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Thread: Ion Cleaners Snake Oil?

  1. #1 Ion Cleaners Snake Oil? 
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    Hello, my parents are spending a lot of money on something called Pionair lamps. Costing around $500 each it just seems like a strong UV light that it is suppose to kill mold in a large area. There is no direct contact with mold from what I can tell, as there are no fans circulating the air.

    You can see an explanation of the "technology" if you go on the pionair website. It says "Inductive warmth draws humidity into the unit to cause a photocatalytic reaction that creates negative ions and hydroxyl radicals. Indoor pollutants are positively charged and draw the negatively charged ions into the environment. The negative ions attach to the pollutants allowing gravity to pull them out of the air. The hydroxyl radicals attach to microbials such as mold and bacteria and destroy them."

    This is bs right? Please explain if it is, many thanks!

    -Kenny


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  3. #2  
    exchemist
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lycan Frost View Post
    Hello, my parents are spending a lot of money on something called Pionair lamps. Costing around $500 each it just seems like a strong UV light that it is suppose to kill mold in a large area. There is no direct contact with mold from what I can tell, as there are no fans circulating the air.

    You can see an explanation of the "technology" if you go on the pionair website. It says "Inductive warmth draws humidity into the unit to cause a photocatalytic reaction that creates negative ions and hydroxyl radicals. Indoor pollutants are positively charged and draw the negatively charged ions into the environment. The negative ions attach to the pollutants allowing gravity to pull them out of the air. The hydroxyl radicals attach to microbials such as mold and bacteria and destroy them."

    This is bs right? Please explain if it is, many thanks!

    -Kenny
    Interesting question. I've always suspected these were a bit flaky. There is something about it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_ioniser. which in summary seems to say that it is a sound principle in theory (rather to my surprise!) , but that many domestic ionisers are not powerful enough to have any practical effect.

    Perhaps others with more expertise would like to comment.


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  4. #3  
    Bullshit Intolerant PhDemon's Avatar
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    Yep I agree, the principle is sound but most of them you can buy are not powerful enough to have a significant effect on mold. The ionizers tend to be better at ionizing small particles rather than large, so you will probably get it picking up a lot of dust but having little to no effect on the mould, even if the ionizer removed the mould from the air it doesn't kill it, it probably just dumps it on the floor and then the cycle begins again. An ozone generator can be used to kill mould, but it must be used when the room is unoccupied and you MUST make sure the room is well ventilated and all the ozone has gone before reentering the room.

    Also, this spiel:
    "Inductive warmth draws humidity into the unit to cause a photocatalytic reaction that creates negative ions and hydroxyl radicals. Indoor pollutants are positively charged and draw the negatively charged ions into the environment. The negative ions attach to the pollutants allowing gravity to pull them out of the air. The hydroxyl radicals attach to microbials such as mold and bacteria and destroy them."
    is mostly bullshit. I'm guessing it was written by the marketing department!
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  5. #4  
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    Thanks for the reply guys, I'm surprised that the idea is sound. So I had a flood during the hurricane in NC USA and it flooded my basement, so I'll try it and see what happens.
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