Home is a place of our greatest peace and the most relaxing place after a hectic day. But have you ever consider checking the indoor air quality level of your home? At least to know exactly what you’re inhaling into your body system.
In this article, Ultimate Guide to Buying Air Purifier of 2020, we will walk you down to the best air purifiers for different health issues in the market, why you need air purifiers and should invest in them, benefits of using them etc.
The quality of air outdoors varies depending on emissions from industries nearby, traffic exhaust and local regulations. But do you know that according to U.S Environmental Protection Agency that the air quality indoor can be two to five times more polluted than the air outside?
Many a times the indoor air we thought is pure air is not at all any pure. They contain tiny microbes sized items that can cause you numerous health issues like pet dander, hair, odor, combustion products, mold, pollen, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), lead dust, asbestos, dust mites feces etc.
Exposure to various components such as VOCs increases the likelihood of experiencing symptoms of sick building syndrome.
You May Look at this Top Rated Air Purifiers
|IQAir MultiGas Purifier Medical Grade HyperHEPA||Best for all types of allergiens.||View Now|
|Rabbit MinusA2 Ultra Quiet Air Purifier||Best for asthma||View Now|
|Austin Air Purifier HealthMate + Plus Superblend Filter||Best for smoke & odors||View Now|
|Winix Hr900 Ultimate Pet air Purifier||Best for pet dander,hair, odor and pet allerens.||View Now|
|Germ Guardian Air Purifier.||Best for dust mite, mold and mildew,||View Now|
Indoor air may also contain gaseous chemicals and particulate matter smaller than 2.5microns (PM2.5), according to the European Commission Scientific Committee on health and Environmental Risks, breaking tiny, unseen pollutants puts you at risk. These pollutants pass through your body and staying there.
However, studies have shown that breathing clean air can contribute to your health and well-being. WHO states that by breathing cleaner air, you can reduce the risk of stroke, heart diseases, lung cancer and respiratory diseases such as asthma.
Thank goodness for modern technology, nowadays it is very possible to inhale cleaner indoor air by simply turning on your air purifier to clean all pollutants that may harm you and your children out of the air.
Thus the purpose of this long post to guide you on what air purifier is, what it does and how you can benefit from getting one for yourself and family.
Kindly forgive me for making this post, a long one indeed but this is exactly what you need to before acquiring one of the air purifiers out there. But feel free to jump to any section that’s important to you with table of contents.
What Is Air Purifier?
Air Purifier, is knows as air cleaner is a device that removes contaminants from the air in the room to improve indoor air quality. It is mostly beneficial to people suffering from allergens and asthma.
Air purifiers also help in eliminating second-hand tobacco smoke. Aside using air purifier at home or offices, they can also be used in the industries to remove impurities from air before processing.
What Do Air Purifier Do? (Uses)
Air purifier helps to capture air pollutant that contaminate the indoor air quality you inhale into your lungs like pet dander, pollen, dust mite VOCs, gases, ash, tobacco smoke, unpleasant odors etc. that may cause you and your household ill health.
By removing particles from the air, these contaminants don’t have the opportunity to get inside your lungs as you breath. The less bad particles you inhale, the healthier you stay.
How Do Air Purifiers Work?
Air purifier does a good cleaning job by sucking in all the poor quality indoor air into the air purifier, then this dirty air is made to pass through various filters incorporated in the air purifier, which after the purification of air inside the air filters, the purified air is pumped out into the room.
The air purifier keeps repeating this processes to keep the indoor air clean and well circulated in the room.
Of which when the filter is over saturated with this air pollutant, you either remove the filters and replace them with new one or you vacuum them and replace them back. But it all depends on the brand you purchased.
Let’s look at various stages air purification goes through before coming out clean:
Stage 1: Pre Filter
This is the first stage of all air purifiers no matter he type you bought. As soon as the air purifier encounters contaminated air in the room as its first line of defense it captures bigger particles like dust, animal hair, mold, pollen, dust mites from the polluted air.
