What is a Smart Air Purifier and How Does it Work?

Photo of Woman with Smart Air PurifierIf you’ve done any type of research on air purifiers, you’ve undoubtedly come across products that are labeled as a “Smart Air Purifier” or containing a “Smart Air Filter.”

While the use of the term “Smart” may seem to be vague and not hold much meaning to you, this classification does actually clue you in to some key features that an air cleaning device will contain.

In this article, we’ll answer the two most important questions regarding this new technology, “What is a Smart Air Purifier” and “How Does a Smart Air Purifier Work?”

By the end of this post, you’ll be equipped with everything you need to know about smart air purifiers and how they’re different from regular non-smart devices.

The information provided here will help you decide if this new technology is worth the extra investment or not when purchasing an air purifying machine for your own use.

First, What is an Air Purifier?

Before we dive into explaining what a smart air purifier is, it’s best if we start by defining what a regular air purifier is and what it can do.

Once you have this basic information, understanding how a smart air purifier differs will make a lot more sense.

At its core, an air purifier is a special device that works to remove harmful airborne particles that cause respiratory problems and sickness. This includes everything from pollen, pet dander, dust, mold spores, bacteria, viruses, gases, chemicals and volatile organic compounds.

This type of device takes in dirty air, filters out the bad particles, and then pumps clean air back into the room.

Air purifiers repeat this air cleaning process several times per hour in order to keep it constantly fresh and toxin-free.

Regular non-smart air purifiers operate in either one of two ways:

  1. Continuous Air Filtering
    This is similar to how a room fan operates. You set the machine on a desired air cleaning level and it continues to filter the air at this rate on a continuous basis, regardless if the air is dirty or clean. There is no self-detection of air quality.
  2. Automatic Air Filtering
    Air purifiers with this mode contain air quality sensors that monitor the air for impurities. When these particles are detected, the device automatically adjusts itself to remove them from the air in the most efficient way. This mode offers the best combination of air cleaning and energy efficiency.

As you can see, a continuous air filtering purifier requires manual operation and cannot monitor the air quality, while the automatic air purifier is hands-free and does all of the monitoring and adjustments for you.

However, both types of air purifiers have the same drawback – neither gives you any feedback on what type of impurities it has collected from the air or how often a specific type of particle is entering into room, like pollen.

Those types of concerns are exactly what has led to the development of smart air purifiers, which we’ll explain next.

What is a Smart Air Purifier?

Photo of Smart Air Purifier with AppAs you just discovered, regular air purifiers have a major pitfall – they don’t tell you which impurities are infiltrating the air that you breathe, nor how often.

On the other hand, a smart air purifier provides all of that information to you.

The major benefit that a smart air purifier has over a regular air purifier is that it allows you to actually track and control the air quality within your home.

These types of air cleaners get their “smart” name because they come with a special smartphone app that provides live readings of air quality data. These apps monitor and measure airborne particles in your home and deliver that data to you in real-time.

This enables you to track a room’s air quality over a few days or weeks and spot trends, which will show you which times of day the air quality is at its best and worst. This can help you discover which types of toxins are more prevalent inside your home.

Photo of Smart Air Purifeir App Air Quality DataSmart air purifiers gather this air quality data from special monitoring sensors on the units and can be set up to send you alerts when air quality levels change. The include smartphone app also allow you to have more control over your air purifier by allowing fine tune adjustment of the air cleaning settings.

As you may have already guessed, smart air purifiers also fall under the automatic filtering category and adjust themselves to keep your home contaminant free.

Another popular feature that many smart air purifiers come equipped with is a scheduler. This gives you the option to set up a timed schedule so that the device doesn’t operate 24 hours per day.

As you can see, smart air purifiers offer a lot of advantages over regular air cleaning devices. With the advancement of smartphone app technology connected to the machine, you’re able to get exact information about the air quality within your home and control it to the finest degree.

Smart Air Purifier Naming Conventions

When you’re looking to buy a smart air purifier, you’ll often find it marketed under several different names.

The reason for it is that each manufacturer is trying to capitalize on specific marketing terms in order to set themselves apart from the competition.

Terms you’ll come across include:

  • Smart Air Purifier
  • Smart Air Filter
  • Wireless Air Purifier
  • Wi-Fi Enabled Air Purifier
  • Bluetooth Air Purifier

While the technological names for various products may be different, just remember that each device includes smart capabilities and those key terms are practically interchangeable.

Top Smart Air Purifiers and Features

Now that you know what a smart air purifier is and how it works, you may be wondering what some of the top air purifiers are and what features they come with.

The list below will help you quickly compare the best products in this category.

Photo of Airmega 400SAirmega 400S Smart Air Purifier

App Includes:

  • Personalized timer and scheduler
  • Real-time and historic air quality information for indoors and outdoors
  • Filter use indicator and notifications for when it’s time to replace them

Air Filter and Room Coverage:

  • Includes a True HEPA filter and Activated Carbon filter
  • Rated for rooms up to 1,560 sq. ft

Photo of Dyson Pure Cool LinkDyson Pure Cool Link

App Includes:

  • Personalized timer and scheduler
  • Real-time and historic air quality information for indoors and outdoors
  • See pollution levels inside your home and monitor when the air purifier operates

Air Filter and Room Coverage:

  • Includes a 360° Glass HEPA filter
  • Rated for rooms up to 300 sq. ft

Photo of Holmes Wi-Fi Enabled Air PurifierHolmes Wi-Fi Enabled Air Purifier

App Includes:

  • Uses free WeMo app, which works with other smart controlled devices
  • Personalized timer and scheduler
  • Connectivity with IFTTT Weather apps to automatically adjust device to changing weather conditions
  • Filter use indicator and notifications for when it’s time to replace them

Air Filter and Room Coverage:

  • Includes two True HEPA filter and two Activated Carbon filters
  • Rated for rooms up to 217 sq. ft

Photo of Honeywell HPA250BHoneywell HPA-250B Bluetooth Air Purifier

App Includes:

  • Personalized timer and scheduler
  • Connectivity to Accuweather.com for pollen and mold levels in your zip code
  • Automatic operation based on current pollen levels
  • Proximity sensor that automatically turns your air purifier on and off when your bluetooth device is within a certain range. Good for when you leave or return home.
  • Filter use indicator and notifications for when it’s time to replace them
  • Direct link to purchase new filters online

Air Filter and Room Coverage:

  • Includes a True HEPA filter and Activated Carbon filter
  • Rated for rooms up to 310 sq. ft

Photo of Winix HR1000Winix HR1000 Wi-Fi Enabled Air Cleaner

App Includes:

  • Personalized timer and scheduler
  • Real-time and historic air quality information for indoors and outdoors
  • Filter use indicator and notifications for when it’s time to replace them

Air Filter and Room Coverage:

  • Uses a 5-stage air filtration system with a True HEPA filter, Activated Carbon Filter and PlasmaWave technology
  • Rated for rooms up to 400 sq. ft.