air purifiers that are good for dustShare on Pinterest

We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Here’s our process.

Air purifiers are devices that help clean the air you breathe in your home. Mounting concerns about indoor air pollutants, from dust to smoke to viruses, have made air purifiers increasingly popular. People with dust mite allergies and other sensitivities to airborne particles might be particularly interested in how an air purifier can help.

Some air purifiers are better at dust control than others, depending on the technology and filter system. We took a look at some of the best air purifiers for dust to see which products live up to their claims.

Any fine particles of matter can be called “dust.” It’s a broad definition that can include particles of soil, sand, pollutants, and skin. When it comes to dust particles in your home, the majority of dust is made up of dead skin cells, hair particles, clothing fibers, and bits of dirt.

Just because household dust is made of mostly organic materials doesn’t mean that it’s a good idea for you to breathe it constantly. Researchers have found everything from bacteria to carcinogenic compounds in household dust.

Enter the air purifier: a fan-like mechanism that draws air in and through at least one filter. The filter attracts and traps dust and other pollutants, thus “cleaning” your air. The filtered air is then released back into your space through another fan-like mechanism.

HEPA filters

High-efficiency particulate air filters, known as HEPA filters, are able to remove 99.97 percent of dust particles that are 3 microns in diameter, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

As of now, air purifiers that have a HEPA filter tend to be the best at filtering out dust from your space. Using air purifiers in smaller, enclosed spaces can increase how effective they are.

Other filter technologies don’t work as well for dust filtration. For example, UV filters that zap mold spores and bacteria are also popular, but those types aren’t as successful at trapping airborne dust. Some air purifiers take a “why not both?” approach and combine HEPA filters with UV filters or other types of filters.

We chose these air purifiers based on the following criteria:

  • Certifications. We looked to highlight products that have a high Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) rating for dust in particular. We also looked for products that are verified and certified by the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) and California Air Resources Board (CARB).
  • Clinical research. We read dozens of studies on dust filtration using air purifiers to figure out what works best in consumer and health provider settings.
  • Type of filtration. None of these air purifiers are ionizers, which create a small amount of ozone. Instead, we focused on HEPA filters. In some cases, we highlighted products that combine HEPA with other filtration technologies. We also included an option with photo electrochemical oxidation (PECO) technology.
  • Customer reviews and feedback. We looked through hundreds of reviews to determine what customers liked about these products, and to alert you of any red flags that you may want to consider before buying the product.

Pricing guide

Air purifier prices can vary widely. Prices are estimated based on the following pricing key:

  • $ = under $200
  • $$ = $200–$450
  • $$$ = over $450

Best air purifier for dust overall

Coway Mighty Air Purifier with True HEPA and Eco Mode

  • Price: $$
  • Pros: automatic eco-friendly mode, great ratings
  • Cons: higher price point, small number of negative reviews mention quality issues
  • Certifications: Energy Star, CARB

The Coway is equipped with a four-stage filtration system that covers 361 square feet (sq. ft.). It starts with a washable prefilter meant to trap bigger dust and proceeds to a HEPA filter to catch the rest. There’s also a deodorizing filter to make your air smell cleaner and a final filter that reduces particles in your air. An automatically eco-friendly mode switches on when there are no dust particles detected in your air.

It’s a bit pricey, but people love the Coway Mighty. Over 12,000 Amazon customers have reviewed this product, with an average star rating of 4.7 out of 5. That’s pretty impressive. What’s more, review aggregator ReviewMeta found that 4.7 rating to be pretty authentic and most of the reviews to be from verified customers. Note also that the “Vital Ion” filter is not an ionizer, so you don’t have to worry about breathing ionized air.

Quietest air purifier

Blueair Blue Pure 211+

  • Price: $$
  • Pros: excellent reviews, 2-year warranty at no charge with product registration
  • Cons: some customers report an odor
  • Certifications: Energy Star, CARB

The Blueair Blue Pure 211+ can control dust in rooms up to 540 sq. ft.. There are three filters to capture particles: a washable prefilter for bigger particles, an inner particle filter that uses HEPA technology, and a carbon filter that traps gases and smoke. It runs quietly compared to competitors and turns on easily with one-button control.

Some customers say that they can smell the carbon filter, and they don’t always like the smell. If you register the product with Blueair, you get a 2-year warranty. On TrustPilot, some customers aren’t thrilled with Blueair’s customer service.

Best budget air purifier

Levoit Core 300 Air Purifier

  • Price: $
  • Pros: great price point, very quiet
  • Cons: works best in small spaces, not effective for all particulates
  • Certifications: Energy Star, CARB

The Levoit Core 300 works with a prefilter, a HEPA filter, and a carbon filter to trap dust and other irritants. Translation: This model provides similar tech to much more expensive options at half the cost. It even comes with a 2-year warranty.

