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7 best air purifiers for bird dander

By
Updated on March 21, 2024
Written by
Teddy Booth
Teddy joined HouseFresh in 2019 as a senior content producer, producing written content as well as product photography and YouTube videos. He supports Danny as a product tester and is our lead how-to writer.
Best Air Purifiers for Bird Dander

Anyone with a pet bird will tell you that they are notoriously messy. With food, feathers, and even feces scattered across the cage and surrounding room, keeping your home tidy can often feel like a never-ending challenge, but it is most definitely worth it.

Due to the minute size of bird dander, it is easily breathed into the lungs, which can cause serious health issues over time. Fortunately, the upside to dander’s tiny particle size is that it remains airborne for a long time, so an air purifier can easily capture it, leaving the air in your home clean and safe to breathe.

Bird dander is composed of feathers and feather dust particles from birds. With natural movements like flapping its wings, a bird spreads its dander throughout a room. Sadly, bird dander, like other pet dander, can cause allergic reactions in pet owners or other pets. 

Some birds, like parrots, emit ultrafine, powder-like dander that is nearly impossible to remediate without an air purifier. While bird dander is a healthy function in birds, it can be bothersome to allergy and asthma sufferers. Like other pet dander can exacerbate breathability, so can bird dander.

When looking for the right air purifier to help with bird dander, it’s crucial to make sure it utilizes HEPA filters, which are capable of capturing particles as small as 0.3 microns, and an activated carbon filter to help eradicate any unpleasant smells. 

However, it’s best to avoid any ionizing purifiers as they can emit ozone, which is dangerous for a bird to inhale. They have small lungs and no noses, so air purifiers with ionizers could be fatal to your feathery pets.

Don’t forget to bathe your bird often, and ensure its cage is cleaned and the cage liners are changed often. Regular cleaning will reduce bird dander not only in the room your birds live but also where it has spread. Regularly vacuuming carpets, curtains, and soft furnishings, and wiping down hard surfaces will all make a difference. 

We highly recommend investing in a vacuum cleaner that’s fitted with a HEPA filter to make sure the dander you’re removing isn’t recirculated back into the air. 

The top 3 air purifiers for bird dander

👑 BEST OVERALL💰 FOR TIGHT BUDGETS🛋️ FOR LARGE SPACES
Levoit Core 400SLevoit Core 300Alen BreatheSmart 45i
AIR CLEANING SPEED ⚡33 minutes40 minutes33 minutes
CADR 👩‍🔬260 CFM145 CFM 245 CFM
FILTER TECHNOLOGY 💨Pre-filter, H13 HEPA and Activated Carbon PelletsPre-filter, H13 HEPA and Activated Carbon PelletsPre-filter, H13 True HEPA and Activated Carbon Pellets (B4-Fresh option)
MAX ROOM SIZE 📏up to 403 sq. ft.up to 219 sq. ft.up to 800 sq. ft.
WEIGHT ⚖️14.1 lbs (6.4 kg)7.48 lbs (3.4 kg)20.1 lbs (9.1 kg)
OUR REVIEW 🔍Levoit Core 400S reviewLevoit Core 300 reviewAlen 45i review
PRICE 💵$189.99$99.99$428.99

Last update on 2024-04-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

  1. In our home lab of 728 cubic feet, we light an incense stick to generate particle pollution and VOCs.
  2. We set up our trusted Purpleair Indoor Sensor with the latest Bosch gas sensor to track levels of PM1ug/m3, PM2.5ug/m3 and PM10ug/m3 and VOCs in the air.
    purpleair
  3. We switch the air purifier to its highest speed and measure how long it takes to get our room air quality down to PM1 level to 0.
  4. We use an energy meter to measure precisely how much electricity is used when running the unit at the lowest and highest fan speed settings.
  5. We track sound levels emitted by the air purifier at different fan speeds with the help of a commercial sound meter.
    sound meter

To help you decide, we’ve picked our favorite 7 purifiers across different price ranges. Whether you’re looking for a budget option best suited to a small room like the Levoit Core 300, or a powerful purifier for a large space like IQAir Healthpro Plus, there is something for everyone in our choices.

