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Should I Buy an Ionic Air Purifier or a HEPA Purifier?

The short answer is many times both.  Having good air quality provides immense wellbeing benefits for homes and commercial businesses. Purifying stale air limits the number of pathogens, bacteria, mold, and viruses that are breathed in by both humans and animals.  Air purifiers work to remove these pathogens from the air; however, there are many types of air purifiers, each of which functions in different ways to improve air quality.

Two common types of air purifiers are ionic air purifiers using an advanced version of PCO (Photocatalytic Oxidation) technology, and HEPA filter air purifiers. Here we will examine the two so you can determine what is best for your application.

Ionic Air Purifiers & HEPA Filters

With so many types of air purifiers on the market, it can be difficult to understand how each one functions. And while there have been newly patented types of PCO systems that employ, an ozone free UV light activating the TiO2 and shifting electrons in the air creating positive and negative ions that are very reactive, Ogena Solutions uses a much different way to create the ions that has been tested to show that they do not increase VOC’s in any way. In fact, they destroy them!

NOTE: It’s important to recognize that some ionic air purifiers generate ions through the use of an electrical field, and that these types of systems (sometimes called Bipolar or Needlepoint Ionizers) have come under scrutiny due to studies that have shown that although they can decrease the number of some types of Volatile Organic Compounds in the air, they also can increase the number of other types of VOC’s to potentially unsafe levels.  It seems that the use of an electrical field to generate the ions has caused this unwanted reaction to occur.

HEPA purifiers use filters to catch air contaminants ie: they’re designed to capture particles in the air and not pathogens.  Having said that, since many pathogens will attach themselves to particles in the air HEPA filters can make a real difference in the amount of pathogens in the air.  Some purifiers use various filters, including an activated carbon filter to capture odors. As the fans pull the contaminated air into the machine, the first filter captures larger particulates that are present while the secondary, denser filter targets microscopic contaminants and particles. By using this circulation method, HEPA filters continually trap and block the particles from re-entering the air, but may not be successful in capturing all viruses and bacteria

When comparing the main differences between an advanced ionic air purifier and a HEPA purifier, keep in mind that both products work well for air purification. They simply clean the air in different methods with the HEPA filter being targeted at particulates in the air such as smoke and dander and do not work at all on surfaces, while an advanced PCO device targets pathogens in the air and on surfaces but do not work well at removing large particulates from the air

To further compare advanced ionic air purifiers and HEPA purifiers, here are their key aspects:

  • Advanced Ionic air purifiers. They have reusable filters and exhibit excellent pathogen killing abilities. The fan speed is lower on these so they run quieter than HEPA systems designed to cover a similar space. They work very well at eliminating cigarette smoke and allergy irritants, but will not work well at removing things like pet dander. However, they do not have carbon filters to provide better odor control. Depending on unit size and number Ionic air purifiers can cover almost any size of space, with a single unit being able to cover many rooms at once.  Due to the multi-room coverage far fewer units will be needed when compared to HEPA filters (that normally require separate units for each room).
  • HEPA filters. These products are good across the board for removing cigarette smoke, odors, pet dander, pet hair, and allergy irritants. They have higher speed fans to pull in the air through all the filters inside. However, they cannot kill pathogens (unless they also have a built in UV light shining on the filter) and the fairly expensive filters will need to be replaced about every 3-8 months depending on usage. Depending on unit size and number HEPA filters can cover almost any size of space.

A Note About Ozone Generation

Ozone generators are often confused with air purifiers as they are commonly mislabeled. Ozone generators create large amounts of ozone as its main function to bond with particles. Due to this bonding, the particles then fall to the ground to promote cleaner air. Unfortunately, ozone itself should not be used when people or animals are present, and the EPA states that ozone can create health risks such as chest pain, throat irritation, and lung tissue inflammation. It can also worsen health conditions such as asthma and other respiratory diseases. Ogena Solutions’ units do not produce any ozone at all, and are UL2998 certified as 100% ozone free!

Patented PCO technologyCARB-Compliant Products for Better Indoor Air Quality

Many air purifier companies seek CARB compliance for their products. CARB stands for California Air Resource Board (CARB), which is a state agency that creates regulations regarding minimum ozone generation and electronic safety standards for air purifiers. Companies that meet these compliance standards show that they go to great lengths to promote and maintain healthier air quality. CARB-compliant companies also show that they prevent hazardous air pollutants from entering the environment and protect citizens from these pollutants.  It’s important to note that although CARB certification is proof that these units do not generate ozone higher than the maximum allowable levels, they still generate ozone.

The OgenaShield Air Purifiers by Puraclenz are CARB-compliant  but importantly are also UL 2998 certified as being 100% ozone free. Our advanced photocatalytic oxidation technology does not generate any ozone whatsoever, and effectively destroy viruses and other contaminants from the air and exposed surfaces. Our selection of advanced ionic air purifiers includes the Q60500, Q61500, and Q63000.

Air Purifiers from Ogena Solutions

Having clean indoor air promotes better well-being and productivity. It’s important to understand the different types of air purifiers when choosing the right one for your application. If you are looking for air purifiers for your home or facility, reach out to Ogena Solutions today, or browse our product catalog for more information about our products.