Air Filtration vs. Air Cleaning

Air Filtration vs. Air Cleaning No matter the season, you and your family will be healthier and more comfortable when your indoor air is cleaner. You have two main options for improving your indoor air quality: air filtration and air cleaning.

Air Filtration

Air filtration is the physical process of removing small particulates of solid matter from your indoor air. The tiny bits of dust you can see in a stray sunbeam are a good example of the particulates that are always inside your home. Particulates can also include pollen, dander, mold spores, and cloth fibers.

The filters in your heating and cooling systems are designed to remove many of these particulates from your indoor air. As air circulates through the HVAC system, it passes through the filter. The filter medium, usually spun fiberglass or pleated cloth, captures the particulates.

Standard HVAC system filters can only provide a minimal level of particulate removal. Higher-quality filters will remove smaller particles, but some HVAC systems can’t handle the denseness of these filters. Specialized filtration systems, such as HEPA filters, provide the best level of physical filtration.

Air Cleaning

Air cleaning is a combination of physical filtration with several processes that remove biological contaminants such as bacteria and viruses. Many air cleaning systems are effective enough to remove up to 99 percent of the contaminants in your indoor air. In addition to high-efficiency filters, air cleaning systems may include:

  • Ultraviolet light: UV light destroys microorganisms when the light is directed on them. This can remove bacteria and other potentially harmful pollutants.
  • Electrostatic precipitators: These devices transfer an electrical charge to contaminants in your air. They are then attracted to a collection plate with an opposite charge, removing them from the air.
  • Activated charcoal: A layer of activated charcoal in a filtration system can remove odors, fumes, and gases from the air passing through it.

CCAC brings more than 40 years of HVAC experience to customers in Corpus Christi and the Coastal Bend area of Texas. Contact us today for more information on air filtration and air cleaning and for professional advice on which system is right for you.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Corpus Christi, Texas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about your HVAC system, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 361-678-2495.  

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    David Mathewst David Mathews is the owner of CCAC Air Conditioning and Heating. A Corpus Christi native... More »