1. IQAir Healthpro Plus

Smaller air purifiers are great when you have one or two birds in your home, but what about when you have more? Look no further than the IQAir Healthpro Plus. This unit will take care of all your needs when you have multiple birds shedding a lot of dander.

It may look big, but no room is wasted on the inside of this unit as it’s packed with a Pre-max filter, HyperHEPA filter, and packed to the nines with activated carbon in its V5-Cell filter. These have the ability to capture everything multiple birds can throw at them and can last up to 4 years, so there is no need to worry about changing them often.

This Swiss-made air purifier is rigorously tested in their purpose-built labs to guarantee you’re getting a top-quality product every time. The menu screen gives you up-to-date information on the air quality of your room, so you can adjust the settings accordingly. Be aware that this one of the best large space air purifiers so it might not be a great fit for very small spaces as it’s heavy and takes up quite a bit of floor space.

What we really like

Contains 5lbs of activated charcoal
HyperHEPA is one of the best filter technologies on the market
Comes with a 10-year warranty
Has wheels to move the unit if needed

What we think could be better

It is a very large unit
Replacement filters are expensive

SPECS & FEATURES

HouseFresh rating:★★★★☆
Time to clean our Tesla Model 3:37 minutes  
Time to clean our test room:1 hour and 55 minutes
Air purifier technology:HyperHEPA Plus Filter
Recommended room size:150 sq. ft. for car mode
Clean air delivery rate (CADR):Speed 1: 7 CFM (12 m3/h)Speed 2: 12 CFM (20 m3/h)Speed 3: 39 CFM (66 m3/h)
Dimensions (in inches / in cm):17.7H x 9W x 17.7D inches (29H cm x 29W x 10D cm)
Weight (in pounds / in kg):5.2 lbs (2.4 kg)
Noise level (low – high):35dB – 55dB
Filter life:1 year
Manufacturer’s warranty:2 years
Estimated energy consumption:$3.15 per year
Country of manufacture:Switzerland and Germany

2. Levoit Core 600S

Levoit are at the top of the game when it comes to high-quality air purifiers at realistic prices. The 600S proved itself as one of our top-performing units in our HouseFresh tests. Not only that but we love how much technology they crammed into this unit whilst keeping it lightweight and on a budget. With its high-spec filters and ability to clear rooms fast, the 600S makes for a perfect candidate to tackle bird dander.

The 600S houses a three-stage filtration system which includes a pre-filter, H13 True HEPA with HEPASmart technology™, and a high-efficiency ARC Formula™ activated carbon filter which adsorbs any odors your birds give off.

It’s really easy to control with features like a timer, sleep mode, and a display lock. On the back of the unit is a smart sensor that gives you air quality readings in real time. If you switch the unit to auto, then it will automatically change its fan speed to reflect the quality of the air. Ideal if your birds often get into a flutter.

What we really like

You connect and control the 600S to a smartphone app
The air quality is displayed using a color-coded LED ring
Weights only 13.7 lbs
Uses minimal energy in sleep mode

What we think could be better

The air quality sensor is on the back, so can’t be placed too close to a wall

SPECS & FEATURES

HouseFresh Rating:★★★★★
Time to clean our test room:15 minutes
Air purifier technology:3-Stage Filtration (Pre-filter for large particles, main filter for airborne particles, high-efficiency activated carbon filter for odors and gasses)
Recommended room size:635 sq. ft. 
Clean air delivery rate (CADR):410 CFM (697 m³/h)
Dimensions (in inches / in cm):12.3 x 12.3 x 23.6 inches (31.3 x 31.3 x 60 cm)
Weight (in pounds / in kg):13.7 lbs (6.2 kg)
Noise level (measured from 3 ft. away):Speed 1: 40.9 dB
Speed 2: 45.9 dB
Speed 3: 61.4 dB
Filter life:6 months
Electricity consumption (kilowatt-hour):Standby mode: 1.53 kWh
Speed 1: 7.92 kWh
Speed 2: 11.35 kWh
Speed 3: 21.15 kWh
Speed 4: 49.27 kWh
Estimated running costs (electricity consumption + filter replacements):$107.29 per year
Manufacturer’s warranty:2 years
Country of manufacture:China

