In quick response to the above title, “Do Air Purifiers Help with Mold?”, the answer is yes. If you’d like to know just a touch more about just how effective these devices are when it comes to treating pesky mold spores, then keep reading.
A home doesn’t have to be dirty to have problems with mold. It can appear just about anywhere indoors where you have high temperatures and high humidity levels. If it’s not treated quickly and effectively, mold can cause a whole a range of problems, not just to the house, but to your health as well. But don’t despair as there are steps you can take to help eliminate mold and keep it at bay. One of which is to invest in a decent air purifier.
In this article, we’ll go over in more detail why you need to steer clear of mold and mildew and how to best banish it from your home. We’ll also explain how an air purifier works and how it can help calm this situation, improving your indoor air quality in an instant.
Following on from that, we’ll then point you in the right direction of some of the best air purification systems available now for tackling mold within the home.
Why Mold Needs to be Avoided
There’s quite a range of adverse effects mold spores can have on your health including the onset of allergies, asthma, chemical sensitivity flares, and respiratory problems. And these are just the short-term effects. Long-term exposure to mold is much more serious. Symptoms related to long-term exposure to mold include cancer, neurotoxicity, hypersensitivity pneumonitis, and pulmonary injury.
Mold spores reproduce by releasing spores into the air. They float around the air until they find a damp surface to cling to. Then, as long as the surface remains damp, the mold spores are fed. And eventually, they start to reproduce. The spreading of mold can happen very rapidly so it’s important to deal with it as soon as it’s detected.
Where Mold is Most Likely to be Lurking
As mentioned earlier, mold can appear anywhere that’s moist and humid. If the humidity indoors is above 60%, this is the perfect breeding conditions for mold. Finding a large source of mold in the home could indicate a much deeper problem such as poor ventilation or leaking pipes. Whatever the source may be, it still needs to be treated. In worst cases, if mold is left untreated, apart from the damage it could do to your health, it could even cause the decaying of your home.
Quite often, in properties of poor ventilation, mold spores will form around the edge of the window, typically in the corner. In the bathroom, however, you may notice spots of mold appearing just about anywhere. Both the shower and bathtub are very common as these areas tend to be damp quite a lot. The sink and toilet are in the same boat. However, you also need to look closer. Mold is very good at hiding and is also likely to appear in places such as shampoo bottles, shower heads, and toothbrush holders as all offer the perfect conditions for reproducing.
How Air Purifiers Can Help
There are various types of air purifiers available. However, not all of them are effective at mold removal, so you need to be careful. Any air purifier that’s fitted with a True HEPA filter will definitely help as these filtration systems physically trap the mold, preventing them from reentering the atmosphere. Ideally, when dealing with mold, you should also choose a model that’s fitted with an activated carbon filter. These filters are specially designed to tackle odors and are the only kind strong enough to deal with mold.
Another good feature to look for is those fitted with a germicidal UV-C light. These are the most effective at stopping mold spore reproduction. While there is some controversy over whether UV light should be used in air purifiers because of its potential danger to humans, it is contained within the system itself and therefore should eliminate any associated risk. As air passes through, it’s exposed to UV-C light, destroying any mold spores’ DNA, making it impossible for it to reproduce.
While air purifiers won’t completely solve your mold problem, it’s certainly a good place to start. According to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Guide to Air Cleaners in the Home, while both portable air cleaners and HVAC filters may be effective at removing some mold spores, they won’t solve an ongoing mold and moisture issue. To do this, more specialist equipment will be required. But if you’re looking to remove naturally occurring mold spores from your indoor air then an air purifier is a good tool to help.
Preventing Mold Growth
It’s one thing tackling mold that’s already there, but it’s another thing altogether, preventing it from returning. However, if you want to continue breathing in fresh and uncontaminated air, then both must be adhered to. One way to keep on top of any mold problems within your home is to periodically tour your property looking for cracks in the walls, or any signs of leakages. You should also ensure that all potential entry points for water are sealed. This will also help shield the property from wind, helping to keep your home warmer in the winter.
If you do detect any signs of serious mold, contact the professionals who can treat this problem immediately for you. Once the current problem has been rectified, your air purifier will work much more effectively at providing you with a constant supply of clean air.
When you do have your own air purifier in operation at home, make sure you change the filters on a regular basis, especially if living with any elderly people or those with any underlying health problems. While many of the high-end models have integrated filter replacement monitors, some of the budget models are a little less intuitive and will need to be checked manually every few weeks. If it looks dirty or clogged, then replace it. If you read the manufacturer’s guide, it should give you a better indication of how often the filter will need changing.
Best Air Purifiers for Mold
Alen BreatheSmart Classic P1000 Air Purifier
Best for Larger Areas
The Alen BreatheSmart Classic P1000 is a fantastic top-spec air purifying system that is perfect for use in rooms up to 1,100 square feet in size. It measures in at 15.5” x 2.5” x 14.5”, and has a cool, sleek appearance that will accentuate any office, studio, or home space.
