What chemicals is in tobacco smoke?
Here’s a scary stat from CDC. There are around 15% of the non-smokers being exposed to second-hand smoke, resulted in 41,000 deaths annually in U.S. alone. There are over 4000 – 7000 chemicals in cigarettes. at least 250 of them are harmful substances to our body and 70 of them are carcinogenic or Cancer linked. Common toxic/ chemicals found in just one cigarette includes the notorious and addictive Nicotine, Ammonia (cleaning product), Arsenic (rat poisons), Carbon monoxide (poisonous gas), Cadmium (batteries), DDT (insecticide), Formaldehyde (preservation for dead specimens), Methoprene (also insecticide), Lead (poisonous) and Polonium (radioactive element). Many types of Cancer are highly related to chemicals above that will have a devastating impact on our lung, larynx, breast, leukemia, stomach, prostate, kidney and more. Quit smoking is the ideal but not always the available option, so getting an air purifier for smoker might be the next best thing.
How do we measure?
Who is this for?Heavy smokers that smoke indoor would really benefit from the list. social/ casual smoker or person staying with or around smokers also fit into the bill. A person staying nearby industrial or urban area with high air quality index (AQI) like Beijing. Baby/ children with developing immune system; elderly or recovering patient that have a weaker immune system. Finally, anyone that needs a healthy, clean air environment free from second-hand smoke.
Best Air Purifier for Smoker 2019
The premium selection air purifier, IQAir HealthPro Plus is our first pick in the lot against the never-ending battle with cigarette smoke. Why? V5-Cell Gas & Odor Filter MGOdor is your answer. The inclusion of V5 carbon filter with Pelletized chemisorption not only clear out chemicals and odor from a cigarette smoke, it will do it in a short period of time thanks to the powerful 300 cfm airflow with 6 fan speed controls. IQAir HealthPro Plus will also reduce the cigarette smell from staining your shirt. The wide purifying applicable area (up to 1098 sq. ft. ) and all-around 320-degree distribution is also ideal for people that hang around with smokers indoor or in places with poor ventilation.While IQAir HealthPro Plus is pretty much untouchable in our best air purifier for smoker list, is not all perfect though. The strong airflow filtration often co-relate to an air purifier bulkiness and no exception with IQAir HealthPro Plus. Perhaps more critically, the expensive price tag also means this premium air purifier would only be off-limits to few. If you are the selected few and would like something that has even higher odor/ chemical filtration than HealthPro Plus, consider IQAir GC MultiGas.
- Made in Switzerland craftsmanship with strong impact resistant ABS plastic and zero-leak triple-seal technology.
- PreMax pre-filter that is capable of capturing both large and micro-particles such as pollen, spores, mold.
- Effective V5-Cell MG Granular activated Carbon filter that absorb and eradicate all types smoke and odor.
- HyperHEPA is the best True HEPA filter we reviewed that is capable of trapping ultra-particles down to 0.003 microns.
- Long-lasting filter. True HEPA filter has 4 years lifespan, Carbon filter has 2 years lifespan and even pre-filter has a 18 months lifespan.
- Certified quality and performance. Each air purifier are individually tested to ensure the air purifier meets the strict specifications.
- Noise level is considerably low in its segment given the air purifier airflow strength and speed.
- Powerful 320 degree airflow distribution that provides one of the widest purifying coverage.
- Up to 6 selectable fanspeed that can also be adjusted via remote control.
- Built-in programmable timer that allows specific fanspeed, time, day or week scheduling.
- Easy layer filter replacement that slides out individually instead of conventional front cover style.
- Industrial leading 10 years warranty.
- Very expensive (3 times of standard air purifier price).
- No dust & odor sensors = no automatic fan speed setting and air quality indicator.
- Bulky and heavy that is difficult to move around even with carrying handle and casters.
