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7 Best UV Air Purifier In 2022 (Safe, Effective, And Efficient!)

There are ways to remove allergens in the air; none is "killing" it like an ultraviolet air purifier. Unlike a HEPA machine, it permanently kills bacteria and viruses, leaving no traces behind. This comprehensive buying guide will explain how UV-light works, the benefits of using a UVGI method, and the drawbacks that come with it. After comparing and reviewing more than 100 models at all price points, we filtered out the bad ones and handpicked the best UV air purifiers you can buy right now. Read on.
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Who is this for?

Everyone could do with a UV air purifier. The ultraviolet ray stops the viral infection from spreading and protect us from diseases. Among the group, newborns, children, and the elderly are the biggest beneficiary of their developing/ weakened immune systems. Teachers and students are also the perfect candidates as they are regularly exposed to different sources of air pollutants. If you constantly fall sick with symptoms related to breathing difficulty, a UV air purifier with a HEPA filter would do wonders as well.

2022 Best UV Air Purifiers

BEST BUDGETBEST OVERALLBEST PERFORM-ANCEPERFORMANCE
PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA Air Purifier ReviewInvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 ReviewMedify Air MA-50 Review
PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA Air PurifierInvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 Air PurifierMedify Air MA-50 Air Purifier
Ultraviolet Types/ Lifespan
UV-C light bulb x1/ 12 months (9,000 hours)UV-C light bulb x1/ 12 monthsUV-C light bulb x1/ Lifetime
Recommended Room Size
200 sq. ft. (19 m2)1,276 sq. ft. (119 m2)1,100 sq. ft. (102 m2)
CADR
Dust 80 cfm (136 m3/h)
Pollen 80 cfm (136 m3/h)
Smoke 80 cfm (136 m3/h)
Dust 170 cfm (289 m3/h)
Pollen 170 cfm (289 m3/h)
Smoke 170 cfm (289 m3/h)
Dust 295 cfm (500 m3/h)
Pollen 295 cfm (500 m3/h)
Smoke 295 cfm (500 m3/h)
Filtration
4-stage5-stage4-stage
Ratings
4out of 54.2out of 54.5out 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?

Finding the right air purifier with UV light is not easy. You will need to consider many factors in picking the best model. To help you filter out all the fake UV lights and make sure you're getting the best out of the air purifier, carefully go through the list one by one and see which requirements may apply to you.

  • UV-light - A UV air purifier must come with a genuine UV-C light bulb, and that's the minimum criteria. We will rate how effectively ultraviolet light kills biological pollutants at maximum capacity. We will also compare the UV's exposure time, usage lifespan, the number of lightbulbs, the replacement bulb cost, and the stock availability to see which model stands out.
  • UV light intensity - The stronger the UV light, the more germs and microorganisms will be killed in the chamber. The light intensity is determined by the power wattage, the technology (UV-A, UV-B, UV-C), the type of UV light (mercury/ LED), and the number of bulbs.
  • UV exposure time - The longer the biological pollutants dwell in the chamber, the more bacteria and viruses will be killed. Exposure time correlates with the UV light intensity and airflow speed.
  • Airflow speed - Pick a model with variable fan speed adjustment. Unlike a conventional air purifier, the slower the airflow speed, the longer the exposure time the germs would be in the chamber.
  • HEPA filter - When choosing a HEPA air purifier with UV light, go with the more efficient True HEPA filter over a HEPA-type filter.
  • Pricing - Always go with a model you could afford to own and maintain. The more filters an air purifier has, the costlier the long-term ownership will be.
  • Maintenance cost - Not just the UV-light, the overall filtration cost, including the HEPA filter. Some air purifiers require filter change every 6 months rather than annually. Thus you will need to account for that. For models with a reusable filter, regularly vacuum or wash the filter to extend the usage life.
  • No Ozonator - All UV air purifiers listed here must not exceed the ozone emission concentration limit of 0.050 parts per million (ppb). Higher priority will be given to air cleaning devices that are UL-listed, and CARB certified. In any case, we will never include an ozone generator in our list. Ozonator produces harmful ozone that can irritate the lungs and damages its cell.
  • Design and size - UV air purifiers come in all shapes and forms. Consider your room size, home decor, daily routine, and pick an air purifier that will fit the bill. Stay clear of a poorly ventilated model or has dodgy build quality. The most important thing is choosing a model you're comfortable with day in and day out.
  • Room size - Depending on room space that needs fresh air, always go with a higher capacity model with stronger airflow. That way, you can place the air purifier further while running at a much slower speed.
  • Noise level - The lower the dB rating, the better the usability. A quiet air purifier allows you to run the machine all day without disturbing your daily activities. Ideally, the noise output should be between 30-60 dB.
  • Energy consumption - The higher the wattage, the more powerful the UV light will be but at the cost of higher power usage. Luckily, most modern air purifiers are energy-efficient (+- 50 watts) for all-day operations.
  • Supporting filters - Whether a pre-filter, HEPA filter, carbon filter, or ionizer, any extra filtration that work well for a UV air cleaner is welcome. The supporting filters will assist in trapping airborne pollutants that manage to bypass the UV light. The more filtration it has, the higher consideration will be given to the particular model.
  • Warranty - The longer the warranty period, the better assurance you will have with the machine. Look into the warranty terms, replacement policy, and after-sale service location. Never pick a model that does not come with an official warranty.

1. PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA Air Purifier

PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA Air Purifier Review

Small and mighty UV HEPA machine. At a price of slightly above 100 dollars, Pure Enrichment PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA air purifier comes equipped with a genuine UV light that works as advertised. The light bulb is nicely fitted inside the short 12.1 inches height and 6.9 inches width body designed for homes with limited room space. Adding the 8.4 pounds weight, it is highly usable, where you can carry it around the house via the back handle. Best of all, the compact body does not hinder the ultraviolet intensity in any shape or form. The conventional setup utilizes two large sides of air inlets and an outlet for all-around sterilization. Unlike other portable air purifiers that slap a UV lamp without doing anything, you're getting the complete UV treatment that eliminates incoming airborne pollutants.

Affordable HEPA air purifier with UV light technology. The cheap and long-lasting light bulb makes up for the hassle filter change.

Moving to the top control panel. PureZone 3-in-1 UV easy-to-use setup requires no prior knowledge of an air purifier. You can adjust the three fan speeds, activate sleep mode, and filter reset after you have changed a new filter set with a simple click. The dedicated UV-C function can be disabled when you're away or not in use to extend the light bulb's life. We highly recommend you leave UV mode on to curb the spread of germs and bacteria. A timer function will also shut down the machine between 2, 4, and 8 hours to help converse energy. Best used before you leave for work or hit the bed.

Safety-wise, PureZone 3-in-1 comes with ETL Mark and CARB certification with below 0.05 ppm ozone concentration level (UV mode). It is harmless to our health and safe to use if you have children or pets at home. The manufacturer's five-year warranty is a big vote of confidence in the air purifier's durability and reliability. It will not break down even if you leave it running all day, every day.

