Best Indoor Air Purifiers To Add To Your Home
A couple of years back we blogged about indoor air pollution and recommended a few products you can purchase to make your space a bubble of clean air. With global carbon levels on the rise, it’s important that the place you call home remains an easy breathing sanctuary to give your lungs the break they need from pollutants and allergens. Here at Cambridge Mask Company we’re always researching the latest innovations that support our product, while raising awareness about others in the clean air industry to help spread the word about cutting edge technologies out there that can purify the air you breathe. So today we’re updating our old faithful indoor air blog and taking a little look at the recent most highly rated air purifiers you can purchase for your home, courtesy of reviews.com.
Elizabeth Reynolds of reviews.com reached out to those of us in the market for a new air purifier with a few words of advice:
“Choosing an air purifier to fight contaminants is complicated; a great model has the right type of filter that can tackle the quantity of air in any given room. Our team consulted health professionals for our roundup of 85 safe and effective portable purifiers designed for home use. After testing them for performance, noise, ease of use, among other features and speaking to health professionals we created a resource for those wanting to clean the air in their homes.”
To read the article straight from the horse’s mouth, you can follow this link, or stay right where you are and we’ll sum it up for you. First of all, customers should understand that CADR is a rating applied by the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers. The CADR can tell you what kind of purifier you need based on the size of room you are looking to purify. Here’s how reviews.com came up with their two most highly recommended purifiers:
“We tested out eight that were rated to clean close to 360 square feet of pollen, dust, and tobacco smoke, then spoke with air quality specialists and physicians about the importance of true HEPA filters and other features”
And the gold goes to…the Winix 5500-2 Air Cleaner with PlasmaWave Technology! Hailed for its sleek design, fantastic ratings…and is that a $100 discount on Amazon we see? Among the glowing reviews online which tout this product as being “the quietest air purifier I’ve ever owned” with filters that are “are stupidly easy to swap in and out” and even “sensitive enough to filter farts” – what’s not to love?
In second place we have the Coway 4-Stage Filtration System with Air Quality Indicator. Lightweight and quiet, this is a stylish choice for any home that somewhat resembles the i-Pod nano’s giant friendly cousin. It’s a little more pricey than the Winex model, but has similarly stellar reviews, such as: “It was like unboxing an Apple product – so intuitive, so seamless, so simple”, “when it’s at eco mode, it won’t consume a lot of electricity” and “costs far less to maintain for five years (about $600 when you factor in price, electricity, and filters) than many other purifiers on the market”.
What makes an air purifier truly exceptional?
- Higher CADR numbers equal greater purifying powers. Ratings of 350+ are considered to be excellent
- HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filters are an unequivocal must
- A pre-filter that acts as the first line of defense
- A secondary filter to increase the effectiveness of the unit
Do I really need an air filter? The pollution in my area isn’t that bad…
According the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the air inside a home could be just as polluted as outdoors and depending on the household “air levels of many pollutants may be two to five times, and occasionally more than 100 times higher”. If your home has poor ventilation, pollutants, dust, smoke, cooking fumes and pet dander may build up and become highly concentrated. Not to be alarmists but there are a huge number of products we put in our living spaces that give off harmful VOCs (volatile organic compounds), which can be real health hazards. Decorating and cleaning products, heating, cooling and dehumidification systems, cheaper pressed wood furnitures and dyed fabrics, plastics, carpets and insulation can all give off chemicals that aren’t about to do you much good. So even if you’re lucky enough to live in a pollution free wilderness, your indoor spaces could probably do with a decent method of purification.
As manufacturing our own clean air sadly becomes a daily part of our lives, the market has become saturated with products that claim to use amazing technologies and what appears in some cases to be downright wizardry to purify your home. reviews.com has a word of warning about certain purifiers you may find a little more friendly on your wallet but a lot less friendly for your lungs stating of the three listed below: “they may work, but there aren’t proven effective like charcoal and true HEPA filters — and there’s one we actively avoided.”
“Negative ion filters send electrically charged ions out into the air. These ions latch onto pollutants and particles, which then stick to ceilings, walls, or the floor so you no longer breathe them. The experts we spoke with were not huge fans of ionizers, since they don’t really clean the air so much as “ground” the junk floating around in it. Our runner-up, the Coway 4-Stage Filtration System, does offer this feature, but it can be turned off without affecting the machine’s performance.
“UV filters attempt to sanitize the air by zapping particles with rays of ultraviolet light as they pass through. The GermGuardian unit that we looked at offers this feature, but the jury is out on whether it actually works. “UV light doesn’t have effective proven results in air purifiers,” Fatima Puri, air quality specialist at AlenCorp, told us. “Air moves way too quick.’”
“Ozone filters emit charged particles that attract pollutants, similar to negative ion filters. The difference: Ozone filters also emit ozone as a byproduct, which is known to irritate the lungs of children, the elderly, and anyone with a chronic lung condition. Not only is this counterproductive to the concept of air purifiers, but also one of our experts called it “a killer in disguise.” Yikes.”
So there you have it, but don’t just take our word for it. Check out this article for handy tips on purifier placement, how to minimize air pollution indoors without a purifier, alternative highly rated purifying products you might want to also consider, more on CADR and how the experts decided on the winning purifiers out there on the market.