3. Honeywell HPA300

There’s a good reason why you’ll probably see this unit in medical waiting rooms across the country. The Honeywell HPA300 is great if you’re looking for a simple turn-on-and-go type of unit with its high-performance fan, True HEPA filters, and activated carbon mesh. There are no complicated functions to get your head around, just sit back and let it clear your room of bird dander.

Instead of the usual one-piece HEPA filter, Honeywell has gone with three smaller filters which can be replaced individually if needed. True HEPA filters have the ability to capture up to 99.97% of microparticles which include dust, smoke, and bird dander.

This air purifier performed amazingly well in our performance testing, especially for a unit in its price bracket. The only real issue we faced was the amount of energy it uses. If you’re using this air purifier on full speed all day, the costs can rack up, but the good thing is, with its high performance, you will rarely need to have it on max for more than an hour at a time.

What we really like

Straightforward, easy-to-use controls
Doesn’t take up much floor space 
There’s no set-up needed, ready to use out of the box
Replacement filters are easy to come by

What we think could be better

I would like to see an air quality indicator

SPECS & FEATURES

HouseFresh Rating:★★★☆☆
Time to clean our test room:26 minutes
Air purifier technology:Activated Carbon pre-filter and True HEPA filter
Recommended room size:465 sq. ft.
Clean air delivery rate (CADR):300 CFM (509 m³/h)
Dimensions (in inches / in cm):20.8L x 10.83W x 22.38H inches (52.8L x 27.5W x 56.8H cm)
Weight (in pounds / in kg):17 lbs (7.7 kg)
Noise level (measured from 3 ft. away):Speed 1: 43.6 dB
Speed 2: 48.8 dB 
Speed 3: 53.9 dB
Speed 4: 59.5 dB
Filter life:HEPA every 12 months, Pre-filters every 3 months
Electricity consumption (kilowatt-hour):Standby mode: 0 kWh
Speed 1: 28.35 kWh
Speed 2: 42.92 kWh
Speed 3: 55.8 kWh
Speed 4: 76.2 kWh
Estimated running costs (electricity consumption + filter replacements):$151.22 per year
Manufacturer’s warranty:5 years
Country of manufacture:China

4. Smart Air S

If you pride yourself on your home being modern and fashionable, then you probably don’t want a big air purifier ruining the aesthetic. Well, we got you covered with the beautifully designed Smart Air S that would complement any room. It may be small, but this unit contains a high-powered fan and H11 HEPA filter.

Smart Air have made it their mission to deliver powerful, easy-to-use air purifiers at affordable prices, and the Smart Air S demonstrates this. If your bird(s) live in a small to medium room, this unit will make light work of their dander, removing it from the air whilst looking cool and sophisticated.

The downside is that it doesn’t come with an activated carbon filter as standard, so we would highly recommend spending the extra $$$ as it will capture all of those odors which birds produce. 