Despite the affordable price tag, the PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA air purifier comes with the must-have UV-C light. A century-old technology that uses short-wavelength to inactivate mold, bacteria, flu viruses like H1N1, influenza, and rhinoviruses3 in the air. The close proximity and sufficient exposure to the ultraviolet light destroy 99% of pathogens inside the chamber. PureZone's UV radiation strength is stronger and more consistent than other compact UV air cleaners e.g. AC4100. On top of that, you have the pre-filter that traps and protects the HEPA/ carbon filter from larger particles like dust and hair. The activated carbon filter absorbs smoke particles from pets, food, cigarette, and noxious chemicals like formaldehyde, benzene, and carbon dioxide. The true HEPA filter removes 99.97% of the fine particles as small as 0.3 microns before releasing the clean, sterilized air. With PureZone 3-in-1 continuously filtering the air, you will see air quality improvement in a matter of hours.

PureZone 3-in-1 UV True HEPA air purifier works great in the bedroom, kitchen, small apartment, office, and nursery home. The air cleaner can effectively clean and sterilize up to 200 square feet of room space at max speed. Leaving it at low speed will increase the pathogen's UV exposure time in the chamber but at the cost of slower clean air distribution. The official CADR is slightly under par at 80 cubic feet per minute; therefore, PureZone 3-in-1 is best used in small to medium room sizes. Save and except for Medify MA-50, not many models can offer the same output at its price range.

PureZone-3-in-1-HEPA-Air-Purifier-UV-light

For the electrical cost, the 60 watts power consumption is reasonable for an ultraviolet air cleaner of its caliber. On average, 12 hours of runtime will only cost you around 0.1 dollars daily in the utility bill. Rounding up to 30 days, expect a monthly 3 dollars of electric cost. Leaving the UV mode on will have almost no impact on energy consumption. The only thing missing is the Auto mode that helps manage the energy usage at an optimum level.

PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA UV-C technology is virtually silent at most speeds. Still, you will need to account for other noise factors e.g. the spinning motor fan. The combined noise output is around 30 to 50 dB depending on the fan speed you're in. Since UV does not produce any noise, you can set it to whisper-quiet sleep mode with the UV-light running in the background. The perfect combination to ensure a good night sleep free from pesky allergens.

On to drawbacks, there are two things PureZone 3-in-1 didn't tickle our fancy. The mentioned CADR is only at a low 80 cfm with minimal air cleaning coverage. The filter set also requires replacing every 6 months despite the UV-light bulb can last 9,000 to 20,000 hours (around 12 months). As a 3-in-1 air purifier, the UV-C technology cannot work independently, and you will need to replace the entire filter set to resume operation. The saving grace is the low annual filter cost is around 40 dollars, including the replacement UV lamp; way less than other brands' upkeep costs.

In short: Affordable HEPA air purifier with UV light technology. The cheap and long-lasting light bulb makes up for the hassle filter change. ⚠️ Buy this if you're on a tight budget for a multi-stage UV air cleaner.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

4

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±139.99 $$/ 7

(annual filter cost ±40)

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2. InvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 Air Purifier

InvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 Review

Skip the old one and go with the new and improved InvisiClean Aura II air purifier with UV light. The refreshed design is given a modern flair without sacrificing its practicality and germ-killing performance. At a low under 150 dollars price, you have the familiar design with air intake position on both sides and air outtake right at the top. It is measured at 17.8 inches in height, 12.3 inches in width, and 6.3 inches in depth; not exactly as compact as touted. When needed, you can still effortlessly move it around or room to room UV sterilization. Internally, the updated gutsy DC motor output more power than a standard AC motor yet uses 82% less energy even with ultraviolet radiation. There is also an updated safety switch configuration with boosted performance for extra reliability. The only thing unchanged is the in-house 1-year warranty which is standard and bare minimum. Still, some models in the same segment offer more extended protection.

InvisiClean Aura II 4-in-1 UV air purifier can be your primary defense against airborne germs invasion at a heavily discounted price.

Control-wise, the InvisiClean Aura II UV air purifier is dead easy to use. You can cycle through the 4 speeds (Low, Medium, High, Turbo) to control the UV exposure time. You can set timer auto-shutoff (2, 4, 8 hours), a sleep mode that locks speed to low, and disable indicator lights). There is also a reset filter change indicator that can be turned off after replacing the filter. More importantly, UV light/ ionizer mode is optional, and you can turn it off via the dedicated control button. Since UV light is highly beneficial and does not produce harmful byproducts, we recommend keeping it on as additional filtration to deal with airborne pollutants.

InvisiClean Aura II 4-in-1 UV air purifier is ideal for people with breathing trouble due to allergies. You have the germ disinfecting UV-C light that irradiates and destroy microorganisms cell from reproducing. Given the smaller light bulb size and short exposure time, UV germicidal irradiation will take time to break down bacteria, viruses, and other higher-resistance strains of the pathogens. As such, the supporting filters are vital in the purification cycle. The 2-in-1 activated carbon pre-filter comes with chemical adsorbent materials that remove dust, smoke, and odors before it reaches the HEPA filter. South Korea made premium H13 True HEPA filter traps 99.985% of microscopic particles in the air as small as 0.3 microns, including mold, mildew, pollen, and pet dander. Lastly, the ionizer release ions to help pull down dirty particles in the air for the filter to capture. Both ionizer and UV-light are effective and safe with CARB approved ozone emission levels. Again, it is entirely optional, where you can disable the function when not needed.

InvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 UV-C light

A proven UV air purifier can relieve you from allergies, clear sinuses, cough, and swelling. At the lowest 1 air change per hour, InvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 can cover up to 1,276 square feet of room size. Most people will count on the 2 air changes per hour, which still cover a healthy 638 square feet range. You can increase to 4 air changes per hour for sensitive or asthmatic persons who need swift clean air sanitization with a reduced 319 square feet of coverage. All three dust, pollen, and smoke clean air delivery rate are at a healthy 170 cfm figure. Regardless of the fan speed InvisiClean Aura II is running, the ample ultraviolet germicidal lights eliminate common allergy triggers, including dust mites, mold, pollen, and germs.

Being the second-best air cleaning performer on the list, InvisiClean Aura II will run silently in the background at the lowest speed. The noise level is between 31 decibels to a loud 60 decibels in turbo mode, regardless of whether the UV-C light is activated. Power-wise, the 3 watts standby mode to max 47 watts is low compared with other electrical appliances. Suitable for all-day operation as it is intended. The mercury UV light bulb drains very little electricity so you will not see the differences in your utility bill.

Priced at a discounted 150-200 dollars, InvisiClean Aura II is at a good spot with a low 50 to 85 dollars annual filter replacement cost. It is also aided by the long-lasting 12 months UV-C light bulb that should give you about 10,000 hours of runtime. That said, let's flip the switch and focus on the few downsides that this machine inherited. InvisiClean Aura II uses a carbon pre-filter that is inefficient in dust removal and smoke absorption. Other models offer a better carbon filter at a similar price point. Turbo mode is distractingly loud and only usable when you're away from the air cleaner. Lastly, the lack of auto mode and air quality sensors is a big missed but understandable. All the mentioned complaints are shared in a UV air purifier that will not directly impact ultraviolet light performance.

