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What makes for the best filterless air purifier? The best feature of a filterless air purifier is the fact that you don’t have to change the filter. This leaves you with a low-maintenance way to keep the air in your home clean. They’re also very cost-effective and energy-efficient.
However, while it’ll save you from the expense and hassle of replacing filters, it’s important to note that a filterless air purifier won’t be as efficient as a filtered model. This means that may not be an ideal solution for allergy sufferers, those with pets, and people who live in highly polluted areas.
Air purifiers can keep the air inside your home healthy, so keep reading our buying guide to learn more about choosing the best filterless air purifier to suit your needs.
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: This high-capacity option is suitable for most rooms in your home. It uses ultraviolet light to clean your air. You’ll enjoy that it’s able to target household allergens with ease, making breathing easier.
This model works best for medium-to-large rooms. You can clean up to 743 square feet with it. It does best in rooms around 343 square feet, where it can sanitize and purify the air supply up to 3 times in a single hour. However, there has been testing that shows this model is not as efficient at lowering VOC levels in homes. This might be a dealbreaker for those looking to tackle VOCs specifically.
You’ll be able to choose between the 3 different cleaning modes this model offers. This 3-speed fan gives you precision control over your environment. You’ll be able to breathe cleaner air thanks to the cleansing properties of ultraviolet light through a patented Germicidal technology unique to this model. It will help reduce the number of airborne particles, like dust, mold, viruses, and even bacteria. There is a 24-hour automatic timer to make setting it and forgetting it possible.
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: We like that this highly compact model is made to travel with you wherever you go. There are six included in your order, and they’re all essentially silent to keep household distractions minimal.
If you have multiple rooms that require purification, this is an excellent option. There are six total units included so you can ensure you’re breathing easy everywhere in your home. Use them on the staircase, in bathrooms, in your living room, and anywhere else. However, some folks may not like the fact that this is a system of air purifiers instead of just one unit. If you prefer to have one unit doing all the work, this isn’t the right option.
A sterilization function is offered to ensure that you’re breathing the cleanest air possible. You’ll also enjoy the low noise this model emits. It’s a low-power option, as well, making it more eco-friendly than some competitor options. The Smart design features an LED indicator light, so you know that it’s always on and working. You won’t have to worry about pet dander, mold, mildew, or any other allergens making your symptoms worse.
Award: BEST FOR HEALTH-CONSCIOUS DESIGN
WHY WE LIKE IT: You can rely on this air purifier to avoid emitting anything potentially harmful, like ions or ultraviolet light. It uses a unique Thermodynamic TSS technology to keep airborne particulate from your breathing supply.
You’ll enjoy that this option doesn’t emit anything potentially harmful. You’re free of ions and ultraviolet light. Just like its sister model, the AirFree Tulip, it works using Thermodynamic TSS technology. This means that it uses heat to destroy airborne particles like mold, pet dander, other spores, toxins, and more. The lack of a traditional filter can spell disaster for some populations. Those with allergies or asthma are better off choosing a unit with a HEPA filter.
This air purification unit also reduces ozone levels, making your home a healthier place. It’s completely silent so that you can even use it in the bedroom without worrying about sleep disturbances. It’s an ideal option for the kitchen, bathroom, living spaces, garage, and more. It uses filter-free technologies, so it’s far better for energy conservation. You won’t have to worry about changing or washing any filters, either.
Award: BEST FOR CLEANING WITH IONIZATION
WHY WE LIKE IT: If you need to travel with your air purifier constantly, this highly portable option will be a great choice. Instead, it doesn’t require a power outlet and can plug right into a universal serial bus slot.
The output of ions in this model is simply astounding. It has an output of up to 20 million negative ions per second, so it’s constantly working to keep your air clean. It can clean larger rooms than you might expect, as well, with the ability to be used for up to 500 square feet. Compared to competing models, this air purifier does get a bit noisy. If you need pure silence in your home, this option might produce too much white noise for you.
