7 Best UV Air Purifiers to Sterilize Indoor Air in 2023
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.
2023 Best UV Air Purifiers
|BEST BUDGET||BEST OVERALL||BEST PERFORM-ANCEPERFORMANCE|
|PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA Air Purifier||InvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 Air Purifier||Medify Air MA-50 Air Purifier|
|Ultraviolet Types/ Lifespan|
|UV-C light bulb x1/ 12 months (9,000 hours)||UV-C light bulb x1/ 12 months||UV-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)|
|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)
|4 ⭐ out of 5||4.2 ⭐ out of 5||4.5 ⭐ out of 5|
- Compact 4-stage UV air purifier.
- Affordable UV-C light bulb.
- True HEPA + Carbon Filter.
- Timer, sleep mode.
- 5 years warranty.
- Below average CADR.
- Small filter set (6 months).
- No Auto mode.
Pure Enrichment PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA air purifier comes with a genuine UV light for all-around sterilization. A century-old technology that radiates short-wavelength ultraviolet light to inactivate mold, bacteria, flu viruses like H1N1, influenza, and rhinoviruses3 in the air. Additional filtration includes a 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 air purifier continuously cleaning and sterilizing 200 square feet of room space, you will see indoor air quality improvement in a matter of hours.
At slightly above 100 dollars, PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA UV-C comes with 3 fan speeds, sleep mode, 2, 4, 8 hours timer, filter change indicator, and a dedicated UV-C function can be disabled to extend the light bulb's life. We highly recommend you leave UV mode on to curb the spread of germs and bacteria. 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.
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 even though 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 that the low annual filter cost is around 40 dollars, including the replacement UV lamp, which is 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.
±139.99 $$/ 7
(annual filter cost ±40)
- Compact 4-in-1 air purifier.
- Effective and cheap UV light.
- H13 True HEPA filter.
- Decent CADR.
- Timer, manual sleep mode.
- Carbon pre-filter.
- Loud at turbo speed.
- Lacks auto mode.
Skip the old one and go with the new and improved InvisiClean Aura II UV air purifier. The main highlight is the germ disinfecting UV-C light that irradiates and destroys microorganisms cells from reproducing. Supporting the UV is the 2-in-1 activated carbon pre-filter 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 capturing. Both ionizer and UV-light are effective and safe with CARB approved ozone emission levels. Again, it is optional, and you can disable the function when not needed.
Ideal for people with breathing trouble due to allergies. InvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 can cover up to 1,276 square feet of room size. 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 rates are at a healthy 170 cfm figure.
Priced at a heavily discounted $150-200, InvisiClean Aura II air purifier is in a good spot with a low $50-85 annual filter replacement. It is aided by the long-lasting 12 months UV-C light bulb that should give you about 10,000 hours of runtime. You are also getting a 4 fan speed (Low, Medium, High, Turbo), timer auto-shutoff (2, 4, 8 hours), reset filter change indicator, sleep mode, and dedicated UV light/ ionizer control.
There are a few obvious downsides that you will need to look into. First, 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. Given the smaller light bulb size and short exposure time, UV germicidal irradiation will also take time to break down bacteria, viruses, and other higher-resistance strains of the pathogens. Turbo mode is distractingly loud and only usable when you're away from the air cleaner. 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. Buy this if you want strong UV and HEPA performance at a reasonable price.
±399.99 $$$/ 7
(annual filter cost ±50-85)
- Strong UV-C light.
- Wide 1,100 sq. ft. coverage.
- Hospital-grade H13 filter.
- Active carbon composite filter.
- 12-hour timer, night mode, child lock.
- Lifetime warranty protection.
- Expensive + high filter cost.
- Short filter lifespan.
- Lacks AQI, auto mode.
Medify Air MA-50 air purifier is powered by a 4-stage filtration that removes even the tiniest particles in the air. The ozone-safe UV light radiates a high dosage of 254 nanometers short wavelength to destroy small cell mold, bacteria, and viruses from multiplying at close proximity. 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. Lastly, 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.
Independent lab tested by Aerosol Research and Engineering Laboratories Inc. to be effective against 99.95% of particles related to COVID-19 & SARS-Cov-2 in the air. At full speed, the Medify MA-50 UV air purifier 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. CADR is close to 300 cfm, which can benefit UV radiation by bringing in more airborne pollutants. It is the ideal model to opt for if you have severe asthma and constantly fall sick from airborne germs and viral viruses.
