Winix 5500-2 PlasmaWave

Winix 5500-2 Review: Price is Right for this PlasmaWave Air Purifier!

One of the best sellers for the brand, we reviewed Winix 5500-2 air purifier a long time ago, but even till this day, we can't figure out how Winix manage to keep this PlasmaWave machine price down with its complete purifying specification. What is complete purifying specification you might ask? It is our essential, "must-have" set of features like HEPA filter, carbon filter, and Auto mode. Continue reading to see the full "must-have" list plus the comparison between other similar range air purifiers.
MRSP/ RSP**
± 249.99 p
     Annual filter ^    
± 80 p
Online price*
Latest Amazon price

Winix 5500-2 Specification

ProductWinix 5500-2
Dimension
15 x 23.6 x 8.2 in
(38.1 x 59.9 x 20.8 cm)
Weight15.4 lb (7 kg)
Coverage (up to)360 sq. ft. (33 m2)
Dust free (CADR)243 cfm (413 m3/h)
Pollen free (CADR)246 cfm (418 m3/h)
Smoke free (CADR)232 cfm (394 m3/h)
Airflow speed53 - 226 cfm (90 - 384 m3/h)
Fanspeed4
Filtration4-stage
Pre-Filter
- Lifespan
- Replacement cost ($)
Pre-filter
Permanent
HEPA filter
- Lifespan
- Replacement cost ($)
True HEPA filter
1 year
Carbon filter
- Lifespan
- Replacement cost ($)
AOC Advanced Granular Carbon Filter
1 year
Ionizer/ TechnologiesPlasmaWave Technology
UV-light/ PCO
-
Other filter
-
All-in-one filter
- Lifespan
- Replacement cost ($)
Filter H 116130
1 year
+- 79.99
Optional/ Addon
-
Noise level26.6 - 60+ dB
Power consumption5 - 90 W
Timer/ Scheduler1, 4, 8 hours
SensorsVOC sensors (Air quality)
More color options
Auto mode
Air qualityAQ indicator
Filter change indicator
Wi-Fi/ BTBluetooth
ENERGY STAR
Remote control
Child lock
Warranty2 years
Email/ Phone support

Product image

Key features

  • 4-stage filtration with PlasmaWave™ Technology
  • Permanent pre-filter
  • AOC Advanced Granular Carbon Filter - 93% efficiency
  • True-HEPA filter - 99.97% efficiency up to 0.3 microns
  • 4 fan speeds (Low, Medium, High, Turbo)
  • Auto mode/ Sleep mode
  • Timer (1, 4, 8 hours)
  • Air quality indicator - Blue (good), Yellow (fair), Red (poor)
  • Light sensor, Odor sensor
  • Remote control
  • 2 years warranty

Winix 5500-2 review

  • Super attractive price (after online rebate) when you consider the complete specification offering.
  • Decent CADR that covers medium room size well via its 4-stage filtration and PlasmaWave technology.
  • Washable pre-filter that might be a hassle to maintain, you will be glad how much money and dust you have collected even a short period of time.
  • Genuine, True-HEPA filter works as advertised in removing allergens and other germs microorganisms.
  • Use a standalone AOC carbon filter rather than cheap out on a carbon pre-filter sheet.
  • Full access remote control including the mode selector.
  • 4 fan speed plus Auto mode and Sleep mode. Sleep mode pairs well with the light sensor that autonomously adjusts the LED indicator brightness according to the room ambient light.
  • Built-in timer with 3 pre-set option (1, 4, 8 hours).
  • Not outstanding, but an improved 2 years warranty (Winix 5500 only comes with 1-year warranty).
  • We like the dedicated AOC carbon filter, but it's not the best in the market when it comes to strong, pungent smell.
  • During our test, there is a delay (2-4 minutes) before the air purifier reacts to surrounding airborne particles. Either the odor sensor requires cleaning or the sensor takes its own sweet time to detect.

