How Long Should You Run An Air Scrubber?

Air scrubbers are effective in eliminating pollutants inside your home. But the question is this: how long should you run an air scrubber to achieve optimal results?

The answer to this depends on a few factors. Below, I discuss how long you should use air scrubbers, how to use them efficiently, and answers to related questions.

How long should you run an air scrubber?

how long should you run an air scrubber
Photo Credits – Venta Air

In general, it’s advisable to run an air scrubber for 24 to 48 hours. This will allow the scrubber to filter out heavy pollutants in the air.

However, this recommendation is based on scrubbers rated with 400 to 600 CFM. Also, it assumes that the air scrubber has four air changes per hour (ACH).

With this, the exact duration depends on various conditions in your property as well as the exact unit you’re using. Here are some of the things you should consider:

☝🏻Level of pollution on your indoor air

If your home is suffering from a bad case of molds, you need to run the air scrubber for at least 48 hours. In some cases, you’ll need to run it longer until the mold presence has reached a tolerable or safe level.

It’s important to monitor your home air quality to see whether you still need to run the air scrubber after 48 hours. If there’s still a substantial amount of pollutants in the air, you may need to run the scrubber continuously.

☝🏻The size of the air scrubber

You also have to factor in the size of the air scrubber you’re going to use. Technically, air scrubbers with higher airflow and ACH rating can clean a room faster than smaller ones.

If you have a large place to clean, it’s best to get an air scrubber rated for its floor area. If not, you’ll have to run the unit for multiple days, not to mention that you’ll have to clean or replace the small filter frequently.

☝🏻The size of your home.

Aside from the size of the scrubber, you also have to factor in the size of your home or the room where you plan to use the unit.

Large rooms require equally large air scrubbers. This is to ensure that the unit can produce enough air changes per hour to eliminate all pollutants present in the air.

Poorly sized air scrubbers will consume more electricity than it’s supposed to. Worse, the unit may overheat, which is often the case for a scrubber that’s too small for the room it’s cleaning.

☝🏻The number of machines

The number of air scrubbers you’re using will also affect the duration of running your unit.

Multiple units can clean a room faster than a single one. With this, you’ll only need to run the scrubbers shorter, which can potentially save electricity. This is as long as the number of air scrubbers is suitable for the overall size of your room or property.

☝🏻Presence of moisture

If your property suffered from water damage, it’s best to run an air scrubber until all the moisture is gone. This pairs well with a dehumidifier to ensure that molds won’t grow and spread all over your home.

Take note that the air scrubber won’t remove moisture itself. What it eliminates are the mold spores that could grow on the moisture-laden areas of your home.


How to make your air scrubbers more efficient

Air scrubbers are powerful tools in eliminating pollutants inside your property. Still, it requires proper maintenance to ensure that the unit will function efficiently.

With this, you should observe these points on your air scrubbers:

✔️Change the filters regularly.

Photo Credits – Bob Vila

The filters of air scrubbers will soon get saturated with particulates. When this happens, you need to clean or replace the filters to ensure that the unit will function well.

Take note that dirty filters will block proper airflow. It will force the unit to compensate, which can lead to overheating.

Running an air scrubber with clogged filters will lead to excessive electricity consumption. Worse, the unit will not be filtering contaminants efficiently despite using more power.

✔️Change filters per room

Once you’re done using an air scrubber in a specific room, it’s best to replace or clean the filters before running them in another place. This is to prevent cross-contamination, especially if the filters are already clogged with particulates.

Most HEPA filters in air scrubbers can last for months. However, the pre-filter and carbon filter require frequent replacements.

✔️Consider using several air scrubbers

To ensure that the air inside the room circulates and gets cleaned, you should consider using multiple air scrubbers. You should place each one around the room for optimal coverage.

This is to ensure that you’re not filtering the same air over and over again. Take note that this is more critical if you’re cleaning the air of a large warehouse or property.

✔️Choose your filters

Take note that air scrubbers are usually equipped with a HEPA filter and a pre-filter. Most of the time, these are enough to remove most airborne particulates.

However, these two won’t do much when it comes to malodors. This is why you should consider purchasing an optional carbon filter. Most air scrubbers are designed to accommodate this additional filter, which can remove smoke and foul odors in the air.

Whatever filters you’re using, make sure that it suits the manufacturer’s recommendations. Also, you should invest in quality filters that will last long.

✔️Remove the source of pollutants.

 As much as air scrubbers help clean the air, it’s not the sole solution to the problem. Also, it should only be used once the source of pollution has been removed.

For example, if your home has a mold problem, you should avail of mold remediation. After the molds have been professionally removed, you can use an air scrubber to eliminate any lingering spores that could restart an infestation.

Final words

How long should you run an air scrubber? In general, air scrubbers should be run for 24 to 48 hours, depending on the extent of pollution in your home. Above all, you should get an air scrubber suitable for the size of your property.