In short: InvisiClean Aura II 4-in-1 UV air purifier can be your primary defense against airborne germs invasion at a heavily discounted price. ⚠️ Buy this if you want strong UV and HEPA performance at a reasonable price.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

4.2

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±399.99 $$$/ 7

(annual filter cost ±50-85)

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3. Medify Air MA-50 Air Purifier

Medify Air MA-50 Review

A high-performance, premium-looking air purifier with a matching price tag. If you want the best of the best, Medify MA-50 is a sleek UV air purifier that stands at a slim 12.4 inches diameter and a tall 24.6 inches height. The UV-C light is nicely tucked inside the machine, protected from unnecessary exposure. While not exactly table-friendly, you're getting a sturdy, 16 pounds model that will sit firmly on the ground for total UV sterilization. Design-wise, there's an air inlet and digital screen at the front and a standard top air outlet to further distribute clean air. Build quality is up there with the best with safety UL listing and ozone-safe as approved by CARB (California Air Resources Board). The trademark lifetime warranty is also here that covers all electronic parts and motors, excluding filters. You will truly appreciate the peace of mind after a few years down the road.

Pricey it may be, this is undoubtedly the best UV + HEPA performance air purifier to date.

Moving to controls, Medify Air MA-50 tempered touched glass panel is easy to operate with clear indicators on every function. You can cycle between the 4 fan speeds or choose night mode when you need to relax with minimal distraction. The advanced 2-12 hours timer can be scheduled to shut down all functions, including the ultraviolet light. Speaking of the UV-light role, it is entirely optional that can be disabled at any point of purification. Since the UV light does not produce any smell or toxic chemicals, we recommend leaving it on to kill pathogens that cross their way. Passive features include the filter replacement indicator that alerts you to change the filter every 2,500 hours and the must-have child lock function for those with kids at home.

The rare breed from its series. Medify Air MA-50 air purifier uses a 4-stage filtration to remove even the tiniest particles in the air. The built-in UV light radiates a 254 nanometers short wavelength to destroy small cell mold, bacteria, and viruses from multiplying at close proximity. The lightbulb is small but compensates with a high dosage. Since the sterilization takes a while to disinfect the biological pollutants, the standing-by pre-filter will capture large PM10 particles like dust, hair, and lint and prevent them from clogging the UV/ HEPA filter. The medical-grade H13 HEPA filter removes 99.9% of microscopic pollutants as small as 0.1 microns bypassing ultraviolet radiation. The active carbon composite neutralizes pet odors, cooking smoke, musty mold, and toxins e.g. VOCs, asbestos, formaldehyde, benzene, and ozone byproducts, before releasing sterilized air. Simple and effective UV + HEPA combination.

Medify Air MA-50 UV-C Light

Independent lab tested by Aerosol Research and Engineering Laboratories Inc., Medify Air MA-50 is proven to be effective against 99.95% of particles related to COVID-19 & SARS-Cov-2 in the air. At full speed, it can purify up to 2,200 square footage of room space at 1 ACPH, 1,100 square footage at 2 ACPH, and 550 square footage at 4 APCH. The best filtration performance even without accounting for the UV-C ray contribution. CADR is close to 300 cfm, which can benefit UV radiation by bringing in more airborne pollutants. Medify Air MA-50 is highly suited for large room sizes, including living room, garage, basement, office, playroom, or home offices. If you have severe asthma and constantly fall sick from airborne germs and viral viruses, this is the ideal model to opt for.

Since UV radiation does not generate much noise, Medify Air MA-50 air purifier can be used as a bedside model with the dedicated night mode. It churns out an average of 35 decibels to a max of 56 decibels white noise output for medium fan speed. There is no issue running it all day while busy with your daily chores. Energy Star certified power consumption is efficient despite the omission of auto mode. Depending on the state, you should be expecting an increase of 3-4 dollars in electricity bills with its 54 watts of energy output.

The trade-off for extraordinary filtration performance is the cost. Medify MA-50 Air Purifier will set you back around 300+ dollars for a brand-new set. That's twice as expensive as some air purifiers on this list. The short 3-4 months filter life also means you will have to bear a high 78 to 156 dollars annual filter cost (UV light bulb is covered by the lifetime warranty). A crucial consideration point that many people tend to ignore. Despite the high price tag, there is no air quality monitor and auto mode. Skip this model if you're on a tight budget, as the maintenance cost is not something you will look forward to.

In short: Pricey it may be, this is undoubtedly the best UV + HEPA performance air purifier to date. ⚠️ Buy this If you want the best air cleaning performance for large room sizes.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

4.5

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±325.00 $$$$/ 7

(annual filter cost ±78-156)

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4. Pure Enrichment PureZone Elite Air Purifier

Pure Enrichment PureZone Elite 4-in-1 True HEPA Air Purifier Review

Pure Enrichment PureZone Elite is our go-to UV air purifier to clean and sanitize your air. It is well-built, highly functional, and has a guaranteed 5-Year warranty with local customer support. Not many brands can offer all this at such a competitive price point. The sleek modern exterior comes at a tall 25 inches height with a 9 inches diameter. The single UV-C light bulb is well placed and protected inside not to crack easily. PureZone Elite is fitted with complete 4-stage air filtration despite the slim tower profile. The tried and tested air intake is located at the back, with air outtake at the front. The 9.3 pounds weight is not too heavy, and you can still move it around by holding on to the easy lift handle. Available in White or graphite option, our preference is with the former, but ultimately the final decision is yours.

A tall UV-C sanitizer that can protect you against pathogenic germs. The supporting 4-in-1 HEPA filtration is the perfect icing on the cake.

On to the Smart technology, PureZone Elite UV standard 3 fan speed shines well with the auto mode. In auto mode, the air cleaner will only use a higher speed when a high concentration of pollutants is detected to conserve energy. Sleep mode with light detection technology keeps the fan speed at the lowest, with indicator lights off to reduce nighttime glare. UV function is optional and can be enabled/ disabled at any time. There is also a 2, 4, 8 hour timer to turn off the machine and a filter reset indicator reminding you to replace the filter. Finally, the oddly placed color-coded smart air quality monitor display the current room air quality level. For most people, leave it in auto mode and let the ultraviolet purification perform autonomously.

PureZone Elite 4-in-1 UV-C Light + photocatalyst filter help combat seasonal allergies by eliminating common airborne viruses e.g. Varicella, Measles, Mumps, Influenza, Rhinoviruses3, and Viral meningitis that are exposed to the UV radiation. The intense UV-C rays penetrate and disrupt the DNA of the pathogens and prevent them from multiplying. Without the spread of the microorganisms, it will not trigger allergies like cough, sneeze, fever, and inflammation. Protecting the mercury lightbulb is the 2-in-1 activated carbon pre-filter that traps dust, smoke, and household odors in one go. Next, the True HEPA filter removes 99.97% of fine particles like pollen, pet dander, mold, and mildew. Lastly, the ionizer release ions to link with other positive ions pollutants in the air. The combined and heavier impurities will fall, allowing the filter to capture and UV sanitize, leaving the air cleaner than before.

Pure Enrichment PureZone Elite Air Purifier UV-C Light

Do not be disheartened by the low applicable area; PureZone Elite 4-in-1 can cover under 190 square feet of room size but with much higher air changes per hour. It is still suitable for a nursery home, dorm, bedroom, living room, dining room, kitchen, office, basement, and garage. Combined with the extensive UV radiation, the under 120 cfm CADR can swiftly reduce harmful irritants in the air and alleviate your allergy symptoms. You will breathe better, sleep better, and wake up completely refreshed the next morning.

