Every home is unique. Every home has different types of indoor air pollution and varying conditions that impact indoor air quality. Each home has different people with different health sensitivities that can be affected by pollutants in the air. An air purifier can help improve the air quality in any home, but you want to use the best air purifier for your home and situation. Do you have pets, live with a smoker or live in a region with high humidity and mold problems? Different air purifiers are better suited for each of these different environments.
Determining what air purifier is the best air purifier for your home requires exploring different scenarios and conditions in your home. Understanding the benefits of different air purifiers will help us determine which type of air purifier will do the best job in your home.
If allergens are the biggest concern
Do you have pets and is someone in your home allergic to pet dander? Do you have a pollen allergy? Then an air purifier that filters particulate matter will be the best choice. Most air purifiers have some sort of particle filtration, though there are certain standards like “true HEPA” that claim to capture particles at a certain efficiency.
Classic 480i Blue Air
- Covers 434 sq. ft.
- Weighs 33 lbs.
- Filtration: Dual protection filters with coconut carbon and HEPASilent (electrostatic and mechanical).
- Recommended by the Swedish Asthma and Allergy Association.
This air purifier, made by a company founded in Sweden, can be as quiet as 32 decibels at the lowest setting. It uses a relatively small amount of electricity only 15W. It features WiFi app control and a filter replacement indicator. The manufacturer suggests the filter be replaced every six months. Any HEPA filter will need to be replaced regularly as it fills with the materials trapped in the filter. It is easy to forget to do this at the right time, so an indicator is a helpful feature. A household with multiple pets might require more frequent filter replacement than the indicator suggests, however. A HEPA filter air purifier removes particulate pollutants from the air which offers the minimum amount of filtration efficiency choice for someone who has allergies.
IQ Air Health Pro Plus
- HyperHEPA: Claims to filter 99.5% of particles of 0.003 micron size
- V5 cell technology: carbon filtration
As mentioned above, the HEPA filter may help remove some of the pet dander and pollen in the air. The additional activated carbon filter stage means this air purifier can help remove unpleasant odors and harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the air. In a house with multiple pets, an air purifier that removes odors could be useful. HyperHEPA technology claims to remove even smaller particles than HEPA, but these claims represent difficult air quality standards to verify in a real-world setting. Regular HEPA filters are designed to meet these industry ratings, so they may be sufficient for removing pet dander from your family room.
Why Molekule is the best for allergens
The Molekule air purifier is the best option for homes with allergy problems because it uses a dual-phase filtration system. After air passes through the Pre-Filter, the PECO-Filter can destroy allergens carried by pet dander or pollen particles, instead of just removing them temporarily from the air. Though traditional filtration methods can offer a minimum level of protection from pollutants, the PECO technology goes a step beyond, breaking down allergens that pass through the device, so that they are not released back into the air.
If VOCs/smoke is the biggest concern
What if the primary pollutant in your home is smoke? Typical sources are tobacco, weed, a fireplace, wildfires or cooking. VOCs make up a significant and dangerous part of the indoor air pollution smoke creates. If you have new furniture, carpeting, or paints making chemical odors in your home, they are also creating VOCs. A HEPA filter can not remove VOCs from the air, so you will need a carbon filter that can help remove VOCs from the air if you choose to go this route. Smoke also contains particulate matter, so you will need a HEPA filter or some kind of mechanical filtration, in addition to a carbon filter.
Austin Air Healthmate Plus
- 4-stage filtration system: 1 Large Particle Pre-filter, 1 Medium Particle Pre-Filter, 1 Carbon filter, 1 HEPA filter.
- 15 lbs. of activated carbon and Potassium Iodide Impregnated Carbon and Zeolite.
- 1500 sq. ft. room coverage.
This is a large, powerful air purifier suitable for people who are especially sensitive to airborne chemicals or for places where smoke is a special concern. The surface area it can cover is massive compared to most home air purifiers.
