Best Budget Air Purifiers under $100

Not everyone can afford to spend hundreds of dollars for a top-of-the-line, feature-laden air purifier. There are a lot of benefits you can get from having one at home—like less susceptibility to allergy and asthma triggers, odor control, and overall comfort—but some of us would understandably prefer to stick to pocket-friendly models, especially if multiple units are needed around the home. This is why we’ve compiled this list of the best air purifiers on a budget—all of which are under $100.

If you don’t mind sacrificing bells and whistles and would still want an air purification device that gets the job done, read on!

Top 5 Budget Air Purifiers under $100

Product Features Price

Top Pick

1. GermGuardian AC4825

  • Pre-filter + True HEPA + Activated carbon filter + Titanium dioxide UV-C
  • Gets rid of particle pollutants, odors, smoke, VOCs, and airborne germs
  • Covers 167 sq. ft. of space
  • CADR: Dust 118, Pollen 125, Smoke 108
  • Adjustable speed
  • 3-year warranty
Check price on amazon

2. AeraMax 100

  • True HEPA + AeraSafe treatment + Carbon filter + PlasmaTRUE technology
  • Removes airborne particles, germs, VOCs, smoke, and odors
  • Covers 200 sq. ft.
  • CADR: Dust 65, Pollen 75, Smoke 68
  • Features its AeraSmart sensor and Aera+ mode
  • 3-year warranty
Check price on amazon

3. Envion Therapure TPP240

  • Permanent HEPA + UV + Photocatalyst filter + Ionizer
  • Removes airborne particles, germs, VOCs, smoke, and odors
  • Covers 350 sq. ft.
  • CADR: Dust 132, Pollen 155, Smoke 137
  • Adjustable speed and 24-hour timer
  • 1-year warranty
Check price on amazon

4. Levoit LV-H132

  • Pre-filter + True HEPA + Activated carbon
  • Removes airborne particles, VOCs, smoke, and odors
  • 129 sq. ft. coverage area
  • Adjustable speed
  • Doubles as a night light with two brightness settings
  • 2-year warranty
Check price on amazon

5. GermGuardian AC5000

  • Pre-filter + True HEPA + Activated carbon filter + Titanium dioxide UV-C
  • Removes particle pollutants, odors, smoke, VOCs, and airborne germs in the air
  • Covers 180 sq. ft. of space
  • CADR: Dust 123, Pollen 128, Smoke 116
  • Adjustable speed
  • 5-year warranty
Check price on amazon

Budget Air Purifier Reviews

1. GermGuardian AC4825

The AC4825 from GermGuardian is a 3-in-1 air purifier that uses a True HEPA filter to remove particle pollutants like dust and pollen, an activated carbon filter to neutralize smoke and odors, and a titanium dioxide UV-C lamp to kill airborne germs. These technologies make this air purifier a well-rounded model in terms of performance. It’s also suited for small to medium rooms that are up to 167 sq. ft. in area.

While it comes with a filter replacement indicator and three speed options, it unfortunately doesn’t have a programmable timer nor an auto mode. However, its filters last pretty long at about 6 to 8 months, which means that it doesn’t require frequent maintenance.

Pros

  • Removes particle pollutants, smoke, odors, and airborne germs
  • Has UV-C technology
  • Comes with a filter replacement indicator
  • Three speed levels
  • Easy to maintain

Cons

  • No auto mode
  • No programmable timer

2. AeraMax 100

The AeraMax 100 is another True HEPA air purifier that manages to offer slightly more sophisticated features, but at the cost of its CADR ratings. It uses a four-stage process to clean indoor air. The True HEPA and carbon filters remove particle pollutants and odors, respectively, while the AeraSafe antimicrobial treatment takes care of airborne bacteria and viruses. Lastly, PlasmaTRUE technology uses ions to help combat odors, VOCs, smoke, and small particles.

It has an AeraSmart sensor that detects the level of pollution inside your home and works with the auto mode to automatically adjust fan speed. To add, it has a special Aera+ mode that increases air intake to help combat more pollutants during the allergy and flu season. On the flip side, though, it doesn’t have a timer and its CADR ratings are not the best if you’re suffering from respiratory problems. However, if you’re keen to enjoy this model’s other benefits in spite of being an allergy or asthma sufferer, you can manage by using this air purifier in smaller rooms (about 100 sq. ft.).

Pros

  • Removes particle pollutants, smoke, odors, and airborne germs
  • Has an AeraSafe antimicrobial treatment
  • Special Aera+ and Auto modes
  • Comes with a filter replacement indicator
  • Three speed levels
  • AeraSmart sensor

Cons

  • Short carbon filter lifespan
  • No timer
  • Unimpressive CADR ratings

3. Envion Therapure TPP240

The Envion Therapure TPP240 features a permanent HEPA type filter, a UV lamp, a photocatalytic filter, and an optional ionizer to remove airborne pollutants like dust, pollen, germs, smoke, VOCs, and odors. Since it doesn’t have any filters that need replacing, it’s the cheapest air purifier to maintain on this list. However, you’d have to spend some time to clean the filters once its clean filter indicator goes off.

Unlike the two aforementioned models above, this air purifier comes with a programmable timer that you can set for up to 24 hours. It also features special controls for turning on and turning off the ionizer and/or the UV function. It doesn’t have an auto mode, but it lets you manually adjust the fan speed with three levels to choose from.

Pros

  • Removes particle pollutants, smoke, odors, and airborne germs
  • Has UV-C technology, an optional ionizer, and a photocatalyst filter
  • Clean filter indicator
  • Good coverage
  • 24-hour timer included
  • Affordable to maintain

Cons

  • Not True HEPA
  • Short warranty
  • No auto mode

4. Levoit LV-H132

The Levoit LV-H132 keeps things simple with a True HEPA filter, which removes dust, pollen, and other particles in the air, and a carbon filter that absorbs odors, smoke, and VOCs. While it doesn’t miss out on having a filter replacement indicator, the absence of a UV lamp or an ionizer renders it ineffective against viruses and small bacteria.

