Shopping for an Ionic Air Purifier?
You are at the right place.
Ionizer air purifiers generate negative ions that bond with common household pollutants, eliminating them from the air. While they are appreciated for their quiet operation, there has been a long debate over their safety because they generate ozone as a by-product.
However, if truth be told, the ionizers produced these days are sophisticated pieces of technology. They don’t produce ozone gases and those that only produce a minuscule amount.
Ionic air purifiers are a great investment because they effectively clean your home environment and are quite affordable.
To help you choose a suitable one from the sea of products, we have rounded up some of the best ionizer air purifiers.
Have a look!
Why Do You Need an Ionizer Air Purifier?
Ionizer air purifiers are highly effective at removing airborne pollen, mold, dust, pet dander, bacteria, viruses, smoke, odors, and chemical toxins.
They charge the air for a cleaner and fresher breathing experience you typically encounter around waterfalls, rivers, and mountains. But their benefits don’t end here.
Let's look at some advantages of an ionizer air purifier to understand why should you get one.
If you are sensitive to noise, you will find an ionizer a worthy investment. Unlike traditional air purifiers, ionic air purifiers have an extremely quiet operation.
And that is primarily because there is no noisy fan propelling the air across it. Instead, these air purifiers contain a couple of electrical plates to generate negative ions. The process itself is completely noiseless.
Where traditional filters remove particles as small as 0.1 microns, an ionizer eliminates particles as small as 0.01 microns.
An ionizer generates negatively charged ions that attract and bond with positively charged particles to knock them out of the air.
Now, there are no filters involved in this process that might let tiny particles slip through. The ions it produces bind with both small and large particles, effectively eliminating them from the air.
Traditional filtered air purifiers not only have a higher initial cost but also entail expensive maintenance charges in terms of replacement filters.
Ionic air purifiers don’t come with such costs. True ionizers are filter-less devices that don’t need replacement. For maintenance purposes, all you need to do is periodically wipe the electrical plates to restore optimal performance.
Where most air purifiers operate using disposable filters, ionizer air purifiers rely on charging plates to produce ions.
Some ionic purifiers simply release ions to eliminate air pollution, while others collect pollutants on metal collector plates.
Regardless of the type, ionic purifiers are reusable. There is no need to replace the filters or ionizing plates. If they become dirty, you can wipe them with a clean cloth and continue using them as normal.
What’s In This Buying Guide
Ionizers are an economical and noiseless solution to indoor air pollution. They are available in many shapes and sizes.
In this buying guide, we review some of the best ionizer air purifiers to help you choose the right one.
We explain the different types of ionic air purifiers and discuss their care and maintenance.
And in the shopping guide, we list some crucial aspects of the best air ionizers.
Lastly, we answer some common questions regarding ion air purifiers.
However, if you are interested in purchasing an air purifier to eliminate mold from your home, check out our reviews for the best air purifiers for mold.
Best Ionic Air Purifiers
SilverOnyx Air Purifier for Home
- Best Overall
10.5 x 10.5 x 16.5 inches
Up to 500 square feet
Air Purification Stages
Mesh pre-filter, True HEPA H13 filter, activated carbon filter, UV light, and Ion generator
Air Quality Sensor
hOmeLabs 4-in-1 Compact
- Best Ionizer for Personal Use
6.7 x 6.7 x 7.5 inches
40 to 50 Square Feet
Air Purification Stages
Pre Filter, HEPA Filter, Activated Carbon filter, and ion booster
Air Quality Sensor
1 year warranty
Envion Ionic Pro 90IP01TA01W
- Best Ionizer Air Purifying Tower
7.5 x 28.5 x 9.5 inches
up to 500 square feet
Air Purification Stages
Air Quality Sensor
1 year warranty
Holmes Desktop HEPA Filter & Ionizer
- Best Desktop Ionizer
9.7 x 13.1 x 6.3 inches
109 Square Feet
Air Purification Stages
HEPA-Type filter, activated carbon filter, and ionizer
Air Quality Sensor
1. Best Overall: SilverOnyx Air Purifier for Home
SilverOnyx Air Purifier is a sleek and stylish model that features a curvy design with smooth edges and numerous unique and impressive features.
SilverOnyx has 5 filtration stages and can cover medium to large areas measuring up to 500 square feet.
It has an optional ion generator that works together with the UV-C light and triple filtration stages to provide you with clean, better-quality air.
Although SilverOnyx is not an air purifier specialty brand, its air purifier for home quickly gained immense popularity among the masses.
