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7 Best Plug In Air Purifiers In 2022 (Efficient, Safe, & Work!)

Dirty air can appear in any corner of the home, particularly in places where you just can’t fit a full-sized air cleaner in. A plug in air purifier would be the ideal air cleaning solution in a confined space. Before pulling the trigger, you will need to know the good and bad things about this tiny device. From how a pluggable air purifier works, what allergens it can remove, and how it can protect you from an allergic reaction, all shall be answered here. We will also compare the many types of plug-in air cleaners on the market and review them with pros/ cons. At the end of the post, you will have a clear mindset on which model to invest in one.
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Who is this for?

Everyone from children, adults, elderly would benefit from using a plug-in air purifier. It is designed to operate in tight spaces like a dorm or shared room where there is no space left to fit in a full-size air purifier. It is also ideal for those that already have an air purifier at home and won't mind the extra filtration against airborne allergens.

2022 Best Plug In Air Purifiers

BEST BUDGETBEST OVERALLBEST PERFORM-ANCEPERFORMANCE
Hamilton Beach TrueAir Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator ReviewGermGuardian GG1000 Pluggable Air Purifier & Sanitizer ReviewGermGuardian GG1100 Elite Review
Hamilton Beach TrueAir Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator Air PurifierGermGuardian GG1000 Pluggable Air PurifierGermGuardian GG1100W/ GG1100B Air Purifier
Filtration Types
CARBON FILTERUV-C LIGHTUV-C LIGHT
Recommended Room Size
64 sq. ft. (6 m2)56 sq. ft. (5 m2)56 sq. ft. (5 m2)
CADR
Dust N/A
Pollen N/A
Smoke N/A
Dust N/A
Pollen N/A
Smoke N/A
Dust N/A
Pollen N/A
Smoke N/A
Filtration
1-stage1-stage1-stage
Ratings
3.7out of 53.8out of 53.8out of 5
Amazon Price
$$$
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** MSRP (Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price)/ RSP (Retail selling price) is accurate at the time of posting.
^ Annual filter cost is calculated based on filter price and 12 hours of usage. Pricing could vary depending on air quality, usage frequency, and speed.
` The indicated online price guides as follows: $ = under $50, $$ = $50-100, $$$ = $101-200, $$$$ = 201-300, $$$$$ = $301-400, $$$$$$ = 401-500, $$$$$$$ = over $500.

How Do We Measure?

There are not many good, pluggable air purifiers that are effective, safe, and energy-efficient. Trust us, as we have been in the air cleaning industry for more than 30 years, and it's a rare breed. To help you spot a good one that does not produce harmful byproducts, here's what you need to look for in a plug-in air purifier.

  • Design and portability - Pick a model that is easy with the eyes, as you will be looking at it for years to come. Make sure it will fit your wall plug, as some models are known to be overly bulky and heavy.
  • Technologies - Your options are a negative ion generator, carbon filtration, and UV sterilizer. Each has pros and cons, so pick the type that suits you best.
  • Filtration performance - The better the output, the more pollutants the pluggable machine can remove. Only compare apple to apple e.g. ionizer with an ionizer.
  • Pricing - No a big deal if you are getting a single unit as most plug-in air purifiers will not cost more than 50 dollars. If you're getting multiple units for your home, look for bundled deals that will save you a ton.
  • No harmful byproducts - Never go with a model that emits ozone or chemicals, as it will do more harm than good. Avoid an ozone generator or ozonator regardless of how adjustable it is.
  • Warranty - Never settle with a model that does not offer at least a 1-year warranty from the manufacturer.

1. Hamilton Beach TrueAir Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator Air Purifier

Hamilton Beach TrueAir Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator Review

The only specialized pluggable carbon air purifier that deals with household odor. Hamilton Beach TrueAir Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator is a top-rated product with close to 8,000 ratings on Amazon. It is the ideal home gift for smokers due to its low price and practicality. At a compact 6.5 inches in height, 5.2 inches in width, and 3.74 inches in depth, it fits seamlessly in any home, apartment, studio, dorm, hotel, or caravan during a road trip. The under 30 price tag does not compromise its durability, as the build quality is solid with no signs of leakage or uneven gaps.

A highly effective odor eliminator that uses a carbon sheet to absorb toxic gases and odor. Works best near a pet area, smoking spot, trash bin, or dry washroom.

Hamilton Beach Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator works straight out of the box with only a single on/ off switch. It is compatible with a U.S. wall outlet with 110 voltage output. The only requirement is to replace the carbon filter sheet every 3 months for optimal performance. A red filter replacement indicator up front alerts you when it is time to change the filter to keep you in check. Depending on the variant, Hamilton Beach Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator may come bundled with a night light or air freshener with Green Meadow Scent Cartridge. Skip the air freshener and go with the night light variant if you intend to use it in a children's room for added comfort and security.

