The 10 Best Air Purifiers

Updated October 05, 2017 by Ezra Glenn

10 Best Air Purifiers
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 41 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. If you are having problems with pet dander, smoke, pollen, or odor in your home, you will be relieved to know that there is a wide range of air purifiers available to help you. Available in a myriad of sizes and capacities with HEPA filters and advanced features like wireless connectivity and UV-C light technology, there is a unit suitable for every need. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best air purifier on Amazon.

10. Honeywell Compact HHT-011

Though the Honeywell Compact HHT-011 works best in rooms measuring less than 85 square feet, it will help reduce overall pollutants in apartments or small homes over time with regular maintenance. It also has a nightlight for soft illumination when you want it.
  • optional ionizer feature
  • cheap plastic construction
  • can be loud at high settings
Brand Honeywell
Model HHT-011
Weight 6.3 pounds
Rating 3.7 / 5.0

9. GermGuardian AC5250PT

The GermGuardian AC5250PT is most effective when placed in medium to large rooms. It features UV-C light technology that helps kill bacteria, viruses, and mold spores, protecting you and your family from possible illness or respiratory issues down the line.
  • pet pure filter reduces dander
  • five speed settings available
  • plastics used are not very durable
Brand Guardian Technologies
Model AC5250PT
Weight 13.7 pounds
Rating 3.7 / 5.0

8. Holmes Desktop HAP242-NUC

The Holmes Desktop HAP242-NUC has a slender design that works vertically or horizontally to best fit your setup. It is a sufficiently powerful choice for the office or dorm room where space is at a premium, and features an optional ionizer function for those who want it.
  • clears up to 99 percent of particles
  • variable speed settings
  • not great for smoke odor reduction
Brand Holmes
Model HAP242-NUC
Weight 5.8 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

7. Honeywell 50250-S

With its true HEPA filter and 360-degree airflow, the Honeywell 50250-S is great for allergy and asthma sufferers. It is powerful enough for rooms nearly 400 square feet in size, yet itself measures just 18 inches in diameter.
  • five-year limited warranty
  • filters can be vacuumed clean
  • very noisy on high
Brand Honeywell
Model 50250-S
Weight 21.9 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

6. O-Ion B-1000

The O-Ion B-1000 is an eco-friendly option with a low 7.5 watts of energy consumption, so it won't jack up your electric bill. It's a compact unit, so don't expect it to work magic on your entire home, but it functions well as a tabletop model for small rooms.
  • no costly filters to replace
  • includes a one-year factory warranty
  • ionizer releases harmful ozone
Brand OION
Model pending
Weight 3.9 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

5. Hamilton Beach 04383A

The compact Hamilton Beach 04383A is most effective in rooms up to 160 square feet, and a great choice for the household on a budget. A HEPA-grade filter keeps airborne allergens at bay, and can be cleaned with almost any vacuum.
  • three ultra-quiet speed settings
  • no replacement filters needed
  • easy to tuck away under furniture
Brand Hamilton Beach
Model 04383A
Weight 6.4 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

4. Airmega 300S

If you need a solution for spaces that are over 1,200 square feet or extremely polluted, the Airmega 300S is your answer. It features timer and speed controls, filter monitoring, and quality reports in its companion app, so you can ensure it's working from anywhere.
  • easy-access controls
  • attractive perforated design
  • five-year limited warranty
Model 111359
Weight 27.7 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

3. GermGuardian AC4825

The GermGuardian AC4825 has a unique three-in-one cleaning system. Its true HEPA filter captures most allergens, including dust and pollen, while its easily replaceable UV-C light and carbon-fiber layer take care of almost everything else.
  • certified energy efficient
  • filter replacement indicator light
  • uv-c technology kills bacteria
Brand Guardian Technologies
Model AC4825
Weight 13 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

2. Winix 5500-2

Suitable for rooms of up to 360 square feet, the Winix 5500-2 promises to eliminate all but the smallest particles from your life. Its PlasmaWave technology acts to remove molecular pollutants as well, and unlike ionizing models does not emit any ozone.
  • silent mode for nighttime operation
  • smart sensors adjust power as needed
  • great for removing smoke odors
Brand Winix
Model 5500-2
Weight 20.2 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

1. Coway AP-1512HH Mighty

The Coway AP-1512HH Mighty will maintain its excellent performance for years to come, making it a worthwhile investment for any home looking to cut down on particulates. And it works quickly, so you'll be breathing easier within a few minutes of plugging it in.
  • washable pre-filter
  • combines carbon and hepa technology
  • three timer settings and auto mode
Brand Coway
Model AP-1512HH
Weight 15.9 pounds
Rating 4.5 / 5.0

How Do Common Air Purifiers Work?

