Monday, 25 November 2013

How To Choose A Vacuum Cleaner For Allergy Sufferer


If you are allergic to dust mite or pet dander, it is very important to vacuum your house regularly to keep your allergy in control. But some allergy sufferers find that their allergies worsen or flare up AFTER vacuuming. Why is this so? The problem lies in the vacuum cleaner. Here's some tips on what to look out for when buying a vacuum cleaner for allergy sufferers:

True HEPA filter
HEPA stands for High Efficiency Particulate Air. HEPA-filters trap fine particles that trigger allergy and asthma symptoms, like pet dander and dust mite faeces. This is the first and most important feature to look out for when purchasing a vacuum cleaner for an allergy sufferer.

There are many grades of HEPA filtration. The higher the HEPA filter grading, the higher the filtration. Example: 

A HEPA 10 filter screens out 85% of the airborne particles

A HEPA 13 filter eliminates 99.95 % of these particles

A True HEPA filter, by definition, must remove 99.97% of particles at least 0.3 microns in size. This is as small or smaller than pollen, pet dander and mold. Ideally, this is what an allergy sufferer should opt for. In Europe, this is the equivalent of S-Class filter.

Well Sealed Unit
It is important that you choose a vacuum cleaner that is well sealed, so that it does not leak air out before it gets filtered. Otherwise, the vacuum cleaner is just stirring the dust/air and spewing the allergen particles back into the environment, causing the allergy sufferer to experience allergic symptoms.

There are many channels air could possible leak out e.g. poor hose connections, leaking canisters etc. It is best if you can purchase a vacuum cleaner that certifies the ENTIRE vacuum cleaner to be well sealed. If it is not certified that the entire vacuum cleaner is well sealed, check with the salesman or retailer how it works to prevent air from escaping. This is a big ticket item, if they cannot give you a satisfactory answer, pass.

Other Considerations
Of course there are other factors to consider as well, like living space, budget, flooring, ease of use and other frills/features one would like to have. But for an allergy sufferer, those two features: True HEPA and well sealed unit are most important.

There are some vacuum cleaners offered by Allergy Store that are excellent for allergy sufferers and fulfils these key criteria. Check them out if you are looking for one to protect yourself from allergies.