On to the few drawbacks, PureZone Elite bundled carbon pre-filter is not washable. You will have to take it for weaker smoke absorption. Other air purifiers will get you a better filtration with a dedicated preliminary filter and separate activated carbon filter. Power consumption is good, but the noise level can also be an issue for those not OK with white noise. Again, we suggest leaving it at low speed for whisper-quiet operation while enjoying longer germs exposure time in the chamber. The best of both worlds.

In short: A tall UV-C sanitizer can protect you against pathogenic germs. The supporting 4-in-1 HEPA filtration is the perfect icing on the cake. ⚠️ Buy this if you want a powerful tower UV air purifier with Smart technology.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

4.1

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±149.99 $$$/ 7

(annual filter cost ±60-90)

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5. HoMedics AP-T30 TotalClean 5 in 1 Air Purifier

HoMedics AP-T30 TotalClean 5 in 1 Review

HoMedics AP-T30 is a 5-stage, mid-range UVGI cleaner from its TotalClean lineup. It has a good balance in price, performance, and functionality. While not our go-to model to deal with in-house pollutants, it offers extra protection against viral infection that many could do with one during this unprecedented pandemic. House in an 11+ inches width and 24 inches height body, it is fairly substantial for a tower air cleaner that is typically slim. The 12.2 pounds is also on the heavier side to accommodate the bigger framework and multiple filtrations. Still, we have no problem finding a spot for typical residential homes. Build quality is solid, with no off-gassing or UV light leakage detected.

The only 5-in-1 UV air purifier that kills airborne germs with a pleasant aroma smell.

Comes in black or white, HoMedics TotalClean AP-T30 support a top to bottom 360-degree filtration that captures irritants at all angle. The eye-sight front control panel is straightforward to use with many customizable settings. Basic controls include a power button and 3 fan speeds that play a role in the ultraviolet exposure time. Replace filter light indicator reminds you to change the multi-stage filter when worn out. Activate the Night light button to give children peace of mind during sleep or guide them through the dark during the middle of the night. We also like that both Ion and UV-C sanitizer can be activated/ deactivated separately when not needed. Best suited for asthma and allergy sufferers with sensitive lungs yet require absolute clean air. Another highlight is the aromatherapy feature, thanks to its built-in essential oil slot. Choose your favorite aromatic essential oil, sit back and relax while HoMedics TotalClean purifies your surrounding air with a natural aroma smell. No other UV air cleaners here come bundled with this feature.

HoMedics TotalClean air purifier comfortably beat its competitor with its superb 5-in-1 air filtration. The single UV-C technology eradicates microorganisms by destroying their DNA and the replication cells. Far more effective than conventional filters as the deactivated biological pollutants as no chance of escaping and reproducing. To assist with the UV radiation exposure time, the outer pre-filter blocks dust, debris, pet hair, and lint that otherwise may damage the UV or HEPA filter. The inner HEPA filter traps up to 99.97% of airborne irritants as small as 0.3 microns e.g. mold, pollen, mildew, and dander. The carbon filter neutralizes cigarette smoke, chemical fumes, and pet odor via the chemical absorption material. The built-in ionizer generates ions to attract and pull down heavier contaminants in the air for the filter to capture.

HoMedics AP-T30 TotalClean 5 in 1 Air Purifier

The only downside with this 5-stage filtration is the purifying coverage. The mid-range HoMedics AP-T30 TotalClean can cover a room space up to 195 square feet, so you're limited to smaller room sizes like the bedroom, kitchen, or study area. Alternative air purifiers like PureZone and Medify Air would be better if you need a more comprehensive UV purifying range. The other way to work around this is by leaving HoMedics AP-T30 24/7, including the UV-C light. It will wear up the filters and UV bulb quicker. Still, you're getting better air cleaning coverage with reasonably low power consumption.

Price under 200 dollars, HoMedics annual filter cost is low, and the UV-C light bulb has a lifespan of 10,000 hours. We recommend replacing it sooner rather than later, especially when a drastic drop in the ultraviolet light intensity. While we are at it, let's address the common complaint with HoMedics AP-T30, which is the noise. The spinning fan is clearly audible at high speed to compensate for the average airflow delivery rate. Not a deal-breaker for us personally as it does not affect the UV-light performance. The best solution is to leave it at the lowest speed, which increases the allergens' dwell time in the chamber. We're also not a big fan of the slimmer base design, but that is just nitpicking at this stage.

In short: The only 5-in-1 UV air purifier that kills airborne germs with a pleasant aroma smell. ⚠️ Buy this if you absolutely need the essential oil and nightlight addon.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

3.8

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±159.99 $$$/ 7

(annual filter cost ±55)

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6. GermGuardian AC5250PT Air Purifier

GermGuardian AC5250PT Air Purifier Review

Why settle for just UV technology? Why not have it all? GermGuardian AC5250PT Pet Pure 5-in-1 air purifier comes with the completed filtration set at an affordable price (after a discount). It is also well-protected, with a five-year warranty covering any manufacturer defects. Not many brands out there have the confidence to provide this long-term assurance. The UV light is safely housed in a slim tower profile with a width of 6.1 inches, free from unwanted exposure. The tall 9.5 inches height of GermGuardian AC5250PT Pet Pure enhanced the flexibility to place in a tight area with little room to spare. The 10.5 pounds weight is on the heavy side; you can still effortlessly move it around the house that needs air cleaning. Design-wise it is rather conventional, with a large front air inlet occupying most of the space. Build quality is good, with no signs of off-gassing or nauseating smell from the ultraviolet lamp, even if the air cleaner is left running the entire day.

A proven UV air purifier designed with pet owners in mind. Trap and kill microorganisms in a household without you realizing it.

Moving to the controls, the GermGuardian AC5250PT setup is straightforward, with a digital display that helps readability. There are 5 fan speeds to choose from that co-relate with the ultraviolet light efficiency. Leaving it at 1-3 speeds will extend the trapped microorganisms' dwelling time in the chamber while outputting a subtle noise level. The 1-8 hours programmable timer can be set to shut down the air purifier when not in use. The filter reset function is only used after replacing the filter set to keep track of the filter life. The UV mode can be disabled for those that prefer only mechanical filtration. We do not encourage doing so as it would defeat the purpose of owning a UV air purifier.

The air cleaner keeps you, your partner, and your pet happy. When air is drawn into the chamber, the high dosage ultraviolet germicidal lights produce short-wavelength light (100-280 nm) that damages the nucleus of cells of pathogens. The damaged mold, bacteria, and mold will either be killed off or made dormant without the ability to reproduce. As UV radiation will take its time to inactivate the pathogens, the carbon pre-filter traps dust, hair, and other large particles, plus mild smoke odors traveling inside. The True HEPA filter with 99.97% removal efficiency capture microscopic particles like dust mite, pet dander, mold, and mildew pending sterilization. There is also an antimicrobial coating on the filter that inhibits the growth of microbes that somehow manage to survive UV radiation. All in all, the UV light intensity is excellent yet consistent. With sufficient exposure time, it will ease the work of the other filtration.

GermGuardian AC5250PT Air Purifier

GermGuardian AC5250PT PetPure 5-in-1 UV air cleaner can reach up to 180 square feet of room space for small to medium room sizes. While not the widest, Ultraviolet radiation performance surpasses our expectations; it is suitable for the bedroom, living room, kitchen, basement, or areas where your pets roam. The CADR is rated 123 cfm for dust, 128 cfm for pollen, and 116 cfm for smoke. Again, acceptable but certainly not the best output for its segment. The lack of an ionizer means it can be 100% ozone-free for pets, children, or people with asthma or impaired lungs, providing only mechanical filtration is used. Noise level and power consumption are efficient despite the lack of auto mode. You can run it all day without incurring a hefty electric bill at the end of the month.