Staying with smokers, if you have resorted all possible way of stopping them smoking indoor (including yourself), Blueair Classic 605 is your next best alternate solution. Thanks to the crazy high smoke CADR output (500 cfm), the figure alone would easily qualify it as the best air purifier for smokers. The bundled SmokeStop filter filtration will also effectively remove odors and chemicals released from a cigarette. Adding the wide 775 sq. ft. purifying coverage and a generous amount of airflow circulation, harmful gases and odors that are lingering around the house will be clear off in a snap. Finally, there is also the benefit of Wi-Fi connectivity where you could control everything remotely and not have to breathe any residue cigar odor before stepping into a smoker’s room.Prevention is always better than cure and purchasing Blueair 605 will be a very expensive prevention especially with the annual filter replacement cost. There is also the bulkiness factor that makes this odor eliminator machine practically unusable in tight spaces. Also in order to reach the maximum efficiency, the air purifier would have to run on full blast which will generate a lot of background noise.
- Widest purifying coverage and strongest airflow in its Classic series.
- HEPASilent Technology that electrostatically charge particles before passing to filter media.
- Highly effective gradient structured particle filter and SmokeStop Filter.
- Very impressive dust, pollen and smoke CADR return.
- Top-notch build quality with its durable galvanized steel body.
- Wi-Fi connects easily and works well with the intuitive Blueair Friend app or Amazon Alexa.
- Up to 5 years warranty.
- The most expensive model in Blueair Classic series.
- Very high annual filter replacement cost.
- Lacks stand-alone pre-filter that would capture large particles from other filters.
- Lacks integrated air sensors for air quality monitoring and Auto mode. Requires the addon purchase Blueair Aware monitor to enable the feature.
- Bulky and heavy although we expect no less.
Smoker or non-smoker, we got you covered. Winix 5500-2 is a perfect example of how to make a solid, entry-level air purifier with a dedicated carbon filter. It cost at least 2 - 3 times less than most premium air purifiers in the market, yet its AOC Advanced Granular Carbon filter does a remarkable job wiping out cigarette smell at a reasonably high 246 cfm CADR rates. Accompany with PlasmaWave Technology, airflow delivery rate is also decent but not over the top thus ideal for medium room size. Feature-wise, Winix 5500-2 comes with all the modern add-ons e.g. preset timer, air quality indicator, AQ sensor with auto mode, and remote control that not even some top-line cigarette smoke removal machine have it.As Winix 5500-2 is considerably affordable in this best air purifier for smokers category list, its airflow performance and purifying coverage are of course incomparable with the big boys. Furthermore, the annual filter replacement cost is not the cheapest, therefore this could be a hindering factor in long-term ownership.
- Super attractive price (after online rebate) when you consider the complete specification offering.
- Decent CADR that covers medium room size well via its 4-stage filtration and PlasmaWave technology.
- Washable pre-filter that might be a hassle to maintain, you will be glad how much money and dust you have collected even a short period of time.
- Genuine, True-HEPA filter works as advertised in removing allergens and other germs microorganisms.
- Use a standalone AOC carbon filter rather than cheap out on a carbon pre-filter sheet.
- Full access remote control including the mode selector.
- 4 fan speed plus Auto mode and Sleep mode. Sleep mode pairs well with the light sensor that autonomously adjusts the LED indicator brightness according to the room ambient light.
- Built-in timer with 3 pre-set option (1, 4, 8 hours).
- Not outstanding, but an improved 2 years warranty (Winix 5500 only comes with 1-year warranty).
- We like the dedicated AOC carbon filter, but it's not the best in the market when it comes to strong, pungent smell.
- During our test, there is a delay (2-4 minutes) before the air purifier reacts to surrounding airborne particles. Either the odor sensor requires cleaning or the sensor takes its own sweet time to detect.
