Why do you need an air wash: test drive Philips HU 5930/10

For a comfortable existence in the room, you need to maintain humidity of about 40-60%, doctors say. Moreover, in hot weather, the humidity should be slightly more than in cold. In fact, the requirements of GOSTs for indoor humidity are taken into account during design and construction, and in new homes the layout itself, the placement of windows and radiators helps maintain comfortable humidity (although, of course, it does not fully provide it). In old buildings, the norms are different, and the materials have changed their properties over the years, and there have been many repairs - in general, GOSTs have remained somewhere behind, and humidity in the apartment is the work of the tenant himself.

Part 1. Why do you need a humidifier

Actually, what is humidity? Many sincerely believe that 40% humidity means that the air around is 40% water. Disappoint you: no, by no means. If this were true, we would need not the lungs, but the gills.

In fact, humidity is absolute and relative. Absolute is just the amount of water vapor in one cubic meter of air, it is measured in g / m3. In everyday life, we rarely use this indicator. But the relative humidity is the same percentage, the ratio of the current absolute humidity to the maximum possible in these conditions. The last indicator depends on the temperature. For example, at 20 ° C a cubic meter of air can accommodate 17.3 grams of water vapor, and at 30 ° C - already 30.4 grams. Therefore, relative humidity depends not only on the absolute value at the time of measurement, but also on temperature.

Dependence of the amount of water vapor on air temperature
Temperature t ° C−30−20−10010twentythirty40fifty60
Maximum absolute humidity fmax, (g / m³)0.290.812.14.89, 417.330, 451.183130

The lower limit of humidity in the living room is 30%, and at the same time, the person already feels dry. This is especially noticeable in winter, when the windows are clogged and the batteries are working. The humidity drops even below the minimum permissible. For a child, an indicator of 30% is generally fraught - the mucous membrane dries up, the body loses moisture, the skin, in particular infant, can begin to peel off and so on. So it is believed that in a nursery it is necessary to maintain a relative humidity of at least 50%. In addition to, as we have said above, this indicator is comfortable for adults. This is where it turns out that you cannot live without a humidifier.

A humidifier is a device that evaporates water from a reservoir and saturates the air with water vapor. There are several designs of humidifiers. The classic version is called cold, or adiabatic . The basis of his system is a wet cartridge through which air is driven by a fan. The effectiveness of cold humidifiers is not very high, but they can "self-regulate": the higher the humidity, the less efficient the device operates, maintaining constant humidity without electronic controls.

Air washing: general view The device is rather bulky: it must be understood that due to the presence of filters it is approximately two times larger than a conventional humidifier. On the other hand, he is handsome. Even on my historic floor it looks quite good.

In industry, the power of a cold humidifier is usually not enough, and another system is used - a steam humidifier. In fact, this is something like a large kettle, heating water to a boil and intensively evaporating it indoors. Such a device can in the shortest possible time raise the relative humidity up to 100%, so it is mandatory to be equipped with a hygrostat and a regulator that allows you to set the desired humidity. Of course, excessive humidity is as dangerous as excessive dryness - but with the help of steam devices you can artificially maintain a level of humidity that is uncomfortable for humans, but required for technical tasks. For example, such devices are used in factories, in agriculture, in museums, where a precisely set and controlled humidity level is very important for the safety of exhibits. There are also household steam humidifiers - they are considered effective and convenient, but require on average significantly more energy than cold ones - about 150 W versus 20-30. Plus, they, like any electric heaters, are unsafe for children: a child may get a burn or electric shock. Modern models have a protective cover and produce “cold” steam with a temperature of about 50 degrees, but still manufacturers recommend refraining from steam models in a house where there are children under two years of age.

Finally, there are ultrasonic humidifiers that “knock out” microdroplets from water using ultrasound. Thus, they create fog that spreads indoors. Ultrasonic humidifiers can maintain a given level of humidity, achieve any, even very high performance, and at the same time they are “cold” and compact - that is, it is such an exceptionally perfect “machine” for the home.

However, ultrasonic humidifiers have a clear drawback. The fact is that the tap water that we pour into the tank contains many impurities. Not necessarily harmful - maybe it's just salt. The steam produced in the humidifier somehow settles on various surfaces in the apartment. For example, when using an ultrasonic gadget, my black polished cabinet in the hallway was covered with a thin white coating in one day. Water filtration helps only in part, and the only remedy for this is to use distilled water. Which you need to buy for money, for example, in auto parts stores. And given the flow rate of distilled water, you just can’t get enough.

And this problem is solved by washing the air.

Part 2. Air washing: advanced system

In fact, air washing is a hybrid of two devices, a humidifier and an air purifier. Or you could say: a humidifier with an integrated filtration system. The principle of its action differs from the described options. The sink does not spray water or steam in the air. It sucks in air, passes it through the filter, moistens it and lets it out already in the “finished” form, that is, purified and with a given level of humidity. It would seem - an ideal scheme. But when testing the sink, there were several pitfalls that must be taken into account when buying. But first things first.

Before us is an advanced model Philips HU 5930/10, which at first glance seems quite expensive (an average of 25, 000 rubles). But if you study the market, the price will be absolutely average - there are much more expensive models with the same technical indicators. Just washing the air is more expensive than a conventional humidifier due to the cost of the filtration system. If you buy a separate humidifier and a separate air purifier, about the same amount will come out.

The water tank is removed.