For a shy of under 130 dollars after discount, GermGuardian AC5250PT Pet Pure UV air cleaner might do well in most departments, but it is not without a few flaws. The carbon pre-filter is not the most effective in removing smoke and odor, particularly chemicals. The Auto mode omission is a big downer, given some cheaper models like PureZone manage to bundle with it. Lastly, the multiple filter set will wear out quicker in a bad air environment and is costly to change. Thankfully the UV light has a longer 10-12 months life and is only 29.99 dollars to replace.

In short: A proven UV air purifier designed with pet owners in mind. Trap and kill microorganisms in a household without you realizing it. ⚠️ Buy this if you want complete filtration but don't mind the smaller coverage.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

4.1

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±229.99 $$$/ 7

(annual filter cost ±53-80)

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7. SilverOnyx True HEPA Air Purifier

SilverOnyx True HEPA Air Purifier Review

Designed for the desktop crowd. SilverOnyx True HEPA is our favorite small UV air purifier simply for its inexpensive price tag yet packed with tons of value. It is compact (less than 10.5 inches in diameter), lightweight (5.1 pounds), and still manages to squeeze in 5-stage air purification, including a full-sized mercury UV lamp. Albeit small, the UV light is a genuine one that will neutralize airborne microbes. No other compact air purifiers even come close to SilverOnyx's multi-stage filtration, let alone a full-sized model. You can place it anywhere in the home that needs air cleaning without worrying about bulkiness. Works best at higher ground such as table, bedside, or TV cabinet for broader distribution.

A compact but high maintenance 5-stage UV True HEPA air purifier that can eradicate germs before they spread.

Another stands out feature of the SilverOnyx True HEPA air purifier is the easy-to-use controls. You'll have dedicated buttons for everything from power, filters, timer, light, sleep, auto, Vita-Ion, to a 5 fan speeds airflow. Auto mode will increase the fan speed when a high volume of pollutants is detected. The 24 hours programmable timer allows you to set the time to turn off the air purifier e.g. right before work or travel. Both functions are critical in extending the UV-light bulb's life and improving efficiency. The UV and Vita-Ion function are optional and can be disabled when not needed. There is also a digital display that will show the current timer setting and filter residual life, so you will have a heads-up on when to change the filter cartridge.

On the whole, SilverOnyx True HEPA air purifier build quality is decent, and we have not found any uneven gaps or leakage. UV light is securely slotted inside to prevent breaking and leakage. It comes in 3 distinctive color options (black, silver, and white). The clean design incorporates 360 degrees of purification that will significantly help airflow circulation. The removable panel is at the bottom that can be swiftly taken out for a quick filter change. The standard 1-year warranty is given but incomparable to what GermGuardian, Medify Air, and PureZone offer.

SilverOnyx's world-class purification UV technology will give you the clean, fresh air that you deserve. With the brushless DC motor pulling in the air to the internal chamber, the main UV-C Light photocatalyst damages the pathogens' nucleic acid and stops them from multiplying inside the chamber. Ideal for containing viral infections, bacteria, and viruses, including strains of H1N1 at bay. Extending the exposure time and protecting the ultraviolet light bulb is the preliminary mesh filter that blocks large visible particles like dust, pet hair, and lint. True HEPA H13 filter traps 99.97% of microscopic particles as small as 0.3 microns in a typical household, such as mold, pollen, and pet dander. The active carbon filter removes mild smoke and odors from pets, cooking, and cigarettes. Lastly, the Vita-ion diffuses millions of ions to merge and pull down airborne contaminants for the filter to seize. It pairs very well with UV technology as both are reusable and will work seamlessly in the background. You can disable the anion generator if you have sensitive lungs and prefer to leave it off.

SilverOnyx True HEPA Air Purifier

At max speed, the SilverOnyx True HEPA UV air purifier can cover up to 500 square feet of room space in an hour based on the lowest air changes. It performs best on small room sizes and non-humid areas like the bedroom, living room, office desk, or dormitory with limited space. CADR is unavailable, but it shouldn't be too far off from the airflow delivery rate. Overall, the ultraviolet light intensity is strong. Still, the small light bulb may take some time to kill off the pathogens completely.

SilverOnyx True HEPA air purifier will run silently in the background if you keep the fan speed below the fourth speed. For those who intend to use the air cleaner at nighttime, you can leave it in auto mode with UV, which guarantees zero noise distraction even if it is placed next to you. Power consumption is equally low, and you can leave it running all day efficiently with the Auto mode selected. The fan speed will always be kept at the lowest until there is a need to tackle bad air quality.

Let's focus on the few downsides of the air purifier that may or may not break the deal. The main gripe I have is the cartridge filter set that needs to be changed every 6 months. It is a hassle to change and can cost you around 100 dollars annually. Another problem is that the UV-light replacement part is difficult to find and can be pricey to replace. Both issues are not something you will look forward to and will hinder the longevity of the air purifier. Smoke and odor filtration is also not its strong suit, but so do many air cleaners listed here. SilverOnyx is a UV sanitizer after all. Not a deodorizer.

In short: A compact but high maintenance 5-stage UV True HEPA air purifier that can eradicate germs before they spread. ⚠️ Buy this if you value Smart features equally as the UV performance.

Build Quality

Features

Coverage

Particle Filtration

Smoke Filtration

Price

Filter Cost

3.9

OUT OF 5

online price (US)** Sales Tag
±299.99 $$$/ 7

(annual filter cost ±72-100)

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.

 

GermGuardian GG1100W/ GG1100B Air Purifier

GermGuardian GG1100 Elite Review

The only pluggable UV-C air sanitizer on the list caters to a niche group. GermGuardian GG1100 Elite is well-loved by users for many reasons. It is cheap, silent, and kills airborne bacteria and viruses. However, there is a big caveat with a plug-in air purifier that you should think twice before getting one. So let’s see what this compact UV air cleaner can and cannot do.

A germ-killing, filter-free, pluggable UV-C air sanitizer for under 40 dollars. Usable as a standalone unit, HVAC addon, or to complement an air purifier.

Starting with the plug-and-play form factor that is travel-friendly and very easy to use. Just plug it into a wall socket and let the UV sterilization work quietly in the background without the need for configuration. At a dimension of 6.75 inches, 3.5 inches in depth, and a weight of just 0.7 pounds, you can plug GermGuardian GG1100 Elite into any 120V/ 60Hz U.S. power wall plug without having to worry it will fall off. Available in either black (GG1100B) or white (GG1100W) version, the clean, compact, minimalist design help elevate the home decor without sacrificing usability. Once plugged in, the front circle LED ring will glow, letting you know the UV-C sanitizer is working. There’s even a USB port allowing you to charge your mobile devices while GermGuardian GG1100 Elite is cleaning the air. Perfect for an office cubicle, study room, dorm, kitchen, playroom, or any small room size that does not have any spare spaces.

