Air Purifiers: Ratings of Sources
Total of 16 Sources
For an explanation of how we rank reviews, see our ratings criteria page.
by Editors of ConsumerReports.org
Our AssessmentConsumerReports.org conducts the most unbiased, scientific tests of air purifiers. Editors test 22 portable room-sized purifiers, two professionally installed whole-house filter systems and six furnace-type filters, then rank them from best to worst and point out which models to buy. Testers rate each model for dust, pollen and smoke removal (testing room filters on both low and high speed). Filters that attach to your heating/cooling system are rated for airflow, and room air purifiers are rated for noise on low and high speed. Editors also calculate the annual energy and filter costs for each purifier. ConsumerReports.org points out a few models to avoid, and editors provide helpful information on the health dangers of ozone generators, whether you should pay attention to UV and virus-removal claims, and whether you really need an air purifier at all.
by Editors of AllergyBuyersClub.com
Our AssessmentThe aim of AllergyBuyersClub.com is to test products and then share the results with consumers. AllergyBuyersClub.com also sells these units. Particle-removal testing is performed in an unsealed office environment, and subjective criteria such as mechanical efficiency, noise level, ease of use, cost of ownership, filter access and customer feedback are factored into the ratings. Because AllergyBuyersClub.com focuses on severe-allergy sufferers, it concentrates on rating high-end air purifiers. Ratings cover 90 modes, but all of the highest-rated air cleaners cost $750 or more. Three models from IQAir win Best of Category awards.
Furnace Filters and Air Conditioning Filters
by Editors of AllergyBuyersClub.com
Our AssessmentRetailer AllergyBuyersClub.com also reviews furnace filters. The top ratings go to pricey washable furnace filters; they cost hundreds of dollars initially, but save money in the long term by eliminating the need for disposable filters. Disposable 3M Filtrete filters -- which get the highest ratings elsewhere -- are merely rated "good" or "very good."
Top 10 Air Purifiers
by Ed Sherbenou
Our AssessmentAir-Purifier-Power.com is dedicated exclusively to air-purifier information, providing general background on air-quality issues as well as detailed reviews of more than 70 air purifiers and a top 10 list. All reviews are written by Ed Sherbenou, who has multiple-chemical sensitivity and uses several of the units in his home and office. Ratings are based on 10 criteria, including construction quality, ozone issues, gas and odor removal, noise level and price-performance ratio. The IQAir HealthPro Plus is the top-rated air purifier, followed by the Blueair 650E. The Honeywell Enviracaire 50250-N is rated the best value.
Certified Room Air Cleaners
by Editors of the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers
Our AssessmentThe Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) uses an outside lab to verify clean air delivery rates (CADR) quoted by manufacturers for given air cleaners. Products are rated only for effectiveness on dust, pollen and smoke. Manufacturers have to pay several thousand dollars to have their product certified; at the time of this writing, 31 have done so. The charts posted on the AHAM site are helpful for comparing products, and we find that most air cleaners of the same size perform similarly. This site does not cover the controversy surrounding air purifiers that produce ozone. It merely indicates whether or not a unit meets the current U.S. Food and Drug Administration limit of 50 parts per billion for medical products. Three current air cleaners -- all from Blueair -- are certified to meet the ozone standard and deliver good performance (above 350 CADR) in removing dust, pollen and tobacco smoke.
Best Product: IQAir HealthPro Plus
by Gregory Han
Our AssessmentThis lifestyle blog tests a wide variety of home products, awarding the Best Product designation to the best in each category. Editor Gregory Han tests the IQAir HealthPro Plus in his Los Angeles apartment alongside less expensive purifiers from Holmes and Honeywell. He measures particulates using a $2,000 laser gauge -- also on loan from the IQAir company. The IQAir purifier drastically reduces particulates, far beyond the capabilities of the cheaper units in this detailed, easy-to-read review.