This cylindrical air purifier comes with a digital control panel at the top. It is small enough for a side table and looks equally good on your bedroom’s large top shelf. It stays out of your way and easily fits with your decor as you can choose from 3 colors.
SilverOnyx Air Purifier for Home boasts 360° air intake. The cylindrical shape means there is 60% more surface area for air filtration.
The air first passes through the mesh pre-filter that traps bigger particles like fiber and pet hair. In the next stage, an H13 True HEPA Filter removes particles as small as 0.3 microns. The last filtration stage is an activated carbon filter that removes odors and chemical contaminants like VOCs.
Plus, there are separate buttons for UV-C light that kills microbes and an ion generator that helps tackle smaller particles more effectively.
2. Best Ionizer for Personal Use: hOmeLabs 4-in-1 Compact
This compact and portable ionizer purifier is an amazing model from hOmeLabs. The small machine packs a ton of features, including triple-stage filtration and an ion booster.
The hOmeLabs HME020020N boasts a 360-degree air intake with clean air delivery out the top. It covers only 40 to 50 square feet of area, making it ideal for personal use.
The hOmeLabs 4-in-1 Compact Air Purifier is a simple yet sleek model. It features a box-like design, with the entire lower portion dedicated to the air intake and inlet holes on all sides.
The fan of the HME020020N pulls in the air and forces it through the 3-stage filtration system for purification. The clean air comes out from the vents at the top. The device also generates negatively charged ions to deal with the remaining pollutants. They also make the air cleaner and fresher.
The hOmeLabs air purifier runs on 2 speeds – high and low.
When you plug in the device, the LED turns red, showing it’s on standby. Once you press the button on top of the hOmeLabs unit, it starts operating at low speed, and the LED light turns light blue. Press it again, and the fan speed increases to high, and the LED turns bright blue.
The device is quite user-friendly,in addition to the single-button functionality, it features a filter change indicator light and simple and quick filter changes.
3.Best Ionizer Air Purifying Tower: Envion Ionic Pro 90IP01TA01W
The Envion Ionic Pro 90IP01TA01W features a sophisticated tower design that is both modern and minimalistic. The device produces an ionic breeze that charges different airborne particles, causing them to clump up and fall out of the air.
The Ionic Pro Turbo is fairly simple to set up and use. There are no filters - only ionic plates that need cleaning once in a while when they are dirty.
Although it is not Energy Star rated, the Ionic Pro consumes only a small amount of energy to operate.
We really like the Envion Ionic Pro for its pure ionizer air purification. The ion generator is built in compliance with the U.S. safety requirements for low ozone emission, so it is pretty safe to use.
The machine uses both positively and negatively charged ‘ionic’ filters to attract airborne pollutants, trapping them on collection plates inside the machine.
The Ionic Pro features a sleek and slim tower design. You can easily install this model in any room without having to free up too much space for it.
However, since the Ionic Pro is tall, you can’t place it on a shelf or a coffee table due to the danger of it tipping over and falling. It is also lightweight, making it quite portable, so you won’t have any difficulty moving it from one room to another.
This ionic air purifier is very quiet. It has 3 different fan speeds - at the highest fan setting, it produces only 30 dB, which is close to a whisper. You can easily place it in your bedroom at night as it won’t disrupt your sleep.
4. Best Desktop Ionizer: Holmes Desktop HEPA Filter & Ionizer
Holmes Desktop HEPA Filter & Ionizer is an elegant yet extremely functional option. It features a versatile, dual-position design that you can place both horizontally and vertically.
This Holmes unit features dual filtration stages consisting of a HEPA-Type filter and an activated carbon filter. Plus, you can use the optional ionizer function for a fresher indoor environment.
We chose the Holmes Desktop HEPA Filter & Ionizer because of its compact design and versatile functionality. You can easily place this low-profile device on your desktop to clean the surrounding air.
Although this Holmes unit has a small area coverage of up to 109 square feet, it can clean the air in smaller rooms in no time.
The Holmes device uses a 2-stage filtration system. The first stage is a HEPA-Type filter that captures particles as small as 2 microns. The second stage is an activated carbon filter that traps odor molecules and chemical particles.
The last step is the optional ionizer that emits a steady stream of charged ions to freshen the air around the room.
Ionic Air Purifier: Buying Guide
What Is an Ionizer Air Purifier – and How Does It Work?
An ionizer air purifier is a home appliance that generates negative ions to combat indoor air pollution.
Unlike ozone-generating devices, ionizers release a hoard of negatively charged ions that attract and bond with positively charged particles flowing through the air.
This bonding changes the chemical composition of the particles, making them too heavy to stay airborne. As a result, they fall down, leaving behind a cleaner and fresher air for you to breathe in.