The starters

Winix 5500-2 dimension
Dimension
15 x 23.6 x 8.2 in
(38.1 x 59.9 x 20.8 cm)
Winix 5500-2 weight
Weight
15.4 lb (7 kg)

Similar to Winix 5300-2 setup, Winix 5500-2 air purifier has the newest aesthetic design that is both modern and contemporary. At a relatively compressed dimension, this black housing air cleaner is just the right size at 15 x 23.6 x 8.2 in with 15.4 lb of weight. Build quality is solid, well-fitted with no visible gap as it should be. While the whole body is made of plastic materials, it is not the cheap, flimsy type that you feel it will release harmful ozone with any heat. Air vent placement is very typical console air purifier setup, where you have air inlet located at front sides while air outlet is located at top back. Lastly, there is a back handle slot that you can grab on to when moving the air purifier around.

Winix 5500-2 control

Moving on to the usability, Winix 5500-2 air purifier has a slight slanting angle control panel placed right at top. The entire control panel consists of a left Winix logo, five evenly spaced buttons (On/ Off, Mode, PlasmaWave, Fan Speed and Timer), one center air quality indicator bar that cycles between blue/ amber/ red, eleven indicator lights including change filter indicator, odor sensor, light sensor, and a small filter reset button. Skipping the first self-explanatory On/ Off button, let’s go through each button one by one. Mode button allows the cycle between Auto mode and Sleep mode. The center dedicated PlasmaWave button activates or deactivates Hydroxyls function. Fan speed button that will cycle between the four fan speeds. Timer button will switch between off, 1, 4 or 8 hours preset setting. The small Reset button will reset the count and turn off the change filter indicator light (use after you have changed the filter). Odor sensor detects the amount of odor in its surrounding; light sensor detects the level of ambient background light and automatically adjusts the brightness of the LED indicators. Besides the filter reset button, all of the above function can also be control via Winix 5500-2 remote control. Overall we like the controls are clearly labeled with many supporting indicator lights, the only tiny complaint we had is the touch button lacks tactile feel unlike some of the older, classic air purifier.

To round up Winix PlasmaWave 5500-2 “complete purifying specification”, the air purifier comes with a 4-stage filtration with PlasmaWave Technology, 4 fan speeds with auto mode/ sleep mode, odor sensor, light sensor, digital screen with air quality indicator, filter replacement indicator, remote control, Ozone safe Certified by CARB (California Air Resource Board), AHAM listed, ENERGY STAR rated and 2 years warranty.

Airflow, CADR and everything in between

Winix 5500-2 coverage
Purifying coverage
360 sq. ft. (33 m2)
Winix 5500-2 airflow speed
Airflow speed
53 - 226 cfm (90 - 384 m3/h)
Winix 5500-2 fanspeed
Fanspeed
4
Like we mentioned earlier, Winix 5500-2 air purifier carry on from the previous 5500 setup with a slight bump 360 sq. ft. purifying coverage (2 air charges). Suitable for medium size bedroom although placing Winix PlasmaWave 5500-2 in a large living room does no harm either. Airflow delivery rate remains at 53 - 226 cfm across its four speed, not bad as the airflow output has been proven on its consistency. Besides the same 4 fan speed operation, the air cleaner also comes with the typical dual Auto mode and Sleep mode. Auto mode (enabled by default) will activate autonomous purifying based on the surrounding airborne pollutants it detected. Sleep mode is much simpler. It set the fan speed low and turn off the air quality indicator light so the air purifier can run anonymously at night.
Winix 5500-2 dust CADR
Dust CADR
243 cfm (413 m3/h)
Winix 5500-2 pollen CADR
Pollen CADR
246 cfm (418 m3/h)
Winix 5500-2 smoke CADR
Smoke CADR
232 cfm (394 m3/h)
All three CADR passes our 200 cfm benchmark. Remarkable for an air purifier of its class. Dust CADR is at 243 cfm (upgraded marginally from the previous version), while Pollen and Smoke CADR are at 246 cfm and 232 cfm respectively. From the figures itself, the air purifier will have enough airflow to remove all types of indoor airborne irritants from its airway. In short, Winix PlasmaWave 5500-2 airflow performance is at a satisfying level regardless of its price tag.

