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The best independently tested and certified air purifiers in 2023

August 2, 2023

The right air purifier can help clear your air of contaminants like smoke, dust and pollen.

If you live in wildfire territory or a smoggy city, you may feel that the air inside your home is cleaner than the air outside. The truth might surprise you. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the air inside your home can often be more polluted than the air outside. Air purifiers, which filter particles from the air, can help reduce indoor air contaminants that arise from everyday life.

To help guide your search for an air purifier that best suits your space constraints and budget, we consulted health and filtration experts to learn more about air purifiers and what you need to know before buying one.

How we picked the best air purifier
To pick the best air purifiers, we relied on a mix of expert guidance and staff recommendations. To select our top picks, we prioritized the following:

Filtration: Our experts say that filtration is key when choosing any air purifier. Aligning with their guidance, all of our recommendations advertise high-efficiency particulate air filtration (HEPA) and have a clean air delivery rate (CADR) equivalent to at least two-thirds the recommended room size. For example, an air purifier for a 600 square foot room should have a CADR of at least 400.
Independent testing: We only picked air purifiers independently tested by the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM). AHAM certifies the performance of air purifiers.
Adjustability: We only picked air purifiers with at least three levels of adjustable speed.

Blue Pure 311i+ Max
The Blue Pure Max line is the newest series of air purifiers from Blueair. I received the Blue Pure 311i+ Max from the brand and have been using it in my 500 square foot NYC apartment for over a month. The 311i+ is lighter, quieter and easier to use than other air purifiers I’ve owned. I like that it pulls in unfiltered air from all directions into its base, meaning you can place it anywhere in your apartment. During the spring allergy season, I usually wake up with a stuffy nose and find myself sneezing in my space. This year, with this air purifier, I rarely had either symptom.

I also appreciate the 311i+ Max’s pre-filter: a large fabric mesh cover that wraps around the body of the machine. It’s aesthetically pleasing and easy to take off to hand-wash. When I took it off, I noticed it had caught a lot of larger particles of lint and hair.

You can turn the machine on manually, or use the Blueair app, where you can access more detailed stats around air monitoring and filter status. I also used the app to set a schedule for the filter — mine now changes to night mode every evening.

Instant AP 100
Select associate updates editor Zoe Malin has owned this air purifier for years. “I love that it’s totally hands off because it senses the air quality in your room and adjusts settings accordingly,” she says. This feature, called auto mode, usually comes with a price tag around $150, but not with the relatively affordable Instant AP.

Malin also likes that this purifier has a light sensor. When she turns off the lights in her apartment, the air purifier dims its display lights and reduces speed to its quietest setting automatically.

Following AHAM guidance, this air purifier is best suited to small rooms no larger than 126 square feet. Think bedrooms and offices.

Blueair Protect 7770i
The Protect 7770i is a top-rated pick from our guide to the best quiet air purifiers. On Amazon, it has a 4.5-star average rating from over 400 reviews. It’s AHAM verified, and, following AHAM guidance, it is well-suited to rooms up to 674 square feet, the largest of all our recommendations.

Aside from tackling large spaces, the Protect 7770i stands out with its unique screen and voice controls. The screen shows you the air quality in your space, a feature typically reserved for companion apps. Like our editor’s pick, the Blueair 311i+ Max, you can connect this air purifier to the Blueair app to set a schedule and view filter status. After setting it up via the app, you can control this air purifier using Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant.

The Protect 7770i is very heavy at 43 pounds. It has wheels built-in if you need to move it around your space.

Honeywell HPA300
This top-rated air purifier cleans a larger space than most other options around the same $270 price. Unlike most of our top picks, it does not have an auto mode, a companion app or a night mode. But according to AHAM lab results, it has a very high CADR rate (especially, we think, for its price).

The features it does have are basic but important. It has four speed modes: low, medium, high and turbo. It has a filter indicator which shows you when you need to replace the filter. The dimmer button turns off the panel lights, a useful feature if you want to use this product in a bedroom. It also has a timer button which turns off the purifier after two, four or eight hours.

Bissell Air320 Max
Unlike other options on this list, this air purifier from Bissell looks more like a modern piece of furniture than an air purifier. It stands elevated off the ground with four wooden legs, making it easier for you or a robot vacuum to clean under. In the same vein, when moving or storing the purifier, the power cord wraps around a slot in the back of the machine.

Instead of touch buttons, the Air320 has a single dial that controls speeds, power and filter status. Like our editor’s pick, the Blue Pure 311i+ Max, the Air 320 has a pre-filter fabric cover that captures larger particles of dust and hair, according to the brand,

When connected with the Bissell connect app, you can monitor air quality and control the air purifier remotely. On Amazon, the Bissell Air320 Max is top-rated, with a 4.6 star average rating from over 3,000 reviews.