Buying guide for budget air purifiers: Get rid of dangerous gases and allergens like pollen and dust mites from homes

If you have lived in Delhi NCR region, like this writer has, in the October-November period, you would be familiar with the dreadful bad air days. The scenes are no different from the disaster and doomsday movies we see in Hollywood.

Buying guide for budget air purifiers: Check out our detailed study of air purifiers in this category and pick one that suits you.

The AQI index goes berserk, with very high indices affecting the overall health and well-being parameters. Schools remain shut, smog paralyses day-to-day life, children and elderly feel the pinch the most, but no one is spared. Masks are used frequently, but those are only short-term solutions. Governments experiment with an odd-and-even formula to reduce vehicular pollution, but that too is insufficient. In such a scenario, opting for a good and effective air purifier is the only solution. 

In this buying guide for air purifiers, we will delve deep into all aspects of air pollution, the best air purifiers in the market and discuss their features so that you can make an informed decision. 

Remember, if you live in a metro, an air purifier is no longer a luxury, it is a must. North India, owing to several reasons, may be worst affected, especially during winter months, but no Indian city is immune from air pollution.

What is air pollution?

A quick Google search is sure to give you a basic idea of what an air purifier is all about. But wait! Let’s first understand what are the kinds of air pollutants people have to experience. In 2016, the World Health Organization (WHO) came out with a study that showed that 14 of the 20 most polluted cities in the world were in India. While industrial pollution is a major contributor, other factors also play a significant role. Chief among these are vehicular emissions, stubble burning, generation of dust (particularly from construction sites), depleting tree cover and poor waste management. While long-time solutions like policy changes and behavioural changes in public are considered ‘drivers of change’, in the immediate, an air purifier is a perfect solution.

What is an air purifier?

An air purifier is a device designed to remove contaminants from the air in a room to improve indoor air quality. These devices are commonly used in homes, offices and other indoor spaces to reduce the presence of pollutants, allergens and other harmful particles.

What would pollutants imply? Typically, they include dust, pollen, soot, smoke, liquids, and gases like carbon monoxide, sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, volatile organic compounds (VOCs, chemicals that easily vaporise into air and are found in paints, solvents, cleaners, and fuels).

When we think air pollution, as consumers, we generally think of pollutants that make breathing hard. However, one must always bear in mind that allergens are also pollutants that can cause serious health hazards. So what are they? Allergens are substances that can cause allergic reactions by triggering the immune system. These reactions can range from mild symptoms, such as sneezing and itching, to more severe responses like difficulty breathing. Allergens that contribute to air pollution typically include pollen (from trees, grasses and weeds), dust mites (organisms found in household dust) and animal dander (skin flakes, saliva, and urine from pets) and mould spores (fungi that thrive in damp environments).

Also read: 14 out of world’s 20 most polluted cities in India, Delhi and Varanasi the worst: WHO

How do air purifiers work?

In layman’s language, the job of an air purifier is to clean up the air. The most basic way to do so is by filtering it. Let’s see the different ways in which that goal is achieved.

Filtration: Most air purifiers use a filter to capture particles from the air. The most common type is a High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter, which can trap particles as small as 0.3 microns with an efficiency of 99.97%.

Activated Carbon Filters: These advanced filters are used to remove odours, gases and VOCs; they adsorb them onto a porous material. Note that adsorption is different from absorption – the former means the attraction of molecules onto the surface of a solid.

UV Light: Some air purifiers use ultraviolet (UV) light to kill bacteria, viruses and other microorganisms.

Ionisers: These devices emit negative ions (like atoms and molecules) that attach to airborne particles, making them heavier so they can be more easily captured by filters or fall to the ground.

Some air purifiers come equipped with a technology called Photocatalytic Oxidation (PCO). However, such air purifiers are considered premium and do not come under the budget air purifier bracket.

What are the benefits of an air purifier?

Needless to say, the benefits are many and often immediate. Here’s a list.

Improves air quality: Removes dust, pollen, pet dander, mould spores, and other airborne particles.

Reduces allergens: Helps reduce symptoms for people with allergies or asthma by removing allergens from the air.

Eliminates odours: Removes smoke, cooking smells, and other unpleasant odours.

Removes harmful chemicals: Can capture VOCs and other harmful gases that may be present in indoor air.

Promotes better health: Reduces the risk of respiratory infections and other health issues related to poor air quality.

What are the common uses of air purifiers?

Homes: To improve air quality for general health and to help with allergies or asthma.

Offices: To create a cleaner working environment and reduce the spread of illnesses.

Hospitals: To maintain sterile environments and reduce the risk of infections.

Industrial settings: To remove contaminants that may be harmful to workers or affect product quality.

Let’s check out some of the best options among budget air purifiers we can get on Amazon.

The Coway Airmega 150 Professional Air Purifier is designed for home use, featuring a True HEPA filter that captures 99.99% of viruses and PM 0.1 particles. It boasts an extended filter life of up to 8500 hours and comes with a manufacturer’s warranty of 7 years, ensuring long-term reliability. Available in a sleek white finish, it offers effective air purification with minimal noise for enhanced indoor air quality.