This air purifier is best in a smaller space, around 200 sq. ft. Many reviewers were especially impressed with how quiet the unit is. Other reviewers noted that the unit seemed ill-equipped to really filter smoke, gases, and scents, so the carbon technology might not be up to par with pricier models.

Best air purifier for dust and odor control

Winix AM-90 Wi-Fi Air Purifier

  • Price: $
  • Pros: includes WiFi, has a SmartApp, washable pre-filter
  • Cons: some customers say there are some issues in connection with SmartApp and other smart home devices
  • Certifications: Energy Star, CARB

The Winix AM-90 can service a room that’s 360 sq. ft. It uses a prefilter, a HEPA filter, and an activated carbon filter. After being filtered, air is blasted with a special technology meant to break apart smells and gases and neutralize bacteria before it is released back into your space. Filters last for 12 months, and the device comes with a 2-year warranty.

Reviewers noted that while the app works well, the integration with other smart home devices (such as Amazon Echo) is not always so seamless. This disappointed customers who hoped to be able to use Wi-Fi to turn the device on and off.

Best air purifier for large spaces

Coway Airmega Smart Purifier

  • Price: $$$
  • Pros: powerful and effective in larger spaces, lots of options for functionality
  • Cons: high price point, 1-year warranty only, bigger footprint
  • Certifications: Energy Star, CARB

The Airmega is a splurge, but it does provide powerful dust filtration for spaces up to 1,560 sq. ft. This unit combines HEPA filtration with carbon filtration, as well as a prefilter to capture larger dust particles. There are a ton of different fan speed options and mode settings, as well as automatic sensors that choose mode and fan speed for you based on your current air quality.

Despite the price, the product is only fully guaranteed for 1 year against internal malfunctions. The purifier also has a bigger floor footprint than many other models, since it takes in air from both sides and expels clean air out of the top fan, which means that you can’t put any furniture that would block the air intake next to it on either side. This purifier is designed to be used in larger spaces, though, so keep that in mind.

Best portable air purifier

Molekule Air Mini+

  • Price: $$$
  • Pros: portable, uses PECO technology, connectivity
  • Cons: high price point, only works up to 250 square feet, not Energy Star certified
  • Certifications: CARB, FDA cleared for medical use

The Air Mini+ from Molekule is sleek, stylish, and portable with a vegan leather handle, so you can take it with you as you move around your home. It’s also the only air purifier on our list to use PECO technology instead of a HEPA filter.

This kind of technology destroys pollutants, including particulate matter like dust, through oxidization instead of trapping them. In the Air Mini+, an integrated pre-filter and PECO filter work together to purify the air.

It has a particulate sensor with automatic fan speed adjustment, but you can manually change the speed too. Plus, it works with the Molekule companion app so you can track particulate levels in the air, adjust fan speed, and keep tabs on the state of your PECO filter.

While the Air Mini+ has a lot going for it, there are a few drawbacks. It’s designed for rooms up to 250 square feet, so it works best in spaces like bedrooms or small living rooms. The purifier is quiet at the lowest speeds, but it does get loud from third to full speed.

Molekule offers a 30-day home trial with a full refund, so you can check out the PECO technology for yourself.

Best air purifier design

Blueair DustMagnet 5410i

  • Price: $$
  • Pros: doubles as a side table, connectivity
  • Cons: high price point
  • Certifications: Energy Star, CARB

The DustMagnet 5410i reimagines air purifier design. With its sleek lines and tabletop surface, it’s made to blend into your space, even as it’s working to clean the air.

According to Blueair, patent-pending DustMagnet technology can capture 99 percent of dust before it settles. This is thanks to an advanced HEPA technology that uses dual air intake and an electrostatic charge to cluster particles.

Plus, it’s really quiet compared with traditional air purifiers. The DustMagnet 5410i can purify spaces up to 1,713 sq. ft.

Another standout feature of the DustMagnet is a five-color LED on the exterior, which indicates air quality on a scale of very polluted to excellent. It’s compatible with smart devices and works with the Blueair companion app, which has a number of useful features.

The Welcome Home feature automatically turns the air purifier on and off as you come and go.

Most customizable air purifier

Alen BreatheSmart FLEX True HEPA Air Purifier

  • Price: $$
  • Pros: lifetime guarantee with filter subscription, quiet, choice of colors and filter types
  • Cons: high price point
  • Certifications: Energy Star, CARB

With a choice of filter types and colors, this BreatheSmart FLEX air purifier is highly customizable. Four types of HEPA filters are designed to capture allergens, dust, mold and germs, neutralize odors, and absorb smoke and VOCs. The air purifier is also available in six stylish colors.

It works in spaces up to 700 sq. ft. According to the company, the BreatheSmart FLEX captures 99.99 percent of airborne dust, allergens, and other contaminants. It’s backed with an impressive forever guarantee. If something goes wrong, the company’s in-house experts will help resolve the issue or ship you a free replacement.

