The "studies" touted by RGF are either anecdotal or psuedo-science. They are not clinical trials. A clinical trial would be a double-blind study using real people to determine if the product had any health benefits.
It is interesting that none of the studies in the RGF literature or website test their units in real life environments. Assumptions made about the effectiveness of the devices used in actual HVAC systems are invalid when based on tests run in chambers.
It is frustrating for me to see this misuse of science and the lack of critical thinking of those who continue to sell this product.
PHI is great
Breathe easy...sorry to hear about your frustration level. My clinnical trials in a real life enviroment is over 3 years installed successfully in my home with 2 kids and a dog. We are very happy with the results this provides. I have also done air quality tests using the Air Advice monitors and I am quite satisfied with the readings from that 7 day data collection. To each their own I guess.
I have learned over the years that if "it" works for someone - it works for that person or family. That holds true for whole house air cleaners, duct cleaning, supplements, bee pollen or whatever. My advice is always - if it works for you keep using it. (as long as it is not harmful to ones health)
However, if you sell a product to install in someone else's home, you have to meet a higher standard. You should have the evidence that it works. I have seen no study provided by RGF that their products work in a home environment. Studies that show results in chambers are not relevant to the installations of these devices in an HVAC system.
Also, since claims are being made on "killing" something in the air, one must also have good studies to show that this device will not have a detrimental effect on humans. Frankly, the logic of assuming that the chemicals emitted by the device will only destroy "bad" elements escapes me. How can you be sure of this? It seems that the most vulnerable people with the worst respiratory problems would be the most likely to be harmed. Oftentimes, these are the very people that these devices are purchased and installed for.
Exactly. I think that the "logic" is that once you're invested in a product like this, you want it to be true for others, especially if you make money with it. It's like religious wishful thinking. Arguing with religious people is a waste of time, except when it helps others avoid getting hurt by them.
Originally Posted by breathe easy
-If you won't turn it on then nothing else matters.
I have a Guardian Air Cell in my house for one and a half years.
During this time the equipment was replaced 3 times, so, this is my 4th cell.
Looks like is breaking every ~5 months. Could be less than that, not sure, as I don't keep looking every day if the equipment is working or not.
As this is breaking very often, I'm not sure if I'm getting the benefits of it. Can be that I'm using it for 4 months and the cell is broken for 2 months before I notice.
I'm glad this equipment have 3 years warranty, but, at the same time, when the warranty go off you are in your own. Based on my experience as customer, the cell will break few months after the 3 years (if they don't fix this issue before that). So, when you buy this you are buying an equipment for only 3 years of lifetime.
Unfortunatelly I didn't knew about it when I got it.
I stopped selling them after I had to go back to everyone we ever installed and change them out 2-3 times (just as you have) I will never sell them again in my lifetime..
Funny thing is this I put this post up (11-20-2006, 04:03 PM ) 4 plus years ago exploring the idea of using them and we did use them I wish i saw the headache that was to come with everyone....
Just as a complement to my previous post...
Like I said on my previous message, I'm using the product for 1 1/2 years.
I have 3 kids that go to elementary school, we used to get sick time to time as they spread that to everyone in the house. After install the PHI we noticed that we don't get sick as we used to be as the sickness does not spread to everyone.
It is bad that the product is failing a lot in my home, otherwise I will be very happy with it. Looks like it is doing what is supposed to do (except breaking every 5 months).
The PHI had nothing to do with having fewer colds in your family!
The idea that a device in the supply side of your HVAC system will have any effect on your health is ludicrous. The information on the device is based on studies done in a chamber the size of your oven.
Here is an analogy. Let's bake a cake. You mix up the ingredients, pour them into the pan and bake it in the oven for 60 minutes at 400 degrees. Add a little frosting and Voila. Tasty cake.
Now let's take the same ingredients and pour them into the pan. But this time instead of placing the pan in the oven, we will place it in the next room. We turn the oven on to 400 degrees, keep the door open and one hour later we have? . . . a warmer kitchen. No cake.
Moral - no cake unless you bake it in the oven! (and no killing of anything unless you have exactly the same conditions as the tests!)
Jim-HVAC...great product. There are other great products as well, but I have a lot of experience with this one and very happy with the results. The ozone can be easily controlled through the nm transmission rate on the broad spectrum UV light...simple as that.
The problem with using these types of devices is that they are depending on indoor air chemistry to produce a desired result. If the product works on things like mold, bacteria or viruses, it will also attack human tissues and cells. Furthermore, the chemical reactions that take place are not predictable or complete. Therefore, instead of creating innocent byproducts like CO2 and water, they create an array of undesirable byproducts like formaldehyde and ultrafine particles.
