If you have been using a high-performing air purifier for a while, you may have noticed a worrying red light popping up. What does a red light mean on an air purifier? Keep reading to find out.
Each air purifier model may have different uses for a red light, but in most cases, a red light will indicate some kind of maintenance issue, like taking a long while before you clean your air purifier. Without the red light, an issue going on with your air purifier may not always be clear, like the best quiet HEPA air purifier may not always produce louder noise levels to signal something is wrong.
You’ll notice that it may be the air purifier that’s triggering the red light. So, if you have the best air purifier with a washable filter, all you need to do is wash it, dry it, then replace it into the machine. Simple!
In most cases, a red light indicates some maintenance issue, like taking long before you clean your air purifier.
As previously mentioned, each air purifier features a different design, so the troubleshooting steps to fix a red light will vary. And, if you’re using the best photocatalytic oxidation air purifier, it may have different warning lights altogether. That said, here are a few universal tips to think about as you troubleshoot your air purifier.
The primary reason an air purifier will emit a red light is when the air filter has become clogged and needs cleaning or replacement. You can troubleshoot this by opening up the air purifier’s housing and looking at the filter. If it appears extraordinarily dirty or clogged, it is time to clean it or replace it. As a note, the HEPA filter works best when replaced every six months to one year. You can find out what true HEPA means. On the other hand, Electrostatic and activated carbon filters should be cleaned every month with gently running water and microfiber cloth so that your washable filter air purifier can operate efficiently. And, that way, your air purifier won’t harm you.
Some air purifiers will emit a red light when the filter needs to be replaced or cleaned, but an orange light when the filter is close to needing some maintenance. This is why you should know what a dirty filter on an air purifier looks like and expect what happens if you don’t change the air purifier filter.
If you are tired of dealing with cleaning or replacing a filter, read our filter vs filterless air purifier comparison to see if a filterless option will be right for you. Additionally, if it is time to replace or clean your filter, know how to clean air purifier blades to ensure your machine can clean your air smoothly.
The primary reason an air purifier will emit a red light is when the air filter has become clogged and needs cleaning or replacement.
STAT: HEPA filters will eliminate up to 99.97 percent of airborne pollutants that are 0.3 microns in diameter and above. (source)
In some cases, a red light will indicate an extraordinarily high amount of air pollutants floating around. If you live near an active wildfire, the red light will warn that the air purifier is struggling to purify all of that smoke. You can troubleshoot this issue by moving the air purifier around to different rooms of your room, as some rooms may be less polluted than others. If your space is rather polluted and you’re stuck with a large space, it might be best to invest in one of the best air purifiers for large rooms. That said, you’ll want to know the energy usage of an air purifier, especially if it’s being used in a large room.
In rare cases, the red light could be shining for no real reason. Sometimes the sensors get overwhelmed and think that the filter is too dirty or that your atmosphere is too polluted when neither is true. In this case, you will want to hold down the red button for several seconds until it resets. In fact, on the best Levoit air purifiers, you’ll find easy-to-use and simplistic controls for the device as well as maintenance capabilities.
Some air purifiers will emit a red light when the filter needs to be replaced or cleaned, but an orange light when the filter is close to needing some maintenance.
How often should I clean or replace the filters?
This will vary depending on your filter and purifier, so check the instructions for details. However, HEPA filters tend to need replacement once every six months to one year, while other kinds of filters should usually be cleaned once a month.
How do I clean the filters?
When it comes to electrostatic and activated carbon filters, clean them with gently running water and a microfiber cloth. Be sure to give them adequate time to dry before reinserting them into the air purifier.
How do I reset the filter replacement indicator?
The process to reset a filter replacement light is usually done by holding down on the light itself for several seconds before you see it fade. This will vary depending on the make and model of your air purifier.
And, if you want to look at more models, read our Alen BreatheSmart Classic large room air purifier review.