What’s inside count

Winix 5500-2 Pre-filter
Pre-filter
Permanent
Winix 5500-2 HEPA filter
True HEPA filter
1 year
Winix 5500-2 carbon filter
AOC Advanced Granular Carbon Filter
1 year
Winix 5500-2 technologies
PlasmaWave Technology
^ Winix 5500-2 filters/ technologies/ lifespan
Winix 5500-2 air purifier has a typical 4-stage filtration setup that includes a permanent pre-filter, True HEPA filter, AOC Advanced Granular Carbon Filter and PlasmaWave technology. The permanent pre-filter would focus on large particles and at the same time, reduce the work stress of True HEPA filter. The protected True HEPA filter would then concentrate on microscopic allergens as small as 0.3 microns, with a standard 99.97% filtration efficiency. AOC Carbon filter would function as what a deodorization carbon would: trap smoke and odors indoor within its proximity. Finally, PlasmaWave would produce Hydroxyls to help break down tough airborne allergens, germs, and odors. The tiny differences between Winix 5300-2 and Winix 5500-2 filters are the former uses carbon pre-filter while the latter uses an upgraded AOC Advanced Granular Carbon Filter.

Covered against

Winix 5500-2 VS Dust

Dust

EXCELLENT

Winix 5500-2 VS Pollen

Pollen

GOOD

Winix 5500-2 VS Hair

Hair/ Pet hair

GOOD

Winix 5500-2 VS Dust mite

Dust mites

GOOD

Winix 5500-2 VS Mold/ Mildew

Mold/ Mildew

GOOD

Winix 5500-2 VS Pet dander

Pet dander

GOOD

Winix 5500-2 VS Virus/ Germ

Virus/ Germ

GOOD

Winix 5500-2 VS Tobacco smoke

Tobacco smoke

GOOD

Winix 5500-2 VS Chemical

Chemical

GOOD

Winix 5500-2 VS VOCs

VOCs

GOOD

Winix 5500-2 VS Smoke/ Gas

Smoke/ Gas

GOOD

Winix 5500-2 VS Odor

Odor

GOOD

On the whole, 4-stage Winix PlasmaWave 5500-2 air purifier with a combined 360 square feet and 243 cfm dust CADR is highly effective in filtering initial dust and hair particles. The following PlasmaWave and True HEPA filter are excellent in eliminating dust mites, pet dander, bacteria, viruses, allergens like pollen, mold, and mildew, As for odors and smokes, the AOC Advanced Granular Carbon Filter score an above average efficiency in eliminating cigarette smoke, VOCs, ammonia, cooking smell, pet odors, and radon.

Keep it down

Winix 5500-2 noise level
Noise level
26.6 - 60+ dB
Winix 5500-2 power consumption
Power consumption
5 - 90 W
Winix 5500-2 air purifier offer the same noise level output as the previous generation model. If you have no issue with Winix 5500, this PlasmaWave air purifier will also serve you well. 26.6 - 60+ dB Noise level is reasonably soft at low to medium speed. At high/ turbo speed, there is clear fan noise that might not be bearable for some. Fortunately, you can activate Sleep mode to lock the air purifier at low speed while you're snoozing. PlasmaWave does generate some noise but is neglectable and can be deactivated when not needed. Energy usage is low to average at 5 - 90 W max depending on the fan speed the air purifier is regularly running. Auto mode does help in optimizing energy consumption but do not expect a sensitive, fast-changing speed even when pollutants is roaming nearby.

