When I look out of my Noida apartment window these days, the sky looks so clear, with no smog or dust in the air. However, it is when my air purifier whirs to life because of its automated schedule that I realise how the air is still not what it should be ideally…or what it is in some other parts of our country.
As we return to the daily commute cycle, we tend to forget the amount of pollution these drives expose us to. And it was just to check this that I thought I should try out the Airific Car Cabin Filter from Nirvana Being. Over the years, I have tested car air purifiers, but this was going to be a first.
The Airific Car Cabin Filter can be self-installed, if you are confident enough to pop open the glove cabinet or wherever your AC filter is stowed away. I wasn’t. So I got some help getting this done. It was quite easy and I could have managed it myself though. A few minutes later, the new filter was safely installed, and I was staring at the black board that was supposed to be my four-year-old AC filter. Not a pretty site in any sense.
I had a portable air quality monitor in the car to see how this was working. On the first drive, with the windows down, the monitor was clocking over 160 on PM2.5. I really wasn’t expecting the reading to be this bad in March. We NCR residents keep these numbers for Diwali and not Holi.
Anyway, I rolled up the windows and switched on the AC, and drove to a nearby market for some quick shopping. After the seven-minute drive, the reading was 50 and flashing the green signal. A PM2.5 level of under 50 is supposed to be good for humans. From here, I drove back home, a drive of more than 25 minutes. By the time I reached, the reading was 25 and I could sort of feel it in the air.
Over the past week, as the temperature rose in North India, I had been switching on the AC regularly. A few minutes into each drive, the AQI monitor starts showing levels under 50. The longer the drive, the better the air quality. The Airific Car Cabin Filter is priced around Rs 1500, based on the car model and has a shelf life of six months. That, for some, could be a small price to pay for breathing clean air.