There is a built-in dual voltage power supply, as well. This allows you to skip the hassle of finding an adapter or converter for your unit. On top of this, it also is capable of being used with a USB port. This makes it an excellent choice for those who are traveling or just need a portable model. It can run on a power supply as low as 1.5-watts.
Award: BEST FOR PORTABILITY
WHY WE LIKE IT: This is a highly compact option that comes in handy when you’re on the go. It can easily plug into any power outlet and be forgotten about since it’s such a quiet model. It uses the power of ionization to clean the air.
This plug-in option can match up with any standard outlet, so you have a full range of movement throughout your home. This makes it a wonderfully portable choice that you can even travel with if you need to. This little air purification unit has a modest coverage of 40 – 60 square feet. This model is just too small for some consumers to get the job done. It’s better suited to those traveling who need a compact option.
It uses filterless ionization to clean the air. This proven method will save you the hassle of replacing or washing any included filters. It comes with 2 fiber brush heads, as well. You’ll enjoy the intelligent design that allows for an output of up to 32 million negative ions in a second. It has a super purification function available when you need the job done quickly. You’ll also enjoy that it’s low-energy and low noise. It only reaches levels of around 20 decibels.
Award: BEST FOR DEODORIZING ROOMS
WHY WE LIKE IT: This option is fantastic if you need an air purifier specifically for your bathroom or kitchen. Its number one priority is deodorizing rooms and ensuring bad smells are gone. You’ll enjoy the easy touch controls, as well.
The economical design means that low power consumption is a priority for this model. It’s a low-maintenance option that doesn’t require the usage of a filter to get the job done. This saves you both money and time on filter replacements, which could make it a great ionic air purifier. However, some consumers report that this model’s power is lacking. If you have huge rooms to filter the air in, you might want to go with a more powerful air purification system.
Because of its compact size, you can use this model in the bathroom, kitchen, gym, garage, hallways, bedroom, or anywhere else. It will fight foul odors like cat litter, smoke, dirty laundry, trash, cooking food, and more. The design makes it quiet even while working at total capacity. You can clean rooms of up to 400 square feet since it releases 28 million ions per second.
Filterless air purifiers are air purifiers without filters. They use other types of technology like ionization, UV light, or electrostatic precipitation to remove harmful substances from the air. Because they don’t have filters that need cleaning or replacing, they don’t require a lot of maintenance. But, you should ask yourself, does this air purifier help with flu? If you’re prone to contracting cases of flu or cold, you’ll want to know before you buy one.
You can also read our page on what plants are food air purifiers if you wish to try a more natural approach to cleaning your air.
The primary and most important difference between a filterless air purifier and a standard air purifier is that it doesn’t have a filter, like the one you’ll find in our Alen BreatheSmart Classic large room air purifier review. Filterless models still sanitize the air, but it eliminates the need for you to replace the air filters every 3-6 months, saving you time and money. You can also check out our filter vs filterless air purifier comparison to learn more.
You’ll also save time in cleaning and maintenance because, unlike standard air purifiers, filterless air purifiers eliminate the need to clean washable filters or replace them with new disposable ones. Because they don’t use a fan like standard models, you also won’t have to clean the fan blades. This also makes them quieter to run, which means they’re perfect for music rooms, nurseries, or bedrooms.
You’ll also reap the benefits of a lower energy bill because they consume less energy than a standard air purifier. That said, they’re simply not as efficient as a model that uses a HEPA filter or activated carbon filter because they don’t contain fans that circulate the air quickly or at different speeds.
Filterless air purifiers are ideal for people who don’t have respiratory concerns, live in less polluted areas, or don’t have pets. However, some models that use ozone generators can produce ozone in large enough quantities, causing lung irritation.
How Filterless Air Purifiers Work
Filterless air purifiers are appliances that clean the air in your home without the use of filters. Since you don’t have to buy replacement filters for them, they’re much more cost-efficient in the long run. They tend to be very quiet and are very energy efficient. Plus, you’ll enjoy the same cleaner indoor air quality as you would with filter purifiers because they still work at a molecular level.
