Consumer VOICE

Operating Cost of Air Filters

Electricity consumption is not the only running cost of an air filter. The real expense is the cost of replaceable filters. The bigger air-purifier filter costs about Rs 8,000 and has to be changed every 7 months or so; filter of a smaller one costs around Rs 5,000 and needs changing every 8 months. So, on an average the bigger air filter costs around Rs 13,000 a year and the smaller one about Rs 7,500 per year.

Air filters may be rated on a variety of factors, including clean air delivery rate (which determines how well the air has been purified), efficient area coverage, air changes per hour, energy usage and the cost of the replacement  filters. Two other important factors to consider are the length that the filters are expected to last (measured in months or years) and the noise produced (measured in decibels) by the various settings that the purifier runs on.

Many air filters generate some ozone, which is a toxic gas. When inhaled, ozone can damage the lungs. Relatively low amounts can cause chest pain, coughing, shortness of breath and throat irritation. Ozone may also worsen chronic respiratory diseases such as asthma and compromise the ability of the body to fight respiratory infections.

Because of the nature of the ionization process, ionic air filters tend to generate the most ozone. This is a serious concern.

Overall, due to below-average performance and potential health risks, consumers are advised not to use ozone-producing air-cleaning technology. Ionizers have been found to be less effective in removing particles of dust, tobacco smoke, pollen or fungal spores than either high-efficiency particulate filters.

Make Your Air Cleaner Work for You

  • You have to shut the door of the room for the air filter to make any difference. It’s ineffective in a room where the door opens multiple times or even in open cabins or large lobbies.
  • Next, clean the pre-filter and replace the HEPA filter exactly at the time it’s specified.
  • Place it in the most uncluttered area of the room so that it can suck in more air. Run it continuously when you are in the room.
  • Monitor its efficiency with an external AQI monitoring device kept on the opposite side of the room. Remember that very few brands of air cleaners tell us all the specifications.

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