It also reduces the pressure on the filters behind, thus increasing their efficiency.
Stage 2: Customize Filter
At this second stage, the purifier captures and cleans the air of yellow dust, NOx, pollen, SOx, bacteria, pet allergens, exhaust fumes, mold, Influenza, legionella and VOCs. It is called filters of different needs.
Stage 3: Deodorization Filter
Air purifier manufacturers have actually conquered the warning Environmental Agencies to consumers that air purifiers are not effective at capturing gases and volatile organic compounds by making air purifiers with deodorized filter.
This filter traps and cleans the air of gases and VOCs, Noxious gas, smell of foods, smell of animal, smell of cigarette, H2S and odors.
Stage 4: HEPA Filter
HEPA filter is the core technology of air of all air purifiers. They are best powerful filters made form minuscule glass fibers.
These fibers are then tightly woven to trap 99.97% of the air pollutants with size of 0.3microns or more. As many times as the air passes HEPA filters, the cleaner the air becomes.
HEPA filters clean the air of particles such as mold, pet dander, fine dust, cigarette fumes, dust particles, dust mites, smoke, pollen and allergies.
Stage 5: Activated Carbon Filter
The main work of this particular filter is trap and eliminate odors, formaldehyde, chemicals, smoke, VOCs, cooking odors, household odors, tobacco smoke etc.
These are the five stages of air purification passes through before coming out cleaner but note that not all air purifiers in the market have this five stages, No. Some air purifiers are three stage filters, some are four stage filters while some are five stage filters depending on type and work it meant to do.
Bottom line: The effectiveness of your air purifier depends on the number and types of type of filters it is constructed with. The basic air purifier in the market has 3stages filter, which are pre filter, True HEPA (HEPA Type or HEPA like) and activated carbon filter.
Air Purifiers labeled HEPA type or HEPA like are not as effective as True HEPA filters. Bear this in mind.
Why Do You Need Air Purifier?
There are so many reasons why you need at least one air purifier in your home. Let’s look at these statistics:
- Indoor air pollution is the 8th most important risk factor for diseases and is responsible for an estimated 2.7% of the global burden of all diseases.
- Between 1.5million and 2million deaths a year could be linked to indoor air pollution
- Around 50% of the world population (about 3 billion people) is exposed to indoor air pollution from open fires and wood burning cooking stoves.
- In USA, between 2,100 and 2,900 cases of lung cancer in non smokers are linked to radon exposure.
- Radon is the second biggest factor of lung cancer.
- Dampness and mold increases risk of asthma related problems by 30 to 50 percent
Our handy guide to the best air purifier with humidifier features more great products like this.
Should You Really Get Air Purifier?
Air Purifier is a greatest device that helps to promote better health. But if you ask me this question in person I would say Yes and No with the reasons below but the choice is yours:
Yes, you need air purifier if you:
- You’re like other 50 million Americans that suffer from allergies or have asthma. You will notice a big difference once you start using air purifier even your use of inhaler will reduce drastically.
- You always get sick or have someone in your home that get sick often or prone to infection.
- You have little children in your home because pollution harms their health more and very fast due to their tender lungs.
- You have a furry pet so as to get rid of their hair roaming in your air.
- You have a car.
- You smoke, leaves with someone that smokes or have chain smokers as neighbors.
- Lastly you need an air purifier to ensure that you stay free form airborne toxins and stay as healthy as possible.
But No, you don’t need air purifier if you:
- Non of the above cases is you because you may not notice the different if you’re always healthy.
What Are Benefits Of Air Purifiers?
1. Air purifier helps you and your household to breathe easier and clean.
2. It reduces cooking odors, harmful gases and unpleasant fumes, thus giving you cleaner air while cooking.
3. It helps you sleep well without disturbance by cleaning your room air of dust, mold and dander that may trigger stuff nose, sneezing, congestion and sinus headache.
4. It works to remove airborne pollen, help you breath easier.
5. It helps people with breathing problems like asthma and COPD or other respiratory conditions to breath in clean air and using less of their inhaler.
