Say no to filters!
How filterless air purifier works
As the name implied, filterless air cleaner will purify the air without relying on any mechanical filter. Depends on the technology, it can cover a wide range of indoor pollutants like a normal HEPA filter would. There are 5 types of air purifiers in the market, one of those is the forbidden fruit that you should never go for.
- Ionizer/ Electrostatic recipitator – Electrostatically charge and release negative ions to merge with positive ions particles. The merge particles would fall due to the increased weight and settle down in the purifier. There are slight differences between ionizer and electrostatic precipitator. The former is usually part of a HEPA air purifier filtration. The later is a standalone unit that comes with a collector plate to collect the fall particles.
- Thermodynamic sterilization – aka Airfree air purifier. Similar concept as boiling water that kills 99.9% of microorganisms and germs through heat. The sterilization process end with only normal temperature air released back out.
- Hybrid – The main filtration must be a permanent filter or technology that is every green. While the supporting filters like carbon filter can be washable or replaceable. This enables the air purifier to work even if the rest of the filtration is worn out. Honeywell AirGenius 5 is a good example.
- Ultraviolet UV cleaner – A conversational inclusion in the list as light bulb still has a usage lifespan. Uses UV-C/ ultraviolet from a light bulb to remove bacteria and viruses. The allergens are obliterated inside thus no cleaning ever needed. Modern UVGI cleaner comes together with ionizer which we have touched on earlier.
- Ozone generator – This is the forbidden one we talked about. Ozone generator works through the process of oxidation. It split oxygen molecules (O2) into single atoms, eliminating any contaminants in between. The single atoms with merge with other oxygen molecules to form ozone (O3). Ozone generator is effective against odor, uses no filter but is harmful to our body. Inhaling to ozone can lead to many side effects and respiratory problems.
Who is this for?Anyone from that needs clean air free from germs, smoke, and allergens. Busy parents or bachelor that do not need to be tied down with another home appliances. An asthmatic or hyperallergic person that is constantly sick. Newborn, baby and children would greatly appreciate it.
Best Filterless Air Purifier 2019
A well-known brand with a not so popular model. AirGenius 5 is a hybrid air purifier that most people often overlooked. Powered by the ifD technology that is only available in selected Honeywell models. This air purifier comes with 3 stage filtration that is unusual in the filterless world.
What's cool: Patented QuietClean ifD technology that remove up to 99.9% of allergens as small as 0.3 microns. Washable pre-filter that can be reused over and over time. Upgradable odor-reducing pre-filter that captures large dust, hair, smoke, and odors! There is also ionizer that will electrostatically charge ions for easy capturing.
What's not: ifD is more for non-gas particles so the 3 months lifespan odor pre-filter upgrade is imminent. Filters require regular cleanup/ vacuuming to maintain its efficiency.In short: A proven technology that will save you a lot of time and money finding the replacement filter. It is not as efficient as True HEPA filter despite the figures suggest otherwise. There is also the cheaper version AirGenius 4 or 3 that we would not recommend. Stick with Honeywell AirGenius 5 as it has the best value in terms of performance and features.
- Sleek, airflow resistance tower design that is modern and practical.
- Support either permanent, wahsable pre-filter or odor-reducing pre-filter. Our votes goes to the odor-reducing pre-filter.
- Practically no annual filter maintenance cost as the ifD is reusable.
- Effective ifD filter that will capture most microscopic household allergens.
- Easy to use Smart controls with optional oscillation and accent light.
- Electronic Filter Check reminder with live gauge indicator.
- Highly customizable timer (up to 12 hours).
- 5 years warranty.
- Loses out to traditional media filtration that tends to have stronger filtration. Smoke and odor filtration efficiency is not great either.
- The permanent filter requires regularly clean up to prevent particles congestion.
Filterless is Airfree. Airfree is filterless. This is how we would describe Onix 3000. A compact air purifier that kills germ without any filter or releasing any harmful ozone. All these are achievable thanks to the Thermodynamic TSS Technology that applies the concept of boiling water.
What's cool: Support up to 650 sq. ft. coverage. Thermodynamic TSS Technology that destroys (note: NOT capture) microorganisms. This includes dust mites, mold, pollen, pet dander, odors, bacteria, and viruses. No filter change or maintenance every needed. Adjustable night light.
What's not: Slow purification process that would take days to cleanup a room. Not effective against dust.In short: Killing it softly is the best way of describing the elimination process. Compensating that is the silent and hassle-free operation that you could leave it on its own. If for some reason you don't quite fancy Onix 3000, there is the mirroring model Iris 3000, P3000 or the older P2000.
- Sterilization method that is super effective against microorganisms like mold and pollen.
- The TSS ceramic core does not require any maintenance or cleaning.
- No recurring cost as the air purifier does not use any filter at all.
- Fits anywhere with its compact and lightweight body.
- Stress-free light can be adjusted on brightness intensity.
- Absolute silent operation thus it will work exceptionally well in the bedroom.
- 2 years warranty that covers all manufacturer defects.
- Purification works on a gradual basis that could take days to clean up a room.
- Less effective on dust, smoke and odor compared with conventional filter-type.
- Plain vanilla unit with no add-on features.
