HEPA Air Purifiers Overview
It is essential to have quality air purifiers in your home because good health is imperative. The studies from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) shows that the air inside your home can be five times dirtier than the air outside. No matter how clean is your home; it still contains dust, pet dander, pollen, and fumes. These airborne irritants make it harder to breathe if you have Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD) or other lungs disease. Hence, air purifiers are required to remove such particles from the air and make it clean.
Different air purifiers feature a different type of filtration technology so they target different types of air pollution. HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) Filters are one of the main types of air cleaners and most popular air purifiers. They are effective at removing dust and other irritants such as dust, animal dander, pollen and other particulates from the air, yet they produce no ozone. Today, we will look into some of the best HEPA Air Purifiers.
Best HEPA Air Purifiers 2017
We have prepared a list of 10 best HEPA Air Purifiers to give you an idea of a variety of designs and brands that are available. If you don’t have time to go through long reviews, this comparison table will help you make a choice or have an idea of what you are looking for.
|Product Image||Product Name||CADR||Air Change Per Hour||Coverage Area||Price|
|Honeywell HPA 300||Dust 320, Smoke 300, Pollen300||5.0||465 sq. ft.|
|GermGuardian AC4825||100+||5.0||155 sq. ft.|
|Coway AP-1512HH Mighty||Dust 246, Pollen 240, Smoke 233||4.0||361 sq. ft.|
|Winix WAC9500 Ultimate Pet||Dust 182, Pollen 194, Smoke 183||NA||283 sq. ft.|
|Whirlpool Whispure AP51030K||Dust 325, Pollen 401, Smoke 316||4.8||500 sq. ft.|
|Airmega 400S||NA||NA||1,560 sq. ft.|
|Alen BreatheSmart||Dust 256, Smoke 276, Pollen 301||2.0||1,100 sq. ft.|
|Rabbit Air MinusA2||Dust 200, Smoke 193, Pollen 208||3.3||408 sq. ft.|
|Dyson Pure Hot Cool Link||NA||NA||NA|
|Hamilton Beach TrueAir||NA||NA||140 sq. ft.|
Best HEPA Air Purifiers 2017 – Short Reviews
If you went through the above comparison table and still want to know more about them, we have reviewed those above-listed printers in more detail. The following reviews will help you get a better idea about these printers since all HEPA are not created equal.
The Honeywell HPA 300 is one of the most popular air purifiers with HEPA Allergen Remover Filter. It has manageable noise level, convenient side handles, and low-profile design. This machine can effectively remove indoor pollutants; especially dust particles from your home. It also efficiently removes smoke particles.
This air purifier features three air-cleaning levels allows you to adjust the airflow through the filter. However, it does not have an air-quality sensor or auto mode to adjust these three cleaning levels. It features an operation timer that enables you to set it for 2, 4 or 8 hours, easy tap control buttons, and turbofan mode. This unit also has a filter monitor to help you keep track of when to change the filters.
It is a decent air purifier that effectively removes dust and smoke from your home, and activated carbon reduces common household odors. Though it lacks some features like auto mode and remote control, this cleans the air of your home effectively. And it comes with a five-year warranty that protects you against manufacturer defects.
The GermGuardian AC4825 is an affordable, and highly rated and bestseller air purifier. The HEPA filter can capture almost 99.97% of all dust and allergens as well as removes household odors. This is ideal for small and medium-sized rooms.
It is affordable, lightweight and packed with various features. The 3-in-1 Air Cleaning System with Pre-Filter, True HEPA Filter, and UV-C make it perfect for those with asthma problems and allergies. It can remove smog and pollen, air-borne particles and pollutants, and unpleasant household odors.
GermGuardian 3-in-1 air cleaning system has three fan speed settings, low, medium and high. It is very quiet when it is operating enabling you to use it throughout the day and night even while sleeping. The filters of this air purifier last for about 6-8 months between replacements. It does not emit ozone hence it is environment-friendly too and comes with a 3-year limited warranty.
This Coway AP-1512HH is an ideal air purifier to remove the indoor air pollutants without raising your monthly utility bill. This HEPA air purifier is compact and quiet and easily filters air pollutants out of the small rooms. It offers great safety and convenience features.