6. For pet owners, it helps to clean pet hair, dander and odors out of the air, further reducing the stress of vacuuming everyday.
7. Whether you have seasonal or all year around allergies, air purifier helps your allergy problems by capturing and removing the allergies from the air you breath in before they have chance to irritate your lungs or eyes.
8. It reduces unwanted odors around your home.
9. It reduces virus-carrying particulate in the air.
10. It helps you get better skin by reducing skin rashes, dryness or dullness.
11. It eliminates air borne allergens.
12. It reduces harmful gases and volatile organic compounds in the air.
13. Air purifiers with Ultraviolet Germicide Irritants (UVGI) eliminate viruses, bacteria and germs from the air that can lead to additional health problems.
14. It help to protect babies and pregnant women from breathing harmful air pollutants.
In general, air pollutants are mostly PM10, PM2.5 and other smaller particles. Pre filter helps to remove PM10 of the air, HEPA filter helps to remove PM2.5 and other smaller particles, UVGI filter helps to capture bacteria, viruses and germs out of the air and activated carbon filter eliminates odor.
Top 5 Best Air Purifiers of 2020
Though there are many air purifier brands in the market to select from, just know that not all air purifiers live up the claim made by the manufacturers.
Just to make your easier, we have shortlisted below the best air purifiers that will actually solve your needs. They have been tested and proved.
1. Best For Allergens: IQAir MultiGas Purifier Medical Grade HyperHEPA
If you need a powerful air purifier that will removes most microscopic allergens out of your air, this device does it better than any purifier in the market.
Because the air purifier was made with medical grade HyperHEPA filter that captures particles that are 100x smaller than a standard true HEPA filter and False (HEPA Type or HEPA like). IQAir purifier captures pollutants in the air up to 0.0003microns to be exact unlike True HEPA that captures only 0.3microns and HEPA type captures 1 microns.
So this feature made IQAir Purifier outstanding from every other air purifiers out there. It also has a special V5 cell odor and gas filter that extract harmful chemicals and gases from the air that also triggers allergies and do harm to your health.
It exchanges the full make it perfect for largest apartment and the air purifier for long term performance.
After using this air purifier, you will never want to use another. It weighs 29 pounds.
2. Best For Asthma: Rabbit MinusA2 Ultra Quiet Air Purifier
Do you have asthma? Or You’re leaving with asthmatic patient? Amidst all the air purifier in the market, this is the best air purifier for though our #1 brand can also do the job well.
This unit has been verified and certified to control asthma and allergy that triggers it by the Asthma and Allergy foundation of America.
And to give you that confidence that this air purifier worth your money, the manufacturer’s had gone ahead to offer you 5-year warranty (parts and labor) and 24/7 technical support if you get one today.
You will see tremendous change using this air purifier because it uses special 6 stage air cleaning process that strips the air from all types of asthma inducing toxins.
To crown it all, the unit is Energy Star Certified, meaning that it will cost little to run it and can purify up to 815sq.ft area. You also have additional layer of protection to this air purifier by choosing between a set of four customized filters.
- Germ Defense
- Toxin absorber
- Odor neutralizer
- Pet allergy reducer
3. Best For Smoke & Odors: Austin Air Purifier HealthMate + Plus Superblend Filter
Do you smoke? Or have someone that smokes leaving with you? Or you have chain smokers as neighbors? Do not worry Austin air purifier gets you covered.
Your health is very important because studies has shown that passive smoking can increase the risk of nasal sinus cancer, throat cancer, larynx cancer, breast cancer, long and short term respiratory symptoms, loss of lung function etc.
This is the reason why you should keep the air inhale into your system cleaner. With Austin air purifier, you’re covered. It is the best air purifier for Cigarette smoke and Cigar odors.
It is ultimate protection for people with chemical sensitivity. It is design for the toughest air contamination conditions, effective in capturing and removing smoke, odor and VOCs out of the air up to 1500sq.ft.
