Human’s search for better life has led to the best inventions, including the use of air conditioning systems to simulate clean air and humidity in domestic, commercial, and industrial settings. Air purifier, humidifier, dehumidifier, and vaporizer are just some examples to this. Not to be confused from one and the other, each of these devices serve unique purpose/s. As the name implies, an air purifier is primarily for cleaning the circulated air in rooms. Humidifier, on the other hand, adds humidity in an enclosed place or room and even an entire house or building. Dehumidifier is basically the contrast as it aids in the removal of humidity in a room, house or building. Finally, vaporizer helps in vaporizing substances to better serve their purposes.
Probably the earliest use of what is known as air purifier today dates back in 1830. Unlike the nicely looking devices today, though, the first of its kind was simply a copper helmet that comes with flexible garment and collar as developed by Charles Anthony Deane. The air is pumped through a leather hose that is long enough to attach the helmet rear. Another pipe, a shorter one, is also used as a discharge of the breathed air. The garment, which may be of airtight cloth or leather, is used to sieve pollutant and is secured in place through a string. The design is very easy and simple, simply having an air pumping tool with two bellows. Improvements came in fast and patents have been awarded to different inventors and scientists after Deane.
Soon after, humidifiers came to life. The first few designs were usually referred to as natural humidifiers because of its very simple and almost natural configuration – only a wick and reservoir. A good example to this is a partially water-filled stainless steel bowl that is covered with a towel. The towel is centered to the sink by a waterproof weight, while water spreads through it via capillary action. There is not much known commercial types back in the days as there are now due to its design simplicity and of course, low cost. Today, its known benefits have created a huge market for commercial manufacturers which paved the way to better and efficient designs for residential, commercial and industrial settings.
Dehumidifiers followed soon with the rise of man-made ice rinks and pools around the world. Like anything else, the first kinds of this device were simple, but nevertheless do the work intended for. Eventually, vaporizers followed. The first developed vaporizers have been useful for different applications although these days, it steadily grew in fame as a useful device in making and improving e-cigarettes.
Commercial-Grade Air Purifiers
Easily described as air cleaner, an air purifier is a tool or device that is used to eliminate macro and micro contaminants that pollute air –usually in an enclosed area. The first of its kind had been marketed as health aids, helping asthmatics and allergy sufferers get rid of triggers that can invoke attacks. These days, with the imminent danger of man-made pollution, the most common air cleaning devices have also been designed to reduce; and eventually eliminate the danger of second-hand tobacco smoke from the air. With these marketing benefits, the popularity of air purifier has grown significantly that a number of designs have been developed for commercial and industrial purposes.
Commercial air purifiers vary in sizes, design, and power. What makes them unique from portable units is configuration. Large or small, these devices are affixed to the heating, ventilating, and air conditioning unit (HVAC) or the air handler unit (AHU) of commercial, industrial, and medical industries. Newer designs of air purifiers are also effective CO2 eliminators as they are equipped with adsorption techniques like pressure swing adsorbers. Thermodynamic sterilization or TSS which makes use of heat sterilization, Ultraviolet germicidal irradiation that use UVGI, High-efficiency particulate arrestance or HEPA filters, Photocatalytic oxidation or PCO, photoelectrochemical oxidation or PECO, and Titanium dioxide or TiO2 are among the newer techniques being used in air purifiers. More common types of these devices use either passive or active purifying techniques. Passive air purifiers are equipped with filters that will block and eliminate impurities, while active air purifiers benefits from the effective purification of ionization. Of the two though, the passive air cleaning technique is recommended by experts due to its ability to permanently remove pollutants through the filters.
Humidifier in Residential, Commercial, Medical and Industrial Settings
Increasing the moisture or humidity in a room and/or a house or building is the main purpose of a humidifier. These days, with the acknowledgement of climate change, this is one of the devices that are really needed to improve the convenience and health in homes, commercial buildings, and industrial industries. These devices may be in form of portable appliance to best fit domestic applications while furnace humidifiers are connected to the home’s heating, ventilating, and air conditioning system. In medical applications, humidifiers are included in the ventilators to ensure the comfort of the patient. While in larger settings like industrial institutions, these devices are also included in larger systems.
Humidifiers can dramatically help in eliminating adverse health conditions due to extreme weather conditions. Heat can affect the lining of a person’s throat and nose by drying the mucous membranes. Eventually, this can cause mild to severe respiratory distress to people across ages. Aside from the health benefits that it offers, it is also useful in preserving important and sentimental fixture like wooden furniture. Heat can cause cracking, loose joints and/or shrinkage of furniture pieces. At the same time, artworks, books, and papers can get damaged, become brittle, shrunk or warped due to continuous exposure to low humidity.
The use of humidifier can also effectively help in keeping electrical efficiency as it keeps semiconductor devices at pristine conditions. Exposed to extreme heat, surfaces that are electrically charged can become very hot. This can then cause dust and small particles to stick onto these surfaces which can eventually destroy semiconductor devices and/or worst cause severe hazard.
