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Ceiling Fan Smoke Eaters


     If these ceiling fan smoke eaters could actually move 2,000 cfm and have the HEPA filters installed (recommended for smoke removal), they will operate at 99.97% efficiency.  HEPA filters, by definition are 99.97% efficiency down to 0.3 microns.  According to the Purifan site, the filters can remove down to 0.3 microns, which includes smoke particles.  This means that you need one Purifan at 2,000 cfm for a room size of 32 feet X 32 feet X 10 feet high (1,024 square feet), not 400 square feet!  This allows for heavy smoke conditions and 12 air changes per hour.  Your Purifan representative will not guarantee good results under these conditions.  You will be encouraged to buy more Purifans in order to eliminate that much smoke.  We wonder where the laws of physics break down in order for this to look like the truth.  Use our calculators to see how many effective smoke air cleaners you will need for your situation.

     According to the Purifan site, the filters are made up of layers of high efficiency materials.  They go so far as to include a layer of HEPA material.  Once again, the misuse of terminology to try to capture the unwitting.  HEPA filters rely on densely packed fibers in a corrugated configuration in order to produce high efficiency and holding capacity.  Take a look at a picture of a HEPA filter magnified to show the density of the fibers.  This type of filtration requires a sealed space for the air to be forced through the filter.  The open cowl design of the Purifan does not provide the necessary conditions for the effective use of a HEPA filter.

     As for the efficiency and effectiveness of the filters, we do not know as this would require testing of the unit, which the Purifan company is not willing to provide.  Testimonials can be bought and edited.  We rely on testing and real world results as proof of the effectiveness of the smoke air cleaners that we provide.  Our advice is to stay far away from products that do not provide testing from an independent third party.

purusaire-1 purifan

The Filters

     Many of our customers have asked about the new technology of ceiling fan smoke eaters, like the Purifan.  When you to take a look at the Purifan site, you will see some very engaging marketing and a lot of true statements about air cleaning, but you will not see testing data or any kind of third party certification.  Once again, marketing takes the place of common sense and customers get confused by a sales pitch instead of stepping back and looking at the Purifan for what it is, with a little understanding of simple physics.  In short, ceiling fan smoke eaters cannot be included in your choices of smoke air cleaners without testing.  In some cases, affordability can be an indicator of the level of effectiveness and durability.

How many ceiling fan smoke eaters will I need?

     When we figure how many units you need for your situation, square footage is very important.  The cubic feet per minute capacity of each machine determines which machines you might want and how many you need to install.

Statements vs. Facts

This information is presented to inform you about the ineffectiveness of ceiling fan smoke eaters.  Smoke Eaters Supply does not endorse nor provide parts for ceiling fan smoke eaters.

This information is presented to inform you about the ineffectiveness of ceiling fan smoke eaters.  Smoke Eaters Supply does not endorse nor provide parts for the ceiling fan smoke eaters.

Excerpt from the Purifan site: (commentary added)

     If you have a Mild Smoking Problem (read 6 air changes per hour), good building ventilation (read one more variable on which to blame the ineffectiveness of the Purifan) and higher ceilings (normal ceiling height in bars and halls is 10 feet) then you probably need one Purifan for every 400 square feet.  If you have a Harsh Smoking Problem (read 12 air changes per hour) on your busiest activity nights and you want to make customers or members happy then we recommend one Purifan for every 300 square feet.  That means for Mild Smoking Problem the Purifans are about 20 feet apart in both directions.  For Harsh Smoke Problems they should be on 12 or 15 foot spacing to work the best.  There are no systems that can keep up with heavy smoking situations like Bingo Halls or Casinos (the Smokemasters do this all day long and have been for more than 20 years), but the Purifans make a huge improvement in the visible smoke and odors.  Filter life depends on the volume of smoke and number of hours per week that the smoking is heaviest.  You may need to change filters every 4 weeks in Harsh Smoking Environments.  If you only have a two night per week busy period with a lot of smokers, then filters could last 8 to 12 weeks in a Post or Lodge.

Actual conversation with a recent customer (paraphrased to remove offensive expletives)

Smoke Eaters Supply :  What size room did you say you have?

Customer:  20x20x8 feet with about 4-6 guys smoking.  I have one Purifan installed now, but the sales rep said I need two more.

Smoke Eaters Supply:  Are you happy with the Purifan and you want to purchase more?

Customer:  I am not happy with the Purifan.  I can watch the smoke rise up to it then get blown around the room.  The filters do not do anything and they are too costly.  Please show me a machine that works.

     Until this conversation, we had only heard of the ineffectiveness of the ceiling fan smoke eaters.  Usually the ceiling fan smoke eaters are used together with electronic air cleaners so you can never tell which is doing the real work.  This conversation shows that using a ceiling fan smoke eater alone will not remove your smoke and the solution that is often offered by the manufacturer, is to add more machines.  Our experience has shown that one X-11Q or C-12 will easily eliminate the smoke in a room this size with capacity to spare!