible.
Pros and Cons of Leaving the Air Purifier on All The Time
Weighing the benefits against the disadvantages of leaving your purifier on 24/7 is the best way to find the answers to all sorts of questions going through your mind.
It's important to point out that the following effects are optimal when using the air purifier for continuous periods because turning it off gives time for outdoor pollutants to reaccumulate, even if you keep the house clean all the time.
1. Improving Several Health Conditions
As mentioned earlier, breathing clean air reduces the risks of many diseases like asthma, Cardiovascular health conditions, and other diseases aggravated by harmful pollutants.
2. Reducing Multiple Health Risks
Because air purifiers destroy airborne pollutants and kill bacteria, they help keep infections away. This is particularly significant for immunocompromised individuals who react vigorously to minor infections like diabetic and HIV patients and anyone suffering from another debilitating disease.
3. Keeping Your Home Fresh With a Pleasant Smell
Some smells are hard to get rid of, even if you use air fresheners simply because fresheners can't get rid of odor-causing air particles. Whether you’re still training your pet to use the litter box or you just painted the entire apartment, the smell won’t linger for too long if you’re using an air purifier.
It’s also quite handy to get a purifier to improve the air quality if you're living in an urban area. The problem with such cities is that fumes pollute the air all around. Hence, you end up breathing in a variety of pollutants and airborne particles without realizing they're getting into your lungs.
Although leaving any machine on for a long period of time has some disadvantages, you can’t otherwise guarantee effective air purification. Let’s see at what price it comes before discussing how to get rid of most of these drawbacks.
1. Energy Costs
It’s no surprise that the electricity costs increase when you use the purifier for longer periods.
The good news is, although all purifiers will use some extra electricity, advanced purifiers designed for 24-hour use work with excellent energy efficiency and keep the electricity consumption as minimal as possible, so they save you a lot of cash even if you use them for extended periods.
2. Frequent Need to Change Purifier Filters
Filters remove particles and odor through absorption. When you keep the purifier on for longer periods of time, the filters get clogged faster and slow down the entire unit.
3. Adverse Health Effects
Some purifiers, like ionic and ozone-based air purifiers, do more harm than good when left on for too long.
As for ionic purifiers, they do a brilliant job when it comes to removing odor-causing particles as well as tiny outdoor pollutants. Nonetheless, they're less effective when it comes to removing dust, pollen, and larger dirt particles that consequently pile up and trigger asthma attacks, chronic cough, and other health conditions.
Furthermore, ozone generators produce harmful by-products that sometimes reach toxic levels and cause severe lung irritation. This is why they should be restricted to home cleaning services to be used by professionals.
How to Avoid Damaging My Air Purifier Despite 24-hour Use?
It’s a little challenging to find the ultimate air purifiers that give you all the advantages you’re looking for without spending tons of money on electricity or putting your health at risk. However, these tips will make things easier.
1. Find an Effective Air Purifier
There are several types of air purifiers, but the most popular for 24-hour use are the HEPA Air purifiers and the PCO ones.
This type of air purifier utilizes several carbon filters to trap various contaminants within range.
- Excellent for reducing asthma attacks and respiratory symptoms
- Don’t produce harmful by-products, so they're safe to use all day long
- Widely available
- Not effective against mold spores
- Requires frequent filter replacement
Photocatalytic Oxidation Purifiers
PCO purifiers rely on UV rays to break down particles, causing air pollution.
- Effective against bacteria, viruses, and fungi
- Produce harmless by-products
- Efficiency decreases with time
2. Choose Energy Star Certified Models
Energy Star is the most trusted governmental label for marking energy-efficient products that can still deliver the performance demanded by customers in the U.S.
3. Use a Smart Air Purifier
Modern air purifiers feature air quality sensors that detect the air purification speed. They can be connected to smartphones, allowing the user to control the fan speed to minimize energy consumption. You can adjust the speed to lower levels when no one is home and increase it about an hour before you're back.
4. Stay Away from Ozone Air purifiers
Although Ionic air purifiers and electrostatic air purifiers are quite effective in removing pollutant particles and for the elimination of odor, they’re potentially dangerous even in well-aerated houses.