It is the best small room air purifier with a portable design and versatile capabilities. This air purifier uses a four-stage filtration process to effectively clean the air in your room. The washable pre-filter, carbon filter, True HEPA filter and ionizer take out large particles like hair and dust, removes odor, smoke, and pollen and charges outgoing air for easier capture in the next pass.
The Coway lacks sleep or quiet mode but has an auto mode that senses the air quality in the room and adjusts the settings to maximize the effectiveness of the machine. It is one of the most energy-efficient models and comes with impressive filtration, eco mode, simple controls and 3-year warranty.
The Winix air purifier is a top-rated air purifier because it uses a patented PlasmaWave Technology, which is not found in other air purifiers. This innovative feature offers the same air cleaning advantages of an ionizer without producing harmful side effects or ozone. The PlasmaWave technology eliminates the toxic contaminants.
This Winix WAC9500 features 5-stage cleaning system with a Pre-filter, Clean-Cel Anti-bacterial treatment, True HEPA filter, carbon filter and PlasmaWave. It is specially designed for the pet owners to help them eliminate microscopic pet dander and hair that cause allergies and breathing problems.
It features two smart sensors, which individually monitor the room for an increase in odors and dust, and adjust the unit automatically to quickly remove these types of contaminants. A light sensor in this unit puts it into sleep mode while you’re asleep or the lights go dim. It comes with only one-year warranty.
The Whirlpool Whispure AP51030K is a powerful air purifier that can easily clean the air in large rooms. This offers the best clean air delivery rates (CADR) out of all models and is effective at removing indoor pollutants from your home. It uses the formula developed by the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers.
It is very effective at removing smoke, dust, and pollen from the indoor air. This purifier is ideal for those having allergies and breathing-related problems as it almost makes 5 air changes in one hour. It only has two cleaning stages to remove particulates from the air.
Though it features sleep mode that lets you sleep without any disturbance and also saves energy, it lacks an auto mode that would automatically adjust the settings based on the air quality of the room. It is one of the quietest air purifiers and is Energy Star verified; also has AHAM, ARB, and UL-Listed marks certifications.
The Airmega 400S is great home air purifier that filters environmental toxins with two industrial-grade HEPA filters. Its unique design makes it capable of running relatively quietly (52 dB) even on its highest airflow setting.
It has a multicolored light ring on the front of the unit to indicate air quality (colors range from blue-green, green-yellow, orange-red and pink), from good to unhealthy. This air purifier is equipped with Wi-Fi and can be controlled remotely. The company’s mobile app provides a superior machine interface for controlling the device and monitoring air quality.
It features a Smart Mode (Auto, Eco, and Sleep) that adjusts purifier performance based on air quality. The differential pressure sensor detects filter performance and alerts the user when it’s time to replace the filters. It comes with 5-year warranty.
This Alen BreatheSmart air purifier is considered to be the smartest, powerful and the quietest model on the market by many people. It is a complete solution to most air pollutants and is ideal for those who cook regularly, have allergies as well as those who own pets.
The Alen BreatheSmart features easy-to-replace HEPA-Pure Filter has several layers of filter technology that delivers the highest quality of clean air. It is recommended to replace the filters to extend the life of the device. A life timer feature lets the user know when the filter needs to be replaced.
The SmartSensor Technology allows the air purifier to automatically adjust the airflow when it detects pollution and allergens. The WhisperMax technology makes it extremely quiet. This Energy Star certified air purifier comes with lifetime warranty and manufacturer’s 60 days Satisfaction Guarantee.
The Rabbit Air MinusA2 is an exceptionally quiet air purifier. This is somewhat sleek and stylish as you can add customized panels to the front that feature artwork from famous artists like Van Gogh, Gustav Klimt, and Katsushika Hokusai. It is great air purifier for small rooms and has unique features.
It has a six-filter system; a washable pre-filter, medium filter, true HEPA filter, one of the four custom filters of Rabbit Air (Germ Defense, Pet Allergy, Toxin Absorber and Odor Remover filters), carbon filter, and finally the optional ionizer. You can also easily mount this on your wall instead of leaving on the floor.