Moving on to the key specification:

  • Main filtration – UV-C light technology with Titanium Dioxide
  • Supporting filtration – N/A
  • Purifying coverage – 56 sq. ft.
  • Fan speed – 1
  • Ozone-safe – Yes

GermGuardian GG1100 Elite sole UV-C technology with titanium dioxide works very well at eliminating microorganisms from growing and spreading. When airborne pollutants are drawn into the chamber, the 254 nm ultraviolet light ray penetrates the outer structure of the pathogen and damages its reproduction cells. Within minutes of exposure time, the supporting titanium dioxide will disinfect and decompose the pathogen before releasing clean air. There is no burning smell to worry about, and the photocatalysis cycle will continue until GermGuardian GG1100 Elite is turned off. Without the dependability of a filter, there is an abundance of UV rays exposure time to kill off germs, bacteria, and viruses. Performs best when placed close to the sources e.g. litter box, toilet bowl, entrance, and diaper pail. GermGuardian GG1100 UV light bulb’s 4,000 hours lifespan should last between 6-8 months before an estimated 15% reduction in the UV light intensity. The only recurring fees would be the replacement bulb at around 15 to 30 dollars with the filterless setup.

GermGuardian GG1100W/ GG1100B Elite

Being a pure UV air purifier without mechanical filters, the GermGuardian GG1100 Elite plug-in is completely silent. You will not hear the noise at a close-up. No air purifiers on the list can come close to GermGuardian silent treatment. Further complimenting the noiseless operation is the low power consumption at only 3.5 watts hourly. At only 40 dollars, you can purchase multiple UV-C sanitizers in every room, and the energy usage is still lower than a console air purifier. The low power output also means there is no fire risk where you can leave it on while you’re away for work or travel.

Another strong suit of GermGuardian GG1100 Elite is the children and pet-safe setup. It is UL listed and CARB verified with ozone output less than 0.05 ppm (asthma-friendly). However, the main drawback to a pluggable unit is the filtration depth. The small body means there is no space left for any filter or motor fan other than the UV light bulb. Hence, GG1100 is ineffective against large particles, mainly dust, hair, pet dander, and dust mites. The 56 square feet of air-cleaning coverage is also small, that you will need more than 1 unit to cover an entire room. Compared with other air purifiers on the list, the air cleaning performance is not at the same level.

In short: A germ-killing, filter-free, pluggable UV-C air sanitizer under 40 dollars. Usable as a standalone unit, HVAC addon, or to complement an air purifier. ⚠️ Buy this if you truly understand GermGuardian GG1100 Elite wall plug air sanitizer limitation.

What Is A UV Air Purifier? How Does It Work?

UV air purifier is a device that emits short-wave ultraviolet light to inactivate airborne pathogens and microorganisms drawn into the internal chamber. Also known as UV-C sanitizer or ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI), it helps improve indoor air quality by sanitizing the air. With cleaner air free from allergens, you will breathe better, sleep better, and stay healthier.

UV technology has been around since 1908, and since then, it has been recognized by health agencies, including CDC and EPA. You can find UV in hospitals, healthcare centers, beauty salons, industrial processes, medical equipment, water treatment, laboratories, meat processing, plants, and other sanitizing appliances. Available in residential use, you can also find UV technology in a multi-filtration HEPA air purifier.

Besides UVGI, below are the common types of air purifiers currently available in the market.

  • HEPA air purifier - Uses mechanical filters consisting of a pre-filter, HEPA filter, and an activated carbon filter. Some HEPA air cleaners even come with UV and ionizers, thus making them a popular choice among buyers.
  • Deodorizer - Another filtered air purifier that comes solely with a carbon filter. It is mainly used to remove smoke and odor.
  • Ionizer - Produce negative ions that link with other positive ions pollutants in the air. This resulted in the joined contaminants falling from the increased weight.
  • Electrostatic precipitator - Generates high-voltage electrostatic charges to attract and pull down airborne pollutants. The collector plate will capture the fallen particles rather than letting them scatter throughout the room.
  • Photocatalytic oxidation (PCO) - Similar to UV, which uses broad-spectrum UV light and titanium dioxide to oxidize biological pollutants into harmless compounds.
  • Ozone generator (not recommended) - Emits harmful ozone that splits oxygen molecules into a single atom and combines with other oxygen molecules to create ozone (O3). Using an ozone generator at home can be dangerous as ozone exposure can cause many respiratory problems.

How Effective Are UV Air Purifiers?

A UV air purifier will effectively kill 99.9% of mold, bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens in the air, including COVID-19, when given sufficient exposure time. When indoor air is drawn into the air purifier's internal chamber, the broad-spectrum UV-C light irradiates a short wavelength of 254 nanometers that will penetrate the nuclei acid and induce damage to the DNA/ RNA. The pathogens' defective cells will lose the ability to reproduce, die off, and pose no threat to our health. A study led by Duke University Medical Center and the University of North Carolina Health Care concluded that UV light reduces more than 91% of pathogens in a hospital. UV radiation takes around 12.5 seconds to kill >99.9% of the virus, 1-3 minutes to disinfect an E. coli bacteria, and 30 minutes sterilization time as a generalization.

Conversely, UV air purifiers are ineffective in removing large particulates like dust, pet dander, smoke, and odor. It can lead to chemical reactions with toxic fumes like VOCs from paint varnish. It also cannot remove non-airborne pollutants stuck on the sofa, carpet, wall, and floor.

Here are other factors that affect the effectiveness of a UV air purifier:

  • UV-C Light exposure time – The closer the pollutants to the ultraviolet light, the better they will be sterilized.
  • The light bulb material (phosphor, quartz, LED) - Mercury lamp emits >90% UVC radiation at 254 nm. Excimer lamp/ Far-UVC peaks at 222 nm. Light-emitting diodes (LED) emit narrow wavelength peaks at 280 nm.
  • Type and size of lightbulbs - The larger the size, the stronger the sterilization. Most sterilizers use a UV-C lightbulb.
  • Airflow cooling effect – Little do people know that the air purifier ACH also affects the volume of clean air distribution. The higher the ACH, the wider the purifying coverage.
  • UV-C light intensity/ dosage - Most UV light bulb has a lifespan of around 10,000 hours and will lose about 15% of their UV power annually.
  • The strain of the pathogens - Some mold, germs, bacteria, and viruses are more resistant to UV radiation and require a longer exposure time.

Is UV-C light In An Air Purifier Safe?

Air Purifier's UV-C light is safe for humans to use. It emits a limited range of ultraviolet light that only destroys pathogenic microorganisms that cannot penetrate the external layer of skin cells or eyes. The ozone byproducts produced are at a safe concentration level (below 0.05 ppm) approved by EPA, FDA, and CARB. It will quickly dissipate or revert to oxygen molecules.

That said, there are fake UV air purifiers, AKA ozone generator, that relies heavily on ozone to mask the air. Ozone is an unstable colorless gas that can induce coughing, chest tightness, sore throat, inflammation, headache, and shortness of breath. In the long-term, ozone can damage the airways, lungs cell, and the lining of the respiratory system. It will also worsen asthma, aggravate lung diseases, and increase premature death risk. Avoid those models at all costs.

Note that UV air purifiers do not prevent you from contracting bacteria and viruses like coronavirus. You are still at risk of contracting viruses that are non-airborne or from contact with an infected person.

When Should I Use The UV light On An Air Purifier?