At what cost

Winix 5500-2 MRSP/ RSP
MRSP/ RSP**
+- 249.99
Winix 5500-2 annual filter replacement cost
Annual Filter Cost
+- 80
^ Replacement filters/ estimated cost
To our surprise, Winix 5500-2 air purifier online price is cheaper than the prior model Winix 5500 despite having a newer design and better specification. The better spec is also well reflected in its mid-range/ medium room size group despite having a lower price point. Winix 5500-2 filter replacement cost is quite reasonable as it comes in a yearly bundled pack of True-HEPA filter and Carbon filter. Filter availability is also excellent because the filter set can be used across a few different models in Winix stable.
Compare with the likes of Honeywell and lower end Blueair models, Winix 5500-2 air purifier is very well priced especially after the discounted price. You can purchase Winix 5500 2 in Home Depot, Best Buy, Walmart or Bed Bath and Beyond (subject to availability), we recommend buying straight from Amazon as it offers the best deal (around 40% cheaper than MRSP price), expedited shipping, 30 days no questions asked return policy, and of course, the sheer Amazon convenience. If you don't quite fancy buying from Amazon for whatever reason, Winix official channel offers great seasonal deal where the price will drop from time to time.

The challengers

Winix 5300-2 PlasmaWave

Winix 5300-2

A slightly lower tier model, Winix 5300-2 is cheaper but not by a lot accounting both models online price. The downfall is the lower grade Odor control carbon pre-filter that in theory is less effective than Advanced Granular Carbon Filter. The rest of the design and specification is identical.

Winix NK105

Rather than recommending the usual Winix HR1000, this newer, tower form air purifier stands tall with its slimmer body profile. Winix NK105 is also blessed with WiFi-enabled feature where you can pair with Winix SMART app for remote access. The downside for going with NK105 is the higher cost yet with a weaker airflow purifying coverage and CADR.

Holmes HAP8650B-U

An unorthodox choice, Holmes HAP8650B-U only cost around half of what 5500-2 is priced with identical purifying coverage and CADR output. What's lacking is the PlasmaWave tech and other convenience features such as air quality display and Auto mode.

Coway AP-1512HH Mighty

Voted the best air purifier by our peers, Coway AP-1512HH Mighty is only a tad more expensive but in return, you get a slightly better purifying coverage, CADR, and lower maintenance cost. Coway Mighty also comes with PlasmaWave technology equivalent Vital ionizer.

 Good to know

Winix 5500-2 VS Coway AP-1512HH

Again it is tough to pick between these two highly recommended air cleaners. In the end, we decided to go with Winix 5500-2 PlasmaWave for its standalone AOC carbon filter and of course lower online price than Coway AP-1512HH air purifier. Apart from that, both air purifiers have a mid-range 300+ square feet coverage, 4-stage filtration, 230+ CADR and a wholesome of features like air quality sensors, Auto mode, and timer.

Winix 5500-2 VS Honeywell HPA300

The inevitable VS comparison that most people will go through. On paper, it is a landslide win for Winix 5500-2 PlasmaWave as the air cleaner comes all the tech gadgets like Auto/ Sleep mode, air quality indicator and remote control all at a cheaper cost of ownership. On the other hand, Honeywell HPA300 this an extraordinary machine despite having none of the above features, the air purifier does better in airflow performance that resulted in a broader room size coverage (465 sq. ft. VS 360 sq. ft.) and better clean air delivery rate return. (above 300 cfm). At the end of it all, we still going to pick Winix 5500-2 as the discounted online price is simply irresistible.

Winix 5500-2 VS 6300-2

If you are confused choosing between Winix 5500-2 or Winix 6300-2, Winix 5500-2 is our pick as it has a lower price point and most importantly, it's still can be easily purchased online. Winix 5500-2 also utilized an arguably better smoke and odor filtration. AOC Advanced Granular Carbon Filter VS Winix 6300-2 thinner Odor control carbon pre-filter. Otherwise, both air purifiers share the same 15 x 23.6 x 8.2 in dimension, 360 sq. ft. room size coverage, 230+ cfm dust/ smoke/ pollen free CADR, 4 speed, 4-stage PlasmaWave filtration, and a full set of usability features like Auto mode, AQ sensor.

