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Researching and buying a new air purifier can get a little technical, especially if you’re purchasing one with health problems in mind. For this Top Purifier List, we wanted to find the best air purifiers suitable for individuals with mold allergies. Mold build-up in homes, apartments, and offices can cause several health issues, so we purchased 15 of the best air purifiers for mold on the market today and tested them in our homes to get the dirty-turned-clean truth.
For our testing and measurement, we compared the effectiveness of multi-staged filtration methods used by various air cleaner manufacturers and weighed the quality of HEPA and activated carbon filters employed. Those scoring highly demonstrated superior engineering, including effective pollutant isolation via internal seals between cleansing stages, a comparatively higher volume of adsorption media, medical-grade HEPA filters, and component construction developed for heavy use.
After putting each purifier through the test, we eliminated 5 models and created this list of the top 10 air purifiers for removing mold and reducing the risk of mold growth in your home. Ultimately, some of them make our list of the best air purifiers.
We ultimately decided on our #1 top pick and Editor’s Choice for the best air purifier for mold and mildew: the IQAir HealthPro Plus Air Purifier. The system’s micro-particle filtration stage filters airborne particles and helps to cleanse the air of mold spores before a granular activated carbon adsorption stage coupled with a pelletized alumina chemisorption filter removes volatile organic compounds and destroys dangerous chemicals with an oxidation process. Lastly, the unit’s HEPA filter captures bacteria, viruses, and other hazardous particles before returning clean air to its environment. Keep reading to learn more about the other models we tested and how they stack up when it comes to the elimination of mold and fungus.
Medical-Grade HEPA: Yes | Weight: 35 lbs
WHY WE LIKE IT: The HealthPro Plus is a mold and germ-destroying air purifier that uses traditional air purification methods to treat the surrounding environment. This machine has no ionization or ultraviolet light treatment stages, which means no harmful VOCs in the air for you. This is our editor’s choice of the best air purifier for mold.
The HealthPro Plus from IQAir is one of the most solidly engineered air purifiers we’ve reviewed.
IQAir’s 3D UltraSeal system prevents leaks of polluted air before being processed through a multi-stage filtration process. Tongue and groove seal seat filter media to the frame of the machine, and the UltraSeal seals seat the filter frame to the purifier body. Removable media trays also have their own seals to ensure cross-contamination between stages doesn’t happen – of course, this is pretty much a non-issue considering the differential pressure between the filter stages (incoming higher pressure air contacts each filter stage and results in a lower pressure air output after passing through the media, backflow isn’t physically possible under normal operating conditions).
The top features are its six fan speeds that can be selected from the air purifier’s control panel, and an automatic timer that can be configured for daytime and nighttime use. A differential pressure sensor detects changes in filter performance and alerts the owner when the filter is approaching its end of life. It has so many good key features. It’s a great alternative to an ozone generator. This is not in the best cheap air purifier category, but worth the money. Although, you may want to check out air sanitizers vs air purifiers to see which one is better.
Medical-Grade HEPA: Yes | Weight: 31 lbs
WHY WE LIKE IT: We’re big fans of Blueair’s product line; from its high-capacity Pro XL model to its economical Classic 203, these machines are very well-engineered and do exactly what they’re supposed to for years on end before breaking down. It has earned its place as the best air purifier for mold and dust
If you’ve read some of our other reviews on air purifiers, you’ll know that we’re not fans of machines using ionization and/or ultraviolet light to eliminate air pollutants due to a byproduct of these technologies being ozone – which (at high enough levels) can cause respiratory problems. It’s already tough having your lower and upper respiratory tract deal with any air pollution in your home, so an air purifier that releases low levels of ozone is much more ideal.
However, Blueair’s ionization process has been lab-tested to ensure that the ozone levels leaving the device are lower than the levels entering it. It’s one of its top features and the best of both worlds. Ionization can be an extremely effective means of eliminating pollutants if it’s used properly, and Blueair knows its stuff.
The Classic 405 is a seamless mold air purifier that provides excellent performance for medium-sized areas (rated for spaces up to 434 square feet). It’s extremely quiet even on its highest setting, and the machine can be controlled via Blueair’s mobile app, “Blueair Friend.” It’s a great air purifier for large-room apartments or homes. We had a little bit of trouble with Wi-Fi connectivity on our test units, but after reconfiguring, we could reliably connect. Operating a home appliance via a mobile app greatly adds to this product’s convenience, almost like using a remote control. Our recommendation though is that consumers interested in buying the 405, or another one of Blueair’s noni models, also purchase Blueair’s Aware indoor air quality sensor – otherwise, the mobile app only allows users to change the fan speed.