Mechanical filtration at its finest. The quiet and efficient fan will pull in surrounding smoke and odors inside Hamilton Beach TrueAir filtration. Through chemical adsorption, the carbon filter will neutralize common odors from tobacco, pet, cooking, stinky bathroom, and trash bin. While the filter is small and removal efficiency is not desirable, it will still get the job done with a little bit of patience. Covering a 64 square footage radius, the purification cycle delivers endless fresh air back into the room as long as Hamilton Beach TrueAir Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator is kept running. No harmful byproducts are created during the process.

Hamilton Beach TrueAir Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator Air Purifier Review

Hamilton Beach TrueAir Plug-Mount is a niche product that is not meant for everyone. It is particularly good at trapping light cigarette smoke and odor. Still, it will struggle to handle non-smoke particles like dust. The carbon filter also requires replacing every 3 months, which can be troublesome, let alone the incurred cost. The air-cleaning coverage is also very limited, but that's nothing new coming from a pluggable air cleaner.

In short: A highly effective odor eliminator that uses a carbon sheet to absorb toxic gases and odor. Works best near a pet area, smoking spot, trash bin, or dry washroom. ⚠️ Buy this if you only want to remove odors in a tight area such as the bathroom.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

3.7

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±39.99 $/ 7

(annual filter cost ±15-30)

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2. GermGuardian GG1000 Pluggable Air Purifier

GermGuardian GG1000 Pluggable Air Purifier & Sanitizer Review

That are many reasons why this GermGuardian GG1000 plug in UV-C sanitizer would be the perfect one for you. Its hour shape design is pleasing to the eyes yet very compact at 3.2 inches in diameter and 7.5 inches in height. No problem fitting it in a wall socket. The lightweight 1.13 pounds store well in a backpack you can bring to work, staycation, or a long trip. GermGuardian GG1000 is also well-priced, given it is an older model with the replacement model already out in the wild. It is well-built, and many owners still utilize it flawlessly after years of ownership.

World's most popular UV plug-in air purifier with proven track records in performance and reliability. You can't go wrong with this model.

As a plug-and-play model, GermGuardian GG1000 is very easy to use with no controls to fiddle around with. You'll only need a wall socket without relying on an extension or transformer. Just plug it in, and you can safely leave it for months before replacing the light bulb. The UV purification works anonymously in the background without generating any sudden noise. You will scarcely remember its existence, which is a good thing for a plug-in air purifier. The 3.5 watts power usage is energy efficient that will not burden you on the utility bill. With the low running cost, you can easily get multiple units and place them in every single room as we would.

Powering GermGuardian GG1000 plug in air purifier is the decade-old UV-C light technology. It uses solely ultraviolet radiation to kill mold, germs, bacteria, and viruses in the air, including influenza, staph, and rhinovirus. Since the pathogens will be permanently eradicated from existence, there is no chance of the microbes spreading and causing harm to our bodies. It can also remove light smoke and odor without producing high levels of unwanted byproducts. With a modest 56 square feet coverage, GermGuardian GG1000 UV sanitizer is ideal for small room sizes like the washroom, kitchen, and basement. You can also place it near a litter box or poorly ventilated garage to help contain the smell.

GermGuardian GG1000 Pluggable Air Sanitizer Review

There are always ups and downs in everything. GermGuardian GG1000 inherits all the downsides associated with a plug in air purifier. It is not great for removing large particles in the air e.g. dust, hair, and lint. The UV-C light will take ages to remove the PM10 pollutants. \ The small UV coverage also means multiple units are needed to filter the air in a room. Even a budget HEPA air purifier will outperform a pluggable device. Lastly, the UV light bulb requires replacing every quarterly or 10,000 hours of run time to maintain optimal performance. The longer you utilize the UV-C light, the quicker the light intensity will burn out. That's just how the way it is.

In short: World's most popular UV plug-in air purifier with proven track records in performance and reliability. You can't go wrong with this model. ⚠️ Only buy this if is cheaper than the newer GermGuardian GG1100 Elite.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

3.8

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±59.99 $/ 7

(annual filter cost ±15-30)

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3. GermGuardian GG1100W/ GG1100B Air Purifier

GermGuardian GG1100 Elite Review

The newer is always better. GermGuardian GG1100 Elite Plug in UV-C Sanitizer is the updated version of GG1000 with the addition of a USB charging port. It can silently clean the indoor air via sterilization and charge your mobile device simultaneously without losing any power. At a boxy 3.5 inches depth, 6.75 inches height, and a 0.7 pounds weight, GermGuardian GG1100 fits well on most wall sockets. The more conserved square design allows you to easily pack it in the baggage for travel. Build quality is on par with a premium console air purifier that offers zero off-gassing despite costing less than 40 dollars. A rarity at this price point.

