According to Climate Central, “Wildfires burning within 50-100 miles of a city routinely caused air quality to be 5-15 times worse than normal." Learn more about the effects of wildfire smoke here.
Smoke generated by forest fires is comprised of water vapor, particulate matter and a variety of gases, including carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). These materials fall into one of two groups of pollutants: particle or gaseous and require different methods of filtration.
A portable room air purifier can you help manage poor indoor air quality caused by wildfire smoke, as recommended by the EPA in their clean room guidelines. Not all air purifiers are equipped for smoke removal and there are several factors to consider.
We suggest evaluating an air purifier’s performance in removing smoke related pollutants by considering the three points below.
1. Filter Type
Blueair recommends using a combination particle and carbon filter. The activated carbon-based filters that remove fine particles as well as smells and ozone created by the wildfires.
2. Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) for Smoke
Make sure you have an air purifier certified by the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) and look for the Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) for smoke. CADR indicates the air purifiers ability to reduce airborne particles at various sizes and represents the sizes with three common air pollutants: smoke, dust, and pollen. The higher the CADR number for smoke, the more effective the air purifier is at removing the harmful fine particles in smoke.
Example of AHAM label for Classic 680i
3. Room Size
All AHAM Verified® air purifiers are given a recommended room size. It is important to choose an air purifier that can accommodate the volume of air in the room where you will place it. This ensures there is enough airflow (measured in air changes per hour or ACH) to reduce pollutants levels consistently and over a long period of time.
Recommended air purifiers from the HealthProtect™ and Classic families are rated by room size to ensure efficient performance in the removal of wildfire smoke. These models feature activated carbon filters equipped to absorb the chemicals and odors present in smoke, as well as high Clean Air Delivery Date (CADR) values for smoke (fine particles).
Our Blue family air purifiers use combination Particle + Carbon filters to effectively remove the harmful fine particles in wildlife smoke. While they also feature an activated carbon layer to remove odors and gases, the filters are designed for light household odor removal and are not designed to accommodate high levels of gases, chemicals and odors that can be present in wildfire smoke. Learn more.
Our Customer Experience team of clean air experts and are here to help.