The LV-H132 has three speed levels for manual speed control, but no auto mode. If there’s one thing that makes it special, it’s that it doubles as a night light and even features two brightness levels.

Pros

  • Removes particle pollutants, smoke, odors, and VOCs
  • Comes with a filter replacement indicator
  • Three speed levels
  • Doubles as a nightlight
  • Affordable to maintain

Cons

  • No auto mode
  • No programmable timer
  • Limited coverage

5. GermGuardian AC5000

The AC5000 from GermGuardian is a 3-in-1 air purifier with a True HEPA filter for trapping pollutants like dust and pollen, an activated carbon filter for removing smoke, VOCs, and odors from the air, and a titanium dioxide-assisted UV-C lamp for neutralizing airborne bacteria and viruses. Like the AC4825, this air purifier is well-rounded as far as purifying technologies are concerned. It’s designed to run inside small to medium rooms that are up to 180 sq. ft.

The AC5000 has a filter replacement indicator to notify you when the filters are in need of changing. You’re also allowed to choose among three speed options depending on your needs, but unfortunately this air purifier doesn’t have an auto mode. Lastly, this model’s filters last quite shorter than the GermGuardian AC4825’s, at around 6 months. Therefore, you’ll have to be willing to do at least two filter replacements annually if you purchase this air purifier.

Pros

  • Removes particle pollutants, smoke, odors, and airborne germs
  • Has UV-C technology
  • Comes with a filter replacement indicator
  • Three speed levels
  • Easy to maintain
  • Lengthy warranty

Cons

  • No auto mode
  • No programmable timer

Buyer’s Guide:

Air Purifiers under $100

Pros and Cons of Budget Air Purifiers

Budget air purifiers have pros and cons of their own. Looking at the bright side, they are generally:

  • Affordable to acquire

    All the models listed here cost less than $100 to upfront.

  • Cheaper to maintain

    Most air purifiers are already energy-efficient on their own. Affordable models take it a notch higher as they are mostly designed for small to medium spaces and don’t have many extra features that need additional power.

  • Portable

    Budget air purifiers have a smaller footprint compared to their more sophisticated and pricey counterparts. As such, they’re easier to bring with you from one room to another.

  • Straightforward to use

    As you may have observed from the models included here, affordable air purifiers are less complicated to operate than high-end models. You simply don’t have many modes and features to fuss with, which can be a good thing if you live with elderly people who are not as technologically-inclined.

On the other hand, budget air purifiers are associated with the following disadvantages:

  • Limited coverage

    To keep costs down, manufacturers would usually opt to go for a design that would work best only for smaller rooms. Of course, some air purifiers, like the Envion Therapure, are an exception—but usually in exchange for something else.

  • Less convenient

    Less complicated doesn’t always mean more convenient. In the age of smart homes and wireless control, not having programmable timers, automated sensors, and remote controls can be a disadvantage.

  • Limited options

    The air purifier market, like many others, has a lot of mid-range options whereas affordable models are more limited in terms of variety.

The Importance of HEPA Filters

True HEPA filters are considered as the gold standard in air purification because they can remove 99.97% of pollutants that are up to 0.3 microns small in diameter. This includes dust and microscopic particles like pollen, smoke, and pet dander. Many budget air purifiers stick to ionizers to keep prices down as a purely-ionizing unit is generally cheaper than a True HEPA model. However, we’ve made it a point to include mostly True HEPA air purifiers in this list because they’re unparalleled in terms of effectiveness—something that allergy and asthma sufferers would definitely benefit from.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if I use a small-room purifier in a larger space?

Using an air purifier in a space that’s larger than the recommended size will reduce its effectiveness and vice versa. Nonetheless, it will still purify the air and give you a cleaner atmosphere, but at a slower rate (in terms of reducing the concentration of pollutants) than a model that’s properly-sized.

Should I buy multiple budget air purifiers or invest in a whole-house model?

It depends on several points of consideration. First, think about the number of budget air purifiers you would need for your home.

  • After factoring in expenses for unit acquisition, filter replacements, and power consumption, will a whole-house air purifier end up more cost-effective?
  • If you don’t want to buy a separate air purifier for each room, will you be willing to regularly carry an air purifier with you as you move from one room to another?

On the other hand, purchasing multiple air purifiers for each room in your home lets you enjoy a bit of flexibility and customizability. For instance, you can buy an especially-quiet air purifier for the bedroom, a small plug-in model for the laundry room, and an air purifier with a nightlight for the kids’ bedroom.

I suffer from allergies; can I still use a budget air purifier?

Of course. Generally speaking, the best budget air purifiers sacrifice extra features that are designed for convenience for the sake of preserving performance. If you have respiratory problems, your best course of action is to look at the CADR ratings above all else, stick to a True HEPA model, and purchase an air purifier that’s properly sized for the room you’re planning to use it in.

Final Thoughts

These air purifiers are proof that you don’t have to burn a hole through your pocket to enjoy cleaner air at home. While you generally don’t get the convenience of having nice features like a remote control or Wi-Fi and in-app connectivity, these models are all well-equipped to do what they’re supposed to do—purify the air. Also, the pros and cons of the different models listed here prove that compromises are possible to get the best possible result.

With the Aeramax 100, for instance, you get to enjoy having an auto mode (a rare feature among budget air purifiers), but at the cost of competitive CADR ratings. Meanwhile, the Envion Therapure offers an automatic timer (yet another rare feature on the budget market), but sacrifices having a True HEPA filter.

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