A up version to Onix 3000 but essentially the same machine. Airfree Lotus is still the small air purifier that uses the same Thermodynamic TSS Tech. Internally, it will boil up to 400°F (Yup 400°F) and only release back cool air out. Effectively killing any microorganism in the process.
What's cool: Again, Thermodynamic TSS Technology is the key. It will kill irritants like pollen, mold, dust mites, odors, ozone, bacteria, and viruses. There is no filter replacement and the TSS does not require cleaning. Lotus can support up to 650 sq. ft. room size and up to 10 selectable color night light.
What's not: Does not capture dust or any large particles quick enough. To maximize its performance, the air purifier must be turned on all the time.In short: There's a lot of good thing going on with Airfree Lotus. The silent no filter purification, one button operation, and child-friendly night light. It's no HEPA air purifier but that's the beauty of it. It shouldn't be.
- Eco-friendly sterilization method that does not requires maintenance.
- No recurring cost as the air purifier does not use any filters.
- Fits anywhere with its compact and lightweight body.
- Adjustable color light on brightness intensity.
- Absolutely silent operation that will work exceptionally well in a bedroom.
- Consistent and low power consumption.
- 2 years manufacturer warranty.
- Purification is progressively slow that will take days to clear out contaminants.
- Less effective on dust and odor compared with conventional filter-type model.
- Plain vanilla unit with no extra purifying features.
Unlike the above Airfree model, there is nothing fancy about T800 air purifier. It does not have a night light, has small purifying coverage, and topple easily. Why are we featuring it then? Simple. The no filter, water heating, germ killer Thermodynamic TSS Technology.
What's cool: Small, light and portable. Very cheap around 3-4 times less than the average model. More so, it is still the same Thermodynamic TSS with the same killing efficiency.
What's not: 180 square feet coverage is poor. There is also the slow purification process to contend with.In short: If you want a true filterless air purifier and do not wish to top up for filter, EVER, this is it. No fancy design, complicated features, bare prices and works as it is.
- Airfree's patented purifying technology.
- Zero noise generated.
- Small and compact.
- Great with safety features.
- Used low electricity.
- Considerably expensive compare with other Airfree air purifier with way better coverage output.
- Mediocre airflow purifying coverage with no addon features.
- Slow, gradual basis purification that could take days to completely clean up pollutants.
- Weak against dust, smoke and odor compare with conventional filter air purifier.
Let's get this out of my chest, Hamilton Beach TrueAir Compact Pet is not a very good air purifier. It is an OK air purifier that does not use any filter (main HEPA at least), and more importantly, is dirt cheap. So why are we putting it here? Is because it works and some people do not need all the fancy stuff. Inside the filtration, there is a 3-stage filtration that is pretty standard in most model. No dust, hair or pet dander will be too difficult for this pet machine.
What's cool: HEPA-grade filter with a 99% capturing efficiency. Not the same par as True HEPA filter but it will trap any nearby irritants including germs. There is also a washable pre-filter and a 3-month lifespan carbon zeolite filters.
What's not: The 140 sq. ft. purifying range might not sound too bad, but in real life, coverage is really small. The 3 fan speed makes little differences and features are non-existence.In short: Again cheap and works always ring a bell. This compact air cleaner is best used as tabletop lying vertically or horizontally. Do not expect anything more than that and you'll be fine. With that being said, we would still recommend you to go for any of the above filterless air purifiers. Sticking with TrueAir, consider replacing the carbon filters at very least.
- Very affordable price .
- Permanent HEPA grade filter that can be easily maintain with routine vacuuming.
- Compact and portable body.
- Versatile design where you can place the unit horizontally or vertically without ever affecting the airflow efficiency.
- Generally low noise output.
- Small airflow coverage with poor airflow delivery rate.
- Weak filtration (at only 3 micron) with gradual declining on the effectiveness of the permanent HEPA-filter .
- Ineffective against strong odor and chemicals.
- Plain vanilla unit with no features like timer, air quality status, Auto mode.
- Comes only with 1 year warranty (some basic unit offer up to 2).
🏆 Honorable mention
Air purifiers come and down so no point featuring an air purifier that doesn't cut it anymore. Here are some memorable options:
- Bionaire/ Holmes has many zero filter air purifier that is cheap and compact. Keep in mind a lot of the models are no longer in production. Avoid those.
- Envion do carry a few iconic model that we have not reviewed (yet). Something you can ponder on.
📃 Previous holder
- Airfree P2000
- Airfree Iris 3000
- Bionaire/ Holmes Egg air purifier
Best Filterless Air Purifier Comparison Table
|Air Purifier||Filtration||Coverage||Score||Online Price|
|Honeywell AirGenius 5 HFD320||3-stage||250 sq. ft. (23 m2)||8.3|
|Airfree Onix 3000||1-stage||650 sq. ft. (60 m2)||7.8|
|Airfree Lotus||1-stage||650 sq. ft. (60 m2)||7.6|
|Airfree T800||1-stage||180 sq. ft. (17 m2)||6.2|
|Hamilton Beach TrueAir Compact Pet 04384||3-stage||140 sq. ft. (13 m2)||5.9|