The latest UV plug-in air purifier from GermGuardian with the capacity to remove airborne allergens in the background. Come with a nice glowing ring and an ever-useful USB charging port.

Available in 2 color options (black & white), GermGuardian GG1100 Elite comes with a nice color ring that illuminates once you plug it into a wall socket. A thoughtful design element that lets you know the plug-in air purifier is operational. Usability is great, with no controls to tinker with, as this is essentially a plug-and-play model. Without a big motor fan, GermGuardian GG1100 will run silently and efficiently with consistent power output to support UV radiation. The only thing you need to ensure is not to place it next to flammable objects, insecticides, and air fresheners, as it might lead to a chemical reaction.

GermGuardian GG1100 Elite UV-C air sanitizer is targeted for small rooms at 56 square footage of coverage. Emitting a broad wavelength spectrum between 200 to 280 nm, the UV-C light technology with Titanium Dioxide effectively eliminates airborne germs and viral viruses such as influenza, staph, and rhinovirus. It will also reduce volatile organic compounds and faint odor caused by mold, mildew, and other fungi though the impact is less hopeful. Perhaps the most surprising factor to some is that GermGuardian GG1100 Elite does not emit a high volume of ozone that can irritate the lungs. GermGuardian GG1100 is the perfect complement to a HEPA air purifier and ideal for children's bedroom, dining room, kitchen, bathroom (dry), laundry room, or any room that reeks.

GermGuardian GG1100 Pluggable UV-C Sanitizer Review

Sharing the previous generation cons, GermGuardian GG1100 only comes with a limited 56 square footage of sanitization. Far less than a desktop air purifier priced under 100 would typically cover. Unlike a virtually maintenance-free ionizer, you also have to replace the UV bulb every 6 to 12 months. It is also slow in filtering dust, debris, and other PM10 particles known to be resistant to UV-C rays. A simple pre-filter would do a much better job here. That said, all the drawbacks are expected and will not hinder GermGuardian GG1100's day-to-day air cleaning when you use it as intended.

In short: The latest UV plug-in air purifier from GermGuardian with the capacity to remove airborne allergens in the background. Come with a nice glowing ring and an ever-useful USB charging port. ⚠️ Buy this if you want an affordable, pure UV-C sanitizer that doesn't take up any space.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

3.8

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±39.99 $/ 7

(annual filter cost ±15-30)

CHECK LATEST AMAZON PRICE

4. Clarifion Negative Ion Generator GL-139 Air Purifier

Clarifion Negative Ion Generator GL-139 Review

An affordable, sleek, compact negative ion generator that promotes clean air safely without generating ozone. Clarifion GL-139 is the go-to plug-in air purifier and our favorite ionizer to support an existing HEPA air cleaning machine. At only 4 x 6 x 2.9 inches in size and a light 4.8 lb weight, it is travel-friendly, and you can bring it anywhere you go or just leave it at a spot untouched. The durability is exceptional as our units have been running non-stop for years without fail. Just make sure not to place it close to flammable items like an air freshener.

A high output negative ion generator capable of reducing air allergens, smoke, and odor. Widely available in a bundled deal.

Clarifion GL-139 is easy to install with a zero learning curve. You only need to find a wall socket, plug it in, and you're done. The negative ion generator will never stop diffusing ions in the air as long as you kept it plugged in. Since no noise is generated, the glowing blue LED light indicates that the device is running and functioning properly. You can pretty much ignore it at this point during work, chill, sleep, and leave it on even when you're away from work or outstation. The mild energy usage (< 1 watt) further complements its long-term usability and will not encumber your monthly utility bill.

Powering Clarifion pluggable air purifier is an ionization technology that diffuses up to 10 million pcs/ cm^3 of negative ions. The negative ions charge and bond with positive ions pollutants in the air, such as dust mites, pet dander, mold, and pollen. The bonded ions will fall due to the increased weight, thus reducing the risk of you breathing in the airborne pollutants. Since the ionizer is filter-free and reusable, no recurring cost or upkeeping is ever needed. Clarifion is also certified by California Air Resources Board (CARB) (G-20-016) to be ozone and chemical safe. You can safely use it in the children's bedroom, dining room, pet area, stairway, and living room, without having a negative impact on your health.