The recommended relative humidity is between 30% and 50% in homes. Anything in excess can promote the growth of molds and dust mites. To keep check, it is important to install a hygrostat.
Dehumidifier and Its Significance in Homes and Industries
Areas with excessive humidity can cause discomfort and pose health hazards from mildew growth or musty odor. For these purposes, dehumidifiers are necessary in households, medical institutions as well as industrial applications. These electrical appliances extract excessive water that is present in the air and maintain the level humidity. They come in different sizes, types and design to match the application they are to be used. Indoor swimming pools and ice rinks require large dehumidifiers to preserve the required humidity in these huge commercial buildings. These appliances may be classified as condensate or desiccant.
Dehumidifiers that fall under condensate, collect water through a refrigerator. This greywater may be reused like in industrial applications; while at the same time may be perfect for reverse osmosis filtering, which is a process that turns condensate water into useful, potable water. Not all condensate devices are of this design, though. There are those that dispose of the greywater in the form of vapor. A good example to this is the design of the ionic membrane dehumidifier.
Desiccant or adsorption dehumidifiers, on the other hand, are those that are configured with bonding hydrophilic materials along moisture. A commonly used material for cheap domestic design is the silica gel. Most units contain very basic materials like silica gel, substance cartridges of single-use hydrophilic material, and powder. Commercialized units of these devices are significantly larger and usually contain recovery systems for hot air. These systems greatly help in the removal of the humid air that is present outside of the room.
From these two configuration designs of dehumidifiers are a few more types that are now gaining popularity in homes, commercial industries, medical institutions, and industrial applications. Among these are Thermal condensation, Refrigeration, Conventional air conditioners, Makeshift, Ice buildup, and Thermoelectric dehumidifiers.
Vaporizer Popularity Today
The vaporizer humidifier is a tool that helps in vaporizing substances for inhalation purposes. Although its design can be traced down from the basic humidifier, a vaporizer uses boiled water to produce mist or steam in the air. The most common vaporizers today are the ones that can be filled in with water and other herbs and substances that increase aroma and effect. In some designs, the use of mixtures or blends is imminent. When it comes to price, steam vaporizers cost less, ranging from $15 to $50. One of the most commercialized products you will easily find in the market is the Vicks One Gallon Vaporizer with Night Light; the product gathers many positive reviews from satisfied customers. Moreover, it only costs at about $14.99 and can run through 18 hours of vaporizing before it needs to be refilled.
One of the good things about steam vaporizers is they don’t produce harmful minerals and other contaminants in the air because of the process—vaporizers boil water and release pure steam in the open air. As for allergy-related concerns, since vaporizers don’t emit as much contaminants compared to cool mist humidifiers, they are safer health-wise compared to the latter. Just to be sure, it would be wise to consult your immunologist or allergist for recommendations. Even better, vaporizers also help in moisturizing the air and helps improve common respiratory symptoms. And since vaporizers boil water, it is a lot safer to use a variation of water (purified, distilled, or tap) than a humidifier. For best results, use distilled or purified water. When it comes to maintenance, vaporizers can be easily cleaned. Scrubbing the device’s surfaces with mild dish soap water every three days would be enough to keep it clean from thriving bacteria.
However, steam vaporizers are not highly encouraged to be used inside homes with children because of burn risks and other device-related incidents.
Benefits of Air Purifiers vs Humidifiers vs Dehumidifiers vs Vaporizers
The benefits that air purifiers, humidifiers, dehumidifiers, and vaporizers have are somewhat related as they are all used to promote comfort, better health, and lifestyle. Air purifiers are primarily for cleaning the air which is very beneficial to those who have allergies and other health conditions. Humidifiers are also very health friendly as these devices increases the humidity in rooms or places where extremely low humidity is prevalent. They prevent electrically charged devices from getting too much heat that can eventually harm semiconductors. They help keep these things in pristine condition. In industries that paper and art are important, humidifiers are also very important. They prevent these things from curling and losing their value. Conversely, dehumidifiers are maintaining excessive humidity at the recommended level. Done right, this can keep commercial areas like indoor ice rinks and swimming pools clean and safe from harmful high temperature. These devices principally aid in maintaining the proper humidity inside these commercial establishments.
Whereas, the use of vaporizers helps in alleviating respiratory symptoms like common colds and clogged nasal passageways. It can also be used to increase humidity and bring aromatic smell inside the house.
For home, commercial or industrial use, there are definitely air purifiers, humidifiers, dehumidifiers, and vaporizers or the right size, style and design to match the needs of every application. As a matter of fact, there are devices that come as 2-, 3-, or 4-in-one these days.
Now that you have a brief idea of the differences among air purifier, humidifier, dehumidifier, and vaporizers, it will help you in deciding which devices are much needed inside your home. Your deciding factors will make a difference in terms of budget, choice of brand, and model. Nevertheless, investing for these devices won’t make you any loser. After all, spending money for your entire family’s health and home improvement is a never a bad choice.
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