However, this causes some drawbacks. The unit is heavy and not easy to move from room to room. It does roll on casters, but that does not help on thick carpet or stairs. Air purifiers that have more power make more noise. Even on its lowest setting, this unit is moderately loud at 45 db. It only gets louder from there. While its multi-stage design makes it effective at removing smoke from the air, it also makes for more complicated maintenance and filter replacement.
Why Molekule is the best air purifier for VOCs
Molekule is the best in this category because it can destroy VOCs in the air by converting them into carbon dioxide and water vapor using a catalytic reaction. This destruction of VOCs has been third-party confirmed through testing by Intertek laboratories. To learn more, see our article “Third-Party Confirms Molekule Air Purifier Destroys VOCs” .
If you live in an area with high pollution
High pollution might be a temporary problem if the house is being renovated. It may also be an everyday problem. If you live somewhere with high humidity mold spores could be a concern. Additionally, living near a busy major highway or a power plant can increase the pollution. A more powerful air purifier may be best to deal with this level of pollution.
- Medical-grade HEPA (99.97%+ at 0.3 microns)).
- High fan speeds: CADR 360 for pollen, CADR 323 for tobacco smoke, CADR 332 for Dust.
- Covers 1250 sq. ft.
- Contains 2 filters: Combo Pre-Filter and HEPA, 1-inch carbon and embedded potassium permanganate.
“Medical-grade” HEPA may remove a higher percent of ultrafine particles than is standard, though there are caveats. For example, the EPA mentions that these very small particles have more of a likelihood of being deposited onto surfaces, and so that “even a very high-efficiency filter may not have as large of an effect on indoor particle concentrations as expected” (EPA, p.22). The high CADR rating means this unit can move a lot of air, indicating a larger or more powerful fan. However if the unit’s casing is not properly airtight, all of that air is not necessarily being filtered properly. If this air purifier is working correctly, it can potentially clean a lot of air. At 27 pounds it is not as cumbersome as the Healthmate Plus, but it is still quite heavy.
The Oransi Erik 650A Air Purifier ($1595) is a commercial-grade air purifier for those who need a very heavy-duty product. It covers 1560 sq. ft. and contains two filters: a 4-inch deep granular activated carbon impregnated activated carbon/potassium permanganate bed pre-filter and a 12-inch deep main HEPA filter, which they claim can remove 99.99% of all particles. If you have serious, professional-grade pollution problems, it could be an option for you.
Why Molekule is the best for high-pollution areas
Molekule doesn’t simply trap the particles like mold that can be of concern in high humidity areas or during remediation and renovation. It destroys them. The dual-phase filtration system can remove particles that come from smog, wildfire smoke and industrial pollution.
What is the best air purifier for the average home?
The best air purifier for your home is one that can deal with multiple usage scenarios while minimizing many of the drawbacks of other air purifiers, such as frequent filter replacement, difficulty moving from room to room or noise. In any home, the environment and situation can change from season to season and from night to night. Wildfire season presents different pollution problems than spring pollen. Not every air purifier can deal with multiple types of pollution. We believe our Molekule solution is the best air purifier for most homes because it does not simply collect pollutants on filters, but can destroy them. VOCs, pollen, pet dander and more are broken down at the molecular level.
- Dual-phase filtration system with Pre-Filter and PECO-Filter.
- PECO technology uses a catalytic reaction on the surface of filter that destroys pollutants at the molecular level.
- Allergens, VOCs, mold, viruses and bacteria are destroyed.
- Cleans 600 sq. ft. area.
- Third-party laboratory tested.
The device is is effective for people with allergy problems, in homes dealing with mold spores, in homes with tobacco smokers or near wildfires and in homes in high-pollution regions.
It can be confusing to analyze your home air purifier needs to figure out what air purifier is best for your house or apartment. There are so many different types of pollutants and indoor air quality scenarios that one air purifier might work very well in one situation, but not be effective in another. You can avoid a lot of that confusion with the Molekule air purifier, because the device is well-suited for a variety of situations to help improve the indoor air quality in your home.