Why Should You Buy an Ionic Air Purifier?
In addition to their air cleaning functionality, ionic air purifiers provide lots of health benefits. These devices recreate the energizing feeling of being near a waterfall right in your home.
Here are some reasons why you should buy an ion air purifier.
Make Your Body More Energized
If you have ever been near a waterfall or a stream, you may remember feeling revitalized and energized. That’s because the concentration of negative ions is higher near giant water bodies.
Using an ionic air purifier in your home recreates the same effect. It makes you feel more motivated and energized. It is our body’s biochemical response to negative ions.
Increase Mental Concentration and Performance
High levels of negative ions positively impact your mental health. These ions improve oxygen flow to the brain, which makes us more alert and conscious.
Several studies prove that people exposed to negative ions perform better on tests than those who are not. Using an ionic air purifier makes you more active.
Staying indoors or spending ample time in front of a screen makes you feel groggier. This happens because the concentration of negative ions is already low indoors.
Plus, screens give off positive charges and deplete negative ions in the surrounding.
Using an ionizer inside your home makes you feel more energized, allowing you to get more work done in a short time.
Rid Indoor Air of Contaminants
The air in our homes contains many airborne particles, such as dirt, lint, pet dander, pollen, smoke, or VOCs, all making it difficult to breathe. An ionizing air purifier releases a stream of negative ions. These ions bond with positively charged contaminants to remove them from the air.
Types of Air Ionizers
Air ionizers are generally classified into two types – ionizers and electrostatic precipitators (ESPs).
Here’s how these differ:
As the name suggests, ion generators create ions to charge airborne particles. They use the Corona discharge process to produce a steady stream of negatively charged ions that attach to the different airborne contaminants.
Once the particulate matter is charged, it gets attracted to positively charged surfaces around your home and settles on them. The air is free of contaminants, and you can wipe or vacuum the surfaces to eliminate the charged particles completely.
Electrostatic Precipitators (ESPs)
Electrostatic precipitators work on the same principle of ion generation. But instead of landing on the surfaces and floor of your home, charged particles collect on the positively charged collector plates within the ionic air purifier.
ESPs are more popular than ion generators because wiping the particles on collector plates is easier than cleaning an entire room.
What to Look for in an Ionizer Air Purifier
Now that you have decided to get an ionizer air purifier for yourself, here are a few important things you should carefully consider while shopping for a suitable model:
The size of an ion air purifier not only plays a significant role in its placement options but also helps you determine how powerful the unit is.
Smaller units generally cover smaller areas (up to 100 square feet). Bigger and more powerful units are suitable for an area of 500 to 1000 square feet but are generally quite cumbersome as they require more room.
You should carefully measure the room in which you plan to use the ionizer and choose a model with the appropriate size and area coverage for optimal performance.
Although ionizers are generally more affordable than traditional filtered air purifiers, you should still factor in the price before finalizing your purchase.
And we don’t mean the initial upfront cost alone.
You also have to consider the running cost you incur in terms of energy bills as well as the maintenance costs to keep your device in top condition.
You should carefully consider all these aspects and choose a unit that falls within your budget initially and does not burden you with its functionality after some time.
When buying an ionic air purifier, be sure to choose an efficient model that does not burden your budget with extensive energy bills.
Make sure the device is Energy Star certified. That way, you can rest easy about your bills remaining in a desirable range, even if you run the device round the clock.
If you plan on moving the ionizer from one room to another, it’s better to opt for a portable and lightweight model.
Moving a heavy and bulky device is cumbersome, which is why compact and lightweight units are a better choice. They are easy to move and can also accompany you at work, in the car, or around the house as you work.
The portability of an ionizing device is particularly important if you plan to use your device all around the house.
You won’t be able to move a bulky or heavy unit from place to place without needing help. For this purpose, some models come with wheels, while others are quite lightweight, which makes it really easy to move them from one area to another.
So you should think about your application beforehand and choose accordingly.
As mentioned earlier, an ionizer is most effective if it is used in an appropriately sized area.
Manufacturers clearly mention the area coverage of their products in the specs list. You should measure the room you want to use it in and keep that measurement in mind while looking at different models.
Remember, using an ionizer with small area coverage in a big room won’t deliver desirable results, so make sure to choose wisely.
Warranty is a way of knowing how reliable a product is.
Since manufacturers offer coverage for a certain time frame, it shows their confidence in how long they believe their products will last without developing any problems.
The longer the warranty coverage, the more reliable an ion air purifier is.
