• How It Works: Carbon Filter

    Here’s what you need to know about this odor- and gas-eliminating filtration method.

    • Cooking, pets, smoke, mildew and cleaning products may not seem to be related, but they all have something in common: the ability to stink up our homes, and potentially contaminate the air we breathe.

      If you’re struggling to get rid of strong odors, a carbon-activated filter may be the way to go. Here’s what you need to know about this unique filtration method.

      What is a carbon filter? 

      Made of activated carbon, also called activated charcoal, carbon air filters can help trap odors. Select Filtrete™ Room Air Purifier filters —including those labeled Odor Defense—feature an active carbon layer for 15x odor reduction power*.

      For your HVAC, consider Filtrete’s Odor Reduction Filter and remember to change it regularly. (That’s at least every three months for 1” filters.)

      How do carbon filters work?

      Carbon filters trap odors through a process called adsorption, which occurs when molecules attach to the outside of a surface, rather than being soaked into it (that’s absorption). The more porous the activated carbon, the better, as this will increase the amount of surface space available for contaminants to latch onto when air passes through the filter. 

      How can a carbon filter help you breathe easier? 

      In addition to helping remove odors caused by pets, cooking and mildew, each of our carbon filters captures airborne particles such as dust, pet dander and more.

      Who should use a carbon filter in their home?

      Anyone can benefit from using a carbon filter in their home, but there are some homeowners who might find them particularly helpful, including smokers or those who live with smokers and pet owners. Even if you only use a carbon filter for a short period of time—such as during a wildfire disaster or building project—you’re sure to notice the difference odor filtration can make. 

      *Compared to ordinary carbon filter organic vapor capacity of other national retail air purifier filter brands.