Are HEPA Filters Toxic for Our Health?

HEPA filters have become one of the most popular filter types in air purifiers. These filters are quite useful and can efficiently remove over 99% of germs from the air. However, despite being a solid option for homes and workplaces, you might be worried that they could be harmful to health.

HEPA filters aren’t toxic to health; instead, they can improve your general well-being. These filters only remove the particles in the air; they don’t emit any gases that might have adverse effects. However, ensure you’re using the right purifier and filter size if you want the device to work as it should.

When these advancements first came into the scene, there were a lot of doubts about their health benefits. If you’re part of the many that still doubts it, you’ve come to the right place. This post will take you through a comprehensive breakdown of everything you need to know about HEPA filters.

What Are HEPA Filters?

HEPA’ is an acronym for ‘High-Efficiency Particulate Air. It’s a mechanical air filter that purifies the air you breathe to avoid pollution in the body. It typically removes almost 100% of pollen, bacteria, mold, dust, and other particles present in the air. 

HEPA filters contain thin glass fibers and have activated carbon-based materials. Each component works to filter out even tiny pollutants in the atmosphere.

Aside from HEPA, there are a couple of other air purifier systems out there. However, HEPA has proven to be one of the best and most effective to use. 

How Do HEPA Filters Work?

With the purifier structure, it’s almost impossible for polluted particles in pre-treated air to pass through without being filtered. There are several ways the HEPA filter system stops the particles from getting through.

Firstly, it efficiently traps the contaminants in its fibers by making them stick. This is after the system has sucked in the polluted air through its vents. 

The next method of the HEPA operation follows the Brownian principles of motion. When the particle in question is too small and tries to move through, it collides with other molecules and sticks. In this way, even tinier particles also get stuck in the fiber.

It’s best to remember that the fibers don’t remove chemicals, gasses, or odors from the air. However, the cleaners contain some activated carbon-based material, as earlier stated. These materials absorb odors and other substances which the HEPA fibers cannot catch.

The HEPA system also stops dust, molds, bacteria, and even viruses, helping to destroy harmful gasses around you. With a HEPA purifier, there is a certainty that you can inhale almost 100% particle-free air.

Are HEPA Filters Good for Our Health?

You should understand that the air we breathe daily has numerous harmful organisms we can’t see. To ensure you’re safe, you can employ the use of HEPA. HEPA filters are perfect for our health, and having one in the home goes a long way. 

There are several advantages to using the HEPA filters. Some of these advantages are below.

Advantages of HEPA Purifier

Below are the advantages of using a HEPA purifier:


With the way it operates, you can count on HEPA being effective. The effectiveness of HEPA purifiers is as high as 99.97%, which is near perfection. 

Safe for Individuals with Allergies

For most people with airborne allergies, using a HEPA purifier is an excellent option to consider. The HEPA filter can remove the airborne particles you react to when you contact them. 

It’s also a great device to have if you have asthma. This is because it can eliminate dust and other particles that could trigger symptoms

It Emits No Other Substances

For a start, you should know that air purification technologies like PECO, ozone, and even ionizers leave by-products. In addition, these purifiers emit other substances into the air, which are very dangerous to health.

On the other hand, HEPA filters don’t give off any by-products. 

Do HEPA Filters Have Chemicals In Them?

HEPA devices are made of several components aside from their fibers. For instance, some devices have carbon-based materials that it uses for operation. However, these are not chemicals that should raise concern.

In other words, there are no prominent chemical substances in HEPA filters. The filter only traps chemical substances within its system. Thus, the only chemicals the filters come across are those from the polluted air they sucked in  

Are HEPA Filters Toxic?

When you describe HEPA as toxic, you mean they are harmful to our health in a silent, subtle way. In other words, they damage the body system without the individual knowing.

Scientists have conducted numerous researches to figure out just how the filter is. The truth is, there are disadvantages to using HEPA filters, just as there are with any other filters. However, HEPA filters are not toxic to our health in any way, neither affecting nor damaging it.

Disadvantages of HEPA Purifiers

Though HEPA devices are beneficial, they also have a few downsides, which are:

The Hepa Filter Is Good but Not Perfect

As functional as these filters are, they’re not perfect. They can indeed eliminate tiny particles from the air, but not all. 

Remember that it can only trap contaminants as small as 0.3 microns. Anything smaller than that runs free. As a result, they’re not ideal for removing cancer-causing elements like carcinogens. 

It Stops Functioning When the Filter Is Full

While trapping particles, the filter keeps accumulating this dirt. At some point, the filter becomes filled with these contaminants. If you don’t wipe or wash them off, the device becomes a breeding spot for bacteria.

Eventually, it’ll start releasing these harmful substances, doing more good than bad.

Are HEPA Filters Worth It?

HEPA filters are pretty expensive and are one of the most costly air purifiers today. One HEPA filter can cost from twenty dollars to hundreds of dollars. Plus, the increase in demand is only making the prize go higher.

You might be wondering why you have to spend so much to get an air purifier. The answer is simple – it’s good for your health. Despite the disadvantages, the benefits have the upper hand.

The first function of these filters is to purify the air, and it does so effortlessly. They are also very safe, making them suitable for homes with pets and children.

HEPA filters also come in handy in surgical rooms in hospitals, pharmaceutical productions, and other medical fields. Companies also use them in food processing firms, microchip manufacturing, optics manufacturing, and even pathogen contamination control.  

After spending so much on this device, you will want to enjoy your filter to the maximum. Therefore, ensure you don’t make mistakes when purchasing your air cleaner.

Before buying, ensure that you consider your space. Buy a small device if your room is small and a large one if your area is wide.

Also, ensure it has a Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) that meets your space. This rate gives how much air passes through the filter per square footage. Select a purifier with a high rating if your room is too large.

How Long Does a HEPA Filter Last?

Certain factors determine how long your filter will last. These factors include the usage rate, pollution rate, and filter size.

All things being equal, the HEPA filter will last an estimate of two to three years. Of course, they could last longer if you take care of them properly. This duration favors you more than other competing purifiers like Carbon filters which demand frequent change.

How Do I Maintain the Life of My HEPA Filter?

Always endeavor to clean out the purification unit regularly. Also, change the filters after you have used them for a long time. 

If you’re not sure how to go around the cleaning, try reading the user manual. This usually contains instructions on the best way to maintain your device. 

If there are no specifics, simply use a dry cloth to wipe the filters. In other cases, take out the filter and wash, then leave them to dry. Once dry, return them to their positions.

How Do I Use a HEPA Device?

You use a HEPA air purifier the same way you utilize other air-cleaning devices. Once you have purchased them, set them in the corner of the room as you prefer. 

It’s good to place the purifier in a spot where it can take in the most polluted air from your room. A good example will be placing them in the kitchen or near a bathroom.

If you have children, keep the device in a spot they can’t reach easily.

Air cleaners have a power button where you can control how they function. If you want them at their best, allow the device to run at its highest. However, you can reduce its operating speed by turning down the power.

Some brands also have a mobile application that works for several devices. Some of these apps evaluate the air quality and provide results. These applications tell you when the device filters need to be changed in some cases.