This Energy Star certified air purifier includes a sleep mode and the filter monitor tells you when it’s time to change an air filter. It also has an auto mode that uses the air-quality sensor to measure the level of pollutants in your home and adjust the cleaning accordingly. However, it lacks an operation timer. This efficient machine comes with a 5-year warranty.
This Dyson Pure Hot Cool Link air purifier is as stylish as it is rich in features. It not only cleans the air in your home from allergens and pollutants through a powerful HEPA filter but also heats and cool it when you want. This air purifier features Wi-Fi connectivity that allows users to control the device’s mode via smartphone or tablet.
It uses a 360º Glass HEPA filter and claims to capture 99.97% of the allergens and pollutants from the air of your living space. The active carbon layer captures odors and harmful toxins. It features auto mode, sleep timer and a nighttime mode, and an easy-to-clean aperture.
The Dyson Link app provides real-time air quality reports and allows you to remotely control your device. The Dyson Pure Hot + Cool Link is, without a doubt, the most technically advanced air purifier the company has ever released and it may not be for everyone. It is comparatively expensive.
The Hamilton Beach TrueAir is reasonably priced compact air purifier and is designed especially for those who own pets. Its permanent filter can be cleaned with a vacuum, which allows a user to save quite a bit on pricey replacements. This is ideal for small spaces.
The permanent HEPA-grade filter effectively removes up to 99% of airborne irritants and allergens. With a versatile compact design and removable base, it can be set up in either horizontal or vertical position on desk or shelf or floor. Its streamlined front is designed to reduce the fan’s noise level for quiet performance at any speed.
It features whisper clean for quiet nighttime use and has three speeds, low, medium and high. This Hamilton Beach air purifier is ideal for anyone who wants an air purifier that needs very little maintenance and those who don’t want to deal with filter changes and replacement costs. It comes with one-year warranty.
Buying Guide to Air Purifiers
It is very important to consider buying the right air purifier. Some purifiers actually pollute the air with harmful levels of ozone. There are key factors to consider with any purifier besides their brand, price or design. This buying guide will help you learn more about air purifiers and find a safe and effective unit for you.
Common Household Air Pollutants
Since different air purifiers feature a different type of filtration technology so they target different types of air pollution. It is important to know about the pollutants you want to eliminate from your home before buying an air purifier.
Airborne particles include pet dander, mold spores, dust mite allergen, pollen, plant spores, and fungi. Tobacco or wood-smoke, cooking odors, gaseous pollutants like indoor-pesticides, and aerosols and chemical cleaners are other types of pollutants. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) commonly found in paints, varnishes, cleaning supplies, disinfectants, glues, and adhesives, and new carpets and building supplies are also pollutants found in our homes. The other pollutants are the microorganisms like antigens, pathogens, bacteria, and viruses.
Air Purifiers Filter Types
Different air purifiers are based on different filtration technology. Since different air purifier technologies have different strengths and weaknesses, many air purifiers combine two or more filter or media types in the same unit. And do not forget to look for some mention of a “sealed system” or some similar technology regardless of which filter media is used.
HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) Filters are the most popular air purifiers and they set the standard for air purification. The HEPA certified air purifiers work best for the common particle allergens. The more square feet of HEPA filter, the more particulate it will be able to remove. HEPA filters are comparatively expensive than others but these are best air purifiers.
Activated Carbon Filters are mostly used in conjunction with other filters. They are good for absorbing odors and gases and neutralizing smoke, chemicals, and fumes. The larger the carbon filters the more chemicals it will absorb and the longer it will keep on working. It has to be replaced after it is full.
Charged Media Filters are the blend of two technologies, a particle filter and a slight electrostatic charge. They are able to collect very small particles and are extremely effective for a period of time. The drawback is that the charged media filters lose their efficiency pretty quickly and require more frequent filter replacements.
Electrostatic Precipitators work to the similar principle of charged media filters but instead of capturing these now charges particles on the filter it precipitates out and adheres to collector plates. The big advantage is that these collector plates never have to be replaced and can be easily washed in the dishwasher.