Clarifion Plug In Negative Ion Generator GL-139

As a plug in negative ion generator air purifier, Clarifion GL-139 has a few drawbacks. First, it does not actually remove airborne contaminants like a conventional HEPA air purifier. The fallen contaminants will adhere to the mat, wall, or furniture and can be stirred back in the air when disturbed. You will also need to perform a housing cleaning to remove the pollutants permanently. It is well documented that ionizer is less effective against smoke particles and chemical fumes due to the short purification coverage. If you understand the common limitation we brought up, Clarifion GL-139 would be a good addition to your existing air purifier to improve indoor air quality.

In short: A high output negative ion generator capable of reducing air allergens, smoke, and odor. Widely available in a bundled deal. ⚠️ Unless you want to test how Clarifion GL-139 works, only buy this in the bundled pack to take advantage of the discount.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

3.6

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±39.99 $/ 7

(annual filter cost ±0)

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5. HAPHID Plug In Negative Ion Generator Air Purifier

HAPHID Plug In Negative Ion Generator Air Purifier Review

The filterless, cheap mobile plug-in ionizer that no one talks about. HAPHID Negative Ion Generator is a welcome addition to the somewhat limited options in the market. It shares all the good plug-in air purifier characteristics yet retains its compactness and portability. Right at the bottom, there are 4 carbon fiber brush heads that help filter smoke and odor. While we prefer the cleaner design in GermGuardian, the differences are neglectable, and you will barely notice its existence after using it for a couple of days.

If you're not into the mainstream brand, this less-known pluggable negative ion generator will provide fresh air exactly as it should.

HAPHID is a worry-free plug-in air purifier you never have to pay attention to. Just plug it into a standard U.S. wall socket, and you're good to go. The ionization kick starts automatically, and the power/ working indicator lamp will light up, letting you know everything is in working order. HAPHID consistently removes airborne pollutants by continuously pumping out negative ions. Ideal for bedside use, small offices cubicle, baby diaper changing room, and hallway with limited spaces. There is no upkeeping needed or expensive filters to replace. Not now, not ever.

HAPHID works like every other negative ion pluggable air purifier on the market. It safely and quietly produces 32 million natural anions that charge oxygen ions in the air. The charged ions will drop from the increased weight leaving the indoor air cleaner and fresher. You will breathe and sleep better with HAPHID running close to you. Negative ions also help boost metabolism and immunity via the increased oxygen in the blood. Not bad for a tiny device that costs no more than a fine meal.

HAPHID Plug In Negative Ion Generator Air Purifier Revieweview

Besides being a less-known brand with limited support, the biggest setback for the HAPHID Plug-in air purifier is the limited cleaning output. It has a small cleaning range and does not stop mold, mildew, and other microorganisms' growth like a HEPA air purifier. It is also less effective against chemical fumes and may not help much if a person has severe allergies. We would recommend using HAPHID on top of the existing HEPA air purifier for a more well-rounded filtration.

In short: If you're not into the mainstream brand, this less-known pluggable negative ion generator will provide fresh air exactly as it should. ⚠️ Buy this for the low price and use it as temporary relief before investing in a HEPA air purifier.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

3.4

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±49.99 $/ 7

(annual filter cost ±0)

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6. Belita Amy Plug In Air Purifier

Belita Amy Plug In Air Purifier Review

Live a carefree life with Belita Amy's plug in air purifier. A mini device that can provide natural, forest-like fresh air anywhere you go. Comes in a greeny, leafy theme; its small body frame and lightweight body make it the perfect travel companion. It will fit nicely in the bedside, hallway, bathroom, kitchen, study room, and garage with limited space. You can bring it along during travel, especially in places with high pollution. The durable ABS material will withstand rough use and outlast the 12-month warranty period.

Ignore the unorthodox design. This negative ions generator will safely clean your air without releasing harmful ozone.

Belita Amy is a no-fuss device that requires no prior knowledge of an air purifier. Simply plug it into a wall socket, and it will work immediately, providing fresh air. There is no noise, no ozone, no chemical, and no radiation to contend with. You do not even have to maintain it since Belita Amy is 100% filterless. Just leave the pluggable air purifier to perform its ionization while you go on with your daily life. The low-watt, energy-saving operation will not give you a shock at the end of the month.

How an air ionizer work is simple. The device intelligently and silently emits 32 million negatively charged ions per second. The negative ions will bond with other pollutants in the air, making them heavier and thus falling to the surface. Ionizers will also work on pathogens and odor from the toilet, pets, cooking, and second-hand smoke. The only caveat is that you need to perform sweeping or vacuuming to remove the pollutants once and for all.

