Can I Clean or Wash HEPA Filters? – Supplemental Data

This post contains supplemental data for the post “Can I Clean or Wash HEPA filters?“. It includes detailed information about the testing method, and the original data, open-sourced for all to view. Click here to view the original article Open Data Particle Capture Tests For the particle capture tests, CK …

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New DIY Purifier Design Increases CADR 15%

After I made my first DIY purifier, a design magazine called me up to interview me. I said, “You realize this has no design in it, right? It’s just a fan and a filter.” Now I actually have a design improvement! I’m calling it the DIY 1.1.  The Problem The …

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New DIY Design Increases CADR 15% – Supplemental Data

Methods Results were identical to my earlier tests of the Original DIY, Blue Air, IQ Air, Xiaomi, and Philips. Anna conducted the overnight tests in her 15m2 Beijing bedroom. Doors and windows were closed during the test (except for occasional opening during the first couple hours before bed—that random variation …

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Car Air Pollution Stopped Driving

Do We Need Car Air Purifiers? Do they Work?

Car air purifiers sound like a great idea. But do we need them? Do car air purifiers even work?  Soon after I started making DIYs, people emailed me asking if we could make an air purifier for their car. My initial reaction was, “Great idea!” On the highways, we’re surrounded …

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Is It Possible to Lower the Cost of Clean Air Without Sacrificing Effectiveness?

A few months after I published my DIY tests, there were already Taobao stores up and running, selling DIYs even cheaper than my 200 RMB. I was intrigued. If we could really lower the cost of clean air, that’s a win!

But we have to be sure these cheaper machines are as effective. So I ordered the cheaper machines, tested them systematically, and found they performed much worse (2).

A New Way to Lower the Cost of Clean Air

But that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to make HEPAs even more affordable. Recently I tested one way to do that: if we can shave 1 millimeter from the size of the HEPA, we can save 6% on the price. This new size still covers the fan opening, but does it still work as well?

Method

To test this question, my collaborator Anna ran 10 overnight room tests with the 290cm in her Beijing apartment and compared it to my earlier tests of the 30cm HEPA in the same 15m2 room.

e

Like in my earlier tests, I calculated effectiveness as the percent reduction in particulate from the start of the test to the average of the last four hours. Here’s what one of those tests looks like with the reduction calculation laid out. The blue line is indoor 0.5 micron particles; the red line is outdoor PM 2.5

q

Results

On average, the new 29cm HEPA reduced 0.5 micron particle levels in the room by 86% and 2.5 micron levels by 91%. These results were almost identical to my prior results with the 30mm HEPA.

w

Conclusion

This new HEPA lets us lower the cost of clean air without sacrificing any effectiveness. Win! We just lowered the price of Smart Air HEPAs from 80 RMB to 75 RMB.

HEPA Cost Comparison

Next I took that price and compared it to the two biggest brands out there, Blue Air and IQ Air. (Also check out the long-run cost comparison .)

Nerd Note on Replication

As a side note, this test is now the third series of room tests I’ve published with the Original DIY (early tests; 200-day longevity test). Add that to Dr. Saint Cyr’s tests, and I’d say that’s a satisfying amount of reproducibility.

For fellow data nerds, I’m posting the original data and more details about the test below.

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DIYer Makes Cannon Quieter

Bill is an expat living in the hills northwest of Beijing, and he uses his DIY Cannon to cut the particulate in his home. But Bill wanted to improve on the biggest downside of the Cannon–it’s a bit loud on high: So Bill designed a sound dampening box for the Cannon …

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Preparing for Air Pollution in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia

Air purifiers and air pollution are probably the last things that come to mind when thinking of Mongolia. But maybe it should be the first, given how bad the air there is. I was living in Beijing during the airpocalypse, so I decided to buy an air purifier. Then I discovered …

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Smart Air is a social enterprise that creates simple, no-nonsense air purifiers and provides free education to protect people’s health from the effects of air pollution. We are proud to be the only certified B-Corp dedicated to fighting air pollution.