Air Purifiers Reviews and Prices
by Editors of ConsumerGuide.com
Our AssessmentConsumerGuide.com publishes air-purifier reviews, a buying guide and a section on how air purifiers work. However, there are 341 air purifiers listed. Twenty of these are reviewed and nine receive a Best Buy designation. These ratings are based on value, performance, ease of use and features, but performance doesn't appear to have been tested at all. Whirlpool, Honeywell, IQAir, Austin Air and Blueair air purifiers receive Best Buy designations.
by Contributors to Amazon.com
Our AssessmentOwners rate and review air purifiers with the usual mix of positive and negative postings. At the time of our visit, Rabbit Air purifiers rack up substantial numbers of reviews -- 140 for one model -- while maintaining above-average scores. Some less expensive air purifiers, including models from Honeywell, Hamilton Beach and Whirlpool, also get high ratings.
by Contributors to Amazon.com
Our AssessmentAmazon.com lists furnace filters separately from standalone air purifiers. 3M Filtrete models get the highest ratings from consumers here.
by Contributors to Epinions.com
Our AssessmentThere are quite a few owner-written ratings here for most brands of air purifiers. The pricey Alen A350 rates a perfect 5 stars with eight reviews posted. The less expensive Whirlpool AP51030K Whispure and Honeywell Enviracaire 50250-N both earn 4.5 stars with 17 reviews posted for each. While not scientific, the consumers' experiences are informative.
Fighting Pollution -- Inside Your House
by Beth Luberecki
Our AssessmentFurnace filters are designed to keep the furnace system clean -- not clean the air in your home, says Glenn Fellman, executive director of the Indoor Air Quality Association and Indoor Environmental Standards Organization. He tells The Washington Post that HEPA filter-based air cleaners are the best option if your home's air is dirty. The article notes that IQAir's HealthPro Plus earns top marks in reviews.
Healthy Household Helpers
by Editors of Good Housekeeping
Our AssessmentGood Housekeeping tests and recommends four products to improve air quality or prevent the spread of bacteria. The Blueair 201 (now Blueair 203) air purifier is included for its ability to remove smoke, dust and pollen from the air. No other air purifiers are discussed or compared.
Clear the Air! Tips to Find Your Breathing Room
by Amanda MacMillan
Our AssessmentPrevention magazine editors, interviewed on NBC's "Today" show, say ionic and other ozone-generating air purifiers can be harmful to health -- and desktop air purifiers of any type are too small to make much difference. Prevention advises switching to a large, true HEPA-filter model, specifically recommending the Honeywell HEPAClean 3-in-1 for its UV light and odor neutralizer.
Technology: A Breath of Fresh Air
by Peter Suciu
Our AssessmentThis short article discusses four air purifiers for combating springtime allergies, based on features and price. The Blueair 201, Bionaire BAP1250, IQAir HealthPro Plus and WindChaser Ionic Humidifying Air Washer AAT2003 are mentioned. Suciu says the IQAir was tested "in a basement that had been collecting dust for 20 years," but no mention is made that the other three models were tested.
Top Five Air Cleaners for Allergies
by Editors of AchooAllergy.com
Our AssessmentThis is another retail site dedicated to products in the allergy-relief category. Like most other sites, they do not recommend air cleaners that emit ozone such as the Ionic Breeze, EcoQuest or Oreck XL. Their list of the top five air cleaners for allergies, "the most popular among our allergy customers," includes two blanket endorsements of brands (Honeywell and Blueair) and three specific models: Austin Air The Bedroom Machine, Austin Air Allergy Machine and IQAir Health Pro Plus. Editors do test some of the units, although not as scientifically as ConsumerReports.org does; for example, the site's reviewer says the IQAir Health Pro Plus caused "a dramatic decrease in my usual seasonal allergy symptoms."
Air Purifier Reviews
by Editors of ClearFlite Air Purifiers
Our AssessmentAlthough geared toward sales, this site also provides detailed information on popular air purifier brands, including some that aren't sold here. Blueair and IQAir are given a "premier" rating, with AllerAir and Austin Air rated as "very good." Various air-purifier technologies are discussed and HEPA units are recommended over UV, ion-generating, ozone-generating and electrostatic units. While we take the ratings with a grain of salt, the general information is helpful.