Belita Amy Plug In Air Purifier Review

Belita Amy's design might not be everyone's cup of tea. It is the limited range and performance that could be the stumbling block. The fallen particles will adhere around the house instead of being trapped in the filter. You will need to vacuum regularly to remove the stuck particles on the wall, upholstery, bed, cabinet, or floor. Unless you have very limited space in your home, a regular HEPA air purifier would be the better bet.

In short: Ignore the unorthodox design. This negative ions generator will safely clean your air without releasing harmful ozone. ⚠️ Only buy this if you can get it at a very attractive price (under 20).

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

3.5

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±19.99 $/ 7

(annual filter cost ±0)

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7. HomeZens Portable Plug in Air Purifier

eZens Portable Plug in Air Purifier Review

A small but distinctive device that can provide a healthier living environment for your baby. HomeZens is a Plug in UV air purifier that cleans and disinfects your indoor air as intended. Its slim 3.5 x 7.5 x 3 inches dimension houses a functional built-in turbine cycle with a 180° rotatable body. While the form factor is not the best for travel, it is fully sealed and protected from ozone or radiation leakage. You can safely use it in the children's room or bedside without worrying about harmful substances like zone. Build quality is good and will last for years if it is well-maintained.

Another affordable, pluggable UV air purifier that is excellent at eliminating germs in a confined area.

Usability will never be an issue with HomeZens plug in air purifier. Find a wall socket, plug it in, adjust the right angle via its 180° rotatable body, and off you go. No complicated controls to worry about. The low-power usage light is designed for you to run safely and quietly non-stop until the day you unplug for UV bulb replacement. We have more than 4 units running 24x7 in the house, yet our monthly electricity bill remains steady without any spike. A good testament to its energy efficiency and usability.

Powered by a UV-C Sterilization, HomeZens plug in air purifier begins by forcing nearby air inside its chamber. Through germicidal irradiation, ultraviolet light will kill or deactivate up to 99.9% of germs, bacteria, and viruses, including H1N1. The dormant microorganisms lose the ability to reproduce, rendering them harmless. The photocatalyst decomposition decomposes and removes odors caused by mold, bacteria, pets, cooking, and chemical like formaldehyde. Everyone in the household will enjoy breathing healthy, fresh air with just 2 hours of run time.

HomeZens Portable Plug in Air Purifier Review

HomeZens is not a direct replacement for a conventional HEPA air purifier, which brings us to the cons. You will need multiple units just to cover an entire room. Even then, the filtration is not as comprehensive as mechanical filters. The UV light radiation also needs several minutes to eliminate large particles, and the exposure duration will only increase as the light intensity drops. You will have to replace the light bulb regularly, which can be annoying when you have more than 1 unit at home. Then again, having HomeZens around is better than none. It will be compatible with the existing or future air purifier you intend to purchase.

In short: Another affordable, pluggable UV air purifier that is excellent at eliminating germs in a confined area. ⚠️ Buy this if GermGuardian options are not available.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

3.5

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±39.98 $/ 7

(annual filter cost ±10-20)

CHECK LATEST AMAZON PRICE

Max Fernandez

A loving father and a dedicated reviewer for airfuji.com with more than 1000 air purifiers under his belt. Max Fernandez is also one of the million patients currently suffering from asthma. Feel free to nudge him if you have any questions.

 

Do Plug-in Air Purifiers Work?

Yes, plug-in air purifiers do work cleaning the air in small areas despite their compact size and limitation on performance. It will use either filter, ionization, or UV-C to remove different airborne pollutants, including germs, bacteria, mold, odor, and viruses (SARS-CoV-2).

However, its effectiveness against large airborne particles is not great due to the lack of a HEPA filter. It also cannot remove particles stuck on a surface area, like bedding, carpet, wall, or floor. Plug in air cleaners is not a substitute for a HEPA air purifier.

A 2018 study done by JAMA Internal Medicine confirming plug-in air purifiers can reduce fine particulates in the air. Doing so will help lower blood pressure and alleviate nasal congestion, headaches, dizziness, fatigue, red eyes, throat irritation. In the long run, it can even reduce the risk of COPD, lung cancer, and other respiratory issues.

A Plug-in air purifier is unique on its own. Below are the other types of air cleaners that would complement a pluggable air purifier to clean the air.