You should use the UV light on an air purifier whenever possible to destroy pathogens and microorganisms that have infested your home. An air purifier with UV light is better and more effective than a single mechanical filter as it can prevent biological pollutants from growing. There is less likelihood of you falling sick from contracting airborne germs and viruses.

Does UV Light Remove Smoke And Smell?

UV light can reduce smoke and odor particles, but it is less effective than a carbon filter chemical adsorption. Ultraviolet light is primarily used to eliminate mold, bacteria, and viruses.

Why Does My UV Light Smell Bad?

The unpleasant smell similar to rotten eggs, garlic, or burnt hair is ozone gas byproducts produced during the breaks down of chemical bonds molecules. However, it is unlikely that the ozone comes from ultraviolet light due to the low human detection threshold for odor. Most people will only smell ozone with a concentration level of around 0.01 ppm, which far exceeds UV air purifiers' 0.070 ppm ozone concentration limit. However, there is a possibility that your air cleaning device is an ozone generator that contains UV technology. EPA does not recommend an ozone generator as it produces harmful ozone that can damage our lungs.

Which Is More Harmful UVA, UVB, UVC?

UVA is the most harmful as the ray can penetrate deep into your skin, causing the skin cell to age prematurely and lead to skin cancer. UVB is less harmful but can still damage the outer layer of your skin and causes sunburns. UVC rays are the safest that cannot penetrate the skin yet effective against living organisms. The earth's atmospheric ozone will absorb most natural UVC rays before reaching the ground. Regardless of which type of form, you should avoid direct exposure, as UV radiation is carcinogenic to humans.

Do UV Lamps Increase Vitamin D?

While our body will synthesize vitamin D AKA sunshine vitamin, through UV exposure. One should not expose themself to the air purifier UV light as it will do more harm than good.

The Common Ultraviolet Types

Ultraviolet light is a form of electromagnetic radiation invisible to the eye. Derived mainly from the sun's rays, UV radiation rays are grouped based on the measurement of their wavelength in nanometers. The shorter the UV light band, the stronger UV radiation is, and the most dangerous to living organisms. Below are the three primary types of ultraviolet light:

  • UV-A - Slow vibration with a long wavelength between 320 to 400 nanometers. It is the safest and least dangerous UV type.
  • UV-B - Medium wavelength between 280 to 315 nanometers.
  • UV-C - Fast vibration with a short wavelength between 100 to 280 nanometers. UV-C is the shortest wavelength of the three forms thus the most effective in killing biological pollutants, including bacteria, viruses, parasites. UV-C is regularly found in an air purifier and other sterilization tools.

To recap, UV-A has the longest wavelength, between 315 to 400 nm, followed by UV-B, with a wavelength between 280 to 315 nm. UV-C has the shortest wavelength, between 100–280 nm, with the fastest vibration and energy level.

Can UV Light Damage Eyes?

UV light can damage all structures of the eyes from corneal, cataracts, and reduced vision with macular degeneration. With direct exposure from 8 to 24 hours, you will gradually experience symptoms such as red eyes, watery eyes/ epiphora, itchy gritty feel, increased sensitivity to lights, and Photokeratitis (temporary vision loss).

Can UVC Light Pass Through Plastic, Glass, Walls, Fabric, Aluminum Foil?

UVC light 100-280 nm short wavelength cannot pass through acrylic plastic, glass, walls, metals, and aluminum. You will not be exposed to UVC radiation when it is contained in the above materials. UVC radiation can easily penetrate fabric loose fibers; therefore, you should avoid looking at UV light through a cloth.

How Long Do UV Lights Last?

Most UV light bulbs found in an air purifier will last approximately 9,000-10,000 hours or 12 months. As UV lights will lose their strength by around 15% annually, you should replace the light bulb before the usage life or when there is a dip in the performance. A well-maintained UV air purifier tends to last 5-6 years before the need to change.

How Much Does A UV Air Purifier Cost?

A small UV air purifier will cost you between $50 to 150 dollars, while a medium or large UV air purifier is at least $150, depending on the specification. A whole-house UVGI System (ultraviolet germicidal irradiation) for residential and commercial use will cost you around $10,000, including installation.

Is It OK To Leave UV Air Purifier On All Night?

It is perfectly OK to leave a UV air purifier on all night, as it will not emit a high concentration level of harmful ozone during sleep. UV Air cleaners are supposed to run non-stop to prevent airborne pollutants from coming back and polluting the indoor air. So leave it on even when nobody is around, and make sure to replace the light bulb accordingly.

The Pros and Cons of UV Air Purifiers

Regardless of UVGI cleaner, Ultraviolet Germicidal, or Irradiation Cleaner, owning a UV air purifier has advantages and disadvantages. Understand the ups and downs so you can make a wise choice before purchasing one.

Pros

  • Alleviate allergies by eliminating bacteria and viruses - UV light will also halt the reproduction of microorganisms like mold, bacteria, and viruses. If you often fall sick from viral infection or have respiratory problems like wheezing, coughing, sneezing, postnasal drip, sore throat, or headache, UV air purifiers can do wonders for your health.
  • Cleaner, Fresher Air - With just a few hours of runtime, indoor air quality will improve, and you can enjoy breathing in fresh air free from germs. Unlike a HEPA air purifier, the irritants will be permanently eradicated in the chamber with no chance of escaping.
  • A safe disinfection technology - Suitable for all age groups. UV is widely used in hospitals and healthcare centers.
  • Energy-efficient - UV light uses less energy than a conventional air purifier that relies heavily on a motor fan. It is far more efficient than other home appliances like a washing machine, dryer, and air conditioner.
  • Better practicality - In general, UV air purifiers requires less maintenance and cleaning. There are also plug-in, wand/ wave, or wearable models that are much more portable and travel-friendly.
  • Quiet operation - Most UV air purifiers generate less noise than a HEPA air purifier, particularly at a lower speed.

Cons

  • UV Bulb requires replacing - The ultraviolet radiation will deteriorate over time and become less effective in killing bacteria and viruses. Fortunately, the UV light can be easily replaced at around $30, depending on the bulb size.
  • Less effective against large particles and smoke - Ultraviolet light will take a significantly longer time to remove dust, hair, odor, and smoke than a mechanical filter.
  • Expensive for a standalone unit - You are looking at around $900 for a single UVGI due to the large light bulb needed to compensate for the lack of filters.
  • Ozone emission - UV radiation creates a very low level of ozone byproducts that will not exceed the CARB limit. It is not 100% ozone-safe, as many would claim.
  • Potential health risks - Some UV lamp contains toxic mercury that can leak out when the lamp breaks. Improper use of UV purifiers can cause a burn sensation and damage your skin. Overdosage can degrade plastic, polymers, and dyed textile. It might also kill good bacteria or viral proteins in biomedical products.

In short, you should get an air purifier with UV light that also comes with a true HEPA filter. We do not recommend going for a model that uses UV light as its primary purification system unless it is used as a supplementary unit.

Which Is Better: HEPA Or UV?

Both have pros and cons, but a HEPA filter is more widely used due to its overall efficiency. UV is technologically superior to a HEPA filter that inactivates pathogens and prevents them from multiplying. However, sterilization purification is very slow when compared with a HEPA filter. A HEPA filter can capture more airborne pollutants at a shorter duration, but it cannot destroy bacteria and viruses.

Which Is Better: Ionic VS UV?

