You often hear that HEPA filters can help eliminate indoor air toxins in your home. But what does that really mean? Should you be concerned about toxins in your home’s air, and should you purchase a HEPA filter to get rid of them? These days, many people misuse the term “toxin,” particularly those in the alternative health industry. ‘Toxin’ is not just a term that means “anything harmful to health.” Instead, a toxin is specifically a naturally occurring organic poison. 

When it comes to HEPA filters, it makes more sense to think of them as removing “airborne contaminants” rather than toxins specifically. A HEPA filter has the capacity to remove several contaminants that are common in most households, cleaning the air and helping you breathe easier. 

HEPA Filter Parameters 

The standard of a HEPA filter is based on the ability to remove 99.97% of airborne particles that are 0.3 microns in size or larger. Some airborne contaminants fall below that lower-end size, but you can certainly make a difference with a quality HEPA filter installed in your home. Here are six contaminants that a HEPA filter may remove. 

1 – Dust 

Dust particles and dust mites can cause many respiratory issues in any household, but luckily your HEPA filter should be able to remove most of it before it becomes a problem. You can also look into vacuums with a HEPA filter attached so any dust that reaches the carpet will be removed and not sent back into the air. 

2 – Pollen 

Pollen is a common cause of annual allergy symptoms for many people, but HEPA filters are known for removing any pollen greater than 0.3 microns. It’s no secret that many allergy sufferers have a hard time when there’s too much pollen in their living space, so being able to remove it is a major bonus. 

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3 – Dander 

Pet dander refers to skin flakes your pet sheds into the air. If you have an allergy or intolerance to dander, you may have allergy-like symptoms all year round. A quality HEPA filter can remove most pet dander to help you breathe easier. 

4 – Mould Spores 

Most mould spores are larger than 0.3 microns, so having a HEPA filter in place will help you with any potential mould issues. Keep in mind that it is possible for mould to grow on the filter surface itself; therefore, it’s essential to change your filter regularly so it doesn’t become the host for all the mould it has captured. 

5 – Bacteria 

Bacteria come in many shapes and sizes. And just like any other particles, your HEPA filter should remove any bacteria with particle sizes greater than 0.3 microns. 

6 – Viruses 

There isn’t much evidence to suggest that HEPA filters can remove airborne viruses completely, but they may help in some instances. It’s important to note that some contagious viruses that cause respiratory issues can be spread directly from person to person without having a chance to go through the filter. If a virus is spread within droplets, the size of the droplet is going to be larger than 0.3 microns and should be easily removed by a HEPA filter. 

Have more questions about HEPA performance? Talk to the professionals at RB Heating today. 

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