There are many different air purifiers in the modern era. While they all may seem like recent developments; some air purification systems have been around for centuries. The most common name in the realm of air purifiers is the HEPA system. The HEPA system has enjoyed recent popularity, but it was actually developed in World War II. An abbreviation for high efficiency particulate air; HEPA filters were originally designed to remove radioactive waste materials and dust particles from the air to protect soldiers' respiratory systems.

UV light systems are also popular air purification options. Medical grade ultra-violet light can quickly kill bacteria, viruses, and fungal spores as the air circulates through the filter, protecting both the room and the filter itself from mold inoculation and microbial buildup. Another type of air purifier uses electrostatic precipitators which harness an electrical charge to remove particles from the air.

Carbon filtration may be one of the most simple systems, yet its effectiveness is unquestioned. Carbon filtering is the process of pushing air through a bed of activated carbon to remove impurities. Activated carbon is highly absorbent due to its large surface area. It is said that one teaspoon of activated carbon has the surface area of an entire football field. This surface area allows activated carbon to cling to and absorb a large number of contaminants.

The question remains, are air purifiers effective? From a scientific standpoint the answer is a resounding yes. In multiple studies considering the effectiveness of air purifiers in treating patients with allergic rhinitis and asthma, research suggests that purifiers successfully reduce allergic respiratory symptoms to various degrees. Patients with allergies in the fall or winter months and/or perennial allergic rhinitis were the most commonly studied. In rooms with active air purifiers, there was a seventy percent reduction in airborne particulates on average. The absence of respiratory infection coupled with patients' suggestive responses showed a high degree of effectiveness using air purifiers.

Is It Possible To Treat Allergies With Your Diet?

While air purifiers are a must have for anyone suffering from allergies, asthma, or seasonal rhinitis, many look to supplement this treatment through their dietary intake. The possibility of dietary influences to respiratory conditions cannot be overlooked, Many of the aggravating factors of these conditions exist within various foods. Can a simple change of diet help ameliorate symptoms of allergies and asthma?

Recent published studies have indicated that probiotics may be a successful secondary treatment to allergies. Beneficial bacterial strains include Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium longum, which traditionally inhabit the human digestive system. Largely due to over-processed dietary intake, pasteurization, and antibiotics, the presence of these beneficial microbes in the average human is dwindling.

The ingested live microbes can modify the composition of the intestinal flora in a way that benefits the host. Reintroduction of these bacterial strains through probiotic supplementation shows many benefits, such as properly equipping the body's immune system to reduce allergic reactions and asthmatic symptoms.

The clinical benefit of probiotics depends upon numerous factors including the type of bacteria, dosing, delivery method, and the age and overall diet of the host. For instance, a host eating a western pattern diet will find much less benefit than one who eats a well balanced diet comprised of unprocessed foods.

Why Is There A Need For Air Purifiers?

The prevalence of respiratory disorders such as allergic rhinitis and asthma continually increase worldwide. The World Health Organization estimates over 700 million people are affected by these respiratory illnesses.

As up to ten percent of the world's population is affected by allergic rhinitis, it the most common form of non-infectious rhinitis globally. Allergic rhinitis is, by simple definition, the presence of nasal congestion, sneezing, itching, and inflamed nasal mucosa. The severity of allergic rhinitis differs in patients, ranging from mild to near debilitating levels. Asthma is a condition marked by spasms in the bronchi of the lungs, which causes breathing difficulties. Asthma is usually connected to an allergic reaction to airborne pollutants or hypersensitivity to particles in the air.

Allergies or asthma can have a severe impact on a patient's quality of life. The symptoms can impact relationships, work life, physical function, mental cognition, and psychological feelings of wellness. Secondary disorders caused by allergies and asthma include sleeping disorders, learning and attention impairment, mouth breathing and associated dental malocclusion, and increased risk of upper respiratory infection. As the severity and complexity of respiratory diseases continues to grow, patients and health practitioners alike look for effective solutions.

Now more than ever, patients have the ability to reduce their symptoms by reducing airborne irritants with an air purifier. Allergens such as bacteria, viruses, fungal and mold spores, pet dander, pollen, and chemical pollutants can take a toll on anyone's respiratory system, not just those with allergies. As most of these pollutants are not seen by the naked eye or absorbed by anything around the home, the best way to remove these potentially harmful substances is through the use of an air purifier.

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Last updated on October 05, 2017 by Ezra Glenn

Ezra is a writer, photographer, creative producer, designer, and record label-operator from New York City. He's traveled around the world and ended up back where he started, though he's constantly threatening to leave again.

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