Sylvane.com » Indoor Health Matters


Air Purifiers Help in Clean-Up from Wildfires

Posted by Ashley on November 19th, 2008

As I write this, areas in southern California are starting to recover from a string of dangerous wildfires that first sparked last Thursday and have burned at least 42,000 acres to date. These 3 fires – the Montecito Tea Fire, the Sayre Fire, and the Freeway Complex Fire – spawned thousands of evacuations and mobilized handfuls of fire crews to help contain their violent flames. They are now at least 70% contained (the Montecito Tea Fire is 100% contained), but not without destroying at least 400 houses, 500 mobile homes, scores of commercial properties, and causing at least 10 injuries.

As residents begin trickling back to their neighborhoods and homes – for some, to what is left of their homes – clean-up is top of mind. One important aspect of recovering from a wildfire, or any type of fire, is restoring the quality of the air, both outside and inside the home or office. An air purifier designed to remove smoke can expedite this process.

Wildfires are notorious for injecting a dangerous concoction of volatile organic chemicals (VOCs), soot, and carbon monoxide into the air – all of which is particulate matter that is finer than dust and therefore, easy to inhale. This can quickly become an allergy- or asthma-sufferer’s worst nightmare. People with respiratory and heart conditions can also experience more aggravated symptoms, as they inhale smoke-filled air and find it harder to breathe.

IQAir MultiGas GC Series air cleanerUsing a high-quality air purifier designed specifically for smoke and chemical removal will help remove harmful, airborne particulates in the days following a fire. The IQAir MultiGas GC Series Air Purifier works like a gas mask of sorts with 4 specialized gas filter cartridges: Multigas, VOC, Ammonia, and Chemisorber. The 6-speed air cleaner contains up to 17 lbs. of gas phase filter media and filters 97% of gas particles sized down to as little as 0.3 microns.

Austin Air Healthmate air cleanerThe Austin Air HealthMate air purifier also works to rid the air of particles, smoke, odors, and VOCs using a true medical-grade HEPA filter along with almost 15 lbs. of activated carbon, zeolite, and potassium iodide filters. Both of these air purifiers are designed to cover large areas with efficient and quick removal capacities. Smoke, chemicals, dust, and soot will eventually be obliterated, leaving behind only clean, breathable air.

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