Air purifiers that remove mold air, like the 405, should be used only as health risk mitigation devices, and users should attempt to eliminate mold and mildew sources directly to completely remove mold spores from indoor environments.
Medical-Grade HEPA: Yes | Weight: 45 lbs
WHY WE LIKE IT: The HealthMate employs a pre-filter, medium particulate filter, impregnated carbon, zeolite filter, and a medical-grade HEPA filter to ensure maximum filtration in even non-ideal environments. This model is the best air purifier for mold and allergies, which will give many people some relief.
Austin Air is a leader in the home air purification business, producing superior products meant to last and outperform most other competitors. Its machines, inclusive of the HealthMate, are engineered with great attention to process detail. You know you’ll get your money’s worth and invest in quality home appliance products with Austin Air. With quality products that can purify your living space’s air, you’ll breathe clean, fresh air and boost your immune system. Ironically most consumers miss this about the company, as all of its air purifiers are relatively simple looking – but Austin Air isn’t about bells and whistles, rather they’re solely focused on superior air cleaning products and nothing else (which is still a plus in our book). It may also be a great option if you are looking for the best air purifier for pets.
Medical-Grade HEPA: Yes | Weight: 21 lbs
WHY WE LIKE IT: The Alen BreatheSmart Classic air purifier can eliminate bacteria, fungus, and mold thanks to its HEPA-Silver filter with antimicrobial compounds built-in. We rate this machine best for killing mold and bacteria.
While it’s not a drop in the bucket ($664) for this unit, it should be well worth the price considering its versatility. The Alen BreatheSmart Classic model can take down mold, fungus, and bacteria thanks to its HEPA-Silver filter. Each filter will last 6-9 months, depending on use, which is excellent when compared to many other purifiers on our list.
Another excellent feature of this air purifier is the built-in Laser Smart Technology, which actively scans your home and detects particles up to 0.3 microns in size. Then, depending on the number of microns in the air, the unit changes the color of the Air Quality Indicator Light. This way, you know exactly how pure the air around you is.
Medical-Grade HEPA: Yes | Weight: 3.6 lbs
Air purifiers with features like this, including a true HEPA filter, normally cost quite a bit, but you are getting all of this for a very budget price. It’s one of the best-value air purifiers for pet owners or a great air purifier for a baby. You’ve heard of the old 3in1 air purifier. Well, this is much more in one handy unit.
The SilverOnyx has a great design that fits into any space, and it’s compact, measuring just 13″ tall and about 7.5″ wide. So, like the Blue Pure, it’s easy to keep in the spaces you use most, like your bedroom, kitchen, or home theater. But don’t let that size fool you. It has all of the features to look for in a great air purifier. It has 5 cleaning levels of filtration for the freshest, cleanest air possible. The filtration system is a filter cartridge that includes a mesh pre-filter, H13 HEPA filter, and activated carbon, and it also uses UV-C light and an Ion generator for good measure.
This model offers 5 speeds to clean your air as fast as possible. It will clean the air in rooms large as 600 sq ft. That is a lot of square feet, which means more clean air. Other features include a timer, so that you can use it as an automatic mode to turn it on and off when you want. That auto mode is handy for when you aren’t home or asleep.
The LCD screen shows the PM2.5 (particulate matter) sensor so you can adjust airflow. As you can imagine, that makes for some serious harmful particle removal. The buttons are all on top, and it is very easy to use.
Mold spores, pollen, viruses, and other organic pollutants like dust mites all account for reducing the class of indoor air quality, and the American Lung Association considers these a significant threat to overall health and wellness, potentially causing lost days at both work and school. In other words, it is a health risk. That said, a literal plethora of medical studies are available to the curious mind that delves deep into the relationship between molds, allergies, and asthma, and they all have slightly different conclusions. One thing that keeps constant though, is the fact that breathing clean, dry air is better for respiratory health than breathing contaminated air. To help reduce interior air pollution, consider investing in an air purifier for your home.
Using an indoor air purifier to remove pollutants can significantly improve the quality of your respiratory health, while mitigating risks that have been associated with molds, spores, fungi, and other airborne particulates. Make your immune system stronger by investing in products that can help you breathe fresh air without having to leave your home. Outdoor air pollution already takes its toll on your lower and upper respiratory tract, but you have much more control over improving your home’s interior air quality. Just be aware that you should hire a professional for mold removal in addition to using a good air purifier. The more that you can limit your mold exposure, the better for your allergy and asthma. This is why it is also a good idea to use vacuum cleaners often. Also, check out the best air purifier for cigarette smoke if you regularly smoke in your house. Moreover, you might want a top-rated whole house air purifier, especially for people who smoke.