There is a well developed body of research into chemical reactions of indoor VOC's and ozone. Virtually any double bond organic molecule will react with ozone to create ultrafine particles (less than one micron in size). These particles have been shown to lead to cell damage and inflammation in humans. These are also the most easily respirable particle size and go deep into the lungs.
The most common double bond organic molecules are terpenes (a class of chemicals that provides the scent in most products such as lemon, pine, orange, lime, etc.) and environmental tobacco smoke. Perfumes, incense, air fresheners, cologne, shampoo, furniture polish, baby wipes and many more common household products contain terpenes and other double bond organic molecules. When combined with ozone they all lead to a chemical soup of bad indoor air.
I have done the experiments myself with ozone and terpenes many times. In fact, this article explains many that I did with an ionizer called the Ionic Breeze.
Ozone is one of a group of unstable, highly reactive molecules called "Reactive Oxygen Species" ROS. If you want a sobering mass of information go to Google and type in: "Reactive oxygen species health effects." You will get thousands of hits and find that ROS are responsible for a host of diseases including cancer, heart attacks, asthma attacks and much more. In any event, the PHI product and all of these other in-duct "air cleaners" work on the principle of Photocatalytic Oxidation (PCO). They expose UV light to a catalyst and produce another ROS called a Hydroxyl Radical (OH). Hydroxyl Radicals differ from ozone in that they are difficult to measure.
So last week I decided to do another experiment. This time I used one of the most popular in-duct PCO devices that I purchased on the open market. I "mounted" it on a box, plugged it in and placed it in a 120 sq. ft. room. I also placed a 100 ml bowl of Pine Sol (a terpene) in the room. The starting particle count in the room was 1,600,000 particles of 0.3 microns and above per cubic foot. The ozone level in the room was 10ppb. Within two hours the particle count had risen to 9,999,999 particles of 0.3 microns and above per cubic foot. To put this in some perspective the worst outdoor particle count that I ever recorded is 6,600,000. This was on a Red Alert smog day just 600 feet from a major 6-lane highway.
But here is the really interesting part. The ozone level did not exceed 10ppb. In other words, this massive increase in particles was the result of a terpene/hydroxyl radical reaction.
What this shows is that it is not just ozone that is the culprit in the indoor air chemistry problem, it is also the Hydroxyl Radical and, most probably, other ROS's as well.
The bottom line is that instead of producing better quality indoor air, these devices can actually generate particles and add to indoor air pollution.
I don't believe that HVAC contractors that are selling these devices are aware of these potential indoor air chemistry problems. This may be a case where both seller and buyer beware.
I have an air knight / phi unit. It produces .02 ppm of ozone...a simple negligible amount of ozone due to the simple fact that it is an electrical device. Just a refrigerator your tv. Putting ozone units and pco devices in1 bucket is not the right way to view these items.
Both FEMA and Kansas state university have done studies on the phi technology on it's ability to reduce voc's and both found dramatic reduction capabilities. So your statement on producing voc Seems inaccurate.
Pco units have been proven to shed particulate in the air, but a phi unit is different than a phi device. My phi unit has been in my. Home for over3 years now. Very happy with it. My kids are healthy...I am healthy, my dog is healthy. The air advice test I ran in my home also showed a reduction in voc's in my home after the phi unit was installed.
For everyone reading please visit rgf.com and from there you can see the different test results from independent labs and universities.
First, as I stated I did not find a high level of ozone in the test room. In fact, my results would be about the same as yours. The problem is that ozone is just one of a number of Reactive Oxygen Species that can produce these reactions. All of these molecules have a common characteristic - they are unstable which is why they create chemical reactions in the first place. The most common molecule produced when you expose UV light to a catalyst is OH or the Hydroxyl Radical. The interesting thing about the tests is that ozone was low but the undesirable byproducts were produced anyway - undoubtedly by the reaction with the VOC and the other ROS's produced by the device.
Secondly, I did not say that the PHI device would not reduce VOC's. In fact, it will. But the point is that the reactions often produce unintended and potentially dangerous byproducts.
I went to the RGF site. It is interesting to note that in the section on test results they show a reduction in VOC's (not tested by either FEMA or KSU by the way). The reduction is 29% for Toluene, 13% for Methyl Ethyl Ketone and 98% for D-limonene. D-limonene is a common terpene. Sure you reduce the VOC's, but in this case you would max out the particle counter at 9,999,999 particles of 0.3 microns or greater per cubic foot.
The tests I performed are not Voodoo science. Anybody with a particle counter, an induct PCO device and a terpene source would obtain the same results. In fact, I repeated the tests three times with the same outcome.