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HVAC & Water > Air Purification
  Product Basics
  Brands & Features
  Sizing & Safety
  Costs & Considerations
There is nothing that is as essential to human life and yet as taken for granted as air. A human being can live for weeks without food and for days without water, but can only survive for a few minutes without air. Along with food and drink, air is the one substance that all people ingest on a regular basis. Yet, few of us stop to really think about the quality of that air. And when we do, we are usually thinking of the hazes and smells we encounter outside. But the real problem, as it turns out, is in the last place we tend to look - our homes. 
From time to time new articles appear discussing air pollution in some part of the world, perhaps even in your local area. Most of us are vaguely aware that all the cars on the roads and all the factories in the industrial areas have contributed to the presence of contamination in the air. Many of us are familiar with the difference between fresh forest air and smoggy city air.

Yet, few people are truly proactive about positively affecting the quality of the air which they breathe on a daily basis. Those of you who have the misfortune of suffering from allergies or asthma are much more aware of the components of the air which you breathe on a daily basis. Still, even the allergy and asthma sufferers are often not fully aware of the air cleaning technologies which exist, including both their benefits and limitations.

For many of us, air purification represents a topic filed away under the category of “let the experts deal with it”. We assume that the air in our home is clean and healthy, certainly cleaner and healthier than the air outside. As it turns out, this assumption is almost always dead wrong. Pursuing a basic level of self-education on the topic of air purification can lead to a number of positive and worthwhile outcomes, including a healthier lifestyle and a more comfortable living environment.

In addition, when an existing air purifier requires replacement, you are more likely to make incorrect decisions regarding the type, size, and brand of the new unit if you do not possess all of the underlying information. In turn, this can result in misplaced expenditures that are either unnecessary or do not lead to the desired outcome.

The goal of this section of the site is not to turn you into an air purification expert with full knowledge of the installation and repair of air treatment and ventilation systems. That would require a far more detailed discussion in the context of an intensive course of study coupled with hands-on experience. Rather, the purpose is simply to equip you with a general understanding of the different options that are available when it comes to air purifiers, including the costs, benefits, and drawbacks of each. There is no specialized knowledge necessary to understand these topics and all the information is presented to be fully comprehensible by anyone, even if there is no prior exposure to the subject of air treatment generally, or air purifiers specifically.

To help you along, we have divided this section of the site into several topical areas, each self-contained and dealing with sets of information which are relevant to the ultimate goal of understading air purification technology, products, and options. We provide a summary of the key subjects covered within each topical area and corresponding links below. You can also access each area from the navigation bar in the upper left hand corner of this page.

The "
Product Basics" section provides an introduction to air purifiers, which are also known as air cleaners, and explains why there exists a need for such technology in the first place. Delving deeper, we provide a rundown of the many different types of air purifiers which exist on the market and describe the differences in both operation and effectiveness among these. We also help you to differentiate between technologies which truly clean the air and those which are little more than marketing ploys. This section is most useful if you are either new to the subject of air purifiers or would like to have a better understanding of the different types of air purifiers which are available.

The "
Brands & Features" section provides background on the air purification industry generally and individual manufacturers specifically. By the standard of such stalwarts as the heating industry or the auto industry, the air cleaning industry is fairly new, with the technology really coming into homes in the 1970s and 1980s. However, compared to cell phones or the Internet, the air cleaning industry is a grizzled veteran. In either case, there has been enough time for certain companies to emerge as clear leaders, providing products that are superior in terms of safety, quality, and effectiveness. In addition to identifying the best brands, we also highlight the latest features which are available on certain air purification products. This section can be viewed as a scorecard that will assist you in selecting a specific brand and model of air purifier for your home.

The "Sizing & Safety" section explores more specific selection criteria which play into the decision-making process for a new air purifier. We explore the critically important issue of safety, determine key sizing requirements, consider the question of energy efficiency, and explain CADR-based calculations. This section is helpful if you have a decent idea of the general type and brand of air purifier that you think you want and are now getting down to the nuts and bolts of determining the specific model that will best match your household needs.

The "Costs & Considerations" section comprises information regarding typical price levels, professional services associated with installation and repair, and purchase options available for buying a new air purifier. With respect to costs, although specific prices will vary by region, by brand, and by technology type, they will still generally fall within a certain range. Having an idea of this range can help to plan ahead, as well as to identify price estimates or quotes that are questionable. This section provides a useful planning tool if you have decided to purchase a new air purifier, but have not yet begun the comparison shopping process.

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