Dust, pollen, pet dander, smoke, and odors all degrade the quality of air in your home. They can trigger allergy and asthma attacks and can be the culprit behind all sorts of respiratory problems. Air purifiers seek to address this problem by eliminating these contaminants using various technologies.

Among these technologies is ionization. Ionic air purifiers produce negative ions that trap unwanted airborne contaminants in your household. These negative ions attach to the aforementioned pollutants, weighing them down and causing them to fall on surfaces instead of staying airborne. Some ionic air purifiers also have internal electrostatic plates that help capture airborne pollutants.

In this article, we’ve listed down the best ionic air purifiers in the market. Are you excited to find the best model for your home? Read on!

  • Reduces pollutants, allergens, and odors via ionized collection blades
  • Oxygen Plus technology turns smog and ozone into pure oxygen
  • Germicidal chamber kills 99.9% of airborne germs
  • 500 sq. ft. coverage area
  • 24-hour automatic timer
  • 1-year warranty

  • Emits ions to fight pollutants like smoke, odors, bacteria, allergens, dust, and pet dander
  • Releases 20 million negative ions per second
  • 500 sq. ft. coverage area
  • Dual voltage + USB charging
  • Small and portable design
  • 1-year warranty

  • Generates ions to fight pollutants like smoke, odors, bacteria, allergens, dust, and pet dander
  • UV bulb gives germicidal action
  • Two modes (Whisper silent and Turbo)
  • 300 sq. ft. coverage area
  • 1-year warranty

  • Ionizer fights allergens, dust, germs, and odors
  • Generates ozone for heavy-duty odor elimination
  • 150 sq. ft. coverage area
  • Adjustable ozone output
  • 1-year warranty

  • Generates ion-forming electrons to remove 99.94% of particle pollutants as well as 97% of germs from the air
  • Collects particles using a positively-charged collector
  • Doubles as a decoration light
  • 540 sq. ft. coverage area
  • 10-year warranty

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1. Envion Ionic Pro Turbo

The Ionic Pro Turbo uses ionized collection blades to trap dust, dirt, smoke, and odor molecules. It’s designed for use in medium to large rooms up to 500 sq. ft. According to Envion, it captures 99.9% of airborne germs in less than an hour when used in “standard-sized” rooms.

It unfortunately doesn’t have HEPA filters, which means that it won’t be as stringent against micro-particulates. Aside from ionized blades, this air purifier also uses a germicidal chamber to neutralize bacteria, viruses, and mold spores. Moreover, its Oxygen Plus technology converts ozone and smog into oxygen.

Envion also boasts economical operation with this model, since it uses about the same energy as a night liAside from ionized blades, this air purifier also uses a germicidal chamberght. Because of its fan-less design, this machine should also be quieter than most conventional air purifiers. If you care deeply about long-term costs, you’d probably like this energy-efficient and filter-less (so there’s nothing to replace!) model. It’s not an ultra-sophisticated machine, but it still appears well-equipped to address the average household needs.

Pros

  • Handles germs, pollutants, odors, ozone and smog
  • Adjustable fan speed (three settings)
  • Clean air indicator
  • Silent
  • Easy and affordable to maintain (no filters to replace)
  • Has a 24-hour timer

Cons

  • Short warranty
  • Relatively expensive

The IonPacific Ionbox emits 20 million negative ions per second into your home’s atmosphere. This air purifier relies solely on ionization to get rid of smoke, odors, germs, and particle pollutants like dust and pollen. Unlike the Envion air purifier described above, this unit skips on extra features like fancy chambers and a timer.

The lack of bells and whistles may be disappointing for some, but the Ionbox has its own merits. Its simple profile means that it requires relatively less maintenance and smaller long-term costs. This small machine doesn’t have any filters to replace and/or clean and is also highly energy-efficient. IonPacific promises that users will be able to enjoy 10,000 hours of continuous use per unit.

While it boasts such a high ion output, IonPacific claims that this model doesn’t produce ozone at all. It can also accommodate USB charging on top of its already dual-voltage power supply, making it convenient for traveling. Overall, the Ionbox is a no-frills model that would likely satisfy you if a cheap and portable air purifier is what you’re looking to buy.

Pros

  • Handles germs, dust, odors, smoke, pet dander, and allergens
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Option for USB charging
  • No filters to replace or clean
  • Energy-efficient
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Short warranty
  • No other technologies aside from ionization

The Bell and Howell Ionic Whisper air purifier uses ionization to rid the air of dust, pollen, pet dander, fumes, odors, and smoke, among other pollutants. It also offers UV germicidal protection against airborne bacteria and viruses. Offering decent coverage for up to 300 sq. ft. of space, this machine features two air speeds: “Turbo,” for high-speed air flow, and “Whisper Silent” for quieter operation. Its affordable price tag is accompanied by low long-term costs, as it comes with no filters to replace. It is also incredibly energy efficient, costing only a few pennies a day to operate.

It seems focused on its role as a simple and straightforward air purifier, as it lacks extra features like a timer or a clean indicator. To be fair, you can’t really expect it to be fancy with such a low price tag. If you’re looking to save on costs without compromising your air purifier’s coverage area and you appreciate extra-silent models, then investing in this Bell and Howell model would be a smart choice.

Pros

  • Handles germs, dust, odors, smoke, pet dander, and allergens
  • UV germicidal protection
  • Quiet
  • No filters to replace or  clean
  • Affordable
  • Two speed options (“Turbo” and “Whisper” quiet)

Cons

  • Short warranty
  • No additional features

The Plixio Portable PLX50 is a direct plug-in air purifier that uses a combo of ionization and ozone generation to fight off household pollutants like dust, pollen, smoke, and germs.