Buying the best air purifier for mold risk mitigation can have a lasting impact on your and your family’s long-term health, and having said that, let’s dive into our top picks.
Mold affects our health adversely, and airborne pollution comes in many forms, but the one thing that stays consistent is size. Aside from visible dust, most particulate pollution is tiny – microscopic, in fact – and if the air purifier isn’t assembled with internal seals to prevent air from escaping before it’s been cleaned, then you might as well not even have an air purifier at all. For more peace of mind, it may help to read our article on duct cleaning vs an air purifier to see how beneficial keeping all parts of ventilation clean can be.
All the models that made our list have been engineered with industrial-grade seals and filtration compartments to ensure that dirty air is processed through filters and treatment processes before returning to the environment it’s been pulled from. If an initial review model was found to have a major design flaw allowing contaminated air to escape before the exhaust, we eliminated it from our review.
Machines employing carbon filtration were carefully reviewed to ensure that the medium of choice ranked as some of the highest quality in the industry segment. Activated carbon filters with more weight provide a greater surface area for capturing contaminants and typically last longer – we’ve ensured that the models in this list reign superior to others in the vertical regarding carbon filtration.
HEPA. We’ve all heard the term, but how many of us understand what HEPA is and why it’s critical to air filtration? If you want to learn more about HEPA filters, we have an article just for that. Otherwise, it’s important to understand the very basics: various HEPA grades are available to manufacturers of air purifiers, and a company’s selection of medical-grade, high-performance HEPA filters demonstrates not only superior device functionality, but also the company’s commitment to superior customer health. All of the units included in this list employ medical-grade HEPA filters as part of multi-staged air purification. Also, check out our comparison of air sanitizers vs air purifiers’ effectiveness on mold.
When it comes to mold spore removal, we think of damp spaces that are undergoing remodeling and/or remediation, and while this isn’t always going to be the case, we wanted to ensure that the units that made our final list were built tough – tough enough to take a minor beating, and devoid of components that break when you manhandle them. Our top picks are built solidly and can endure demanding environments and long run times in less-than-perfect environmental conditions.
Air purifier filters vary greatly based on the intended application. Avoid buying an air purifier that isn’t designed to reduce and/or eliminate mold spores in the air, because antimicrobial filters are designed to kill organic pollutants on contact and offer greater protection from contaminants like molds. Medical-grade HEPA filters coupled with pre-filters designed for mold spores capture particulate in an environment that isn’t ideal for propagation – leading to the organisms’ death. If you’re sensitive to dust, make sure sure your AC’s filters don’t scatter dust particles back around your space, which the carbon and mesh filters featured in this Whynter ARC-12SD review help prevent.
Molds and mildew should be dealt with primarily at the source. High humidity environments are conducive to mold propagation. Our recommendation is to 1) Treat the source first, 2) Install an air purifier that’s designed to remove mold spores from the air, and 3) Install a dehumidifier to ensure that the environment’s humidity is kept around 40-45% (to kill mold the environment’s humidity needs to be under 50%, ideally around 35%). These steps should completely remove spores from the air and eliminate mold. Mildew removal is essential no matter the type of mold and besides, no one likes that musty smell. Don’t even get me started on pet odors. For that, you’ll need to look into the leading air purifiers for odors.
If you’re looking for something a little more budget-friendly, consider the Honeywell 50250 HEPA air purifier which we covered in our best air purifiers for allergies and dust buyers guide. Aside from a dehumidifier, humidity control can also be maintained with a portable air conditioner. Also, ensure you keep your air purifier clean by following best practices and guidelines set by the manufacturer.
Our Editor’s Choice for the best air purifier for mold, the IQAir HealthPro Plus Air Purifier is an expertly crafted HEPA air purifier that when used properly can significantly reduce the inhalation risk of airborne mold spores.
Make sure you get the proper machine for your desired job. An air purifier for smoke is going to excel at that job, while a machine for mold will do very well for mold. Whatever you get, make sure it has a true HEPA allergen remover. A true HEPA air purifier will remove the most pollutants. Smart air purifiers and your typical 3in1 true HEPA air purifier are getting better at multitasking, however. Adding a UV lamp to kill germs is also a nice bonus.