The new kid in the block, AIRMEGA 300S is a new household brand created by the non-other water purifier giant Coway. Beautifully design with many striking elements, what's hidden inside this cigarette smoke eliminator machine is a proven 4-stage filtration with 2 pre-filter and MAX2 filter. Focusing on the activated carbon filter, AIRMEGA 300S has a 99% gas filtration rate thus is excellent at filtering out notorious chemicals like Carbon monoxide or Formaldehyde from a cigarette, it will also remove any second-hand smoke odors and other household chemicals e.g. VOCs that came along with it. Together with its continuous pouring airflow distribution and super wide 1560 sq. ft. purifying coverage (limit to 2 air charges mind you), there is no doubt this is the best air purifier to remove tobacco smell in living hall.Beauty comes with a price and in AIRMEGA 300S case, is not cheap. Adding up all the modern spec including Wi-Fi connectivity support, you could be better off with an old-school air purifier that is priced way less. If you need more variant to consider, there is the non-Wi-Fi Airmega 300 version and the similar but higher spec 400 series machine in AIRMEGA lineup.
- 4-stage filtration with wide purifying applicable area (at 2 air charges).
- Utilize 2 Pre-filter on each side of the air purifier that traps dust, pet hair while enhancing HEPA filter and Carbon filter lifespan.
- Highly-efficient allergen, smoke and odor filtration with the combined Green True HEPA and Activated Carbon Max2 filter.
- Convenience and practical Smart mode (Auto mode/ Sleep mode).
- Separate Pre-filter and MAX2 filter lifespan indicator.
- Remotely access the air purifier scheduler, timer, and other functions via IoCare app.
- Real-time air quality display indicator.
- Adjustable sensor's sensitivity (sensitive, normal, less sensitive).
- Reasonable Max2 filter replacement cost that only requires one yearly change.
- Standard 5 years warranty.
- Expensive based price that is close to the non-Wi-Fi 400 version.
- Last checked, app is slightly less refine compared with competitors app.
- Little learning curve on setting up Wi-Fi connectivity for first time user.
- No built-in timer. Only accessible via Airmega app.
- Lacks autonomous sleep mode and real-time HEPA and Activated Carbon filter change indicator available in 400/ 400S models.
- No Ionizer within its filtration list.
Used to be the only air purifier for smoker here that comes with a customizable front panel (in came Rabbit Air MinusA2), Alen BreatheSmart would do an impeccable job in handling odors from cooking, VOCs and of course cigarette if, and if you opt for HEPA-OdorCell filter upgrade pack. Unlike the rest of air purifier listed here, Alen BreatheSmart utilizes a combination HEPA/ carbon filter that is more space-saving, less hassle to maintain and most importantly compatible with its strong airflow and high smoke CADR. Features like timer, air quality sensors, and Auto mode also comes standard so theoretically, you could leave Alen BreatheSmart unattended and let it work its magic.As mentioned earlier, Alen BreatheSmart cigarette air purifier utilizes a HEPA+Carbon combination filter setup that even though it is very effective and space-saving, we would prefer a dedicated carbon filter that can be replaced separately simply for a more cost-effective reason. There is also a few alternate BreatheSmart version you could opt for: the slightly smaller BreatheSmart Fit50 and smallest BreatheSmart Flex that lacks air quality sensors/ Auto mode. [UPDATE] Alen has added BreatheSmart 45i and 75i model in its lineup. Do check them out.
- Plenty of swappable wood trim front cover design.
- Wide purifying coverage, superior airflow delivery rate and highly adjustable (up to 4 speed).
- Up to 3 optional filter upgrade to choose from depending on your needs.
- Ionizer could be turn on or off.
- Longer lasting filters (up to 18 months) depending on usage volume/ air quality.
- Accurate Smart Filter Light replacement indicator that calculates based on usage/ fanspeed/ environment.
- Abundance of features - SmartSensor (air quality sensor), auto mode, filter life timer, pre-set timer.
- Child friendly machine with locking control panel and safe vent guard.
- Alen unique Lifetime Limited Warranty.
- Lacks odor filtration on bundled HEPA-Pure filter (Optional filter upgrade required).
