The uses and benefits of activated carbon
Activated carbon, sometimes referred to as activated charcoal, is used for a variety of purposes. Activated carbon is highly adsorbent due to the large number of pores found on its surface area. There are several different types of activated carbon that might be right for your needs, depending on what it is you're trying to accomplish.
>> Where can you use activated carbon?
There are a surprising number of activated carbon uses. Its highly adsorbent properties make it ideal for use in filters. The best activated carbon is used in air filters, fish tanks and home water filtration systems. Some types of activated carbon are even used in pool filters, during the welding process and in detailing cars.
It should be noted that the process of adsorption is actually different than absorption. Whereas absorption occurs when atoms physically pass through another object when the two make contact (like water being absorbed by a sponge), adsorption occurs on an object's surface only and involves electrostatic attraction, similar to how magnets work. Activated charcoal actually attracts impurities, such as odors, and causes them to adhere to its surface.
>> How can activated carbon help your fish?
Putting what is essentially highly processed charcoal into your fish tank may be new to you, but the reality is that activated carbon benefits your fish in a variety of ways. The adsorbent qualities of carbon make it possible to clarify the water in your fish tank with incredible proficiency. For example, an aquarium filter cartridge for a large tank keeps the water crystal clear, making for happy fish and a beautiful tank. A fish bowl sponge filter, a similar product, is available for fish bowls so that even the smallest of your aquatic havens look sparkling and fresh at all times. The carbon in various filtration units on the market remove medications, eliminate odors coming from your tank and help to prevent water staining. Activated carbon used in aquarium filters can be found at any fish supply or pet supply store.
>> What are the advantages of activated carbon in other areas of the home?
The most obvious reason to use activated carbon is to filter your drinking water. Use activated carbon in a pitcher-style water filter or in your under-the-sink water filtration system. The use of these kinds of filtering processes results in fresh, clean-tasting water that is free of impurities and foul odors.
If you suffer from severe allergies or asthma, you may find that the best activated carbon use is in a HEPA air filter unit. When used with a HEPA air filtration unit, activated charcoal helps to eliminate the spores, dust and other impurities in the air that may impair your breathing.
You can also buy activated carbon for use in your cat's litter pans, as its odor-adsorbent properties are exceedingly effective at eliminating strong pet smells. To use activated charcoal in this manner, either purchase or make your own filters, and attach them to the side of the cat's litter box or bury them under the litter. Alternately, you can purchase bulk carbon and sprinkle it throughout the litter.
Lastly, activated carbon functions well as an odor eliminator in your refrigerator and at the bottom of trash cans, too. Just as with litter boxes, attach a filter or sachet on, in or near the areas where you'd like to control odors and change them out regularly.
>> Consider the benefits of activated carbon for your pool filter
Activated carbon's size makes it an ideal tool for filtering the water in pools and hot tubs. The best activated carbon design is so porous that bacteria buildup is adsorbed by the carbon, effectively clarifying water and eliminating potentially foul odors. Chlorine effectively combats bacteria and mildew growth, but it has a strong odor that you may find unpleasant. Activated carbon benefits you and your family by reducing that strong odor to something more manageable and home friendly.
>> Consider activated carbon for clothing storage
The size and convenience of activated carbon even makes it possible for use in storing clothes. Whether you're a hiker, nature lover or hunting enthusiast, you can appreciate clothes with low or no odors for two reasons:
- Animals have a more difficult time catching your scent, allowing you to get closer.
- Clothes that are saturated in animal scents for hunting purposes are contained, so their odors stay free of your home.
Activated carbon functions as an odor eliminator when you use it to store your clothing and gear. Boots, pants, parkas and even your coveralls benefit from these two activated carbon advantages. Products are available in several forms, including totes and sealed bags suitable for storing in trunks, closets and water-tight containers.
The types of activated carbon vary greatly, making it possible for you to utilize its unique properties in as many ways as possible. The best activated carbon products provide you with functionality, convenience and a reasonable return on investment. Whether you're choosing to buy activated carbon for your fish's personal haven or as part of the detailing kit for your car, rest assured you've chosen an excellent product for your project.