Best Air Purifier for Mold in 2019 ~ Expert Reviews & Buyers Guide
Air Purifiers Best

Best Air Purifier For Mold

Researching and buying a new air purifier can get a little technical, 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 inclusive of: effective pollutant isolation via internal seals between cleansing stages, 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 mold.

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 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.

Top 3 Best Air Purifier for Mold Compared

OVERVIEW
gr5-table__imageIQAir HealthPro Plus
  • 5-Year Warranty
  • HEPA
  • Price: $899
Buy Now
gr5-table__imageBlueair Classic 405
  • 5-Year Warranty
  • HEPA
  • Price: $549
Buy Now
gr5-table__imageAustin Air HealthMate
  • 5-Year Warranty
  • HEPA
  • Price: $506
Buy Now

 #1  IQAir HealthPro Plus Air Purifier – Editor’s Choice/Best Air Purifier For Mold

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. No ionization or ultraviolet light treatment stages in this machine, which means no harmful VOCs in the air for you.

Pros
  • Extremely high air filtration efficiency
  • High powered yet quiet fan motor
  • Very low energy consumption
Cons
  • No designer colors offered
  • Expensive
  • Filter replacement can be expensive

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 seals 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 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.

 #2  Blueair Classic 405 – Best Air Purifier For Mold and Dust

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.

Pros
  • Large room coverage of 434 sq ft
  • Awesome performance rating
  • Highest quality material
Cons
  • Is more expensive than others with same room coverage
  • The machine is big and heavy
  • No integrated Smart Sensor

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.

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 really. Ionization can be an extremely effective means at 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.” We had a little bit of trouble with Wi-Fi connectivity on our test units, but after some reconfiguration we were able to reliably connect. Our recommendation though is that consumers interested in buying the 405, or another one of Blueair’s non-i 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.

 #3  Austin Air HealthMate – Best Air Purifier For Mold And Allergies

Medical-Grade HEPA: Yes | Weight: 45 lbs

WHY WE LIKE IT: The HealthMate employs a pre-filter, medium particulate filter, impregnated carbon and zeolite filter, and a medical-grade HEPA filter to ensure maximum filtration in even non-ideal environments.

Pros
  • Top-notch performance
  • High quality and long-lasting air filter
  • Powerful air flow with high CADR
Cons
  • No Smart Features
  • High power consumption
  • Noisy

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. 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).

 #4  Alen BreatheSmart Classic – Best For Killing Mold and Bacteria

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.

Pros
  • Super quiet operation
  • Purifying air in areas up to 1100 sq ft
  • 4 airflow speed options
Cons
  • The price tag can be a little cringe-inducing to new buyers.
  • Construction can feel a little flimsy

While it’s not 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.

 #5  SilverOnyx Air Purifier – Best For Killing Mold and Bacteria


WHY WE LIKE IT:
An affordable air purifier that does it all. It will clean your air of mold spores, smoke, dust, pet dander and more. Moreover, it’s also compact, affordable and more versatile than models like the Alen Breathesmart Flex.
Pros
  • 5 Level Filtration System
  • True Hepa Filter
  • LCD Display
Cons
  • A bit expensive
  • Lacks the proper amount of breather holes

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 anyone with mold issues. 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 particles removal. The buttons are all on top and it is very easy to use.

Why You Should Buy An Air Purifier for Mold Spore Removal

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 delve deep into the relationship between molds, and 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.

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. 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. Which is why it is also a good idea to use the vacuum cleaner very often.

Buying the best air purifier for mold risk mitigation can make a lasting impact on you and your family’s long-term health, and having said that let’s dive into our top picks.

How We Choose the Best Air Purifiers for Mold

Internal Seals
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..

All the models that made our list have been engineered with industrial-grade seals and filtration compartments, meant to ensure that dirty air is processed through filters and treatment processes prior to 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.

Media Quality and Volume
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 also typically last longer – we’ve ensured that the models in this list reign superior to others in the vertical when it comes to carbon filtration.

Medical-Grade HEPA Filtration
HEPA. We’ve all heard the term, but how many of us really 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.

Industrial Design
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.

Key Factors

  1. Multi-Stage Air Cleaning
    Mold spores are typically captured by medium-sized particulate filters, but some spores can make it through various stages of an air filter until reaching the HEPA filter. Multi-staged purification ensures that airborne particulates captured by your air cleaner have a higher probability of being removed by the machine. Purifiers with true HEPA are the best. Filter life is about 3-6 months depending on usage. When it’s time make sure you get a replacement filter and do a filter change.
  2. Don’t Be Overwhelmed
    There are many models to choose from. With so many air purifiers on the market it can be hard to determine which is best. There are popular models like the Honeywell HPA300, the Levoit lvpur131 air purifier, Germguardian ac5350b, breathesmart flexs with the Hepasilver filter, Coway ap1512hh, the LVH132 air purifier, Purezone 3in1 true HEPA air, Fellowes Aeramax, Germguardian ac4100, Levoit lvh132 and all of the other air purifiers on amazon. No matter what you buy, make sure that you shop around, check price on Amazon and get a lifetime warranty when you purchase. Also consider getting an energy star rated model to save energy.
  3. HEPA
    Should mold spores reach air purifiers with true HEPA, interlaced threads in the filter will attract the particulates and capture them. Dry environments, like the HEPA filter, are inhospitable for spore reproduction and cause the organic material to die. True HEPA air purifiers capture up to 99.97 percent of particles as small as 0.3 microns.
  4. Air Cleaner Construction
    Industrial seals keep contaminants from escaping once caught by the machine, but they also ensure that the machine itself isn’t compromised by its environment. Things like internal moisture protection, positive air pressure relative to the environment being treated, and airflow engineering into and out of the machine all ensure that the air cleaning process works in practice as well as it works in theory.

Features to Look For

  • User Interface
    • Few of us like complicated controls. With that in mind, we set out to include machines on our list that are easy to configure, use, and understand with some very key features. These are mostly “set them and forget them” devices, but understanding filter change indications, speed settings, and automation functions are an important part of the consumer experience.
  • Sensor Technology
    • Not too many sensor are considered necessities on machines like these, but we prefer a few: 1) Differential pressure sensors to indicate filter replacement, 2) Environmental sensors to automate fan speed based on pollution detection, and 3) Day/night programs to ensure a peaceful environment while resting.
  • Caster Wheels
    • Few of us like complicated controls. With that in mind, we set out to include machines on our list that are easy to configure, use, and understand with some very key features. These are mostly “set them and forget them” devices, but understanding filter change indications, speed settings, and automation functions are an important part of the consumer experience.

Mistakes to Avoid

Air purifier filters vary greatly based on 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.

What Else You Should Think About

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 entirely. 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.

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 that you get the proper machine for the job that you want. 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. The addition of a UV lamp to kill germs is a nice bonus also.

 

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