- No dedicated odor carbon filter which could come in handy as filter replacement can be done separately.
- Noisy at highest speed nevertheless Auto mode does come to rescue.
Replacing the Activated Carbon with Potassium Iodide/ Zeolite bound HealthMate Plus in the list is the all-new Rabbit Air MinusA2 SPA-780N. We rated highly of this smoke eater air purifier for many reasons; none-so than its comprehensive 6-stage filtration. Not only Rabbit Air MinusA2 can filter out most household microbes and allergens, its Charcoal-Based Activated Carbon Filter can also extensively remove cigarette odors from the air in addition to the toxic chemicals that flow along. There is also a customized filter option where you could choose either Toxin Absorber or Odor Remover for enhanced odor removal. Adding an extensive 815 sq. ft purifying range and punchy airflow delivery rate, Rabbit Air MinusA2 bring smoker air purifier to a whole new level.While Rabbit Air MinusA2 SPA-780N is one of the best air purifier for smoker in banishing cigarette chemicals and odors particles, its relatively uninspiring smoke CADR might suggest otherwise. Rabbit Air MinusA2 SPA-780N is also not cheap, particularly with the Wi-Fi enabled N version that might not be everyone’s fancy.
- Comprehensive 6-stage filtration that covers from Pre-filter, Medium filter, HEPA filter and customized filter.
- Easily pair with most smartphones for advanced personalized setting like air quality tracking and scheduling.
- Dedicated activated carbon filter and Negative Ion Generator that can be disabled if not needed.
- Low annual filter replacement cost despite utilizing many filters.
- Unique square frame body that can be mounted to the wall.
- Many designer or classic art front panel design to choose from. Compatible with all MinusA2 air purifier.
- 5 selectable speed with Auto/ Pollen/ Sleep mode.
- Trio Particle, odor and light sensor with adjustable air quality sensitivity.
- Sleep mode activates automatically when there is no light source. Fan speed will still auto-adjust according to surround air quality.
- Five-year warranty that fully cover any manufacturer's defects.
- Over $600 MRSP starting price EXCLUDING any selected designer front panel or addon filter.
- There is still some fine-tuning needed on the app UI and features e.g. limited scheduling, air quality overtime.
- Overall dust, pollen and smoke CADR is decent but not over the top figures.
- Heavy for an air purifier designed to be mounted on the wall.
It might be the smallest and cheapest odor eliminator in our list, Holmes Smoke Grabber Ashtray HAP75-UC2 is technically a premium ashtray rather than a genuine air purifier. The built-in multi-layered Activated Carbon filter does help in alleviating smell coming from your cigarette butt by swiftly capturing them before it’s spread across the room. What's more, Holmes smoke grabber ashtray is highly portable (travel-friendly), battery operated so no power socket is needed and will automatically turn on once the lid is open. The super low price tag also make it a perfect gift for smoker that just won't quit.Is Holmes Grabber Ashtray HAP75-UC2 carbon filter strong enough to justify smokers from smoking indoors? NO, but a half decent job would be better than none. If you need an ashtray and don't mind upgrading to a better and so-called “portable air purifier for cigarette”, Holmes Smoke Grabber Ashtray is your answer. Again we must emphasize, smoking outdoor or at least through a window would be a better, costless solution than smoking indoor.
- An upgrade to normal astray that capture smoke via its dual layer carbon filter.
- Cheap to own and maintain.
- Compact with removable, easy to clean tray.
- Automatic operation with lid opened and stop operation with lid closed.
- Able to hold around 5 - 8 lit cigarettes.
- No plug source required as the ashtray is powered by 2 D batteries.
- As expected limited airflow thus below average smoke absorption.
- Slightly noisy fan during operation.
- Short filter lifespan for heavy smoker.
- Batteries require frequent replacing for heavy user.