A UV air purifier would be the better option as it can sterilize airborne microorganisms and fungi with no chance of growth. An ionic air purifier or ionizer emits negative ions to pull down airborne pollutants without killing them. There is a chance the fallen impurities can rise and spread again when disturbed. You can compare both ionic VS UV air purifiers here.

How To Choose The Right Size UV Air Purifier?

As UV air purifier comes in all shapes and forms, picking the right size will impact ultraviolet light's strength in eliminating biological pollutants. You will first need to measure the room size required for air purification. For small room sizes, go with a desktop air purifier that can cover up to 200 square footage of air cleaning. For medium room sizes, go with a model that can reach up to 400 square footage. For large room sizes or whole house HVAC systems, go with a large air purifier that has a recommended room size above 400 square footage. You can also calculate the air purifier's capacity using AHAM’s 2/3 rule for CADR.

How Much Energy Does A UV Light Used In Air Purifier?

Highly dependent on the types of UV lamps (mercury, LED) and the light bulb size, UV light in an air purifier consumes very little energy, typically between 15 to 30 watts. The broader the electromagnetic spectrum, the more energy it requires. Most HEPA air purifiers with a UV light uses between 30 to 100 wattages of electricity annually. The operating cost is estimated to be around 3 to 5 dollars monthly based on $0.15 per kilowatt-hour with 12 hours of daily operation. Multiply by 12 will cost you between 36 to 60 dollars annually.

How To Use UV Air Purifier Effectively?

UV air cleaners are delicate devices that require some care to function well. If you happen to own one, here are a few simple but effective ways to use a UV air purifier.

  • Leave it on, even when no one is around - An Air purifier will prevent airborne allergens from building up, so you will enjoy clean air every time you step foot in the house. You can leave it at the lowest speed and only use high speed when there is a high concentration level of contaminants detected.
  • Replace the filters - An important step that must be done to ensure the air purifier runs effectively. Always replace the HEPA/ carbon filters when the indicator light is lit or after the recommended interval (usually between 6-12 months).
  • The ideal placement - Make sure nothing is impeding the air ventilation. An air purifier requires space for the air inlet/ outlet to draw particles in and release the clean air back into the room.
  • Close all windows/ doors - Air purifiers are designed to work in a room with everything shut tight. It prevents the newly filtered clean air from escaping and dirty air from coming in.

Final Thoughts

There is no doubt an ultraviolet air purifier will protect you from airborne bacteria and viruses. We highly recommend PureZone 3-in-1 when you're on a budget, Medify MA-50 for the extra performance, and InvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 for the best of both worlds. If you need a comprehensive HEPA air purifier suitable for an entire home, click here for our handpicked top germs air purifier list.

Compare Best UV 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
1PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA Air Purifier ReviewPureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA Air Purifier

$$

CHECK PRICE
44-stage200 sq. ft. (19 m2)3
6.9 x 12.1 x 10.8 in
(17.5 x 30.7 x 27.4 cm)
8.4 lb (3.8 kg)80 cfm (136 m3/h)80 cfm (136 m3/h)80 cfm (136 m3/h)
Pre-filter
6 months
HEPA filter
6 months
Activated Carbon Filter
6 months
UV-C Light
20,000 hours
-
Air Purifier Replacement Filter
6 months
+- 19.99
30 - 50 dB60 W2, 4, 8 hours5 years
2InvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 ReviewInvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 Air Purifier

$$$

CHECK PRICE
4.25-stage1,276 sq. ft. (119 m2)4
12.3 x 17.8 x 6.3 in
(31.2 x 45.2 x 16 cm)
8.9 lb (4 kg)170 cfm (289 m3/h)170 cfm (289 m3/h)170 cfm (289 m3/h)
Charcoal Pre-filter
6 - 9 months
HEPA filter
6 - 9 months
-
Ionizer
LB4100 UV-C Light
10 - 12 months14.99
PCO Filter
-
FLT4100 Filter-E HEPA
6 - 9 months
24.99
31-60 dB3-47 W2, 4, 8 Hours1 year
3Medify Air MA-50 ReviewMedify Air MA-50 Air Purifier

$$$$

CHECK PRICE
4.54-stage1,100 sq. ft. (102 m2)4
12.4 x 24.6 x 12.4 in
(31.5 x 62.5 x 31.5 cm)
16 lb (7.3 kg)295 cfm (500 m3/h)295 cfm (500 m3/h)295 cfm (500 m3/h)
Pre-filter
3-6 months
H13 True HEPA filter
3-6 months
Substantial Carbon Filter
3-6 months
UV Disinfection
-
Medify MA-50 Replacement Filter (ME-50)
6 months
+- 59.99
35-56 dBA70W2-12 hoursLifetime
4Pure Enrichment PureZone Elite 4-in-1 True HEPA Air Purifier ReviewPure Enrichment PureZone Elite Air Purifier

$$$

CHECK PRICE
4.14-stage>190 sq. ft. (>18 m2)3
9 x 25 x 7 in
(22.9 x 63.5 x 17.8 cm)
9.3 lb (4.2 kg)>120 cfm (>204 m3/h)>120 cfm (>204 m3/h)>120 cfm (>204 m3/h)
Charcoal Pre-filter
6 - 9 months
HEPA filter
6 - 9 months
-
Ionizer
LB4100 UV-C Light
10 - 12 months14.99
PCO Filter
-
FLT4100 Filter-E HEPA
6 - 9 months
24.99
≤60.2 dBA46 W2, 4, 8 hoursYES5 years
5HoMedics AP-T30 TotalClean 5 in 1 ReviewHoMedics AP-T30 TotalClean 5 in 1 Air Purifier

$$$

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3.85-stage195 sq. ft. (18 m2)3
11.5 x 24 x 11.3 in
(29.2 x 61 x 28.7 cm)
12.2 lb (5.5 kg)
Pre-filter
12 months
HEPA filter
12 months
Carbon Odor Filter
12 months
Ionizer
UV-C light
-
Homedics TotalClean Replacement Filter
12 months
55
2, 4, 8, 12 hours1 year
6GermGuardian AC5250PT Air Purifier ReviewGermGuardian AC5250PT Air Purifier

$$$

CHECK PRICE
4.15-stage180 sq. ft. (17 m2)5
6.1 x 27.3 x 9.5 in
(15.5 x 69.3 x 24.1 cm)
10.5 lb (4.8 kg)123 cfm (209 m3/h)128 cfm (217 m3/h)116 cfm (197 m3/h)
Charcoal pre-filter
6 - 9 months
FLT5250PT Filter-C HEPA Pet Pure
6 - 9 months
49.99
-
LB5000 UV-C Light
10 - 12 months29.99
Pet Pure treatment (antimicrobial)
FLT5000 Filter-C True HEPA
6 - 9 months
39.99
Programmable (1 - 8 hours)5 years
7SilverOnyx True HEPA Air Purifier ReviewSilverOnyx True HEPA Air Purifier

$$$

CHECK PRICE
3.95-stage500 sq. ft. (46 m2)5
10.5 x 16.5 x 10.5 in
(26.7 x 41.9 x 26.7 cm)
5.1 lb (2.3 kg)
Mesh preliminary filter
6 months
True HEPA H13 filter
6 months
Activated carbon filter
6 months
Vita-ion
UV-C Light
1 year
-
SilverOnyx True Hepa Filter Replacement
6 months
+- 35
0.5-24 hours2.5 PM sensor1 year