A common mistake is attributing an air purifier being the same as a humidifier. However, there are several distinctions on their uses. Although an air purifier and a humidifier may have some common denominators in providing health benefits to its users, their purpose and operation means are quite different.
An air purifier is designed for removing air contaminants for a cleaner air to breath. It can also effectively reduce second hand tobacco smoke. It particularly benefits allergic and asthmatic individuals. An air purifier reduces irritants from the air making it less irritating to sensitive people like those who are asthmatic and allergic. An air purifier works by reducing airborne particles such as dust mites, mold spores, pollens, pet dander and dusts that act as allergens.
The common purifying technique involved in an air purifier includes the use of a filter that traps the airborne contaminants based on size exclusion. A HEPA filter can reliably remove 99.97% of particles the size of 0.3 micrometer from the air and retain it inside the air purifier to ensure that the circulating air is free from irritant and contaminating particles. Other purifying techniques include the use of activated carbon that absorbs volatile materials, a photocatalytic oxidation that kills 99.9% of bacteria and viruses using an ultraviolet light and an electrostatic precipitator that also removes air particles.
A humidifier on the other hand is used as a household appliance that effectively provides moisture into the air. This is especially important during cold climates where the heating system can cause air to dry. A humidifier can sooth discomfort symptoms that arise from the drying effects of air such as chapped lips, dry and itchy skin, dryness of throat, mouth and nose as well as itchy eyes by humidifying the air to reduce its dryness and ease these discomforts.
A humidifier consists of basic parts that contribute to its effective functions. It has a reservoir that serves as a tank container filled with water, a wick that acts as a filter to absorb water and trap mineral deposits and sediments that build up from the water and a fan that is adjacent to the wick that blows air to enhance the evaporation of water.
Humidifiers come in vaporizer form that combines a warm mist and steam humidifier that can be added with medicated inhalant for soothing relief from cold and cough symptoms. The cool mist humidifier releases cool, fresh air to the environment while the ultrasonic humidifier creates water droplets from an ultrasonic frequency in the form of a cool fog.
Caution on using a humidifier should be observe to ensure that the humidity level in a room must not exceed to 50% and should not go lower than 20% of air humidity level. Implication of this is a humidity level beyond 50% can encourage breeding of microorganisms such as bacteria and molds while below the 20% humidity level can cause drier air that will harbor the occurrence of symptoms of discomforts caused by dry air.
Both an air purifier and a humidifier have its own unique and specific indications of use. They are both equally effective in providing health benefits to its users and both provide a better air quality to breathe. When choosing between the two, specific needs must be indicated in order to make a better choice which unit will work best for you.
Tips in Cleaning Humidifiers
Cleaning is a part of our usual routine. We clean our body, our beds, and others for if this is not done, it will cause harm tot the health of people, may it be ours or that of other people. It is the same thing with the humidifiers we have at our home.
These humidifiers for a part of the home and plays a vital role in maintaining levels of humidity. It also prevents the damage that dry air brings to our wood items, floors, walls, and other valuable and fine collections. In cleaning humidifiers, one is instructed to first consult the manual that came with the product because there might be certain features that is unique to your humidifier. Nevertheless, we have a few general rules on cleaning the humidifier.
Cleaning humidifiers is not allowed to start unless the humidifier is unplugged from the source of electricity. This is to prevent electric shock and damage to the humidifier. Thereafter, you can us a three percent hydrogen peroxide solution to remove the scale, deposits, or films which got stuck on the tank and on the other parts of the humidifiers.
After that, rinse the tank very well to remove the chemicals which were left behind. It will be very dangerous for the tanks to have chemicals from the cleaning. For example, you forgot to rinse the tank after cleaning it, or left behind some, hydrogen peroxide and you immediately switched it on. You will then inhale the smell of hydrogen peroxide inside your room or in your whole house. it could pose threats to your health because chemicals have different effects on the body.
When cleaning humidifiers, you might notice a float assembly after long periods of not using the humidifier. You need not worry because you can try cleaning it with an acidic solution such as vinegar. Sodas could also be used in the absence of vinegar and let it stand for a few minutes. If the budget allows, you can purchase a commercial humidifier cleaner.
You must also protect yourself while cleaning humidifiers. Wear proper protective covering for your hands such as heavy-duty gloves and cover your clothing, too, with an apron. When you can not stand the smell of the humidifier cleaner you are using, wear a mask. Moreover, protect your eyes especially when using a very strong and acidic cleanser. You could either maintain a significant distance between your eyes and the humidifier cleanser or wear protective glasses or goggles.
In cleaning humidifiers, it is very important that you are able to protect both yourself and your humidifier. Be very careful in cleaning because it is directed towards your health.
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