🏆 Honorable mention
- The Non-WiFi 6-stage filtration Rabbit Air MinusA2 SPA-700A would also fit the bill well. For optimum result, select Odor Remover for its customized Filter.
- Comes with Ionizer, UV-Light and impressive CADR return. GermGuardian AC9200WCA is it for you.
- Need something cheap yet can get rid of cigarette odor? See Hamilton Beach Odor Eliminator 04532GM.
📃 Previous holder
- Airmega 400S
- Austin Air HealthMate Plus
Best Air Purifier for Smoker Comparison Table
|Air Purifier||Filtration||Coverage||Score||Online Price|
|IQAir HealthPro Plus||4-stage||1098 sq. ft. (102 m2)||9.6|
|Blueair 605||3-stage||775 sq. ft. (72 m2)||9|
|Winix 5500-2||4-stage||360 sq. ft. (33 m2)||8.5|
|Airmega 300S||4-stage||1256 sq. ft. (117 m2)||9.1|
|Alen BreatheSmart Classic||3-stage||1100 sq. ft. (102 m2)||8.8|
|Rabbit Air MinusA2 SPA-780N||6-stage||815 sq. ft. (76 m2)||9.2|
|Holmes HAP75-UC2 Smoke Grabber Ashtray||1-stage||155 sq. ft. (14 m2)||4.5|
Frequently Asked Questions FAQ
Which is the best third hand smoke air purifier?
None with a valid reason. All air purifiers do not deal with third-hand smoke as it cannot capture any gas particles or odors that is not airborne. Third-hand smoke is an invincible, residual chemical from a cigarette. The exposed residual would stack up over time and react to other toxic substances, creating toxic that is hazardous to smoker and non-smoker. Most third-hand smoke can be found clinging on object surfaces like clothes, furniture, bedding, pillow, wall, vehicle’s interior, carpet, and even dust. Unless you could stay in a smoke-free environment, washing clothes, change bedding and mop the floor that touches the residues is the best way to go.
Common things that are affected by third-hand smoke
- Toys - Soft toys, rubber toys, Barbie dolls, teethers, Lego, action figures
- Clothes and accessories - Cap, hijab, scarf, gloves, shirt, dress, leather jacket, coat, sweater and even your undergarment
- Furniture – Any type of upholstery from sofa, armchairs, couches, ottoman, massage chair, sofa bed
- Bedroom and linen - Bedding, pillows, bed sheets, blankets, comforter, headboards, mattresses
- Flooring – Affects most porous-type floorboard and natural stone tiles from wood, vinyl, sandstone, ceramic, granite (partially), porcelain (partially)
- Wall and ceiling - Drywall, brick, lath, plywood, wallpaper, cement board, plaster, drop ceilings, ceiling planks
- Curtain and carpet - Drapes, blinds, shades, animal skin rug, Saxony, frieze, office carpet tiles,
- Air vents – Or any opening that allow air to pass in and out from air purifier, air conditioner, ventilation fan, heating system
- You and your personal belongings – Hair!, mobile phone/ iPad cover, handbag, backpack, watch with leather or nylon strap, mobile armband
- Vehicle interior – Dashboard and upholstery
How long does third hand smoke last?
Depends on the volume of the buildup, third-hand smoke residues will remain in its place even after 6 months of quitting smoke. A study done by researchers at San Diego State University shows if a home stayed smoke-free for 6 months, user will experience significant drop of nicotine on their fingers and body but the levels of nicotine, odor and carcinogen substances in a home remained unchanged. This is because the toxic residues from the cigarette have penetrated deep into the porous materials like wood, fabric or carpet. Unless some form of action has been taken. Guest, current and newly added family member will continue to be exposed to the tobacco smoke compounds and put their health at risk. Nevertheless, smoking cessation does play a big part in reducing the number of smoke buildup and spreading third-hand smoke longevity. Due to the limited researches, use this information lightly and never discourage a smoker from stop smoking.
What are the health effects of thirdhand smoke?