Specifications of Coway Airmega 150 Professional Air Purifier For Home

True HEPA filter

Captures 99.99% of viruses and PM 0.1 particles

Longest filter life: 8500 hours

Manufacturer’s warranty: 7 years

Low noise operation

Reasons to buy Reasons to avoid
High efficiency in capturing airborne contaminants May be higher priced compared to basic models
Long filter life and extended warranty for peace of mind Size and design may not fit all room aesthetics

What are buyers saying on Amazon?

Buyers praise this air purifier for quality, low noise, value, simplicity, attractive design, and effective performance, enhancing home aesthetics and functionality.

Why choose this product?

Efficiently removes viruses and fine particles, durable filter life, backed by a long-term warranty for reliable air purification.

The Philips AC1711 Smart Air Purifier is ideal for bedrooms, covering up to 350 sqft. It features a HEPA filter that removes 99.97% of viruses, allergens, dust, and PM2.5 particles. With a filter life of up to 15000 hours, it includes a real-time AQI display for monitoring air quality. This purifier combines efficient purification with user-friendly features, making it suitable for maintaining clean indoor air in residential spaces.

Specifications of Philips AC1711 Smart Air Purifier for Home

HEPA filter removes 99.97% of particles

Coverage area: up to 350 sq ft

Filter life: up to 15000 hours

Real-time AQI display

Designed for bedrooms

Reasons to buy Reasons to avoid
High efficiency in removing airborne contaminants May be relatively expensive compared to basic models
Long filter life reduces maintenance frequency Design and features may not suit all preferences

What are buyers saying on Amazon?

Customers appreciate this air purifier for its simplicity and ease of use, user-friendly features, and overall quality, despite occasional lighting issues and mixed opinions on performance and value.

Why choose this product?

Pick this product for the following reasons – reliable HEPA filtration, long-lasting filter, real-time air quality monitoring, ideal for bedrooms, ensuring clean and healthy indoor air.

The FULMINARE Air Purifier is designed for bedrooms, offices, and living rooms, featuring an H13 True HEPA filter for efficient air cleaning. It operates quietly and includes a night light for ambient lighting. This portable unit is suitable for homes with pets, providing clean and fresh indoor air with minimal disturbance.

Specifications of FULMINARE Air Purifiers for Bedroom

H13 True HEPA filter

Quiet operation

Night light feature

Portable design

Suitable for bedrooms, offices, and living rooms

Reasons to buy Reasons to avoid
Effective HEPA filtration for clean air May have limited coverage area
Quiet operation and convenient night light Night light might not suit all preferences

What are buyers saying on Amazon?
Buyers praise this purifier for its quiet, compact design and low noise levels, though opinions vary on its overall quality and effectiveness.

Why choose this product?

Select this product for the following reasons – compact, quiet operation with HEPA filtration and a night light, ideal for bedrooms and small spaces for improved air quality.

The Honeywell Air Touch V4 Air Purifier offers comprehensive 5-stage filtration for homes, covering up to 543 sq.ft. It includes UV LED and ioniser features, along with Anti-Bacterial, Activated Carbon, and H13 HEPA filters, effectively removing 99.99% of pollutants and micro-allergens. This purifier ensures cleaner indoor air with advanced filtration technologies.

Specifications of Honeywell Air Purifier For Home

5-stage filtration system

Coverage area: 543 sq ft

UV LED and ioniser features

Anti-Bacterial, Activated Carbon, and H13 HEPA filters

Removes 99.99% pollutants and micro-allergens

Reasons to buy Reasons to avoid
Comprehensive filtration system Potentially higher price point
Large coverage area Mixed opinions on ionizer effectiveness

What are buyers saying on Amazon?

Buyers find this air purifier easy to install and operate, with a touch panel, efficient performance, and good value, despite mixed quality and noise feedback.

Why choose this product?

Pick this product for the following reasons: Offers extensive 5-stage filtration, UV LED, ioniser features, and large coverage area for superior air purification in homes.

The AIRTH Air Purifier enhances any AC into an effective air purification system, offering proven defence against PM2.5, PM10 particles, viruses, and allergies. Developed at prestigious institutions like IIT Kanpur and IISc, it ensures efficient room air purification. This portable HEPA AC filter integrates seamlessly with existing AC units, transforming them into powerful purifiers. Ideal for combating indoor pollutants, it combines advanced technology with scientific rigour to deliver cleaner, healthier air for homes, backed by innovative research and development.

Specifications of AIRTH Air Purifier for Home, Portable HEPA AC Filter

Converts AC into an air purifier

Developed at IIT Kanpur and IISc

Filters PM2.5 and PM10 particles

Provides virus and allergy protection

Designed for efficient room air purification

Reasons to buy Reasons to avoid
Utilizes existing AC for air purification Compatibility issues with some AC units
Developed with advanced technology and proven effectiveness Effectiveness may vary based on AC settings and room size

What are buyers saying on Amazon?

Buyers appreciate this air purifier for its quality, ease of use, and sleek appearance, despite mixed opinions on value and efficiency.

Why choose this product?
Here are the reasons to buy this product – harnesses AC efficiency for air purification, scientifically developed to filter pollutants effectively, ensuring cleaner and healthier indoor air.

