How to use activated carbon air filters effectively?
Activated carbon air filters are an important part of an air purification system in a home or industrial production and must be used correctly.
1.) Make sure the filter system uses enough carbon. A rough guideline is that a good activated carbon air filter uses at least 5 pounds of carbon. Of course, not all carbon is created equal, and some carbon may have more binding sites than others.
So, the more carbon the filter contains, the more effective the filtration will be, because there are sufficient adsorption sites to adhere to. On the contrary, the effect is not good.
2.) The “residence time” of the airflow is crucial. In order to remove as many contaminants from the air as possible, the air needs to spend as much time as possible passing through the activated carbon air filter. In the air filtration industry, this is called “residence time”. A filter with a large amount of carbon of sufficient thickness and long residence time will be more effective than a filter with a thin carbon layer.
3.) Carbon filter replacement. Once the carbon is saturated, the carbon filter loses its effectiveness and must be replaced with a new carbon filter in time.
The problem is that there is no perfect way to know when the carbon is saturated. Sometimes you will notice the smell; sometimes you won’t. You can follow the activated carbon air filter manufacturer’s guidelines and change it regularly. The degree of carbon saturation depends on the amount of carbon used and the number of contaminants to which it has been exposed. Note that according to the EPA, carbon monoxide cannot be easily removed by a gas phase filter, so other important steps (such as installing a carbon monoxide detector) must be used to prevent exposure.