  • HEPA air purifier - The most popular option to use alongside a plug-in air purifier. Most models come with a trio of pre-filter, True HEPA filter, and an activated carbon filter that will capture all airborne particles in the room.
  • Air ionizer - A standalone, filterless air cleaner that generates negative ions to attract and merge with positive ion particles in the air. It is basically the larger unit of a plug-in ionizer.
  • Electrostatic precipitator - Works like an ionizer but comes with an additional collector metal plate to trap all the fallen particles. The perfect companion to a plug-in air ionizer.
  • UVGI/ PCO air purifier - Irradiate UV-C light that eliminates biological pollutants by altering the molecular structure. Works better in a multi-stage filtered air purifier than a pluggable unit.
  • Ozone generator - Never get one. It splits oxygen molecules (O2) into a single atom and merges with the remaining oxygen molecules to form ozone (O3). The ozone emitted can cause more harm to our body rather than cleaning the air. Ozone generators are not recommended by FDA, CARB, EPA, and other health agencies.
Do plug-in air purifier work

How Do Plug-in Air Purifiers Work?

A Plug-in air purifier is a highly portable air cleaning device that works by plugging into a wall outlet. The plug-and-play setup is powered by mechanical filtration, ionization, or UV light technology. It works best in a confined area like an office cubicle, bedroom, dorm, pet area, laundry room, and trailer with limited room space.

Not all plug-in air purifiers are created equal. With different mechanisms and technologies to clean the air, here is the breakdown of how each type works:

1. Plug-in carbon air purifiers. Uses a carbon filter to absorb nearby smoke and odors from the kitchen, cigarettes, pets, and diapers. Some models come with an additional HEPA filter that captures 99.97% of airborne particles as small as 0.3 microns. However, it is rare and few due to the size constraint. Another issue is that small filters are ineffective against large particles like dust, hair, and lint. You will also need to constantly replace the filters, typically within 3 months or less. A plug-in ionizer will be the better option if one is looking for a filterless and zero recurring cost model.

2. Pluggable ionizer air purifiers. A filter-free technology electrostatically diffuses millions of negatively charged ions that attach to positive ion particles in the air. The merged ions will fall from the increased weight and adhere to surfaces such as walls, sofas, curtains, carpets, beds, cabinets, and floors. You will be at less risk of inhaling dirty pollutants.

What plug-in ionic air purifiers do not do well is against gaseous pollutants and odors like VOCs, CO, radon, ozone. Without a collector plate, the fallen particles will scatter all over the room. You will have to perform regular vacuuming to prevent the contaminants from reintroducing into the air.

3. Plug-in UV air purifier. It uses the short wavelength of UV-C light (100–280 nm) to kill airborne microorganisms, including mold spores, bacteria, and viruses. Unlike a filter that merely captures the pathogens, the inactivated pathogens' DNA is altered with no chance of growth and spread.

The limitation of pluggable UV sanitizer germicidal irradiation is the overall efficiency. It is ineffective against larger particles and gaseous pollutants due to the long exposure time. Furthermore, some mold and pathogens are more resistant to UV radiation. The ultraviolet light intensity will also gradually drop. You will need to promptly replace the light bulb, which will add to the cost.

To get the most out of your plug-in air purifier, keep it clean so no dust clogs the air inlet and outlet. Also, keep it away from flammable pluggable devices like an air freshener notorious for disrupting airflow circulation. To avoid airflow obstruction, do not place it behind a shelf, table, curtain, or sofa. More importantly, keep all windows closed and leave the air cleaner running even when you're away to reduce the number of airborne contaminants from building up.

Benefits Of Plug-in Air Purifiers

Clean air is essential to our health, and you can achieve that with this little helper. Here are the perks of owning a plug-in air purifier:

  • Easy to use - Plug-in air purifiers require no learning curve, no assembling, no adjustment, and no maintenance. It is fundamentally a plug-and-play device.
  • Economical - Plug-in air purifiers are affordable, typically under 50 dollars for a complete set. It is also cost-effective, with no expensive filter replacement to worry about. You will save a lot of money in the long run as it uses very little energy, under 10 watts per hour. A great stepping stone before you invest in a bigger, full-size air purifier.
  • Space-saving design - Unlike a regular air purifier that can be obtrusive, plug-in purifiers are plugged into the wall power outlet. It will never get in the way. Ideal for small homes with children and pets.
  • Travel-friendly - Enjoy clean air wherever you go. Plug in air purifier portable size is perfect for bringing along during work or travel. You can fit it in a backpack, laptop bag, luggage, purse, or RV with ease.
  • Additional filtration - Plug-in purifier perfectly complements your existing HVAC system and air purifiers. The better the filtration, the greater the cleaner air.

