November 26, 2014

HEPA Filters – What You Need to Know

Do you need a HEPA filter on your new vacuum?  First, it helps to know what a HEPA filter is.  HEPA is an acronym for “High Efficiency Particulate Air”, which means that it traps smaller dust particles than an ordinary filter.  A vacuum with a HEPA filter should not blow as many dirt particles back into the air as one with a standard filter.  The catch is that not all HEPA filters are alike.

The first is a True or Absolute HEPA filter which must pass tests to be certified as True.  A True or Absolute filter will have a serial number attesting to its status.  It must be able to trap at least 99.97 percent of particles of .3 microns. These test results will be printed on the filter. True or absolute HEPA filters may be more expensive than other HEPA filters, but they must perform at a certain standard to receive the distinction of True or Absolute HEPA.

The second is a HEPA type filter which look like HEPA filters and may be made similarly, but often capture only 85 to 90 percent of particles and that percent can fall even lower for particles of 1 micron and below. HEPA type filters are less expensive than true or absolute HEPA filters.

In order to know what you are buying, look for serial numbers and test results if you want to purchase a True or Absolute HEPA filter.  Check the test results at .3 microns to make sure your filter is a True or Absolute HEPA.

Allergy sufferers might find some relief with HEPA filtration, especially in home with pets.  Before you spend the extra money on a HEPA filter, make sure your family needs one, then just just the packaging to make sure you are getting what you pay for.