Change of air! After the great outdoors during the holidays, return home, to the office, to school, to the metro… with indoor air of sometimes uncertain quality.
Allowing to fight against pollution, but also animal hairs, pollens, bad odors, mites, many air purifiers announce being able to also eliminate bacteria and viruses… at 99.9%. This is obviously a considerable stake, while the back to school has just taken place and concerns are resuming about the spread of Covid-19 through schools. Hence the question: Can household air purifiers help us fight this particular virus?
On this slippery slope, manufacturers often prefer not to over-engage. The finer the filter of these devices, the more efficient they are. At Electrolux, it is argued that with a specific filter, 99.9% of airborne viruses are neutralized, preventing them from circulating in the house. “An independent laboratory would need to demonstrate the filtration rate of viruses from purifiers. This would allow us to compare the efficiency of the devices with respect to each other ”, however tempers Johann Roy, commercial director of the Air Solutions division of LG Electronics France.
In the meantime, the wait for this type of device is growing: 54% of French people would be more concerned about the quality of indoor air, according to Gifam (Interprofessional Group of Manufacturers of Appliances and Household Equipment). And for good reason, we spend 80% in closed places and the air we breathe there may be of poorer quality than the outside air, according to Ademe. “Sometimes very clearly, because to the outside air (sometimes polluted) which enters the homes, there are added specific indoor air pollutants,” adds the Ecological Transition Agency. To equip or not? 20 minutes tested five air purifiers for every budget and every room in the house. But don’t forget: ventilating your house by opening the windows is the best way to maintain healthier air in your home!
The basic rather for the bathroom
Surprise at Ikea, which launched its first air purifier in the spring. With Förnuftig (45 x 31 x 11 cm for 3.4 kg), the Swedish furniture giant targets people who want to purify the air in small rooms. Bedroom, bathroom, or even kitchen … the device will move around all the more easily since it is equipped with a large handle. It can also hang on the wall.
Effective from 8 m2 to 10 m2, Förnuftig offers 3 levels of filtration but does not have Auto mode. It will therefore be necessary to let it run continuously.
However, beware: as with most purifiers, the noise level of the machine increases significantly as the filtration speed is increased. If the first level remains almost inaudible, levels 2 and 3 emit a sound level that we have respectively verified at 51 db (A) and 56.5 db (A). This is more or less the noise level of a restaurant room.
Please note, Ikea does not provide an activated carbon filter with its purifier. Sold separately (9.99 euros), it is however he who will take care of evacuating bad smells, especially in a kitchen. In this fall, Ikea is also launching Vindriktning (9.99 euros), a simple air quality sensor with indicator light (green, orange, or red), which, by detecting PM 2.5 particles, offers a good indication of the level of air pollution ambient.
Förnuftig from Ikea. Covered area: 8 to 10 m2 *. Air flow: from 30 to 140 m3 / h. Filter: HEPA. 49 euros.
The compact for the kitchen or living room
Quite compact (22 x 22 x 36 cm, for 3.5 kg), the purifier Bright of the Duux brand is not unsightly in an interior. In black or white, he knows how to be discreet. Connected, compatible with personal assistants, it can be controlled either from its application or from its sensitive screen located on the top. There, nothing could be simpler: it is possible to choose its filtration power (from 1 to 3, without forgetting the Auto and Night modes), or to determine a timer (from 2 to 8 hours, in increments of 2 hours).
Equipped with a pre-filter, a HEPA H13 filter and an activated carbon filter, the device is recommended for a small room, such as a living room, an office or a bedroom. Be careful, at maximum power, the purifier is inconvenient due to its noise level (which we measured at 60 db (A)). Its Night mode remains quite silent. With 35 db (A) measured, Bright makes the equivalent of the noise of a small fan, which implies that it will be placed in a corner of the room rather than next to the bed. Note that the application allows, in addition to the device controls, to know the pollution level of the room and the state of the filter that will need to be replaced regularly (around 30 euros).
Bright, from Duux. Covered area: up to 27 m2. Air flow: 200 m3 / h. Filters: HEPA, activated carbon 199 euros.