The Eureka Forbes Air Purifier 150 features True HEPA H13 filter and Surround 360° Air Technology for comprehensive purification. It effectively removes 99.97% of dust and particulate matter through its 3-stage purification process. Designed to cover up to 200 sq. ft., it operates with minimal noise, ideal for bedrooms or small living spaces. This purifier combines efficient filtration with a sleek white design, ensuring cleaner indoor air quality with reduced allergens and pollutants for enhanced comfort and well-being.

Specifications of Eureka Forbes Air Purifier

True HEPA H13 filter

Surround 360° Air Technology

Removes 99.97% dust and particulate matter

3-stage purification process

Coverage: 200 sq. ft.

Reasons to buy Reasons to avoid
Effective in removing dust and particles May be limited in coverage for larger rooms
Operates with minimal noise Mixed reviews on durability and longevity

How can I purify air cheaply?

To purify air inexpensively, prioritise natural ventilation by opening windows and using fans to enhance airflow. Utilise houseplants known for air-purifying qualities, such as spider plants or aloe vera. Additionally, consider DIY air purifiers using box fans fitted with HEPA filters or activated charcoal filters to trap particles effectively without high costs.

Are air purifiers worth buying?

Yes, air purifiers can be worth buying, especially for individuals sensitive to allergens or living in areas with poor air quality. They effectively remove airborne pollutants like dust, pollen, and pet dander, improving indoor air quality and reducing respiratory issues. Choose models with HEPA filters for optimal effectiveness.

Which budget air purifier is good?

For a budget-friendly option, consider the Levoit Core 300 Air Purifier. It features a True HEPA filter capable of capturing 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 microns, including dust, pollen, and pet dander. The compact design is suitable for small to medium-sized rooms, offering quiet operation and effective air purification.

Also read: Air purifier vs dehumidifier: What’s the difference, which one is right for you and the best options to buy

Top 3 features of best budget air purifiers

Best Budget Air Purifiers Product Dimensions Floor Area
Coway Airmega 150 Professional Air Purifier Compact Up to 350 sqft

True HEPA filter, Long filter life

Philips AC1711 Smart Air Purifier Compact Up to 350 sqft

Real-time AQI display, Long filter life

FULMINARE Air Purifiers Compact, Portable 215 Square Feet

True HEPA filter, Quiet operation

Honeywell Air Purifier Medium size Up to 543 sqft

5-stage filtration, UV LED & Ionizer

AIRTH Air Purifier Portable Small to medium rooms

Converts AC to purifier, PM2.5 & PM10 protection

Eureka Forbes Air Purifier 150 Compact Up to 200 sqft

True HEPA H13 filter, Surround 360° Air Technology

Best value for money budget air purifier

The Honeywell Air Touch V4 is a standout choice for value-conscious consumers seeking superior air purification. With its 5-stage filtration system and H13 HEPA filter, it effectively removes 99.99% of pollutants and micro-allergens, covering up to 543 sq.ft. The addition of UV LED and ioniser technologies, along with Anti-Bacterial and Activated Carbon filters, enhances its efficiency. This purifier offers robust performance in larger spaces, ensuring cleaner and healthier indoor air at a competitive price point.

Best overall budget air purifier

The Coway Airmega 150 AP-1019C stands out as the best overall air purifier with its exceptional features. It boasts a True HEPA filter that captures 99.99% of viruses and PM 0.1 particles, ensuring high-efficiency air purification. With the longest filter life of 8500 hours and a generous 7-year manufacturer’s warranty, it offers reliability and cost-effectiveness. Its sleek white design complements any home decor, making it a top choice for those prioritising performance, durability, and aesthetic appeal in air purification.

Factors to keep in mind while choosing the best budget air purifier

Budget: Consider your budget constraints and look for air purifiers that offer the best value for money within your price range.

Room size: Ensure the purifier is suitable for the size of the room you intend to use it in, as coverage area varies among models.

Filtration type: Look for purifiers with HEPA filters or equivalent, capable of trapping small particles like dust, pollen, and allergens.

Additional features: Evaluate extra features such as ionisers, UV filters, or activated carbon for specific air quality needs.

Noise levels: Check reviews for noise levels, especially if you need a quiet environment.

Energy efficiency: Opt for models that are energy-efficient to minimise operating costs over time.

FAQs

What features should I prioritise in a budget air purifier?

Focus on models with HEPA filters for effective particle removal, suitable room size coverage, and additional features like activated carbon for odour reduction.

Are budget air purifiers effective in removing allergens?

Yes, many budget air purifiers with HEPA filters can effectively remove allergens such as dust mites, pollen, and pet dander from indoor air.

How often do I need to replace filters in budget air purifiers?

Filter replacement frequency varies, but generally, HEPA filters should be replaced every 6-12 months, and activated carbon filters every 3-6 months, depending on usage and manufacturer recommendations.

Can budget air purifiers reduce indoor odours?

Yes, budget air purifiers equipped with activated carbon filters can help reduce indoor odours from cooking, pets, and other sources by trapping volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and other odorous particles.

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