When you’re shopping for an air filter, there are a few things to keep in mind to make it easier:

  • Energy use. Some air filters are more energy efficient than others. Buying an air purifier that’s Energy Star certified isn’t just better for the environment, it’s better for your electric bill, too.
  • Filtration system. Different filters are meant to accomplish different goals. Purifiers that have a UV filter are great for killing viruses and bacteria, but don’t filter dust as well as HEPA filters. Look into the filter technology before you buy.
  • Filter replacement cost. While you’re looking at the type of filter, check on what it’s going to cost to replace the filters and how often they are going to need a replacement. Some companies will void their warranty if you use anything besides their brand-name filters, so keep that in mind, too.
  • Space. Even the most powerful air purifiers won’t be effective if they’re placed in a space that’s larger than their recommended capacity. Air purifiers typically market the maximum size room that they can handle efficiently, so don’t try to stretch it.
  • Noise concerns. As you research different products, take note of reviews that mention how loud the devices are. Some people like their air purifier on as a sort of white noise machine in the background as they sleep, while others need an air purifier is as silent as possible.

NamePriceBest forCoverage (sq. ft.)Other callouts
Coway Mighty Air Purifier with True HEPA and Eco Mode$$overall361auto eco-friendly mode; deodorizing filter
BlueAir Blue Pure 211+$$quietestup to 540two-year warranty; carbon filter
Levoit Core 300 Air Purifier$on a budgetup to 200very quiet; two-year warranty
Winix AM-90 Wi-Fi Air Purifier$dust and odor control360smart app; two-year warranty
Coway AirMega Smart Purifier$$$ controlling dust and allergies in big roomsup to 1,560lots of options for functionality; great for big spaces
Molekule Air Mini+$$$portable250FDA cleared for medical use; Eco filter
Blueair DustMagnet 5410i$$designup to 1,713tabletop function
Alen BreatheSmart Flex True HEPA Air Purifier$$customizing700lifetime guarantee; choice of colors and filtration systems

An air purifier can only effectively clean your home’s air when you’re using and maintaining it properly. These devices are made to last, but you can expect to do basic maintenance like changing the filter periodically.

Here’s what to keep in mind in terms of proper air purifier maintenance:

  • Read the owner’s manual. This will tell you everything you need to know about proper care for your specific air purifier model. You should also be able to find this information on the company’s website.
  • Position it properly. Make sure that your air purifier’s intakes aren’t blocked. Air needs to be able to circulate freely. Placing items on top of your air purifier could also obstruct air or cause damage. Unless it’s designed as a piece of furniture, don’t treat it like one.
  • Replace air filters as indicated. Your air purifier’s filters will need routine replacement, and this can’t be overlooked. If you use a clogged or damaged filter, your air purifier won’t work properly and you could cause damage to your device. Many companies offer filter subscriptions, which can be a handy reminder.

Are air purifiers good for COVID-19?

According to the EPA, an air purifier can help reduce airborne contaminants, including viruses. However, the agency cautions that an air purifier isn’t enough to protect against COVID-19.

Some manufacturers, like Blueair and Molekule, have tested their products against the coronavirus with positive results. Still, air purifiers should be part of a bigger plan to protect against the virus.

Do air purifiers help with allergies?

There’s no official recommendation for air purifier use if you have allergies. However, air purifiers can help remove airborne particles like dust, dander, pollen, and mold.

Some studies have linked allergy symptom relief with the use of air purifiers. A 2018 study found that a HEPA air purifier in a bedroom helped with allergic rhinitis symptoms. Another study from 2018 found that air purifiers with PECO filters reduced the study participants’ allergy symptoms.

Which air purifier is best for dust?

As of now, air purifiers with a HEPA filter tend to be the best for filtering dust from your space. According to the EPA, HEPA filters can remove 99.97 percent of dust particles that measure 3 microns in diameter.

Which air purifier is best for airborne allergens like pet hair and dust?

An air purifier with a HEPA filter is a good option if you’re hoping to minimize allergens like dust and dander. Newer technology like PECO is also designed not just to trap allergens, but to destroy it.

Where is the best place to put an air purifier?

Tucking an air purifier behind furniture or beneath a shelf reduces its efficacy. An air purifier should be in a spot where it has space for airflow around the top, front, and sides. Placing an air purifier on an elevated surface can also be a good way to boost efficiency.

Keep in mind that air purifiers have a recommended capacity, so make sure you’re using a version that’s appropriate for the space.

Air purifiers make a lot of hefty claims in terms of what they can do for allergies and asthma. Finding an air purifier that uses a HEPA filter as well as a prefilter is probably your best starting point for finding something that works well.

Consider other concerns, such as noise level, energy use, and how often the filters need to be replaced when you’re looking for a dust control solution for your space.