Best Air Purifier for Living Room – You already know it’s important to regularly clean your home, but there’s one part beyond the surfaces that’s often looked over: the air. Using an air purifier can help make sure the air you breathe is cleaner, but not all air purifiers are created equal.
That’s why the Lab experts at the Good Housekeeping Institute dug deep into the research to find the best air purifiers on the market. We vetted dozens of air purifiers by evaluating their controls and interfaces for ease of use, road testing in our homes and labs, in addition to reviewing specifications and test documentations and selecting from brands we know and trust.
1.Coway Airmega 250
Coway’s Airmega 250 splits the room capacity between its bedroom-and-office 200M and excellent Airmega 300/400 series. This is the perfect size for a typical living room or den. It captures 99.999 percent of particulate down to 0.1 microns, which makes it capable of tackling wildfire smoke and big-city pollution.
The washable prefilter keeps the replaceable HEPA filter lasting longer, too. And, hey, it also looks like the air purifier version of a 1994 Plymouth Acclaim, but in an endearingly hip way, retro without trying to look retro.
Pros & Cons
- [Coverage] Designed to clean spaces up to 930 sq. ft. in 30 minutes
- [HyperCaptive Filtration System] Combination of a pre-filter, deodorization filter, and True HEPA Filter reduces 99.999% of 0.01-micron particles, including pollen and other allergens. It also reduces 99% of volatile organic compounds and odor
- [Air Quality Indicator] 24/7 pollution monitor air quality throughout the day, adjusting purification to the necessary level and saving energy when it's not needed
- [Rapid Mode] When air quality is in need of a boost, Rapid Mode is activated to circulate at maximum power until your air is clean
- [Smart Mode] With its Smart Mode feature, the Airmega automatically adapts to its surroundings by adjusting fan speeds based on the room's air quality. That means your unit is energy efficient without compromising effectiveness
- [3-stage Manual Fan Speed] Control your Airmega's fan manually with low, medium, and high settings
- [Filter Alerts]The air filter indicator tells you when the filters need to be replaced and the prefilters need to be cleaned for maximum efficiency, based on how much air they have processed
- [Timer] Schedule the unit to purify for 1, 4, or 8 hours of use and conserve energy
- [Warranty] 3-year Limited Manufacturer's Warranty
2.Dyson Pure Hot +
Filtering out volatile organic compounds and particulates is one way of making the air in your home safer. Adjusting it to the correct humidity is another important component, and it’s often ignored. Indoor air is usually very dry, and viruses love dry air. Having the right indoor humidity inactivates viruses much faster than normal, making airborne viruses less likely to infect you.
That’s why I really like Dyson’s purifier (9/10, WIRED Recommends), which I tested last spring. Its almost entirely automated self-cleaning mode takes care of the worst aspect of humidifiers—keeping them mold-free. Along with its excellent air purifier performance and smart features, it’s tough to beat for larger rooms. As long as you can swallow the price.
Pros & Cons
- Triple Functionality: Purifies year-round, cooling fan in summer and powerful heater in winter. Now works with Amazon Alexa
- HEPA filter removes 99.97% of allergens and pollutants as small as 0.3 microns including pollen, dust, mold spores, bacteria and pet dander. Second filter layer with active carbon captures household odors and volatile organic compounds such as paint fumes
- Certified Asthma and Allergy Friendly and awarded the Quietmark accreditation
- Automatically monitors and reacts. Dyson Link app provides real-time air quality reports and allows you to remotely control your machine from your smartphone – standard data and messaging rates may apply
- Has auto mode, sleep timer, night-time mode and easy to clean. With no fast-spinning blades it’s safe for little fingers or paws
This Honeywell is rated for rooms up to 500 square feet, which is on par with the other large-room air purifiers we tested. It’s also very lightweight. Compared to the Blueair HealthProtect 7410i and Dyson Pure Hot+Cool, it was much easier to pick up by its built-in handle and move around. It’s not lacking any parts, either. Inside it packs two HEPA-grade filters and an activated carbon prefilter for trapping volatile organic compounds such as cooking odors.
When air quality dipped inside my apartment, the Insight quickly ramped up its fan and sucked up the odors or invisible particulates. For under $300, you get a strong-performing purifier with an automatic set-it-and-forget-it mode, and unlike many bigger models, you can easily carry it from room to room when needed.
Pros & Cons
- EXTRA-LARGE ROOM AIR PURIFIER – Honeywell HPA300 HEPA Air Purifier helps provide cleaner, fresher air. Recommended for extra-large rooms (465 sq. feet), HEPA Filtration helps capture up to 99.97% of microscopic airborne particles.
- HELPS REDUCE PARTICLES - This HEPA air purifier has 4 air cleaning levels including Turbo Clean. It helps capture the following microscopic airborne particles: dirt, pollen, pet dander, and smoke.
- EFFECTIVE AIR CLEANING AND CIRCULATION – The Honeywell HPA300 Air Purifier filters and circulates air in Extra-large 465 sq. ft. rooms up to 4.8 times an hour.
- ALLERGEN PLUS SERIES – This Honeywell HEPA Air Purifier is part of our Allergen Plus series. This product earned the ENERGY STAR label by meeting strict energy efficient guidelines set by the U.S. EPA.
- COMPATIBLE DOES NOT MEAN COMPARABLE PERFORMANCE – For best performance, use only Genuine Honeywell air purifier filters. Compatible air purifier filter replacements are not guaranteed to offer the same performance or efficiency.