Downsides Of Plug-in Air Purifiers (VS HEPA Air Cleaner)

There are pros and cons of owning a plug in purifier. Here are the drawbacks that you should expect with this tiny device:

  • Less effective - It's no secret that the absence of large mechanical filters will hamper filtration efficiency. Ionization and UV germicidal irradiation have limitations against gaseous pollutants. Furthermore, some mold and pathogens are more resistant to UV radiation, notably when the ultraviolet light intensity drops. Case in point, a desktop HEPA air purifier can fit multiple filters with a bigger surface area; therefore, more pollutants can be captured in one go.
  • Limited coverage - Plug in purifiers are only meant for small room sizes, typically under 100 square footage. It takes a long time to remove airborne particles like dust, mold, pollen, smoke, and pet dander. Compare that with a standard HEPA purifier that can swiftly trap and clean the air of more than 200 square footage.
  • Ozone - Like it or not, ionization and UV technology will emit little ozone even though it is at an insignificant level. Buyers also beware that there are quite a few portable ozone generators that mask themselves as plug-in purifiers. These models do not pass California Prop 65 regulations and should be avoided at all costs.
Is Plug In Air Purifier Safe?

Is Plug In Air Purifier Safe?

Genuine plug-in air purifiers with UV-light, ionization, or mechanical filters are safe because they do not produce harmful byproducts during the air cleaning process. You can use it comfortably in a room with a baby, children, or pet around. However, you should beware of fake "ozone" plug-in purifiers that generate ozone harmful to our health. Ozone generators are not CARB and FDA-approved, and the efficiency is debatable. Many evil manufacturers will mask its plug-in ozone generator as an ionizer to bypass public backlash. Here at airfuji.com, we do not recommend buying or owning any devices that generate ozone.

Do Plug In Air Purifiers Use A lot Of Electricity?

Plug in air purifiers does not use a lot of electricity given their low power output. It uses very little energy, typically between 1-10 watts. Even if you have multiple units running 24/ 7 at home, you will not notice any increase in your monthly electrical bill.

Where Should I Place A Plug In Air Purifier?

As a plug-in air purifier have minimal air cleaning coverage, place it close to your breathing zone so clean air can be delivered quicker. We recommend plugging it near the bedside/ nightstand close to the bed, working/ study desk, or kitchen. The toilet is another popular spot as long as it is not overly humid or the splashing water gets into the air purifier.

Should I Leave A Plug In Air Purifier On All Day?

Yes, you should. Is it recommended and safe to leave a plug in air purifier on all day, all night. If it is not practical for your situation, try to run an air purifier on for at least 8 hours a day to maintain the air quality. Make sure the air purifier is well maintained so it can afford to clean the air consistently.

Do I Need A Plug-In Air Purifier?

While no doubt it works, plug-in air purifiers are a very niche product that may not be applicable to everyone. We recommend getting a pluggable air purifier if:

  1. You have limited room spaces that cannot fit in a desktop air purifier.
  2. To complement your existing air purifier.

Otherwise, consider getting a full-sized HEPA air purifier with a larger pre-filter, a True HEPA filter, and an activated carbon filter. The wider air cleaning coverage and stronger filtration are beneficial for those suffering from allergies, asthma, or other respiratory issues. If you have a baby, children, pregnant women, or elderly at home, it also makes more sense to invest in a bigger and better air purifier with proven efficiency.

How Many Plug In Air Purifiers Do I Need?

We recommend getting a plug in air purifier for every room that does not come with a console air purifier. Since plug in air purifier doesn't cost much (under 40 dollars) with very low power usage, having extra air filtration in a room is always welcome.

How To Use A Plug In Air Purifier Effectively?

There are a lot of constraints with a plug-in air purifier, given its form factor. To squeeze every inch out of the device, here are a few simple ways to use the plug-in air cleaner effectively.

  • Never unplug it - An plug-in air purifier must be plugged on all the time for it to work well. It will continue to clean the air and prevent nearby airborne pollutants from building up.
  • Close to the pollution sources - Given the small air purifying coverage, you should plug the air purifier into a wall outlet near the sources of the contaminants for better air purification. Keep it away from direct sunlight and make sure no electronic devices obstruct the air cleaner.
  • Change the lightbulb - For plug-in models that use UV sterilization, replace them after the recommended usage hours.
  • Close all windows/ doors - A necessity for a plug in air purifier that already struggle with the air cleaning radius. The goal is to reduce the number of outdoor pollutants entering.

Do Plug-in Air Purifiers Make Your House Smell Better?

Yes, but not by much. Plug-in air purifiers are not as effective at removing odors from chemicals, cooking, and cigarette smoke due to the lack of a 3-stage filtration with an activated carbon filter. It is more suited for small rooms such as a bathroom, kitchen closet, and storage area.

How Long Do Plug In Air Purifiers Last?

Most plug in air purifiers will last for 5-10 years with sufficient care and maintenance. You'll need to change the air filters every 3 months or 6-12 months for the UV lightbulb.

Can A Plug In Air Purifier Protect You From The Coronavirus?

