Whole Home Air Cleaners vs. Portable Air Cleaners
So you've discovered that you really need an air cleaner in Old Chatham but you're not sure what type of system to get. Since you know that your indoor air quality is important, you'll want to be sure you have the type of air cleaner that works well to eliminate the pollutants that get trapped inside your home.
Perhaps you're thinking about a portable air cleaner or considering a whole home air cleaner. The portable unit is transferred from room to room manually and is operated manually, while the whole home air cleaner is installed directly into your home's HVAC system and works automatically.
Here are some things you'll want to consider when trying to decide on the type of air cleaner you want.
Cost - Whole Home Air Cleaners vs. Portables
A whole home air cleaner will cost more up front that a portable unit will. This is because the equipment may cost more and is installed by an HVAC professional. On average, a whole house air cleaner costs $1,000 to $5,000. However, the replacement filters cost anywhere from $20 to $200 per year.
Top rated portable HEPA air cleaners can cost on average between $800 and $1,200 but there are units that cost around $4,000, while cheaper units are on average between $100 and $200. Then you must consider that the filter has to be replaced every 6-12 months and that could cost another $70 or more.
A whole home air cleaner will last years upon years longer than a portable and will work better. This may be the determining factor in your decision.
Making Wise Decisions On Air Cleaners -Portable Means Portable
Even if you find a portable air cleaner that promises to clean the air for 3,200 square feet, it does not mean it will effectively clean the air in your entire home. The square footage covered is for one room only. Do you have a room that large? Only the air in a large room could be effectively cleaned with a large portable air cleaner like this, not rooms within a house with walls between them. When there are walls involved, the unit will need to be moved from room to room.
The problem with this is that as the air conditioning system blows air through all the vents in the house, the rooms not being treated have dirty air being circulated throughout.
A whole home air cleaner, on the other hand, works automatically to treat the air before it is blown through your ventilation ducts. This also keeps your vent system cleaner.
If you don't mind having to move around your air cleaner and that all the air cannot be treated thoroughly at the same time, then a portable unit may be the right option for you due to the lower upfront cost.
Duct Cleaning Is Important
Whether you choose a portable unit or a whole home air cleaner, you'll want to have your ductwork cleaned. There is buildup inside that significantly affects the air quality inside your home.
It is not uncommon to find rodent droppings, dead rodents or insects, and other problems like mold and mildew present when we clean ducts. Be sure you get this important part of your HVAC system cleaned out and sanitized. You may want to consider installing a UV light as well to eliminate bacteria, viruses, and other organisms like mold.