So make sure you choose a model with comprehensive warranty coverage for a sufficient amount of time. That way, if the appliance develops any problems during that time period, you can have it looked at, repaired, or even replaced easily.
Pros and Cons: Ionizer Air Purifier
Ionic air purifiers were extremely popular during the late 1990s and early 2000s. Although they are a great filterless alternative to HEPA air purifiers, the risks associated with ozone generation lead them to fall behind in the race.
Modern ionic purifiers are sophisticated and don’t pose the same risks.
But if you’re still unsure, here’s a short list of the pros and cons of ionizer air purifiers to help you choose better.
Care and Maintenance: Ionizer Air Purifier
Ion generating air purifiers are generally low-maintenance devices that don’t require too much of your attention.
However, you have to be timely with their cleaning to reap their full benefits.
Here are some care and maintenance tips to help you out:
Consider the Device Placement
If you want the unit to remove air pollutants from your home properly, you have to consider its placement carefully.
An ionizer sitting in the far corner of the room won’t be as effective as the one sitting in the center of the room. Placing it against a wall or behind any object will also restrict its ion emission and airflow.
For this reason, you should always place the ionizer in an open place, a few feet away from everything else.
While ion air purifiers are undoubtedly very effective, they also tend to be messy and leave behind particulate matter as a layer of fine dirt over every surface of your room.
The dirt is more prominent around the ionizer itself as well as around the emitter plates. And if the unit has collector plates, the dirt accumulates over them with time.
You have to keep an eye out on this situation and clean the unit whenever needed.
Carefully unplug the device and use a clean cloth to wipe the emitter plates and the entire unit. Move it aside to clean underneath.
If the ionizer has collector plates, check them from time to time. If they appear full, take them out, wash thoroughly, dry, and reinstall.
Make Sure the Unit is Properly Grounded
Ionizers sometimes cause a static charge to build up on the air outlet grille. You may feel it if the unit is not grounded properly. Always use the ionizer with a grounded outlet or properly install a ground adapter to avoid this situation.
Check the Filters
If your ionizer also contains filters, like collector plates, you should also check the filters for dirt build-up. If they appear clogged, you should take appropriate measures.
If the filter is washable, wash it to get rid of the dirt and if it is permanent, clean it using a vacuum cleaner. And if it is a replaceable filter, like in the Alen BreatheSmart FIT50, you should not delay changing it to ensure optimal performance.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it Safe to Use Ionic Air Purifiers?
While they are often confused with ozone generators, most ionic purifiers are generally pretty safe to use. They emit negative ions into the air to rid it of airborne contaminants.
The ions are not harmful to your health. In fact, they have a pretty positive effect on your well-being.
On the other hand, ozone generators generate dangerous amounts of ozone, which can cause health issues like lung irritation.
Are Ionizers Better Than HEPA Air Purifiers?
As the name suggests, a High Effect Particle Air (HEPA) filter is designed to capture the smallest particles efficiently.
Ionizers, on the other hand, emit negative ions that charge airborne particles, making them fall out of the air and stick to the nearest surface.
Both have their own benefits.
However, if you want an air purifier to remove mold, dust mites, pollen, or other allergens, a HEPA air purifier is a better option because ionizers struggle to deal with bigger particles like these.
Can Ionizers Kill Mold?
No, ionizers cannot kill mold, or anything else, for that matter.
When mold spores go through an ionizer, they get an electrical charge, clump together with other particles, and fall out of the air.
Unlike UV-C technology, ionic air purifiers don’t disintegrate mold spores. Since they only prevent mold spores from moving around in the air, ionizers do not affect the mold growing in your house.
How Long Does the Ionizer Air Purifier Last?
The life of an ionizer air purifier depends upon various factors, including its size and usage. The bigger, higher-quality devices have a longer lifespan than their pluggable counterparts.
Some ionic air purifiers can last up to 5 years, but, on average, you can expect them to work for 2 to 3 years in spaces with larger amounts of particulate matter.
Final Verdict: What Is the Best Ionic Air Purifier Sold Today?
Despite the backlash they received in the previous years, ionizer air purifiers have made a strong and safer comeback.
After reviewing the different models available on the market, we believe the Envion Ionic Pro 90IP01TA01W is the best ionizer air purifier. It has a large 500 square feet area coverage and creates a cleaner and fresher room environment in no time.
But if you want a portable desktop model, the Holmes Desktop HEPA Filter & Ionizer is an excellent option for its versatile performance.
And the SilverOnyx Air Purifier for Home is also a great pick. It boasts a large coverage area of up to 500 square feet. It offers lots of unique features like multiple filtration stages, auto mode, and air quality sensors for a good user experience.