4. Best For Pet Dander, Hair & Odor: Winix Hr900 Ultimate Pet air Purifier
The Winix Hr900 Ultimate Pet air Purifier is specially designed and built for pet owners and those with pet allergies. It is the best in the market, you can’t regret buying it.
This unit use five stage air purification systems, which includes ultimate pet filter, washable pre filter, advanced odor control (AOCTM) carbon filter, True HEPA filter and Winix plasmawave technology to capture, remove and clean all pet and other household odors and allergies (pet dander, hair and odor). It is extremely quiet.
Energy Star and AHAM certified. It cleans up 300sq.ft.
5. Best For Dust, Mold & Mildew: Germ Guardian Air Purifier
This unit is best for you if you’re on a tight budget and looking for affordable air purifier that will remove dust, dust mite, mold and mildew of the air for you to inhale cleaner, Germ Guardian portable air purifier can do it for you.
It uses three stage filter systems, which includes True HEPA filter, UV-c Filter and activated carbon filter to remove pollutants in the air including bacteria, viruses, germs, dust mite and mode spores.
As if that is not enough, the beautiful unit is Energy Star that means you spend little running it and AHAM Certified meaning that the air purifier has been tested independently for its ability to remove tobacco, dust and pollen up to 167sq.ft.
Things To Consider While Buying Air Purifier
Buy air purifiers that are designed to operate in a space that is 20 to 40% larger than your room for optimal performance.
For example, if your room size is 224sq.ft then you should buy air purifier, which has 20% to 40% more coverage area of 300sq.ft.
Buy air purifiers with True HEPA filter and Carbon filter. They are good at capturing about 99.97% air pollutants measuring 0.3microns diameter like dust, dander, pollen, mold and other common allergies at home while Activated carbon filter unpleasant odors and harmful gases.
But in case you are on a tight budget, you buy air purifier with either one of the filters depending on your need but you will not get a satisfactory performance. Get HEPA filter air purifier if you want only clean air or buy carbon filter air purifier if you have specific allergies.
Cleaning Air Delivery Rate (CADR)
This is a rating that shows how faster and air purifier can clean the air. The higher the number of CADR the better and faster it cleans the air. Buy air purifiers with 300 and above number of CADR.
Know Your Budget and Needs?
Customers are advice to get an air purifier that has True HEPA filter and carbon filter for maximum performance though it may be costly but it worth it to give you value for money. However when in tight budget, you can purchase as follows:
- If you need odor, gas and allergies elimination – buy True HEPA filter with carbon odor elimination filter. This type can remove pet dander, odor, hair, ragweed pollen, grass pollen, household dust, mold spores, dust mites debris, tree pollen and smoke out of the air.
- If your need is to remove dust and general cleaner air – buy HEPA type filtration electrostatic/ collector plates air purifier. This can remove pet dander, odor, smoke and household dust.
- If your need is to remove and eliminate bacteria and other germs – buy air purifier with UGVI technology. It removes bacteria, viruses and germs out of the air you’re breathing.
Cost Of Replacement Filter
Buying an air purifier requires a maintenance cost because the initial cost of purchase is not only the money you will spend. For you to get the best out of your air purifier, HEPA filter requires you changing them every 6 to 12 months depending on the brand you have and carbon filter requires you to change them every 3 months.
But some air purifiers does not need filter replace rather you vacuum them and replace them back.So if yours requires replacement, be ready for it. Air purifier replacement can cost within $12 to $200.
It is very necessary that you understand the monthly energy consumption your air new acquired air purifier to ensure that you will be able to foot the bill. This is how to calculate monthly energy cost of your air purifier.
Look for air purifiers with Energy Star Certification, it simply means that they energy certified and can run around the clock efficient consuming little electricity. Energy Star certified purifiers are 40% more energy efficient than standard models.
Secondly, look out AHAM Verified Seal. AHAM stands for Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers Certification program. They provide Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) and room size guideline on the seal and was approved.
Air purifier should not be too noise. Most of them are too noise when set on highest. So you can buy one that is large than your room, they are effective when you run them on low and there will be no noise.
