A reader writes:
Am very grateful for your web reviews of air purifiers.
Could use some help narrowing the choices down by getting your opinion regarding my multiple pet situation.
Due to doggies constant hair shedding, home requires vacuuming every day, or every other day!
No carpet, well-insulated, renovated older home in poor air quality city, mild allergy sufferer owners.
Rooms 225-300 sf range (Home 2,000 sf).
I actually enjoy "white noise" when I sleep, so "noisy" units not as much of a concern, but I have REAL concerns about filter replacement with tons of pet fur floating about.
Thanks for any info you care to share.
My son has a beautiful Siberian Husky, snow white with blue eyes, he is the ultimate "good boy," a very lovable canine pet.
But he sheds sooooo much doggy hair.
We dog-sit when our son goes on his frequent adventure trips.
Please notice that air purifiers are not intended to substitute for a vacuum cleaner.
They are designed to collect invisible small airborne particles so we don't breathe them.
Dog hair/fur is mainly larger tufts that will fall to the ground, staying aloft only briefly.
Air purifiers will not prevent pet hair from decorating furniture, clothing, car seats, and other surfaces.
Dog hair will quickly clog a vacuum cleaner, which makes it easier not to vacuum.
I have found that an inexpensive microfiber dust mop, the reversible kind with washable pads, is the best tool for dog hair.
You can quickly run it around the whole house, picking up a pile of hair, and escort it to the trash can.
This will reduce time between vacuuming, and ease the inevitable vacuum dirt bin clean-out (less hair wrapped inside).
Your no-carpet floors are perfect for the mop thing, carpet is the hardest for dog owners to keep clean.
Microfiber Flip Mop at Amazon.
The most important thing you want on your air purifiers is a permanent fiberglass prefilter screen.
These were once common, but they were quite effective in extending main filter life.
This hurt filter sales, so the pre-filter screens, which add to cost, began to disappear.
Only a few models available today retain the filter screen.
Prefilter screens like this are vacuumable and washable, collect pet hair well, and last almost indefinitely.
Winix air purifiers provide a good example, they offer both the older style with fiberglass "screen door" prefilter (right image), or a cheaper version with no screen and just replaceable filters (left image).
Winix is a Korean-built value brand, offering low-priced air cleaners that substantially outperform their direct competitors.
Unfortunately, Winix has chosen to market their pricey "Ultimate Cassette" so as to negate the value proposition - users must buy the whole tray, including the fiberglass prefilter, each time they need a filter.
A simple workaround, which I use on most air purifiers, is to cut a rectangle of ordinary household window screen,
available at big box home improvement stores, and place it in front of the other filters.
You can browse the $300
Winix U300 Signature at Amazon.com.
One air purifier that does have the screen prefilter is the Rabbit Air BIOGS 2.0 SPA-625A (SPA-550A is slightly lower powered).
Rabbit Air is an upscale importer which charges a premium for better customer service.
BIOGS 2.0 is stylish and quiet, but may be a bit underpowered for your larger rooms.
See my Rabbit-Air BIOGS 2.0 review:
You can find the
Rabbit Air BioGS 2.0 SPA-550A
Rabbit Air BioGS 2.0 SPA-625A at Amazon.
Another popular particle filter is the powerful Whirlpool AP51030K.
Whirlpool AP51030K has a coarse screen filter permanently built into the front cover.
See Whirlpool AP51030K on my Whirlpool page;
Amazon price is around $297;
Whirlpool Whispure AP51030K Air Purifier at Amazon.com.
With your larger rooms, noise tolerance, and macro-particle (dog hair) focus, the Whirlpool might be the best fit of the three.
Many pet owners attack hair shedding with increased grooming.
My son lures his doggie near the waste basket, pets and pulls hair off by the hand-full during molting peaks.
Amazon has dog grooming tools,
Master Grooming Tools Stainless Steel Pet Stripper has 26 very good reviews and lasts longer.
is wildly popular, with 6,500 buyer reviews averaging 4.6 stars.