Elevating Indoor Air: The Importance of HEPA H13 Filtration
by HEPACART on Jan 08, 2024
Breathing in clean air in your medical facility or school shouldn’t be a luxury — it’s a necessity, especially during cold and flu season. That’s where efficient air filtration and purification comes into play and can make a huge difference in the health and safety of your facility.
Ready to learn how to give your indoor air quality a serious upgrade? Let’s dive into the world of HEPA H13 and H14 filters together.
The Importance of HEPA Filtration
When clean and fresh air is a must-have, HEPA filters, also known as High-efficiency Particulate Air filters, are the most popular option for schools, medical facilities, and anywhere else where air quality is critically important. Whether as a part of your air purifier or an addition to your overall HVAC system, HEPA filters provide unmatched filtration and protection from airborne particles such as dust, debris, and disease-causing contaminants. If health and safety are your primary concerns for air filtration, you can’t do better than a tried and tested HEPA filter.
Why Your Air Needs a HEPA Filter
HEPA filters serve as a vital defense against indoor air pollutants, playing a crucial role in maintaining a healthy living environment. These filters effectively remove odors and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) like benzene and formaldehyde, common in household items, thus preventing nausea and cognitive impairment. By capturing airborne pathogens responsible for illnesses such as the flu and the common cold, HEPA filters reduce the risk of disease transmission, offering particular protection for vulnerable populations like the elderly or immunocompromised. Additionally, these filters enhance sleep quality by eliminating allergens that cause discomfort and respiratory issues. HEPA filters also address hidden dangers such as radon, an odorless gas that can seep through structural cracks and contribute to lung cancer, as well as asbestos fibers, once common in construction, which pose severe health risks. Beyond just trapping particulates, these powerful filters improve overall well-being by purifying the air from contaminants that standard cleaning cannot eliminate, safeguarding cardiac, respiratory, and neurological health.
Understanding True HEPA Standards
It’s important to understand that HEPA filters are rigorously tested and certified to become either HEPA or not HEPA. Because of this, there are no “HEPA-like” or “HEPA-style” filters that are actually certified to the same standards as a true HEPA filter. These marketing terms can be misleading, but it’s important to know that they are not certified with the same level of HEPA filtration. These air filters that are marketed as “HEPA-type” or other jargon claim to be similar to HEPA filters because the fibers of their filter panel are designed to mimic that of true HEPA filters. Genuine HEPA filters have an increased surface area, which allows them to capture minuscule pollutants in the air, making them significantly more efficient than other panel filters. Don’t be fooled by tricky marketing terms! Trust your facility’s air quality to the industry-leader that is backed by testing and a globally-recognized certification.
The Benefits of H13 and H14 HEPA Filters
Looking for the highest level of indoor air quality possible? On the scale of HEPA filtration, your best bet will be to choose either the H13 or H14 classification of HEPA filters. HEPA H13 filtration can trap 99.95% of particles that are 0.3 microns in diameter, while an H14 HEPA filter can capture 99.995%. For most applications, an H13 will meet — and possibly still exceed — your needs for air filtration; however, for high-risk medical settings or areas where the spread of airborne particles is particularly dangerous, you’ll want to opt for the more powerful H14 filtration.
Improving Air Quality with H13 and H14
The best possible air quality in your facility begins with the best possible air filtration. When there is no room for compromising your facility’s health and safety, trust HEPA filtration at the H13 level or better. What makes this classification so much better than the rest? H13 and up provide industry-leading efficiency, lifespan, and air quality that is simply unmatched by filters that have a lower rating.
Higher Efficiency: HEPA H13 filtration boasts an impressive filtration capability, capturing up to 99.97% of particles that are 0.3 microns in diameter. Their superior efficiency is particularly effective against a wide array of allergens, contaminants, and microscopic harmful substances in the air. In comparison, synthetic filters generally achieve around 85% filtration efficiency, which is less effective for removing these particles.
Longer Lifespan: Designed for durability, H13 HEPA filters offer an extended service life, with many models maintaining optimal performance for 12 to 18 months, depending on their operational conditions. Synthetic filters, in contrast, tend to require replacement every 3 to 6 months. Over time, the frequent replacements not only become costly but also contribute to greater environmental waste.
Improved Indoor Air Quality: The advanced pollutant-removing capabilities of H13 HEPA filters contribute substantially to the enhancement of indoor air quality. They are particularly beneficial for individuals with allergies or asthma, as the reduction of airborne irritants can alleviate symptoms and foster a healthier living environment.
While there is certainly a time and place for a less intense level of filtration, H13 or better is your best option when health and safety are your highest priority. These highly efficient and long-lasting filters provide peace of mind and confidence that you’re providing the best possible indoor air quality to your facility’s population.
Differences Between H13 and H14 Filters
While both H13 and H14 are technically under the “medical-grade” classification, significant differences between the two might make one option better for your specific needs than the other. What are these differences, and why do they matter? Let’s dive in.
The biggest difference between the two classifications is that the H14 filters are denser, leading to a reduction in airflow. This characteristic typically renders them less ideal for use in portable air purifiers, as they can restrict the volume of air being filtered.
On the flip side, the H13 filters feature a less dense composition, allowing for a more unobstructed passage of air. This makes the H13 the better choice for balancing efficient filtration with airflow. In contrast, due to the higher density of H14 filters, the amount of air moving through the filter is diminished, resulting in a lower air purification capacity but a higher level of filtration. In a situation where the airborne contaminants are very small but very dangerous, it may be a smarter choice to go with the H14 filter.
Leakage in Filters
H13 has an overall high efficiency, and leaks are much less common because the filter is not as tightly woven, allowing air to move through the filter easily. H14 filters, on the other hand, are more likely to have leakages because the filter itself is dense, and the air moving through the filter will take the path of least resistance, sometimes resulting in a leak where air bypasses the filter altogether.
Because of the potential for leaks, the H14 filter has a lower level of efficiency but a slightly lower level of filtration. Alternatively, the H14 filter has lower efficiency because it is more prone to leakage, but the air that is filtered is more purified than that of the H13. Depending on your needs and the circumstances of your facility, one may be more beneficial for you than the other.
The Verdict on High-efficiency HEPA Filtration
Ultimately, there is a filtration level that will make sense for any facility, but we always recommend that facility managers choose HEPA H13 filtration or higher for the best in air filtration. Paired with a high-quality air purifier, these filters will powerfully trap harmful airborne particles and keep your entire facility safe and healthy for years to come.
Looking to boost your facility with the purifying power of H13 and H14 filters? Unsure about the right kind of filtration for your needs? Whether you’re an air quality expert or just dipping a toe into better filtration, we’ve got you covered with our guide to the best possible air quality. Download your free copy today!