If you landed on this page, then you’re clearly looking for the answer to this question, “How to eliminate smoke in your house?”
It’s also safe to say that you’re trying to find the best air purifier for cigarette smoke and/or cigar odor. One that not only gets rid of the smoke itself but also the smell as well.
What you’ll find below is free information that shows you how to get rid of smoke inside any room or home in the most effective way.
You’ll also discover what the best type of air purifier for smokers is that keeps your house tobacco smoke and odor free.
Use these links below to jump to a specific section of the page:
- Why an Air Purifier is a Good Choice for a Smoker
- What is the Best Type of Air Purifier for Cigarette Smoke and Cigar Odor?
- List of the Three Best Air Purifiers for Smoke (Products and Reviews)
- More about HEPA and Activated Carbon Filters
Best Air Purifiers for Smoke
In a hurry? Here’s a glimpse of the two best products you can get.
You’ll find out more about these air purifiers in the detailed reviews and buying guide below.
Rabbit Air MinusA2
Austin Air Healthmate 400
Why an Air Purifier is a Good Choice for a Smoker
One of the biggest problems cigarette and cigar smokers have faced over the years is the fact that in order to keep a home smoke free, he or she would have to smoke outside. Unfortunately, this option is not always possible or convenient.
For example, a cigarette smoker or cigar lover may live in an apartment setting where smoking outside is not permitted. Therefore, if he or she wants to smoke, it must be done indoors. If the person lives with a non-smoker then this presents a problem for the other person too.
Another classic example is a smoker who lives in a house and doesn’t want the inconvenience of having to go outside just to smoke cigarettes. This obviously leads to a home that smells like smoke, yet many smokers wish this didn’t have to be the case.
Fortunately, in-home air purification technology has made major advancements in the last few years that has solved these problems.
Now, both a smoker and non-smoker can live in the same dwelling without it being a problem for themselves or others around them through the use of a specially designed air purifier for cigarette smoke.
What is the Best Type of Air Purifier for Cigarette Smoke and Cigar Odor?
Before we share with you what the best air purifier for smoke is, it’s important for you to first understand a few things about this technology.
Knowing this little bit of information will help you to make the best choice for your situation.
Because, you’ll discover that not all air purifiers are designed to get rid of cigarette and cigar smoke, and if you buy the wrong type of device, you’ll be wasting your money and not see any positive effects from it. You need a certain type of air purifier for smokers.
The truth is that most air purifiers you find are not designed to get rid of smoke or other gaseous pollutants. They also cannot eliminate smoke odors.
Instead, 99% of air purifiers are designed to get rid of particles that make up allergens, dust and pet dander.
Because that’s the types of things most homeowners want an air purifier to do. Eliminating tobacco smoke is a special purpose.
An air purifier designed to tackle tobacco smoke must be able to combat these two things:
- Airborne particles that form visible smoke
- Microscopic particles that form the odor
These tasks are accomplished best through two pieces of technology:
- A True HEPA filtering system, which removes 99.97% of particles 0.3 microns and larger. This includes visible smoke.
- An Activated Carbon Filter, which absorbs the smoke odor.
An Activated Carbon Filter is the real secret behind eliminating tobacco smoke odor inside your house.
When shopping for an air purifier, you’ll come across many products that include a True HEPA filter. However, most of these devices are not very effective at getting rid of smoke because they don’t also have an Activated Carbon filter to get rid of the particles that make up its odor.
Only an air purifier that can absorb the gaseous pollutants from smoke will work for your situation. Buying any other type of product will be a waste of money.
The Three Best Air Purifiers for Smokers
Now that you know what to look for in the best air purifier for smoke and its odor, you now have enough information to make a good buying decision for your home.
Below, you’ll find the three best products you can buy for smoke removal. Each smoking air purifier contains a True HEPA filter and Activated Carbon to ensure a smoke free home.
Disclosure: At Home Air Quality Guides, we believe in an education-first philosophy. We never make product recommendations until after we educate our readers on what to look for in the top-performing devices and then only suggest items that meet those specific criteria. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases made through the links below. If you buy a qualifying product, you’re not charged a penny more, but we’ll get a small commission that supports our work. We hope you enjoy this free guide and find the best product for your needs through these recommendations.
#1 Best Air Purifier for Smoke
This product tops the list because it was rated as the #1 air purifier for smokers by Cigar Aficionado Magazine.
Because it uses a combination of six-stages of air purification and deodorization that makes it a leader in the industry. By far, this product creates the freshest air for smokers at a fair price.
What also makes it the best smoke air purifier is the fact that it can be mounted on a wall or stand alone as a floor unit.
The design is also unsurpassed in its field. No other air purifier looks as stylish as this product and you can customize the front panel display with various designs and colors.
Finally, it’s perfect for any home because it can purify a space up to 700 sq. ft., which is ideal for most home applications.
#2 Air Purifier for Smoke
The second best air purifier for cigarette smoke and cigar odors is the Austin Air HealthMate HM 400.
