Perhaps “sneaky marketing” is a more fitting word.
Here is a list of some of the deceptive practices in the industry:
Scam #1 Overpriced Replacement HEPA filters
HEPA is a cloth-like filter which captures dust, dirt and pollen. These filters last on average about 6-9 months with steady use. they vary in size and price. No other technology really helps pollen or dust like HEPA.
The SCAM = The problem is that once you’ve paid for the air purifier and go to buy a new replacement – GOTCHA!.The company can charge you whatever they want. Here are just 2 examples of replacement filter costs in popular models that seem a bit inflated:
Honeywell 50250 =
Scam #2: Limited Warranties
Warranties can vary so greatly that you need to read the details and look for a good 5 year warranty, along with a 30 (ideally 60 or more) day no questions asked money-back guarantee.
The SCAM = Warranties can actually make profit for many air purifier companies. EX: The Oreck Air Purifier is pro-rated – in a short period of time you’ll have to pay a percentage that actually makes the Oreck company money because the manufacturing costs them very little..
It reminds me of the days when American cars would not make it to 100,000 miles. Some said that it was to sell parts by breaking down as planned. Otehrs said that because the Japanses cars would last longer that American cars had to improve.
Scam #3: Claims that HEPA will work on mold and viruses.
You’ll find many Companies saying that HEPA will help mold and kill germs.
The SCAM = HEPA filters will capture some of the mold spores but will not kill mold on the walls. Those mold spores inside the HEPA can then spread. Look to include an air purifier with either UV light or electrostatic will kill mold inside and on the walls.
As for germs and bacteria – HEPA will not treat those in a room. If the HEPA is specially treated (and some are) with anti-bacterial chemicals then it will kill bacteria and germs inide the HEPA filter, but will not generally kill it anywhere else.
Scam #4 Claims That Electrostatic Ionizers Will Capture Dust and Pollen
You’ll find many Companies saying that Electrostatic will grab dust and pollen.
The SCAM Electrostatic plates and grids are positive and negatively charged electrical surfaces that will attract some particles like a magnet. Then you wash them off. And while it will capture some dust by it’s “static” charge, most pollen and dust doesn’t have a lot of charge. You need HEPA for grabbing most of the pollen and dust.
If electrostatic (Oreck’s Truman Cells are an example) really worked there would be no need for HEPA.
Scam #5 Never Have To Change The Filter???
Some models claim you never have to change the filters. That would be great, if it worked
The SCAM Washable electrostatic and pre-filters will gather some particles in the air, just not like HEPA. Also the washable “hepa-like” filters are made of foam and don’t adhere particles, or filter particle like “real hepa” filters.
Check out the reviews on this site for real information.
Take the steps to learn the technologies first, find out which filters you need. Figure out your square footage, and then do comparisons. A Comparison chart and video on the technologies can be found below.