A plug in air purifier can reduce airborne viruses like the coronavirus. However, it cannot provide complete protection from Covid 19. Social distance and face masks are still the way to go.

Does the air purifier need to be plugged in?

Besides wearable air purifiers that use rechargeable batteries, all air purifiers need to be plugged into a power outlet to work.

Should I Sleep With A Plug In A Air Purifier On?

Yes, you should sleep with a plug in air purifier on at night as recommended by The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA). It promotes better breathing while you sleep.

Final Thoughts

Plug-in air purifiers have come a long way from their previous doubtful form to today's proven air cleaning device. It may not be the ideal device to deal with airborne pollutants, but it is still way better than having zero protection. To recap, Hamilton Beach TrueAir Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator is our budget pick, and so is GermGuardian GG1000 or GG1100. If you want a full-blown air purifier yet still under the price-friendly bracket, check out our best HEPA air purifier under 100 dollars list here.

Compare Best Plug In Air Purifiers

NoImageAir PurifierOnline Price (Amazon)ScoreFiltrationCoverageFan
Speed
DimensionWeightDust CADRPollen CADRSmoke CADRPre-filterHEPA filterCarbon filterIonizerUV lightOther filterAll-in-one filterNoise levelPower outputTimer/ SchedulerSensorsWarrantyAuto modeRemote controlChild lockENERGY STARWi-Fi/ BTBluetoothAQIFilter indicator
1Hamilton Beach TrueAir Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator ReviewHamilton Beach TrueAir Plug-Mount Odor Eliminator Air Purifier

$

CHECK PRICE
3.71-stage64 sq. ft. (6 m2)1
5.2 x 6.5 x 3.7 in
(13.2 x 16.5 x 9.4 cm)
1.1 lb (0.5 kg)N/AN/AN/A
-
-
Hamilton Beach TrueAir Replacement Carbon Filter
3 months
+- 13.28
-
-
SILENT1 year
2GermGuardian GG1000 Pluggable Air Purifier & Sanitizer ReviewGermGuardian GG1000 Pluggable Air Purifier

$

CHECK PRICE
3.81-stage56 sq. ft. (5 m2)1
3.2 x 7.5 x 3 in
(8.1 x 19.1 x 7.6 cm)
1.13 lb (0.5 kg)N/AN/AN/A
-
-
-
LB1000 UV-C Replacement Bulb
6-12 months+- 14.99
-
-
SILENT3.5 W1 year
3GermGuardian GG1100 Elite ReviewGermGuardian GG1100W/ GG1100B Air Purifier

$

CHECK PRICE
3.81-stage56 sq. ft. (5 m2)1
6.75 x 6.75 x 3.5 in
(17.1 x 17.1 x 8.9 cm)
0.7 lb (0.3 kg)N/AN/AN/A
-
-
-
LB1000 UV-C Replacement Bulb
6-12 months+- 14.99
-
-
SILENT1 year
4Clarifion Negative Ion Generator GL-139 ReviewClarifion Negative Ion Generator GL-139 Air Purifier

$

CHECK PRICE
3.61-stage150 sq. ft. (14 m2)1
4 x 6 x 2.9 in
(10.2 x 15.2 x 7.4 cm)
0.3 lb (0.1 kg)N/AN/AN/A
-
-
-
Negative Ion Generator
-
-
-
Ultra Quiet<1 W1 year
5HAPHID Plug In Negative Ion Generator Air Purifier ReviewHAPHID Plug In Negative Ion Generator Air Purifier

$

CHECK PRICE
3.41-stage1
2.2 x 3.4 x 2 in
(5.6 x 8.6 x 5.1 cm)
0.5 lb (0.2 kg)N/AN/AN/A
-
-
-
Negative ion generator
-
-
<25 dBLow1 year
6Belita Amy Plug In Air Purifier ReviewBelita Amy Plug In Air Purifier

$

CHECK PRICE
3.51-stage431-646 sq. ft. (431-646 m2)1
4.1 x 9.8 x 3 in
(10.4 x 24.9 x 7.6 cm)
0.2 lb (0.1 kg)N/AN/AN/A
-
-
-
LB1000 UV-C Replacement Bulb
6-12 months+- 14.99
-
-
<20 dB1 year
7eZens Portable Plug in Air Purifier ReviewHomeZens Portable Plug in Air Purifier

$

CHECK PRICE
3.51-stage107 sq. ft. (10 m2)1
3.5 x 7.5 x 3 in
(8.9 x 19.1 x 7.6 cm)
0.75 lb (0.3 kg)N/AN/AN/A
-
-
-
UV-C Sterilization + Photocatalyst Decompostision
6-8 months+- 14.98
-
-
<45 dB1 year