The presence of an ozone generator means that it’s a more powerful weapon against odors. While we’re aware that ozone-producing models present a safety risk, the PLX50 fortunately allows the user to adjust the amount of ozone generated. And of course, running this air purifier inside an empty room would always do the trick.

As a compact and extremely-cheap model, it’s not surprising that it slacks off a bit in terms of coverage area. Since it only covers 150 sq. ft., it’s best for use in smaller spaces like laundry rooms, dorm rooms, and bathrooms. Also, while it doesn’t have any filters to replace, you’d still have to clean the unit (through vacuuming) monthly. Regardless, if you’re looking for a cost-effective solution to odor and pollution problems in small spaces, then the Plixio Portable might just be the model for you.

Pros

  • Handles germs, dust, odors, VOCs, pet dander, and allergens
  • Adjustable ozone output
  • No filters to replace
  • Quiet
  • Affordable
  • Sleek and compact design

Cons

  • Generates ozone
  • Short warranty
  • Small coverage area

The Lightair Evolution IonFlow air purifier supposedly releases “billions” of electrons that get converted into negative ions to perform the air purification process. Designed for both tabletop and floor use, it claims to purify an area of up to 540 sq. ft., making it the widest-coverage air purifier on this list.

According to Lightair, this model can remove 99.94% of particles and 97% of viruses from the air. It’s also completely silent as it doesn’t drive air masses around the room. Instead, its internal collector plates attract and trap pollutants from the outside. It’s also ozone-free, which makes it a hit for extra safety-conscious individuals.

Its sleek design makes it ideal for use as a lighting piece. The fact that it can double as an air purifier and an attractive piece of decor somehow softens the blow brought by its rather-steep price tag. Nevertheless, this air purifier remains an attractive option even with the hefty upfront cost involved. It promises robust purification, safety, and low long-term costs. Its 10-year warranty and wide coverage area further enhance its viability.

Pros

  • Handles germs, pollutants, odors, pet dander, and allergens
  • No filters to replace
  • Totally silent
  • Energy-efficient
  • Ozone free
  • Wide coverage area
  • Long warranty

Cons

  • Expensive
  • No other technologies aside from ionization

Ionic Air Purifier Buyer’s Guide


How Ionic Air Purifiers Work

Ionic air purifiers use the power of negatively-charged ions to rid the air of pollutants. These negative ions, which are dispersed into the air by the machine, attach to dust, allergens, smoke molecules, and other contaminants that are positively-charged. This fusion of particles weighs down pollutants and causes them to settle on surfaces. As such, regularly vacuuming your floors, shelves, and tables is a must.

Some air purifiers also use ionized blades or plates to collect contaminants. Basically, instead of falling down onto surfaces, pollutants will instead get trapped onto the said plates or blades. This consequently minimizes the need for frequent vacuuming.

Advantages of Ionic Air Purifiers

Since purely-ionic air purifiers usually have permanent filters, people who are looking to save on long-term costs will benefit the most from the models mentioned here. Unlike HEPA or carbon filters that need to be replaced regularly, ionic air purifiers are cost-effective and only need some cleaning at most. In addition, ionic air purifiers are also lauded for the following characteristics:

  1. They’re cheaper to maintain in the long run because ionizers don’t need constant replacement filters.
  2. They enhance the effectiveness of whatever other technology is present in an air purifier.
  3. They’re cheaper upfront compared to air purifiers that rely chiefly on premium filters like HEPA and iFD.

Disadvantages of Ionic Air Purifiers

While these machines do have their perks, there are also some aspects that aren’t so great. These include:

  1. Since ionizing plates are permanent, they need to be cleaned regularly.
  2. Ionizers have long been associated with ozone generation. However, take note that many modern ionic air purifiers don’t produce ozone. The Envion Ionic Pro Turbo model mentioned in the article even actively converts ozone into oxygen.
  3. They aren’t as effective as HEPA and carbon filters in terms of eliminating small particles and strong odors.

Maintenance

In general, ionic air purifiers need to be cleaned regularly. This is because ionizers and ionic plates can become sites for the accumulation of dust. This only holds true, though, for models that rely strictly on ionization. For models that combine the said technology with filters like HEPA and carbon, regular filter replacement is still required. Ionizing plates, wires, and blades also have to be cleaned, however there’s no standard procedure for accomplishing this task. You should consult with your air purifier’s user manual for specific instructions.

FAQ

Do these air purifiers have odor-controlling abilities?

Negative ions are capable of attaching to and neutralizing odor molecules. Ionized plates can also attract the odor molecules. The results you’ll get, however, won’t be as impressive as what you’ll enjoy with a carbon filter or an ozone generator.

What is ozone and why do ionizers produce it?

Ozone is a highly-unstable molecule that effectively combats odor problems. Ozone reacts easily with odor molecules and causes them to disintegrate, which effectively eliminates unpleasant odors at the source.

Because ionizers commonly use electricity to produce negatively-charged ions, they’re also prone to producing ozone. The charge that they give off when generating ions can disrupt normal oxygen molecules in the atmosphere and cause them to transform into ozone molecules.

Why is ozone harmful?

The high reactivity of ozone makes it ideal as an air purifier. This very same property, though, also makes ozone potentially hazardous to humans and animals. These unstable and reactive molecules can cause respiratory tract irritations and ozone damage to your internal organs. With that said, it’s important to use ozone-generating air purifiers correctly — that is, avoid using them in occupied rooms.

Is an ionizer sufficient to address common air quality concerns?

An ionizer can fight off almost all of the most common household air pollutants, such as dust, odors, smoke, allergens, and even germs. You can’t, expect it to be as effective as, say, HEPA filters against particle pollutants, or as powerful as a dedicated ozone generator when it comes to neutralizing foul odors. As such, having an ionizer at home acts as an all-around solution provided that you aren’t facing severe pollution problems.