The household products we use every day, as well as appliances, furniture, and building materials, emit gases that can become trapped indoors. Many of these gases are pollutants that are harmful to health. Controlling sources of air pollution and improving ventilation are helpful to improve indoor air quality. Air cleaning devices are also used to remove indoor air pollutants.
Visit ARB’s website for a list of air cleaners to avoid and a list of certified air cleaning devices: www.arb.ca.gov/research/indoor/ozone.htm
In the event of a wildfire, air filtering devices may help remove any ash, soot, and dust that have infiltrated your home. Sensitive populations especially should consider investing in an air filtering device if living near an area prone to wildfires. Here are some strategies for selecting the most efficient air cleaner which will not have any harmful side effects:
- Ideally, it is best to buy an air cleaner before a wildfire if you live in an area prone to wildfires or are sensitive to pollution. During a wildfire, it may be hazardous to go outside.
- Select a mechanical air cleaner with a fiber or fabric filter. High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters are the most efficient. Filters should be tightly sealed in their containers and cleaned or replaced regularly.
- Make sure to select the right size filter for the size of your room. Room air cleaners should filter two or three times the room volume per hour. The packaging on most units will tell you the unit’s airflow and the room size it is suitable for.
For more information, see this fact sheet on air cleaners from the Air Resources Board.
Visit this webpage to find a list of certified air cleaning devices.