Third-hand smoke is a relatively new “discovery” that even though at the moment lacks concrete data and researches, there is no doubt on the negative health effects smoking brings to the table. Unlike firsthand or secondhand smoke, third-hand smoke leaves residues toxin that will penetrate deep into porous materials, accumulate over time to the point that your entire house is filled with unpleasant odor. Since traditional ways of airing out a room do not cut it, below are the 10 simple but often neglected tips you could do without having to worry about the danger of third-hand smoke.
10 tips on how to reduce or get rid of third hand smoke in your home
- First the no-brainer: Do not smoke! If you must, smoke near a window or in an open-space area. Wash your hands after smoke and if possible, change your cloth.
- Avoid hanging out in common places e.g. bar that allows smokers to smoke indoor.
- After an outing with smokers, change your cloth straight away when you’re back home.
- Wash all your clothes, bedding, children toys regularly or when exposed to third-hand smoke. Very important especially if you have children.
- The residues from third-hand smoke will stack up over time. Reupholster and re-carpet when washing proves no avail.
- Replace smoke-filled, household objects that is beyond redemption.
- Schedulely mop floor and hard surfaces with natural ingredient like baking soda or household detergent even there is no scent of smoke odor.
- Clean tabletop, counter, air vent, and even ceiling wall to avoid third-hand smoke from penetrating into the porous materials. Turn on an air purifier when performing housekeeping to prevent the toxic from respreading.
- Avoid purchasing a home that smells unless you plan to knock down the entire place for renovation. Alternatively, hire a professional cleaner to perform a thorough cleaning before moving in.
- Ozone generator can remove some odor stuck to porous material. Do note the danger of using ozone generator at home that on improper use, will have a bigger health impact than third-hand smoke.
What to look for when buying a smoker air purifier.
Whether is first-hand or second-hand cigarette smoke, prolonged exposure can cause different lung diseases and even trigger a heart attack. A good air purifier needs to stand out on features and stand guard all the times so we do not even inhale a single puff of tobacco smoke. To achieve that, look out for the below tips in choosing the best smoker air purifier.
9 Tips for Choosing an Air Purifier for Smokers
- Cost of ownership - Don’t just look for the purchasing price, an air purifier filters need to be replaced and in long-run, it’s going to cost you. Do look out for that as well.
- Size and weight - The best air purifier for smoker tends to be large and bulky. If you smoke on your desk or on a regular spot, you may consider a smaller, space-saving tabletop air purifier.
- Airflow delivery rate - The better airflow delivery rate, the faster and more toxic from cigarette will be absorbed by the carbon filter. Same applies to cigarette smell.
- Room size - Depends on where the smoke activities are, you will need a bigger air purifier for living hall or/ and a smaller air purifier for bedroom. When determining the room size requirement, we highly recommend looking at the purifying coverage at 4 air charges per hour (faster purifying).
- Smoke CADR - An official measurement done by AHAM that is only available on participant air purifier. In most cases, CADR above 150 cfm would be decent enough in capturing cigarette vapor and odor indoor.
- Carbon filter - Avoid going for those thin carbon sheet filter type that barely remove any smoke particles and odor. 2-in-1 carbon pre-filter is fine but preferably go with a dedicated carbon filter that is impregnated with odor removing granular, carbon or zeolite.
- Auto mode - We recommend turning the air purifier on 24x7 even when there is no smoker around as Auto mode will help manage the ideal airflow when high smoke level detected.
- Power consumption and noise level - Works well with the above Auto mode, most air purifiers have a similar range power consumption with the exception of few powerhouse machines. Noise level is less important since most smokers don’t smoke on their bed.
- Branding reputation - Air purifier these days have better reliability that the price tag might suggest otherwise. For ultimate peace of mind, Choose an air purifier that offers the longest warranty period. Look into details what does the warranty cover and does it offer a 1-to1 exchange. After service support and location is also another thing to consider.