What you’ll love most about this device is that contains nearly 15 pounds of Activated Carbon, which is unmatched in the marketplace.
It also draws air into the unit through all sides, making it a 360-degree air filtering unit. This makes it possible to place the device anywhere in the room and enjoy maximum air filtration no matter where it’s located.
What’s even better is that this air purifier can purify an area up to 1,500 sq. ft. That’s more than enough power to create clean, fresh air in practically any size single family home.
Finally, this smoke air purifier comes with a 5-year filter life, which means you won’t have to spend a ton of money each year to keep it running efficiently.
#3 Smoke Air Purifier
If you’re looking for an air purifier that can handle smoke in smaller spaces, this is the one to get.
The Levoit LV-PUR131 includes a powerful True HEPA filter for removing smoke particles and a thick Activated Carbon filter for reducing tobacco odors.
The touch panel buttons are sensitive and easy to use, and only require a light touch to switch between the various fans speeds and modes. Also, the air is drawn in from both sides of the unit for maximum efficiency.
More About HEPA Filters
The acronym HEPA stands for “High Efficiency Particulate Air” and you’ll find it attached to the word “filter” when searching for an air purifier.
There are various classes of HEPA filters on the market, but only certain ones can actually be labeled as a “True HEPA filter.”
The word “true” is crucial here.
To be classified as a True HEPA filter the filter has to be fully tested and certified in accordance with current HEPA filter standards. The minimum requirements for the filter is that it has to capture 99.97% (9,997 out of 10,000) of the 0.3 micron particles that pass through it. If the filter doesn’t meet this standard, then it wouldn’t be able to capture the finest particles that make up tobacco smoke.
At their core, True HEPA filters are ultra-fine, glass-fiber substrates that capture microscopic particles that otherwise easily pass through other types of filters. It does this through a combination of diffusion, interception, and impaction.
Impaction traps the largest smoke particles. This occurs during airflow when the particles come into direct contact with the fibers that make up the filter and end up embedded inside it.
Medium sized smoke and odor particles are collected through interception, which is when the fibers grab ahold of them while they’re passing through.
Diffusion is the process that traps the smallest particles of cigarette and cigar smoke. Diffusion is when the microscopic particles move and interact with the surrounding molecules already collected in the filter. As these pass through, their path is interrupted, which causes them to bounce around in an uncontrollable pattern. This finally results in the smoke particles getting trapped by impaction or interception.
As you can see, an invisible chain of reactions is going on inside a True HEPA filter for it to get rid of tobacco and cigar smoke inside a home. Ironically, the more time the air purifier’s smoke filter has to run, the more molecules the filter collects. This actually makes the filter more efficient at trapping the finest particles of smoke because of the process of diffusion.
Each of the air purifiers for smokers listed above has the highest grade of True HEPA filtration. No matter which one you choose, you’ll enjoy a home that’s free and clear of any signs of visible smoke because these particles can’t escape it.
More About Activated Carbon Filters
Activated Carbon Filters are a unique set of filters that are made up of a special type of carbon that has been processed to have ultra-fine pores.
These small pores increase the surface area of the medium and allow gaseous cigarette smoke to be collected through a process called adsorption. This is not to be confused with the term absorption, which refers to the collection of liquids.
Adsorption is the action of the adhesion of molecules from a gas state to a solid surface.
In a smoke designed air purifier, the odor molecules become trapped inside the pore structure of the activated carbon substrate. Once trapped, the scent of smoke dissipates because it’s not released back into the air.
Often, the word carbon is used interchangeably with the term charcoal, however, carbonous materials used in air purifier filters can also include wood, peat, nutshells, coconuts, and lignite, which also contain high amounts of carbon content.
The scientific process of converting carbon-based materials into activated carbon happens through physical modification and thermal decay inside a furnace. After this process is concluded, the material ends up being transformed into a system of submicroscopic pores with a large surface area that’s perfect for adsorption.
Ensuring that the air purifier you get has enough activated carbon to handle tobacco smoke inside your home is extremely important. Even more so if you light up cigars. There are many cheap products on the market that claim they can help with smoke, but the results are very poor and a huge waste of money.
As you just learned, the process of creating activated carbon is no simple task and this feature comes at a price. A smoker can’t afford to cheap out on this type of filter in an air purifier. A large amount of carbonous material is required to adequately remove tobacco odors.
This same rule applies for removing wildfire smoke and forest fire odors which also produce stubborn smoky odors. The best air purifiers for wildfire smoke and fires are also ones that contain a large amount of activated carbon.
Other Types of Air Purifiers for Smoke
Although our buying guide above focused on the two best types of air filters for removing smoke (True HEPA and Activated Carbon), you’ll also find other options out there that claim to help reduce smoke and its odor.
These other air purifier types do have some smoke removing capabilities but they’re not your top choice when it comes to filtering tobacco out of the air in your home.
