Activated carbon has been used for purification since ancient Egypt and India. Introduced to the Western world via the European sugar refineries of the 19th century, it is used today in a wide variety of applications at the home, municipal, and industrial levels. Activated carbon furnace filters are a popular choice, especially among people with allergies or environmental sensitivities. Here are some of the benefits of activated carbon furnace filters.
How a Furnace Works
A traditional forced-air furnace pulls in air through its return ducts, warms it via a heat exchanger, and then uses a blower fan to push the warm air through a series of branching ducts throughout your home or office. A thermostat tells it when to stop running.
A furnace filter protects the blower fan from dust, dirt, and debris in the drawn-in air. It also prevents contaminants from being recirculated throughout the building. Therefore, the more contaminants that are trapped by the filter, the healthier the air you breathe will be. Understanding Activated Carbon
Activated carbon is made from organic material with a high natural concentration of carbon, such as wood, peat, coal, or even coconut husks. The material is slowly heated to a very high temperature in a low-oxygen environment that contains little or no oxygen. This removes water and impurities without burning. The resulting product, known as char, is activated through a physical or chemical process that dramatically increases its surface area and creates a submicroscopic network of pores.
Activated carbon bonds with a vast array of organic and inorganic contaminants along its surface, creating a sort of film. When there are no more open bonding sites, the activated carbon is spent. It can be regenerated with specialized equipment and processing, but this cannot be done at home. Fortunately, activated carbon furnace filters are inexpensive. Why Activated Carbon Is Used in Furnace Filters
Today’s air is packed with impurities, both visible and invisible. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) can be found in everything from paints to cleaning products. Cooking fumes, pet dander, cigarette smoke, and even household dust can worsen allergies or asthma.
Activated carbon attracts and bonds with most unwanted compounds that are found in household air. Many people, even those without underlying respiratory ailments, find the combination of cold weather and dry, heated air to be irritating to the sinuses. It only makes sense to choose filtration that removes as many airborne irritants as possible.
Activated carbon furnace filters are sized exactly the same way as traditional furnace filters. They last for approximately two to three months, and should be changed when they appear visibly dirty. A spent activated carbon furnace filter will not leach contaminants back into the air, but it will no longer be able to remove new contaminants from your home or office. Ready to Get Started?
If you need activated carbon, along with expert guidance on exactly which product to choose and how to use it effectively, please contact Oxbow Activated Carbon today to learn how we can help.