The main filter used in Philips is called Nano Protect (in fact it is a HEPA filter similar to that used in modern vacuum cleaners) and effectively holds fine dust up to 0.02 microns in size; The total filter surface is 1.17 m2. These are not advertising slogans: when a ray of sun hits through a window, after using HU 5930/10 dust flies much less, it is noticeable even with the naked eye. Of course, air cannot be made perfectly clean and transparent, since there are always sources of dust - areas under beds and sofas, on cabinets and so on. But in general, the concentration of dust decreases very noticeably. I don’t have any pets, but I’m sure that if you have a dog or a cat at home, this is an irreplaceable gadget. Unfortunately, it is difficult to compare the washing efficiency with other air cleaners, for example, electrostatic ones - here you need not a consumer test, but a laboratory test with measuring the concentration of air impurities and the time dynamics of this change.

The tank has a slight drawback: pouring water, it can not be put on the bottom of the sink or bath, you have to keep it on weight, since the bottom is not flat.

Also, power consumption can be attributed to bonuses - only 11W, this is less than any light bulb, even energy-saving. Compared to a hundred watts of steam humidifiers, it’s just space saving.

Now let's move on to hydration and its specific features.

Part 3. Operational experience: pitfalls

At first glance, washing seems to be a very simple device. You insert the plug into the outlet, presses the power button, pour water into the tank - and the work has begun. The control is also simple: three fan speeds to choose from, three options for the set humidity (40−50−60%), as well as automatic mode (70%, and the device selects the fan speed depending on the current humidity).

But suddenly it turns out that everything is not so simple. In a small room, I consistently tested a simple Chinese humidifier and a high-tech Philips sink, and the first “set” the humidity from 30 to 46% in 2 hours, and the sink in 6 hours barely reached 35%. I even thought that it was defective (or, say, the sensor broke). This forced me to carry out a number of experiments - and I discovered many interesting properties of washing, which are not described in the instructions, but which, as it turned out, are written a lot on online forums.

Principle of operation Passing through two filters (the second one is “wet”), air is thrown out through a centrifugal fan.

Philips humidification technology is called NanoCloud . It is a rotating filter, continuously moistened by immersing the lower part in a container of water. Air is blown through the pores of the filter, receiving, in addition to moisture, an additional degree of filtration. This technology eliminates the appearance of mold or pathogenic microorganisms that multiply in the aquatic environment, since the water in the air at the outlet is fragmented into - in the truest sense of the word - nanodroplets. The probability that this moisture will settle somewhere in a concentration sufficient for the formation of mold is simply zero, and the air at the same time has a sufficient degree of humidity.

From the foregoing, we can conclude that, thanks to the air purification system and the radically different principle of humidification from other types, the air wash is almost the only humidifier suitable for allergy sufferers.

It would seem that this is an ideal solution that outperforms other humidifiers in all respects (there is no precipitate, the air does not seem to be oversaturated with water). But the flip side is a direct consequence of the benefits of NanoCloud.

An ordinary humidifier stupidly scatters water. In the form of steam, in the form of small drops - it does not matter. And therefore, it moisturizes quickly, actively, and drops, due to the larger size, do not soak into furniture or curtains and do not scatter over a large area. Therefore, by placing an ultrasonic humidifier near the bed and setting it to 60%, you can be sure: in an hour and a half, humidity in a radius of several meters will be 60%. Even if there are gaps. Even if you open the window. In the far corner of the room, 30% may remain uncomfortable, but you need humidity in your local area of ​​residence, right?

And this, in fact, is a moisturizing filter. Inside the device, it rotates slowly, and its lower part is constantly in the bath with water. Flavors can be added to the water.

A sink of air gradually passes air through itself from the entire room. Therefore, a mechanical hygrometer in any part of the room will show plus or minus the same humidity. The rate of humidification is not too high at the same time, since the water is fragmented into parts of an almost molecular level, which, together with gas molecules, penetrate into furniture and interior items, "taking" moisture directly from the air. But - evenly. This is a goal-setting issue: crayfish are small, but three, or large, but five (remember such a miniature of Kartsev?)

The second point is to seal the space. If there is even a small ventilation gap in the double-glazed window, the humidity will increase extremely slowly, because the flow of humidified air from the sink will withstand the flow of dry air from the street. Steam and ultrasonic humidifiers are not afraid: what kind of air they are, they will directly humidify them. But the sink essentially resists the flow of dry air. If you do not have double-glazed windows, but ordinary wooden frames, forget about the sink altogether: it will lose in efficiency to any other system.

Part 4. To take or not to take?

Air washing is a gadget with a narrow focus. Like any humidifier or air purifier, its advantages and disadvantages are in approximately equal proportions, and which bowl weighs heavier will depend entirely on your needs.

What air washing outperforms a traditional humidifier:

+ it has the function of an air purifier, screening out about 99% of impurities and dust;

+ it evenly, but not "zonal" humidifies the air in the room;

+ white plaque does not form from it, and it is safe for children;

+ she has a very low power consumption.

Wherein the air wash loses to a traditional humidifier:

- it moisturizes much more slowly than an ultrasonic or steam model;

- it is sensitive to cracks in windows, open doors and generally leaks in the room;

- it is more bulky than conventional humidifiers;

- it is more expensive, but this is due to additional functionality.

The rest of the car wash plays on an equal footing: humidification modes, automatic achievement of a predetermined level, protection from children (although, to be honest, a two-year-old child will easily figure out how to get around it), an on and off timer at a given time.

To take or not to take - decide for yourself.


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