Ion Generators or Ozone Generators force the impurities to cling to a surface by creating charged particles (ions) and emitting them to the surrounding. Those ions combine with the impurities and force them to cling to the nearby surfaces, often producing dirty spots on the walls. They are not much preferred as they produce ozone that is lung irritant for people with lung disease.
Antibacterial and Germicidal Filters are great for eliminating bacteria and germs. They are mostly used in sterile environments like hospitals, kitchens, daycares, and labs. They are great for controlling mold at home. If you have a low immune system then you might need antibacterial and germicidal filters.
Photocatalytic Oxidation (PCO) has two components, titanium dioxide, and UV light; and is a new type of filtration technology. The titanium dioxide and UV light physically break down the bonds that hold large molecules of VOCs together. Only few air purifier manufacturers use this technology, as it is still new and not widely researched.
Pre-Filters are either foam or some kind of non-woven polyester, and some have electrostatic properties to increase filtration. This filter removes pet hair and other large particles prior to primary filtration and comes with nearly all air purifiers. Pre-filters with activated carbon traps large particles and also absorb odors and smoke.
Heat is the newest filtration type and technically not a filter like above-mentioned filters. It is more like UV as a mode of filtration. It literally incinerates organic particles like bacteria, viruses, mold, and dust mites. Very few air cleaners use heat at present.
The square footage listed for the air purifier should be about the same or slightly greater than the square footage of the room where you intend to use it. The square footage numbers are calculated based on an 8’ ceiling, cubic feet per meter (CFM) and a stated number of air exchanges per hour.
Air Changes Per Hour (ACH)
Air Changes Per Hour (ACH) is also known as ACH rating that tells the frequency of the exchange of all the air in a given room by the air purifier. For example, if the purifier has an ACH of 5 for a 20 square feet room, then it can exchange all the air of the room 5 times in one hour.
If you are buying a unit that needs filter replacement, then make sure to check how much the replacement filters cost. If your unit includes two or more filters, they might need to be replaced separately at the different time. To get the most of your investment, regular filter replacement is important minimizing wear on the motor. Some manufacturers require regular filter replacement as a condition of their warranty.
Different air purifiers use different amounts of energy. Unlike most appliances, air purifiers are supposed to run continuously hence it is important to consider utility bill before jumping to the decision. Generally, air cleaners use anywhere from 50 watts on low to 200 watts on high.
Some air purifiers can be extremely quiet while most of them can be quite loud while operating at full power. However, noise levels can be balanced with appropriate fan settings on all air purifiers. So, it is recommended that you ask/check for a demonstration before buying.
Some air purifiers emit harmful ozone while purifying the air that is dangerous lung irritant for children, elderly and those with asthma. You should avoid buying such air purifiers and better look for CARB (California Air Resource Board) certified air purifiers.
Initial cost isn’t the only expense that is related to operating an air purifier. HEPA air purifiers range from affordable air purifiers for small to large spaces. You should also consider checking the annual cost of replacement filters.
Some air purifiers feature shut-off timer and other features like technology that sensors air pollutants in the air, a filter life indicator, or a UV light. You might want to consider those features before buying an air purifier.
It is recommended to check the warranty of the air purifier. Not just the warranty years but the coverage of the warranty as well. For air purifiers, short warranty means the shorter lifespan of the air purifier.
Reduce indoor air pollutants
You can improve the air quality of your home without air purifiers following simple steps:
- Vacuum often and thoroughly.
- Forbid indoor smoking.
- Change air filters of heating and cooling equipment regularly.
- Reduce the use of candle and wood fires.
- Use exhaust fans in kitchen, bath and laundry areas.
- Avoid storing chemicals, solvents or pesticides near your living areas.
With various air purifier technologies available, there is a long list of air purifiers. Almost all technologies are marketed as beneficial, not all technologies are recommended. Among all the technologies, High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filtration is highly recommended. Though these kinds of air purifiers need regular filter replacements, they are most effective and remove up to 99.97% of pollutants and particles.