Most Honorable Mentions in the post
Fridababy, a company known for ingenious solutions to everyday parenting problems, recently introduced a small-room air purifier designed for spaces up to 150 square feet—like a baby’s nursery. It’s on our recommended list because, not only is it meant to help filter out dust mites and the like, but it also has a built-in sound machine and nightlight.
We’re all about finding space-saving, multi-purpose products, particularly for our littles! While we have yet to review company testing data on the air purity claims, we found the sound machine and nightly aspects easy to use and the filter easy to replace.
Pros & Cons
- SLEEPY SOUNDS: Choose from two white noise options to help little ones fall asleep
- HEPA FILTER: Removes smoke, odors + pollution from the air
- LONG-LASTING: Easy-change air filter lasts for 90 days
- ADJUSTABLE FAN: Choose from three fan speeds with an auto-off timer
- COLOR NIGHTLIGHT: Pick from four nightlight color options to set the mood at bedtime
- CONTENTS: 1 Sound Machine, 1 HEPA Filter + 1 Instruction Manual
5.LEVOIT Air Purifier
The combination of value, performance and intelligent design impressed our engineering experts during our Seal evaluation process. In particular, the unit’s three-stage filtration, including HEPA, helps it capture even the smallest airborne pollutants in rooms up to approximately 400 square feet; a built-in precision laser sensor accurately monitors particles in the room and auto-adjusts fan speeds as needed.
The purifier is also incredibly quiet, operating at a whisper-quiet (literally!) 24db, which you’ll appreciate if it’s stationed in your bedroom; one of our staff testers has been running the unit for several months in her home and says the light hum is quite peaceful at night.
Pros & Cons
- OZONE FREE: Levoit air purifiers avoid using UV-C light, an air cleaning method that research has shown can produce harmful ozone and secondary pollution
- HIGH PERFORMANCE: Enjoy fresh air in minutes with the Core 300 True HEPA Air Purifier. Featuring VortexAir Technology and 360° air intake, the Core 300 cleans spaces up to 547 ft² in 30 minutes, 219 ft² in 12 minutes (CADR: 141 CFM / 240 m³/h). Only products over 6 pounds can be equipped with such powerful motors that optimize the air cleaning performance
- FIND RELIEF: Ease sneezing, congestion, and other allergy symptoms caused by airborne contaminants. The H13 True HEPA Filter works alongside the Pre-Filter and High-Efficiency Activated Carbon Filter to capture 99.97% of airborne particles 0.3 microns in size, such as dust, smoke, pollen, odor
- OFFICIAL LEVOIT FILTERS: Search for B07RSZSYNC or Core 300-RF to find Levoit's Core 300 replacement filter. Levoit filters provide the best fit and filtration, while off-brand filters are unreliable and may damage the air purifier
- MULTIPLE FILTER CHOICES: Choose from a variety of replacement filters to best meet your needs. The Toxin Absorber Filter specializes in smog, toxins, and VOCs. The Smoke Remover filter specializes in wildfire, smoke and etc. And the Pet Allergy Filter helps to capture pet dander and absorb unpleasant odors
- WHISPER QUIET AIR CLEANER: Choose Sleep Mode at night and then forget all about your air purifier while you sleep. QuietKEAP Technology reduces noise levels to a near-silent 24dB, ensuring the Core 300 won’t get in the way of a good night’s rest
- SLEEK DESIGN: The Core 300 practically serves your home while blending in with your decor. Its award-winning design (Red Dot, 2020) and modern white finish help your air purifier fit anywhere in your home/bedroom/room
- UNDISTURBED OPERATION: The display light can be turned off to enjoy a perfect night of sleep without the effect of light. A timer for 2/4/6/8 hours and filter lifetime indicator for your convenience
- FULL CERTIFIED FOR SAFER: Energy Star Verified, Complies with California air resources board (CARB) for indoor cleaning devices. Also FCC certified, ETL listed
The Winix 5500-2 is an exceptional performer on particulates, capturing 99.9% of the smoke in our test room in just 30 minutes on high and 97.2% on its medium-high setting, where it emits an easy-to-live-with 40 decibels. In both cases, that’s a bit better than the results we got from the Coway AP-1512HH Mighty, though in practice the differences are insignificant:
Both machines, when used continuously as they are in most homes, will drop particulates to near zero in under an hour—and keep them there. We still prefer the Mighty for its lower energy consumption, smaller visual footprint, display-shutoff feature, and more attractive look, but it’s a close race.
Pros & Cons
- True HEPA filter captures 99.97% of airborne pollutants; dust mites, pet dander, pollen and other allergens as small as 0.3 microns
- Washable AOC Carbon Filter, made from activated carbon granulars for removal of household odors. Decibels 27.8 dB
- PlasmaWave acts as a permanent filter to safely break down odor, allergens, chemical vapors and other pollutants with no harmful ozone
- Smart Sensors gauge the air and our Auto Mode adjusts the fan to filter the air as needed; with a sleep mode for silent night time operation
- CADR rated for 360 square feet room size. Suitable for medium and large rooms; kids bedrooms, family rooms and kitchens
- Product has no extra filters
Best Air Purifier for Living Room – Given the increased focus on air purifiers of late, we decided to update our report with additional model recommendations, based on further specification reviews and road tests of reliable brands. During the pandemic, our chief engineer, Rachel Rothman, tested more than 12 models in her home, logging 100,000-plus hours of total run time, along with extensive usability tests.
The devices were exposed to drying paint, kitchen fumes and even dirty diapers to measure air purification across a range of scenarios and common at-home needs. We also turned to our Lab experts, as well as outside specialists on indoor air quality, for answers to the most frequently asked questions around air purifiers.