I mean, who wants mold in their house? In addition to being unattractive, it can harm your furnishings and have negative health effects. You’ve come to the right page if you’re considering employing HEPA filters with your air purifiers in an effort to get rid of the mold in your house. Here is the response we received when we questioned the experts if these filters are efficient in removing mold.
Mold spores can be captured by HEPA filters, particularly those that are 0.3 microns or larger in size. Some molds, meanwhile, can evade these screens because they are tiny. Additionally, HEPA filters won’t be able to get rid of the mold that is already present on your home’s damp surfaces.
This implies that HEPA filters can only help you lessen the amount of mold; to completely eliminate the issue, you still need to deal with the underlying cause.
Continue reading to learn more about how HEPA filters can assist you in getting rid of mold in your home. Additionally, we’ll show you how to check your home for mold spores. We’ll also clarify whether these filters are harmful and whether you can reuse or wash them rather than buying new ones. Let’s start this now!
HEPA: Is It Good For Mold?
Molds are tiny fungi that can be found both inside and outside of our homes.
They do well anywhere there is moisture in the air. There may be mold development within your home if you notice black, orange, green, or white spots on specific areas of your home, particularly those that are moist and humid.
The problem is that these molds can irritate the eyes, nose, skin, and create breathing problems, especially in people with allergies, asthma, and weakened immune systems. Even poisoning and lung issues can result from prolonged exposure to mycotoxins, which are their metabolites.
Additionally, mold can harm furniture, bedding, and upholstery. It can ruin the items it adheres to and is ugly. In other words, it serves no purpose, therefore get rid of it as soon as possible!
The use of HEPA or High-Efficiency Particulate Arrestance filters in air purifiers is something that many households are considering. Some vacuums also contain these filters.
Hundreds of thousands of tiny, sticky fiberglass threads are woven together tightly to form HEPA filters. They are capable of capturing airborne particles as small as 0.3 microns. So that they won’t keep floating about in the air, they are able to collect 99.97% of indoor air pollutants, including mold spores.
How minute are these atoms? Simply attempt to hold a single hair strand. You can only picture the tiny air contaminants that these HEPA filters can capture and stop from spreading in your home with a diameter of about 50 to 100 microns.
However, some mold spores are actually even smaller than 0.3 microns in size. This implies that they can still enter your house despite these HEPA filters. Also, the mold growth in some regions of your home won’t be controlled by these filters. In actuality, mold can develop on them, and as a result, your air filters will eventually release mold spores into the air rather than removing them.
Therefore, even though HEPA filters can aid in reducing the growth of mold in your home, they won’t completely eradicate it unless the root causes are immediately treated. This includes your home’s interior having high humidity and moisture levels.
How Can You Tell If the Air Has Mold Spores?
Mold is easy to identify once it has colonized moist surfaces in your home because it takes the form of colored spots. Black, green, brown, white, or any combination of these hues may be used for patches. You could determine the type of mold present based on their color.
For instance, due to its color, Stachybotrys chartarum or Stachybotrys atra are also referred to as black mold. The Aspergillus, meanwhile, is a greenish-white hue.
Spores are made by mold. These airborne, seed-like particles have an impact on the quality of the air within your home. It might be challenging to determine whether there are mold spores in the air. Mold spores are tiny in size and are invisible to the human eye. It is challenging to determine whether they are in the air because of this.
Here are several methods you can use to find out if the air contains mold spores.
- Smell. Mold spores have a distinct musty smell when they are present.
- Symptoms. More frequent allergy problems in you or your family members may potentially be a sign of mold growth.
- Test. If you suspect mold growth in wet regions, you can get a mold exposure kit and use it there. The test strips would need to be sent to a lab for analysis, and they would only let you know the results.
How Toxic Are HEPA Filters?
There have been some toxicity worries due to the fact that HEPA filters are constructed of extremely thin fiberglass fibers. These filters lose their fibers, which increases the amount of airborne contaminants. Studies have shown that breathing in fiberglass can irritate the lungs, and some individuals are concerned that this could eventually result in cancer.
However, scientists have noted that the quantity of fiberglass fibers that these HEPA filters release won’t have a significant negative impact on people’s health. Additionally, the rate of fiber shedding diminishes over time, thus exposure to fiberglass fibers only lasts for a short period of time.
We may state that using HEPA filters is safe in general. They emit fibers that are identical to typical dust particles that are routinely detected in the air.
In order to keep your HEPA filters safer to use, it’s also crucial to clean them frequently. Also keep in mind that they often change once a year. Pre-filters can make your HEPA filters last up to five years longer if you use them.
Are HEPA Filters Washable And Reusable?
With all the pollutants in the air, it is difficult for these filters to capture as many contaminants as they can. The drawback of this is that when these pollutants accumulated on the filters over time, they would become less effective at trapping them. For this reason, it’s crucial to get them cleaned frequently in order to maximize their effectiveness.
Some filters, though, are disposed of after a certain amount of time. The cost of HEPA filters might be high. If they could be cleaned and re-used, you wouldn’t have to purchase new ones each time they became soiled, which would save you money.
However, it would depend on the HEPA filter type you buy. Remember that not all HEPA filters are created equal. If you want to know if the item you’re buying is washable or reusable, read the product information carefully. Read the directions as well to ensure that washing it won’t affect its quality.
Cleaning A HEPA Filter
While permanent filters can be cleaned by using a handheld vacuum to remove all the dust, grime, and pollutants lodged on their surface, washable HEPA filters can be cleaned by rinsing them with cold tap water.
Cleaning your air purifiers with tea tree oil, baking soda, vinegar, or citrus seed is more eco-friendly.
Before reinstalling your HEPA filters in their slot after cleaning them, ensure sure they are totally dry. Nothing mold loves more than a moist, humid atmosphere, so doing this will assist ensure that their surfaces won’t serve as a haven for it.
Replacing The HEPA filter
However, certain filters aren’t designed to be cleaned and reused. When they start to exhibit signs of performance degradation, you would need to dispose of them properly.
Also remember that cleaning your reusable HEPA filters has some dangers.
If you don’t clean the fibers properly, you risk damaging them. Additionally, if you have allergies or respiratory conditions, you may inhale hazardous compounds that have a negative impact on your health.
While HEPA filters alone won’t solve your home’s mold growth problem, they can assist you lower the amount of airborne contaminants or mold spores.