What is the Difference Between True HEPA Filters and Regular Air Filters?

Medical HEPA filters are the most effective method of air filtration. While True HEPA filters are classified as H10 to H12, HEPA filters considered for medical use are classified as H13 filters. These can remove up to 99.995% of particles down to 0.1 micron. As with True HEPA, medical filters must be rigorously tested before experts give them this rating.

The Institute of Environmental Science and Technology (IEST) created a standard way of performing tests to ensure that a filter complies with the HEPA standard, although the EST notes that it is “a basis for agreement between customers and suppliers”. This is usually the standard for HEPA filters with critical functions, such as in nuclear or sanitary facilities.

The IEST did not specify any contaminants, but the industry has used a specific type of aerosol oil for much of the history of HEPA filters.

Charcoal or activated carbon: HEPA filters are great for removing particulates from the air, but they have no effect on gaseous pollutants, such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or odors. Many HEPA air purifiers claim that they can remove these contaminants.

However, they can be hybrid purifiers with an additional carbon filter or the HEPA filter can be impregnated with activated carbon. In any case, this is a completely different filtration method and has nothing to do with whether or not the filter meets the HEPA standard. The first HEPA filter was created in 1940 by American scientists for the Manhattan Project during World War II. With constant improvement over the years, HEPA filters can be found in day care centers, hospitals, health centers, and medical facilities.

While the filter may still be able to capture 0.3 micron particles and capture a high percentage of them, unless HEPA is confirmed to be authentic, it cannot claim to meet DOE HEPA standards. True HEPA: A consumer air filter labeled True HEPA must meet the standard closest to the DOE for a HEPA air filter. However, although they have been scientifically proven to remove pollutants from the air, classic HEPA filters are the least efficient of the three. An authentic HEPA device or filter is the only type of HEPA filter that truly meets the DOE standard for HEPA filtration, has maximum efficiency, and reaches the 99.97% threshold.

If an air filter claims to be a HEPA filter, you're basically trusting that the manufacturer has tested the filters and that they comply with the DOE standard. When looking for portable air purifier solutions for your installations, it's essential to understand the difference between HEPA filters, true HEPA filters, HEPA-type filters, and other types of HEPA filters. A manufacturer that makes air purifiers for use in your home cannot go to the DOE and get the HEPA seal of approval to use them in their packaging. HEPA filters have received recognition for their ability to capture both PM2.5 and larger PM10 particles.

They work by sifting pollutants between individual fibers as air passes through them, making them highly effective at capturing airborne particles. The important thing to know is that there is no official certification program for residential consumer air purifiers that would guarantee their performance.

Ida Trodden
Ida Trodden

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