What we really like

The price is competitive for a unit with this CADR
It doesn’t have an ionizer
t’s very energy efficient
Well designed

What we think could be better

There’s no auto function
We’d like to see a digital display

SPECS & FEATURES

HouseFresh Rating:★★★☆☆
Time to clean our test room:50 minutes
Air purifier technology:H12 HEPA and optional activated charcoal filter
Recommended room size:430 sq. ft. 
Clean air delivery rate (CADR):185 CFM (315 m³/h)
Dimensions (in inches / in cm):13H x 13W x 14.3D inches (33.02H x 33.02W x 36.32D cm)
Weight (in pounds / in kg):10.1 lbs (4.58 kg)
Noise level (measured from 3 ft. away):Speed 1: 35.5 dB
Speed 2: 49.1 dB
Speed 3: 58.2 dB
Filter life:6 months
Electricity consumption (kilowatt-hour):Standby mode: 0 kWh
Speed 1: 5.6 kWh
Speed 2: 19.7 kWh
Speed 3: 39.4 kWh
Estimated running costs (electricity consumption + filter replacements):$105.20 per year
Manufacturer’s warranty:1 year
Country of manufacture:China

5. Levoit Core 400S

You’ll notice a few models from Levoit in this list, and for good reason. They are leading the way in air purifiers that are packed with new technology, smart features, and high-performance filters, all at a price that won’t break the bank. The Levoit Core 400S holds up this standard when it comes to clearing bird dander from medium-sized rooms.

The control panel on this unit gives you everything you’ll need in an air purifier. Here you can control its four fan speeds, set the timer, engage auto and sleep mode, and the digital display gives you an accurate reading of the air quality in your room in real-time in both numerical and color-coded LEDs.

The 400S contains a three-stage filtration system that includes a pre-filter, H13 True HEPA filter, and a high-efficiency activated carbon filter. This all-in-one cylindrical design filter can last up to 12 months and is super easy to replace when the time comes.

What we really like

Connects to Levoit’s smartphone app to control and monitor settings
Very energy efficient
Has handles to easily move between rooms
Auto mode uses the air quality sensor to change fan speed accordingly 

What we think could be better

Replacement filters are on the expensive side
It doesn’t “blend in” to your room

SPECS & FEATURES

HouseFresh Rating:★★★★☆
Time to clean our test room:33 minutes
Air purifier technology:3-Stage Filtration (Pre-filter for large particles, main filter for airborne particles, high-efficiency activated carbon filter for odors and gasses)
Recommended room size:403 sq. ft.
Clean air delivery rate (CADR):260 CFM (442 m³/h)
Dimensions (in inches / in cm):10.8L x 10.8W x 20.5H inches (27.4L x 27.4W x 52H cm)
Weight (in pounds / in kg):14.1 lbs (6.4 kg)
Noise level (low – high):24 – 52dB
Filter life:6 months
Manufacturer’s warranty:2 years
Estimated energy consumption:$39.95 per year
Country of manufacture:China

6. Levoit Core 300

If the 400S has more features than you think you’ll ever use, try out the smaller, more basic Levoit Core 300. This air purifier can sit just about anywhere, quietly working away to clear any bird dander floating around your home. It’s easy to use with just three fan speeds, a night mode, and a timer.

Under the hood is the same Core three-stage filter technology, just a little smaller. There’s a pre-filter, H13 True HEPA filter, and an activated carbon filter that will clear smaller rooms of bird and other pet dander and won’t cost you the world to replace.

The Core 300 is lightweight and energy-efficient, pulling 35.9 watts on its highest fan speed, meaning you could leave it running for long periods of time without the worry of a large energy bill to follow. Ideal if your bird kicks out a lot of dander throughout the day.

What we really like

Perfect for those on a budget costing less than $100
It’s super quiet on sleep mode
Replacement filters are easy to come by
You can set the timer mode to 2, 4, 6, or 8 hours