A high-performance, premium-looking air purifier with a matching price tag. Medify Air MA-50 UV air purifier comes with a tempered touched glass panel to manage the 4 fan speeds, advanced 2-12 hours timer, night mode, must-have child lock, passive filter replacement indicator, and optional UV light. Since the UV light does not produce any smell or toxic chemicals, we recommend leaving it on to kill pathogens that cross their way. The trademark lifetime warranty covers all electronic parts and motors, excluding filters. You will truly appreciate the peace of mind after a few years down the road.
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/ 2,500 hours filter life also means you will have to bear a high 78 to 156 dollars annual filter cost. A crucial consideration point that many people tend to ignore. Despite the high price tag, There is no air quality monitor or auto mode. Skip this model if you're on a tight budget.
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.
±325.00 $$$$/ 7
(annual filter cost ±78-156)
- 5-stage air purification.
- Superb UV-C + Photocatalyst filter.
- True HEPA filter.
- Smart technology.
- 5 years warranty.
- Carbon pre-filter.
- Noisy at high speed.
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. 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.
On to the Smart technology, PureZone Elite UV standard 3 fan speed shines well with auto and sleep modes. UV function is optional and can be enabled/ disabled at any time. There is also a color-coded smart air quality monitor, a 2, 4, 8 hour timer, a filter reset indicator, and a 5-Year warranty with local customer support.
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. 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 be 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 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 UV 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.
±149.99 $$$/ 7
(annual filter cost ±60-90)
- 4-stage 360-degree filtration.
- Built-in UV-C sanitization.
- True HEPA filter.
- Carbon odor filtration.
- Timer, essential oil, night light.
- Noisy at high speed.
- Average airflow output.
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. With its superb 5-in-1 air filtration, the single UV-C technology eradicates microorganisms by destroying their DNA and the replication cells. 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.
Comes in black or white, HoMedics TotalClean AP-T30 supports a top to bottom 360-degree filtration, 3 fan speeds, filter light indicator, night light button, and both Ion and UV-C sanitizer function. Another highlight is the aromatherapy feature, thanks to its built-in essential oil slot. No other UV air cleaners here come bundled with this feature.
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 there is a drastic drop in the intensity of ultraviolet light. While we are at it, let's address the common complaint with HoMedics AP-T30: the noise. The spinning fan is clearly audible at high speed to compensate for the average airflow delivery rate. It is not a deal-breaker for us, as it does not affect the UV-light performance. Another drawback of its 5-stage filtration is the purifying coverage. The mid-range HoMedics AP-T30 TotalClean can only cover up to 195 square feet of room space, so you're limited to smaller rooms like the bedroom, kitchen, or study area.
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.
±159.99 $$$/ 7
(annual filter cost ±55)
- 5-stage pet filtration.
- Proven UV-C Technology.
- True HEPA filter.
- Programmable timer.
- 5 years warranty.
- Charcoal pre-filter.
- No Auto mode.
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 discounts). 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 viruses 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, captures microscopic particles like dust mites, 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.
GermGuardian AC5250PT PetPure 5-in-1 UV air cleaner can reach up to 180 square feet of room space. The CADR is rated 123 cfm for dust, 128 cfm for pollen, and 116 cfm for smoke. With sufficient exposure time, it will ease the work of the other filtration.
Other GermGuardian AC5250PT air purifiers features include a digital display, 5 fan speeds, 1-8 hours programmable timer, filter reset function, and a 5-year warranty covering any manufacturer defects. 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.
For a shy of under 130 dollars after a 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 and are OK with the smaller air coverage.
±229.99 $$$/ 7
(annual filter cost ±53-80)
- Germ-killing UV-light.
- 5 Stages air cleaning.
- True HEPA H13 filter.
- Optional vita-lon.
- Auto mode, programmable timer.
- Weak smoke filtration.
- Expensive filter replacement set.
- Loud at fifth speed.
No other compact air purifiers even come close to SilverOnyx's multi-stage UV filtration, let alone a full-sized model. With the brushless DC motor pulling the air to the internal chamber, the main UV-C light photocatalyst damages the pathogens' nucleic acid and stops them from multiplying. 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's world-class purification UV technology will give you the clean, fresh air you deserve. 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. The ultraviolet light intensity is strong, but the small light bulb may take some time to kill off pathogens completely.
