I keep a couple Aloe plants around. Easy to take care of and they clean the indoor air.
Is this true? And what can we do to make indoor feel and look like outdoor without having to clean big time? What plants are especially easy to take care of?
I'm very interested in this since I live in a polluted city.
Yep, plants have been cleaning the air since the beginning of their existence. And as mentioned, NASA did a study on the top air cleaning plants.
Here are more links!
Wikipedia List of Air Filtering Plants (with info on what they are good at filtering, and whether they are poisonous) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_air-filtering_plants
Another one that looks right up your alley, though must admit I didn't watch it, TED talk on How to Grow Your Own Fresh Air http://greenspaces.in/blog/ted09/
NASA has actually done some fantastic research on this. There's a book that condenses that information called "How to Grow Fresh Air" (http://www.amazon.com/How-Grow-Fresh-Air-Plants/dp/0140262431); more recently (but the same basic information) there's been a TED talk on the topic: http://www.ted.com/talks/kamal_meattle_on_how_to_grow_your_own_fresh_air.html. I have a lot of these plants. (also, fyi: plants will make your home more humid. that bugs some people, and if you have a LOT of plants (thus a LOT of humidity), can cause problems. so keep an eye out and tweak as necessary.) That wikipedia article someone else linked is pretty rocking, too.
Mechanical air filters- honeywell, etc- are just that, filters. They capture dust (and pollen, and dander), basically, they don't capture specific molecules of formaldehyde, benzenes, etc. Quite good in their own way, but a different mechanism entirely than plants.
"Ionizing" air filters are basically crap. The worst ones ionize-to-the-point-of-ozone-production, which isn't good for you, and the "best" ones are simply ineffective at everything. I'd stay away from anything that claims to be germicidal, simply because I don't need it and think that for me, a reasonably healthy non-immune-impaired person, it would be ridiculous and counterproductive. I need some germs in my life.
I use an AirOasis purifier.
Here is an excerpt from their website:
The germicidal UVC lamp destroys germs that pass through the rays of UV light.
Light rays from the UVC lamp react with the nano Nickel HCT™ catalyst to produce catalytic molecules.
Catalytic molecules seek out and destroy carbon-based molecules by converting them to harmless carbon dioxide and water. What are carbon-based molecules? A few examples are: Odor causing VOC’s Smoke Mold Bacteria Viruses
and other aeroallergens...
This breakthrough, originally developed by NASA, does not rely on filters and is virtually maintenance free. In fact, in many circumstances our AHPCO technology reduces contaminants more efficiently than a HEPA filter without the high cost of replacing filters on a regular basis
Since air is not being forced through thick filters, large fans that require high amounts of electricity are not needed. This creates an extremely energy efficient air purifier that operates on a fraction of the electricity required by most air purifiers.
I have used AirOasis for circa seven years and have been very pleased with it. I also use HEPA air filters, and a salt lamp.
Read these two great articles:
All your questions answered.
Our house is plant city, and that may be great for our indoor air quality (unless you are really sensitive to mold), but we needed a HEPA filter (that has an extra "plasma" filter, supposedly for odors and bacteria) in a couple rooms before we actually noticed a difference in indoor air quality.
We can tell if the filter was accidentally turned off because we wake up with stuffed up noses.
I note that none of those "best plants" are aloe vera. I'm not sure how good it really is at cleaning the air. If it were good, I don't know that I'd want to be using it on my skin and cuts... :)
Plants in the home DO sound like a good idea. Assuming you don't have my brown thumb of course... :)
Hi Fakey McFakerson, Can you elaborate on this comment:
"Ionizing" air filters are basically crap. The worst ones ionize-to-the-point-of-ozone-production, which isn't good for you, and the "best" ones are simply ineffective at everything."
What is the point of ozone production? How would you know what that is? I just bought a couple himalyan salt lamps as ionizers and didn't know it could be harmful and now I'm a bit worried. Thanks
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