When it comes to technology, this device has it nailed, offering some great user-friendly features. The first thing to note is the intelligent sensor that has the ability to detect the air quality within the room. This is then displayed clearly on the screen for you to see. As the fans kick in and set to work and the air becomes cleaner, you will see the sensor light change, indicating when the room is filled with clean, filtered air.
Another great feature this air purifier has to offer is that it’s so quiet when in use. Thanks to the device’s integrated WhisperMax technology, at its lowest fan setting, it kicks out just 41.5 decibels, which is around the same noise level as that of a library. So, it is pretty quiet, and therefore suitable for use even in the bedroom.
In terms of actual performance, the Alen BreatheSmart Classic P1000 works on a 3-stage air filtering system that includes a HEPA air filter in the center. The HEPA filter that’s included is optional and can be selected from the following: a standard HEPA Pure filter; an upgraded HEPA filter combined with an activated carbon filter for tackling bad odors (HEPA-Fresh); another upgrade to include antimicrobial Silver-Ion threads in which to eliminate mold and bacteria (HEPA-Silver); and a top-spec HEPA filter that includes everything plus Alen’s unique Molecular Conversion Powder that destroys bad odors on a molecular level (HEPA-OdorCell).
GermGuardian AC4300 Air Purifier
Best for Performance
If you’re searching for a smooth, stylish looking air purifier that’s both highly effective and efficient, then the GermGuardian AC4300 is a good match for you. Measuring in at 8.8” x 6.38” x 22”, this slimline device is capable of cleaning the air in rooms of up to 153 square feet in size, up to 4 times per hour.
This HEPA air purifier uses a very effective 3-stage filtering process in which to clean the room air. There’s a pre-filter that’s combined with an activated carbon filter which successfully removes large particles of pollutants and reduces odors caused by things like pets, cooking, and smoke. The air is then passed through the True HEPA filter where 99.97% of allergens as small as 0.3 microns are captures. This includes pollen, dust mites, pet dander, and other airborne particles. The final stage involves using a UV-C light in which to kill airborne mold spores, bacteria, and viruses.
There are 3 different fan speeds on offer with the GermGuardian AC4300, the lowest setting producing just 40 decibels of noise. And in comparison, to some of the other models out there, that’s not bad at all. In terms of power consumption, it uses just 52 watts, which is much better than many of its competitors. Even when running this device for 8 hours every day, it would less than $20 per year to power.
Another feature that many people love about this machine is the easy-to-use, control panel that sits on the top of the machine. There are just 2 buttons and an LED filter replacement indicator here. So, nothing is too difficult to work and with just a quick glance you can instantly see whether or not your filters need changing.
RabbitAir MinusA2 Air Purifier
Best for Technology Lovers
The RabbitAir MinusA2 Air Purifier is an amazing device in so many ways it’s hard to know where to start! Firstly, it offers a pretty large room coverage of up to 815 square feet and can filter this space effectively twice in one hour. And thanks to the Energy Certified motor, filters last up to two years when used for 12 hours a day. How efficient is that?!
When it comes to the filtration system, that’s pretty amazing too, using a total of 6 different stages in which to clean the air you breathe. It uses a pre-filter to trap and reduce large particles such as dust and pollen. It then uses a medium filter to capture and reduce anything that escaped the previous stage. Air is then passed through the BioGS filter which traps allergens 0.3 microns in size at a rate of 99.97% efficiency, before moving through a customized filter of your choosing. This could be either
As well as being super-efficient at cleaning the air in your room, it’s also super fun to use. It has a customizable front panel that transforms your air purifier into a modern work of art. With just a few clicks of a button you can see creative pieces appear on the machine’s face, including images by Vincent Van Gogh, Claude Monet, Peanuts, and Hello Kitty.
Being the technological marvel that it is, the RabbitAir MinusA2 is outfitted with wireless internet capabilities, allowing you to monitor and control your device from anywhere. You can also pair it with Alexa to make your life easier when you are at home and want to give the room a quick blast before you enter.
As you can see, there are some very cool and very effective air purifiers out there that will not only brighten up your room but will also effectively ward off any bacteria, viruses, and mold spores. Mold exposure can be extremely detrimental to your health. So the sooner you tackle the problem, the better.
While all three of the above models are great, the one that really tops them all has to be the Alen BreatheSmart Classic P1000. It’s super powerful in performance and capable of filtering large rooms, yet it’s so quiet when in use. It also looks pretty cool, and therefore ideal if wanting to use it in a bedroom or office.
If, however, that’s not quite the style you’re after then be sure to check out the GermGuardian AC4300. While it’s only really suitable for smaller rooms it works extremely well in those spaces. It’s easy to use, and very energy efficient.
Or finally, if neither of those float your boat, you may be better suited to the RabbitAir Minus2. It’s a modern machine equipped with a technological playground, that runs like a dream and can be mounted on the wall. So is perfect for anyone who likes their gadgets and is lacking in floor space.
Any of these models can be picked up quite easily on Amazon or eBay. Breathing fresh, filtered air inside the home is a pleasure that once you have encountered, you won’t regret buying one. Not only will it help you feel more awake and energized in the day, it will also help more breathe more easily in the night too.