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 comes in 3 distinctive color options (black, silver, and white), and you have dedicated buttons for power, filters, timer, Light, sleep, auto, Vita-Ion, and 5 fan speeds. The UV and Vita-Ion function are optional and can be disabled when not needed. There is also a digital display that shows the current timer setting and filter residual life, so you will have a heads-up on when to change the filter cartridge.
Let's focus on the few downsides of the air purifier that may or may not break the deal. The main gripe is the cartridge filter set that needs to be changed every 6 months. Changing is a hassle and can cost you around 100 dollars annually. Another problem is that the UV-light replacement part is difficult to find and pricey. 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 UV performance.
±299.99 $$$/ 7
(annual filter cost ±72-100)
GermGuardian GG1100W/ GG1100B Air Purifier
- Very affordable.
- Pluggable UV-C Sanitizer.
- Easy to use.
- Cheap UV-C replacement bulb.
- Zero noise output.
- Small purifying coverage.
- No HEPA or carbon filter.
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.
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.
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 mold, 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 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 can 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 works well for a UV air cleaner is welcome. The supporting filters will assist in trapping airborne pollutants that 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 without with an official warranty.
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. You will breathe better, sleep better, and stay healthier with cleaner air free from allergens.
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.
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. You can compare both UV versus HEPA air purifiers here.
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 versus UV air purifiers here.
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.
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.
- 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.
- 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.
Compare Best UV Air Purifiers
|No||Image||Air Purifier||Online Price (Amazon)||Score||Filtration||Coverage||Fan |
|Dimension||Weight||Dust CADR||Pollen CADR||Smoke CADR||Pre-filter||HEPA filter||Carbon filter||Ionizer||UV light||Other filter||All-in-one filter||Noise level||Power output||Timer/ Scheduler||Sensors||Warranty||Auto mode||Remote control||Child lock||ENERGY STAR||Wi-Fi/ BTBluetooth||AQI||Filter indicator|
|1||PureZone 3-in-1 True HEPA Air Purifier|
|4||4-stage||200 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)|
Activated Carbon Filter
Air Purifier Replacement Filter
|30 - 50 dB||60 W||2, 4, 8 hours||5 years|
|2||InvisiClean Aura II 4 in 1 Air Purifier|
|4.2||5-stage||1,276 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)|
6 - 9 months
6 - 9 months
LB4100 UV-C Light
10 - 12 months14.99
FLT4100 Filter-E HEPA
6 - 9 months
|31-60 dB||3-47 W||2, 4, 8 Hours||1 year|
|3||Medify Air MA-50 Air Purifier|
|4.5||4-stage||1,100 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)|
H13 True HEPA filter
Substantial Carbon Filter
Medify MA-50 Replacement Filter (ME-50)
|35-56 dBA||70W||2-12 hours||Lifetime|
|4||Pure Enrichment PureZone Elite Air Purifier|
|4.1||4-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)|
6 - 9 months
6 - 9 months
LB4100 UV-C Light
10 - 12 months14.99
FLT4100 Filter-E HEPA
6 - 9 months
|≤60.2 dBA||46 W||2, 4, 8 hours||YES||5 years|
|5||HoMedics AP-T30 TotalClean 5 in 1 Air Purifier|
|3.8||5-stage||195 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)|
Carbon Odor Filter
Homedics TotalClean Replacement Filter
|2, 4, 8, 12 hours||1 year|
|6||GermGuardian AC5250PT Air Purifier|
|4.1||5-stage||180 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)|
6 - 9 months
FLT5250PT Filter-C HEPA Pet Pure
6 - 9 months
LB5000 UV-C Light
10 - 12 months29.99
Pet Pure treatment (antimicrobial)
FLT5000 Filter-C True HEPA
6 - 9 months
|Programmable (1 - 8 hours)||5 years|
|7||SilverOnyx True HEPA Air Purifier|
|3.9||5-stage||500 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
True HEPA H13 filter
Activated carbon filter
SilverOnyx True Hepa Filter Replacement
|0.5-24 hours||2.5 PM sensor||1 year|