Better still. Whichever you buy, you can set to run them on high when not around and run them on low when you’re in.
Some Terminologies To Keep In Mind
CADR (Clean Air Delivery Rate)
It means how efficient an air purifier can clean a room. A CADR of 300/hour means that the air purifier can clean all particles in 300m3 in an hour. Note that the high the CADR number, the better the air more it filters per hour for that particle size.
If your challenge is smoke, choose the air purifier that has CADR for smoke and vise visa.
CFM (Cubic Feet Per Minute)
It gives you information on the efficiency of the air purifier. Example 200 CFM means the purifier can remove 200 cubic feet of air per minute.
ACH (Air Change Per Hour)
This rating tells you how many times the air purifier can exchange the air within a room with clean, fresh air every hour. The higher the number, the more efficient the device is at purifying the air inside a room.
The rating certifies that this device is energy efficient.
AHAM (Association of Home Appliances)
The rating means that the particular has been to clean up to the square feet area mention by manufacturer and the devices is effective at the job it was built for.
How Does It Cost To Run An Air Purifier?
Air Purifier are related differently depending on their sizes and square feet area of coverage. So before you buy check out the descriptive section to know wattage of the purifier, you’re buying. The higher the wattage of the air purifier, the higher the energy cost.
How To Calculate An Air Purifier Energy Cost?
Before you do this calculation, find out the rate of electricity charge per kilowatt-hour of your state so as to get the real cost because it differs from state to state. For the sake of this article we will assume 0.80 cents to be our electricity charge per KWh.
- Know the wattage of air purifier you want to buy.
- Know the number of hours you want to run it.
- Calculate the total wattage consumption per day.
- Convert total watts to electricity measurement.
- Calculate the monthly usage by multiplying the total kilowatt per hour by 30 days to get the monthly electricity kilowatts.
- Finally, use your local electricity rates to multiply answer. There you have your monthly energy cost of air purifier.
Assumed air purifier wattage = 70w
Assumed running hour = 24hrs
Assumed cost per month = 0.80 cents
Formula: Watt (W) x Hour (hr) x Number of days x daily electricity rates = Cost of air purifier per month.
70w x 24hrs = 1680w
1680/1000 = 1.680kilowatts
1.680 x 30(days) = 50.4KWh per month.
50.4KWh x 0.80 cents = $42.32
That means the cost of your air purifier energy bill per month is $40.32
If you’re running yours for 12hours, divide your total cost per month by 2.
E.g. 40.32/2 = $20.16
To get air purifier energy cost per year multiply your cost per month by 12.
E.g. $40.32 x 12 = $483.84
Air Purifier Purifying Techniques
As long as air purification remains, there are only two ways indoor air can be purified, which are Passive and Active purification techniques.
Passive air purifiers are more efficient than active air purifiers. Reason being that they remove all dust and particulate matter permanently from the air and collected in the filter. And the most common types of air purifiers under this category are High Efficient Particulate Air (HEPA) filter, Activated carbon filter and Ultraviolet Germicidal Irridiation (UVGI) filter.
Where as Active air purifiers release negatively charge ions into the air, causing pollutants to stick to surfaces, which can redistributed into air, causing health problems. Such air purifier type is Ionizer air purifier.
Types of Air Purifiers
#1. HEPA Filter
This is the #1 efficient air purifier, which has been certified to remove up to 99.97% of 0.3microns particle and are usually effective at removing large particles. They’re healthy to be used indoors because they do not generate ozone and harmful byproducts that may affect human body system at course operation.
In addition, kindly know that some air purifier that are labeled HEPA type or HEPA like has not been certified to meet up with the requirement of HEPA. When buying, buy the ones that are labeled True HEPA filter if you need efficiency.
#2. Carbon Filter
These are porous materials that can adsorb volatile chemicals on a molecular basis, but do not remove larger particles. They work efficiently by changing contaminants from a gaseous phase to a solid phase. Activated carbon filters are normally used in conjunction True HEPA filters to eliminate dust, particulate matters and gases/odors from air.
