Things to Note When Choosing Air Purifiers

Amidst the purchase hike in air purifiers sales in Singapore, we would like to bring to mind 3 important factors to consider when selecting an air purifier – be it for yourself, your friends and family, or your employees. They are as follows:

 Type of Filters

(High-Efficiency Particulate Arrestance) HEPA filter is a common term being brought up in times of haze. However, do we realise that HEPA filters do come in different types (A-F) and grades (E10-U17)? Long story short, they categorise the efficiency in trapping particulates down to a certain size (e.g. 0.3 micron). HEPA filters in most air purifiers are capable of filtering particulates down to 0.3 micron, thus the question lies in its efficiency in doing its job.

However, it is good to note that soot and smoke do exist in smaller forms (up to 0.1 micron). For filtering of particulates down to 0.01 micron, which suspends longer in the air and can further bypass our respiratory defence mechanism, one can turn to Electrostatic Precipitation (ESP) technology. ESP uses voltage discharge to charge particulates and collect them on collection plates. It is the go-to filtration technology for industrial discharge, kitchen exhaust fumes, and dust filtration in Air Handling Units (AHUs) in buildings. It is also the technology that many air quality specialists advocate for high-efficiency particulate filtration.

 Type of Contaminants to Filter

Different types of air filters for air purifiers

Other than smoke particulates that are formed during peat burning, pollutants like oxides of nitrogen, sulphur dioxide, and aromatic hydrocarbons are produced at the same time. Such pollutants, if left untreated, can lead to eye/nose/throat/respiratory irritations and even lung impairment. Although some studies have shown that plants like Chinese Evergreen, Peace Lily, and English Ivy are fairly effective in treating aromatic hydrocarbons, plants provide sites for fungal growth – which leads to another set of indoor environmental problems.

Of course, the above-mentioned pollutants and contaminants are categorised under peat burning. There are other contaminants in the ambient air that we constantly overlook. They include pollen, mould, bacteria, pathogens, malodours, Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), tobacco smoke, allergens, and ozone. All these can cause significant amount of discomfort, and lead to an array of distress ranging from lung irritation to itchy eyes to nausea.

Look for air purifiers that come with a series of photocatalytic filters, activated carbon filters, and nano silver (or the like) filters to ensure a comprehensive air cleaning process.

 Cleaning Speed

Given all else in place, the next most important factor that you should consider is the speed of cleaning for that particular air purifier (a.k.a its airflow). In simple mathematical terms, it basically means how much volume of air it can clean in an hour. The higher the airflow, the faster the indoor air of the environment can be cleaned. There is no point in getting an air purifier that takes an hour to clean the given indoor volume once – you would have already felt the health impacts by then.


In short, when choosing air purifiers, it is always good to base your selection choice from a broader perspective. It is always ideal to own an air purifier that can handle an array of ambient pollutants and contaminants. There are air purifiers in the market that cover more than 1000 sqft and come with a 10-stage filtration process to ensure that your indoor air is carefully taken care of.

Monetary losses are recoverable, but health damages are irrecoverable. Make the best choice.