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Air purifiers can help filter allergens, pollutants, and irritants out of the air and improve air quality in the home or workspace. Air purifiers often use a filter, electrostatic, or UV light-emitting technology to remove particles from the air.
Air purifiers help remove particles from indoor air. The particles they can remove include:
Air filters are typically effective in a single room or area of the house. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states that, although air purifiers can reduce indoor air pollution, they cannot remove all the particles from the air.
Air purifiers can help improve the quality of the air. There are three types of filters available:
- Filtered air purifiers: Capture pollutants in the air and trap them in a filter cartridge.
- Electrostatic air purifiers: Create charged particles and then use the charge to attract and trap the particle in the filter.
- UV light-emitting air purifiers: These devices use UV light to neutralize certain pollutants, such as bacteria and viruses.
The EPA says that an air purifier should come with a clean air delivery rate (CADR) — a higher rate indicate the purifier’s ability to filter larger areas or rooms.
Other health experts state that electric air purifiers, such as electrostatic and UV light-emitting purifiers, create ozone gas. In addition to these types, ionizers and hydroxyl generators also produce ozone gas. The specialists warn that these types of filters can create potentially hazardous indoor air pollution.
The Environmental Working Group states that people should use a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter to prevent air filters from emitting ozone.
Air purifiers can reduce harmful particles, such as allergens and certain gases, indoors. The EPA states that a person should look for the following types of filters based on their needs. For example, to help remove allergens and larger particles, individuals should look for a purifier with a (HEPA) filter. And to reduce gases or fine particles, such as smoke, people should look for an activated carbon filter.
In a 2021 review of studies, researchers looked at scientific evidence related to the effectiveness of air purifiers. They found limited evidence on the efficacy of air purifiers, with the investigated studies suggesting that portable air purifiers improved indoor air quality by between 22.6 and 92%.
Additionally, some of the research in this review found that air purifiers improved blood pressure, respiration, and pregnancy outcomes. However, the scientists note that the studies they examined showed inconsistent findings.
When purchasing an air purifier, people may wish to consider the following factors:
- Type: Filtered air purifiers trap pollutants in a filter cartridge, while electrostatic purifiers use a charge to trap particles in a filter. UV light-emitting purifiers neutralize pollutants using UV light.
- CADR: People may wish to look for a higher CADR when purchasing a purifier, as high-CADR devices can filter larger areas.
- Cost: Individuals can find air purifiers to suit most budgets.
- Lifestyle: Some air purifiers reportedly claim to remove pet dander from the air. People may wish to consider buying a device that manufacturers state is suitable for homes with pets.
- Conditions: Some air purifiers claim they are more suitable for people with allergies or asthma.
- Warranty: A person may wish to purchase a device that comes with a warranty.
- Safety: People with children may wish to buy an air purifier with child safety features.
The following are some air purifiers that that can help filter pollutants and allergens from the air.
Please note, the writer has not tested these products. All information is research-based.
MEDIFY Air offers a three-stage filter that captures large, medium, and small particles. The filters include:
- a large filter for catching dust and pet hair
- a HEPA filter for catching particles such as pet dander and pollen
- an activated carbon filter that captures odors and other gases
The purifier has a CADR of 330, meaning it can filter the air in a medium-large area. People can also turn the product’s ionizer on and off as they wish.
The MEDIFY Air MA-40 also has the following features:
- easy filter changes
- child safety functions
- a four-speed selection
- an auto shut-off
The company offers a lifetime warranty and service if a person changes the filters every 3,000 hours or every 6 months with MEDIFY filters.
The Mila uses certified HEPA filtration and activated carbon to clean air. The company says this purifier has a CADR of 477 per hour and can filter the air in a room within 30 minutes.
The Mila automatically activates and filters the air using eight sensors. This filter can help with smoke, allergens, bacteria, viruses, and other small particles.
Mila offers a 1-year limited warranty for manufacturing defects.
The Oransi Max Air Purifier uses a HEPA filter and active carbon to remove allergens, viruses, and other particles and some odors from the air.
The company states that this purifier is suitable for smaller spaces such as bedrooms and offices. The machine is also lightweight and portable, removes mild smoke odors, and has a CADR of 217.
Oransi also offers a 60-day return policy and a 10-year warranty on all products.
The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America certifies this purifier as suitable for people with asthma and allergies. This device can filter up rooms of up to 1,070 square feet (sq ft) with a CADR of up to 316.
RabbitAir states that this device is very quiet with long-lasting filters. The purifier can remove particles 0.3 microns in size at 99.7% efficiency and particles less than 0.1 microns in size at 99% efficiency.
The device also features five layers that can capture particles such as dust mites, mold, fungi, and pollen. People can choose from a variety of customer filters when ordering the A3.
Additionally, RabbitAir offers a 5-year warranty and year-round technical support.
This air purifier has a HEPA filter and can filter the air in a 700 square foot room within 30 minutes. Alen offers a subscription service for their filters, where the company sends a new filter every 9 months for a reduced price.
The company states that each filter can last 12 months with 24-hour use and has a CADR of 225.
Alen offers a lifetime warranty on the BreatheSmart FLEX True Hepa Air Purifier if a person registers the product and signs up for a filter subscription.
Air filters cannot stop the root cause of air pollutants in the home. For example, some air filters may help remove the smell of mold, but they will not eliminate the problem. Individuals will need to remove the source of the pollutants and improve air quality.
The EPA suggests taking the following steps to improve air quality:
- removing the source of the gas or particle
- changing filters on air conditioning and heating units frequently
- using air purifiers rated for the size of the room and specific pollutants
Air purifiers can help filter the air and remove allergens and pollutants. HEPA filters and activated carbon are suitable options for eliminating allergens and gases from the air. People should also consider the length of warranty and CADR a manufacturer offers.