What Is Ozone Air Pollution?
Ozone is a potent lung irritant and exposure to elevated levels is a contributor to the exacerbation of lung disease; it is especially dangerous for persons with asthma and other chronic lung diseases, children
, and the elderly. Residential indoor ozone is produced directly by ozone generators and indirectly by ion generators and some other electronic air cleaners. There is no difference, despite some manufacturers' claims, between outdoor ozone and ozone produced by these devices.
The Federal Trade
Commission (FTC) took action in 1995 against two manufacturers of ozone generating devices. The FTC charged that they made unsubstantiated claims about the ability of their products to clean air of various indoor air pollutants and to prevent or relieve allergies, asthma and other conditions. Under the FTC's settlement, the manufacturers are prohibited from making marketing
claims that ozone is effective in cleaning
indoor air, that their products do not create harmful by-products, and that they prevent or provide relief from allergies, asthma, and other specified conditions, unless the claims are supported by reliable and adequate substantiation (FTC, 1995).
(1992), the National Institute of Occupational Safety
(NIOSH) (Boeniger, 1995), and the U.S. EPA (1995) concluded that tabletop and room unit ozone generators are not effective in improving indoor air quality. Studies have found that while some indoor air pollutant concentrations decline in the presence of ozone, other pollutants increase. In fact, upon reaction with ozone, some previously undetected, toxic chemicals emerge in indoor air, including formaldehyde and other alehydes (Boeniger, 1995). There is a lack of evidence in the scientific literature that would support the effectiveness of ozone at low concentrations in removing organic contaminants from indoor air (Boeniger, 1995). A recent study by the U.S. EPA demonstrates that ozone is not effective for killing airborne molds and fungi even at high concentrations (6-9 ppm) (U.S. EPA, 1995). At higher concentrations, especially above 0.08 ppm, ozone is a potent irritant that can bring about diminished lung function, cough, inflammation associated with biochemical changes, and increased responsiveness to allergens (Horstman, et al., 1990). Current
evidence of the health
effects of ozone suggests that there is no "safe" threshold concentration for the onset of health responses due to exposure above background ozone concentrations (Burnett, et al., 1994; U.S. EPA CASAC letter, 1995). Also, simultaneous exposure to ozone and other compounds may produce additive or synergistic effects (Last, et al., 1984; Peden, et al., 1995). In addition, persons with asthma have increased susceptibility to ozone and exposure to low concentrations results in increased symptoms, medications use and hospitalizations.
The FDA has set a limit of 0.05 ppm of ozone for medical
devices. A small percentage of cleaners that claim a health benefit are listed by the FDA and these devices conform to FDA regulations
. However, ozone generators, negative ion generators, and certain other electronic air cleaners that are not listed by the FDA, or cannot otherwise prove that their ozone emission levels are lower than 0.05 ppm, may produce levels of ozone recognized as unsafe for humans and are not recommended for use in occupied spaces because of the risk of generation of ozone. For similar reasons, the American Lung Association®
does not suggest the use of these products.
Also is this site http://www.epa.gov/iaq/pubs/ozonegen.html
Much of these studies were done more than 10 years ago, but Ozone is Ozone and if you read it through you may come to the conclusion that maybe this isn't the way to go and thorough cleaning
is as has been noted in previous posts here.