#3 UVGI Filter
Air purifiers with UVGI light are good at removing harmful pollutants like bacteria, virus and fungal spores. They are mostly used in hospital to disinfect the laboratories and patient room.
Other types not really recommended to you if you have breathing related problems.
#4 Ionizer Filter
They emit negative ions in the air that attract all the positively charge particles like dust and makes them heavy to fall on the ground or surfaces. They also generate ozone and other oxidants as byproduct at the course operation in order words they are good for your health.
#5. Ozone Generators
These devices produce ozone, a molecule that can react with certain pollutant to alter their chemical composition. This may result to dangerous indoor air quality.
According to consumer report, studies done by EPA had shown Ozone has been linked to decrease in lung function and increased risk of throat irritation, coughing, chest pain and lung tissues inflammation. From their test it was discovered that most of air purifier brands in the market contain more than 0.05 part per million, which is the healthy amount recommended by FDA.
Features To Look For When Buying Air Purifiers
- Air purifier with washable pre filters. They collect large particles before reaching the main filters. Which are HEPA and Carbon filters, thus extending its life span and saving you few dollars on filters
- Air purifiers that have filter replacement indicator light. The flashing out of the light when the filter is over saturated with pollutants will reduce you the stress of suffering under a clogged air purifier that will never.
- Air quality sensor – it helps to detect how polluted the air is and automatically adjust the air purifiers cleaning speed accordingly.
- Carrying Handle and Wheels – this will enable you move them form one room to another room no matter how many pounds it weighs.
- Remote control or Phone app. This is to let you adjust the settings wherever you’re.
Bad Features To Avoid
- Any air purifier that will emit ozone at the course of operation.
How To Get The Best Out Of Your Air Purifier?
- Replaced your odor (carbon) filter and HEPA filter when due. As the general rules implies, change HEPA filter every six to twelve months. And carbon (odor) filter every three months.
- Place it at the right stand. Due to some of these air purifies can be bulky. Place it them in the room where you stay often. If you have multiple rooms you get one for each of the room.
- Run your air purifier 24/7. When not in the room set it on high and when inside set them on low to less noise.
Air Purifier Pros and Cons
- It helps you breathe clean air and with ease.
- Removes all types of dust particles.
- It helps you get better skin.
- It slows down aging.
- It reduces skin dullness
- It requires maintenance to work well.
- Most air purifiers do not work as advertised.
- Some air purifiers produce ozone which may be dangerous to your like Ozone generator air purifiers and ionizer air purifiers.
Other Ways To Improve Your Air Quality Indoor Are
1. On the days you’re not running your air purifiers, ensure to open your doors and windows for cross ventilation. If you have dust or pollen allergies that prevent you from doing that, you can run you air conditioner or forced air cooling system with clean air filter.
2. Quit smoking indoor, burning candles and wood fires.
3. Use an exhaust fan in the kitchen, bathroom and laundering room.
4. Ensure you vacuum regularly because there is no air purifier that will remove dust mites ad pet hair that settled on furniture and carpet unless they air distributed and redistributed into the air. Use vacuums that have HEPA filters, they are more efficient in cleaning carpets and furniture.
Be sure to check our article on the best heater. A comprenhensive guide that is a must read.
The important of inhaling cleaner air cannot be over emphasized especially to homes that have children, elderly and persons with asthma, COPD, pollen, dust or any other type of allergens and other breathing related health issues.
When your air is cleaner, you will have sounder sleep, reduced snoring, stopped sneezing, reduced nighttime allergies and asthma attacks, strength your immune system, reduced coughing and wheezing, eliminate dry mouth and runny nose.
Get one for yourself and family today, stay healthy and enjoy life free of sickness and pain. This article best air purifier of 2020 serves as a guide to you. So if you choose any of the products highlighted above you would have the best decision. Good luck!
Air Purifier. Wikipedia
Breathe clean air by European Lung Foundation
Ozone generators that are sold as air cleaners. U.S Environmental Protection Agency.