The UV sterilizer for the office
Available in white or black, the air purifier Airpur 3 by Climadiff (27.2 x 30.3 x 49.8 cm for 4.6 kg) is suitable for medium-sized rooms (up to 50 m2). Connected and working in Wifi (2.4 Ghz), it is easy to use. Tactile keys placed on the top of the device allow you to choose its operating mode and speed.
Discreet in Auto mode and Night mode, the noise of the device seemed more worrying at high speed. Using a sound level meter, we measured its sound level at 65 db (A) when the Airpur 3 is launched at full power, the equivalent of the noise in the passenger compartment of a moving car. Of course, it will only be used occasionally, in a room with poor air quality.
By the way, the colored backlight of the ventilation grille on the top of the purifier is a good visual indicator: blue, the air quality is good; yellow, it is medium; red, it is bad. The device claims to remove 99.95% of fine particles including bacteria. Depending on the needs, a timer allows you to trigger the purifier for 2, 4 or 8 hours. And little more than all the others do not have: a UV lamp sterilization system (can be deactivated) is available. This destroys bacteria, viruses and other germs.
Airpur 3 from Climadiff. Covered area: up to 50 m2. Air flow: 400 m3 / h. Filters: pre-filter, HEPA 13, activated carbon, UV lamp. 299 euros.
The suit for the whole house
It imposes, the Pure A9, from Electrolux. Measuring 56.5 x 31.5 x 31.5 cm for 7.9 kg), this air purifier is nevertheless mobile with its large leather handle. Proudly sporting a Scandinavian-inspired design, however, the device requires finding a dedicated location and can be a bit embarrassing in a studio.
Rather dedicated to the home, it is controlled using its touch screen which allows you to measure the filtration power, but also using the Wellbeing application from Electrolux. It allows you to take control of the purifier remotely, which can be nice if you want to find a healthy interior when you come home from work. This application also lists the levels of particles present (PM2.5, PM1 and PM10) and that of TVOCs (ie total organic compounds, corresponding to gases and odors emitted in particular by cleaning products).
Among the quietest existing, it emits a maximum noise level of 46 db (A), much lower than many competitors. Too bad, however, that you have to buy an additional filter (the Care 360, sold for 99 euros) to capture 99.9% of airborne viruses and thus prevent them from spreading in the house.
Pure A9, from Electrolux. Covered area: up to 37 m2. Air flow: 400 m3 / h. Filters: pre-filter, antibacterial layer, EP12 filter + activated carbon, ionizer. 449 euros.
The 3-in-1 for telecommuting
Massive (76 x 22 x 22 cm for 4.4 kg), the Pure Hot + Cool by Dyson is a multidisciplinary apparatus. It purifies and removes up to 99.95% of fine particles (0.1 micron), ventilates, but also acts as an additional heater up to 37 ° C. A good point for teleworkers who will be able to lock themselves in a room without heating the rest of their accommodation throughout the day this winter.
Easy to use, this aesthetically pleasing equipment is controlled using a remote control. The Hot + Cool LCD screen delivers a lot of information that can also be found via the Dyson Link application, with the purifier connected. The application also acts as a real control center, and offers information on the air quality in the city where you are located, that of the room where the device is installed, etc.
We particularly appreciate the Auto mode of the Hot + Cool which, using the three integrated sensors, constantly checks the quality of the ambient air and adapts its filtration speed as a function. In addition, 10 speeds are available, allowing the device to truly adapt to their needs (and their ears). Note that for its use as a fan or auxiliary heater, it is possible to activate the oscillation of its part greater than 350 °. In function, it ensures better air circulation and better heat distribution in the room where the appliance is installed. The Pure Hot + Cool is compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Home.
Hot + Cool from Dyson. Covered area: up to 200 m2. Air flow: 115 m3 / h. Filters: pre-filter, HEPA, activated carbon. 649 euros.
* Manufacturer data.
** Tested for influenza A (H1N1) virus; (A / PR / 8/34) in accordance with ISO 18184: 2014 (E).