Reducing smoke indoors with an air purifier takes a special blend of air purification, which we explained in-depth throughout this guide, so not buying a device with that recommended combination of filters can limit your smoke removal.
Below are the other types of air purifiers for smoke you’ll find for sale, how they work, and why they shouldn’t be relied on as your sole air purification method. This information is here to help you make the best buying choice possible for your health and comfort.
- Ionizer — There are many cheap air purifiers that are marketed to smokers that use ionization as their primary method to remove tobacco smoke. Ionizers are filterless devices that send out negatively charged ions into the air. Those ions then latch onto tobacco smoke particles, weigh them down, and pull them out of the air. The problem with ionizers is that these air purifiers only mask the issue and don’t actually get rid of the smoke particles or their odor. With an ionizer, the smoke particles still remain in the room by being stuck to the walls and sitting on the floor. This means that the particles can easily get stirred back up into the air when someone passes through or be released from the wall if the ionizer is ever turned off. Ionizers are cheap machines and have their place but not as a sole smoke air purifier device.
- Electrostatic Precipitator — These air purifiers operate similarly to ionizers but the difference is that these machines have electrically charged plates and don’t send ions out into the air. A fan draws air in through the device and the charged plates trap tobacco particles from cigarettes and cigar smoke. These plates are washable and reusable for the life of the machine. While this may sound great, the issues here are that these devices often miss a lot of particles that pass through the air purifier, have to be washed very frequently, and can redeposit tobacco particles back in the air while the machine is running. The low price of an electrostatic air purifier may be attractive but it’s only going to frustrate you in the long term if you’re serious about getting rid of smoke and its odor in your home. Plus their overall effectiveness is not as efficient as an air purifier with a True HEPA filter and Activated Carbon filter.
- Ozone Generator — Air purifiers that emit ozone can actually be very effective at cleaning the air of smoke; however, these machines change the chemical makeup of the air around you that can lead to harmful side effects, like coughing, chest pain, shortness of breath, throat irritation, decreased lung function, and more. Also, not much is known about the chemical by-products left behind by ozone generators, so it’s best to stay away from these air purifiers in general.
How to Install, Use and Maintain Your Smoke Air Purifier
Installing an air purifier is simple. Just take the machine out of the box, remove any plastic wrapping that may be covering the internal filters, and then place the air purifier in a central location in your room.
Next, plug the unit in and turn it on by pushing the power button.
Also, sure that there is at least 24 inches of space around all sides and the top of the air purifier. That way, the device won’t have any obstructions that can reduce the inflow and outflow of air.
If your air purifier has an automatic mode, select it, and let the machine do its work. It will detect the levels of smoke in the room and adjust itself to remove those particles at the fastest rate.
If the air purifier has a dial instead, turn it to the fan speed that matches the condition of the room (i.e. no smoking = low fan speed, heavy smoking = high fan speed).
To use any of the features on your smoke air purifier, check the manual for the specific directions. Many air purifiers include things like a sleep mode, timer, optional ionizer, filter change indicator, and more.
An air purifier will only be as good as the filters that are inside it.
Dirty filters mean worse performance. Clean filters mean fresher air.
All air purifiers that are made for smoke have an ideal schedule for replacing the filters. For example, the Levoit air purifier recommended above is every 6-8 months depending on use. The Rabbit Air MinusA2 filters can last up to two years.
Refer to your particular air purifier to determine the exact filter changing schedule. Or, just wait for the filter change indicator to come on to alert you when it’s time for a replacement (if applicable).
As for changing filters, it’s easy to do. Just remove the panel cover, and take out each filter one by one. Then replace them in the reverse order so they are layered in the proper manner.
For example, most air purifiers that are used for smoke have this type of stack order:
- Activated Carbon Filter
- True HEPA Filter
The other thing you’ll want to do for maintenance is clean the particle sensor. Again, your owner’s manual will have the specifics for this process but it often involves a cotton swab and some rubbing alcohol. You just open the sensor door and wipe off the sensor with the swab dipping in alcohol.
Other Benefits of Using an Air Purifier
In addition to getting rid of smoke, the air purifiers reviewed on this page can also help improve other aspects of your indoor air quality.
When running an air purifier indoors, you’ll eliminate other common pollutants, including:
- Mold Spores
- Pet Dander
- Volatile Organic Compounds
- Chemical Gases
As you can see, owning an air purifier as a smoker can lead to better air quality overall inside your home and work to protect your health.
Enjoy Your Air Purifier for Smoke
The three air purifiers listed above are the best in their league when it comes to getting rid of smoke. You won’t find any other device that’s capable of eliminating odors like these. Investing in either air purifier will work very well for your needs.
The biggest question you have to ask yourself is “How much room coverage do I really need?” That answer should narrow down which one you actually buy. The Rabbit Air MinusA2 is good for areas up to 700 square feet, the Austin Air HealthMate HM 400 can handle 1,500 square feet, and the Levoit LV-PUR131 can cover 322 sq. ft.
The choice is yours.