Winix 5500-2 VS 5300-2

There are good reasons why many people are undecided between Winix 5500-2 VS 5300-2 as both air purifiers are identical in many ways. Winix 5500-2 is the higher spec version with marginally better airflow output, AOC carbon filter and remote control. On the other hand, Winix 5300-2 offer a lower price tag that itself is already a deciding factor. Either way, both air purifiers have the same dimension (15 x 23.6 x 8.2 in), purifying coverage (360 sq. ft.), CADR (230+ cfm), 4-stage PlasmaWave filtration and essential features like Auto mode, air quality sensor, timer, and two years warranty.

Winix 5500-2 VS 5500

The discontinued Winix 5500 VS the current top-selling model Winix air purifier 5500-2. Even till this day, many people are still searching for the differences between these two air cleaners. Let's begin with the new model: 5500-2. First, an updated black exterior design that looks more suited to modern times. There is also an improvement on purifying coverage (360 sq. ft.) and dust CADR (243 cfm). Lastly, the replacement purifier also gains the latest AOC carbon filter, built-in timer and 2 years warranty (VS previous 1 year). Winix 5500 on the other hand, achieve a surprise advantage on airflow, Pollen, Smoke CADR, and a washable HEPA filter that is not entirely "washable" as it may sound. Either way, 4-stage filtration, PlasmaWave technology, four-speed with Auto/ Sleep mode, remote control, sensors, and AQ indicator is available on both air purifiers.

Winix 5500-2 VS C535

Even though Winix is more to 5300-2 rather than C535, both models are comparable as they share that same dimension, airflow, and CADR output. Ultimately we go with Winix PlasmaWave 5500-2 air purifier as our pick due to the three main reason: First, it has better availability as it is a global model VS Costco lock C535. Second, it is equipped with Filter H kit that comes with AOC Advanced Granular Carbon Filter VS Winix C535 Filter A kit that comes with Odor Absorbing Carbon Filter. Lastly, it is more competitive price than the limited C535. Only go with Winix C535 if you can find a better deal, wants a white exterior and do not mind losing out on a remote control.

How does Winix 5500-2 PlasmaWave work?

Winix 5500-2 PlasmaWave Technology works by generating positive and negative ions that will combine with water vapor to form hydroxyls. Hydroxyl molecules created can be used to neutralize germs, bacteria, viruses, and other gases including chemicals like VOCs naturally, without producing any harmful ozone.

How do I reset my Winix 5500-2 air purifier ?

To reset Winix 5500-2 air purifier after replacing a filter, first turn on the air purifier. Next, use a paper clip or any thin object to press and hold the RESET button for at least 5 seconds. A short beep can be heard, and the change Filter Indicator LED light will STOP illuminating to confirm the reset.

Final thoughts on Winix 5500-2

Winix 5500-2 air purifier has been in the market for quite some time and it still receives many positive reviews to this day. Out of the 800+ reviews, 86% of the reviewer that gave it 4-5 stars fancy what the air cleaner is offering especially with the sales price tag. The PlasmaWave + True HEPA filtration strength also work very well against dust, germs, and allergens. A small group of people also appreciate the inclusion of air quality indicator, Auto mode and remote control at this price point. As for the negative reviews, around 9% of the 1-2 stars reviewers does not agree on Winix 5500 2 effectiveness against smoke and odors. Some people also complained about the noise level and product longevity, but the percentage is just too small to make any judgement. To conclude, the positives you would get from the air purifier is more important than the shortcomings. Winix PlasmaWave 5500-2 is definitely our pick of the bunch.

Verdicts and ratings

Build quality
7
Features
7
Coverage
6
Airflow delivery
6
Particle Filtration
8
Smoke Filtration
8
Price
7
Upkeeping
7
8.5
Winix 5500-2 PlasmaWave

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