They work by drawing polluted air through an intake, cleaning it, and then dispensing clean air back out into the room. They cleanse the air of harmful particulates and allergens and keep the air in your home cleaner.
Filterless air purifiers clean the air using several different methods of purifier technology. Rather than a filter, these types of purifiers use air ionizers, electrostatic precipitators, ultraviolet light, photocatalytic oxidation, thermodynamic sterilization, or ozone generators to clean the air.
An air ionizer uses electrically-charged plates to clean the air. One plate charges the molecules in the air using ionization while the other collects toxic substances and dirty molecules. The second plate traps these harmful substances so they can’t escape back into the clean air.
Electrostatic precipitators also use a set of plates to catch harmful molecules in the air. However, they use a high-voltage electrostatic field to charge the molecules and release ions to sanitize the air, rather than simply collecting and trapping the dirty particles.
Ultraviolet purifiers can kill germs, viruses, mold spores, and bacteria using UV-C light. This type of UV light is ten times more powerful than any other. These are some of the market’s most effective and cost-efficient filterless air purifiers.
Photocatalytic oxidation also uses UV light, combining it with titanium dioxide to eliminate bacteria and viruses. This technology was developed by NASA and is very effective.
Thermodynamic sterilization is a patented technology that can remove up to 99% of the viruses, bacteria, and other microorganisms in your air. It rids your air of these contaminants using very high temperatures of over 400℉.
Filterless air purifiers that use an ozone generator are typically regarded as unsafe if they have dangerous emissions over the amount recommended by the EPA. They split oxygen molecules into single atoms to eliminate contaminants. When these single atoms merge with oxygen, it creates ozone, damaging lung tissue and aggravating respiratory illnesses.
If you don’t have an air purifier at all, your home could definitely benefit from the filterless variety as long as you don’t have any respiratory concerns. An upgrade is a great idea if you already have an older filtered air purifier and want to see what newer filterless technology can do.
Will a filterless model, you’ll enjoy years of nearly maintenance-free use. You won’t have to change any filters, meaning you’ll save time on cleaning a reusable filter and save money on replacements. Even units with permanent filters have to be maintained regularly, and those air purifier owners will have to learn how to clean their permanent air purifier filter. The quiet operation is also a huge added benefit over a traditional air purifier.
Filterless air purifiers are typically rated to last up to 10,000 hours. That’s a total of 5 years if you run it every day. However, if you clean and maintain it properly, it could last a lot longer than that. It will also depend on how hard it has to work to clean your air. If you live in a particularly polluted area or you expect it to be clean air filled with pet dander and cigarette smoke, that could significantly shorten its lifespan.
If it sounds like a filterless air purifier is for you, there are some key considerations you should know about before making a purchasing decision. One of the most important things to think about is the type of filtration technology you want, followed by size and noise level.
We’ve already reviewed the types of filtration technology above, but it’s important to consider this first. Every type of air purifier works differently. It’s easy to see that the types of technology that trap the airborne particles inside are the best options for those with breathing issues. While other types of technology are effective at killing most bacteria, they still release those previously dirty molecules back into circulation.
Filterless air purifiers come in many different sizes, and some have up to 3500 square feet of cleaning capacity. That’s bigger than some homes! Consider where you’re going to put the purifier and how much square footage you effectively need to cover. This will help you better decide whether the specific unit you want will work for you.
Most filterless units tend to be very high-end, quiet air purifiers, but they’re not all completely silent. You may hear a slight buzzing as it draws in the air and works through the purification process. Think about the environment in the room where it will be working, look at noise ratings, and determine the appropriate noise level for rooms like bedrooms.
If you want your filterless air purifier to be multifunctional or easier to use, look for options that come with features like nightlights, remote controls, or portability. Those with nightlights typically have a blue night light that’s less distracting, while portable varieties are more compact and easy to take on vacation.