Australian Study Shows Most Vacuum Cleaners Release Dust, Bacteria Back Into the Air
You vacuum your house religiously to get rid of all the dust, dirt, and bacteria and make sure your indoor air is up to snuff.
But new research suggests that some vacuum cleaners may actually be making things worse, not better.
Certain vacuum cleaners spit fine dust and bacteria back into the air, where they can spread infections and trigger allergies.
Australian researchers tested 21 vacuum cleaners from 11 manufacturers, including two commercial models. The vacuums were six months to 22 years old, and ranged from less than $100 to almost $800. Brands included Dyson, Electrolux, Hoover, iRobot, and Sanyo. The researchers measured 62 different air emissions.
All released some bacteria, dust, and allergens back into the air. Newer and more expensive vacuum cleaners generally caused less indoor air pollution than older, cheaper models, the study showed.
Vacuums with high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters released only slightly lower levels of dust and bacteria than vacuums that did not use these special filters. HEPA filters are supposed to remove 99.9% of the pollen, animal dander, and even bacteria from the air.
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