What we think could be better

Wish it had an air quality sensor
You can’t use it with the Levoit app

SPECS & FEATURES

HouseFresh Rating:★★★★☆
Time to clean our 728 cubic feet test room (with the device running at top speed):40 minutes
Air purifier technology:Pre-filter, non-HEPA grade particle filter, and activated carbon pellets
Recommended room size (4.8 air changes per hour):219 sq. ft.
Clean air delivery rate (CADR):Dust: 131 cfm
Smoke: 126 cfm
Pollen: 154 cfm
Dimensions (in inches / in cm):8.7L x 8.7W x 14.2H inches (22L x 22W x 36H cm)
Weight (in pounds / in kg):7.5 lbs (3.4 kg)
Filter life:6 – 8 months
Noise level in decibels (measured from 3 ft. away with a sound level meter):Speed 1: 37.1 dB
Speed 2: 48.5 dB
Speed 3: 50.2 dB
Top speed: 54.5 dB
Electricity consumption in watts (recorded with an electricity usage monitor):Standby mode: 0.1 watts
Sleep mode: 17.3 watts
Speed 1: 19.7 watts
Speed 2: 24 watts
Top speed: 35.5 watts
Manufacturer’s warranty:2 years
Estimated energy consumption:$47.30
Country of manufacture:China

7. Austin Air Allergy Machine B405 (HM405)

If you’re looking for an air purifier for a large room, or you have multiple birds together, then we have the unit for you. The American-made Austin Air Allergy Machine B405(HM405) is a powerhouse air cleaning machine that can remove bird dander from rooms up to 1500 sq. ft. without even breaking a sweat. We recently got a chance to review the Austin Air Healthmate which uses more activated charcoal but a similar design fan and system.

Austin Air have packed the Allergy Machine with a four-stage, 360-degree filtration system consisting of a Permafilter™ large particle pre-filter, medium particle pre-filter, medical grade True HEPA filter, and an activated carbon filter which contains a huge 15lbs of carbon. We got hands-on with our Austin air purifier review, and while the particle removal is a little pricey, you can’t be the sheer amount of activated carbon you get. The filter only needs changing every 5 years, so running costs align with budget brands.

This air purifier has no complicated smart controls, only a simple switch to change between its three fan speeds. What makes this unit so efficient is its high-powered fan and the strength of its filters. These combined make this air purifier the ideal candidate for a home with birds. It’s one of the best air purifiers that is made in the USA and, importantly, has no ionizer or any sort of technology that could to chemical byproducts interfering with your bird.

What we really like

Simple/easy to use with one switch operation
The filter can last up to 5 years
Has wheels to move between rooms
Can filter bird dander from any angle

What we think could be better

Could be quieter on the highest fan speed
It uses more energy than most other air purifiers

SPECS & FEATURES

HouseFresh Rating:★★★★☆
Time to clean our test room:36 minutes
Air purifier technology:Carbon Filter, HEPA Filter, Pre-Filter, Large Particle Pre-Filter
Recommended room size:750 to 1500 sq. ft. 
Clean air delivery rate (CADR):150 CFM (estimated based on HouseFresh tests)
Dimensions (in inches / in cm):23H x 14.5W x 14.5D inches (58.4H x 36.8W x 36.8D cm)
Weight (in pounds / in kg):47 lbs (21.3 kg)
Noise level (measured from 3 ft. away):Speed 1: 42 dB
Speed 2: 53.2 dB
Speed 3: 61.5 dB
Filter life:5 years
Electricity consumption (kilowatt-hour):Standby mode: 0 kWh
Speed 1: 61.1 kWh
Speed 2: 85.05 kWh
Speed 3: 147.6 kWh
Estimated running costs (electricity consumption + filter replacements):$254.56 per year
Manufacturer’s warranty:5 years
Country of manufacture:US – Buffalo, New York

Common questions about air purifiers for bird dander

Having a bird as a pet is fun. Birds are calm and beautiful and require little to no maintenance. However, on the other hand, most birds inevitably produce danders, and it can be quite messy.

So, if you are a pet bird owner, then you might have noticed some light-colored flecks on the back of your bird when you look closely at it. This is most likely dander. In this article, we will discuss what causes bird danders and how to get rid of bird danders. 

  • Use an air purifier: This will reduce allergy symptoms and keep the air in the room clean.
  • Pay attention to the hygiene of the bird: Give it regular baths, clean the cage of the bird frequently, change the cage bottom, and vacuum and mop the areas around it. 
  • Choose rooms that have floorboards, not carpets, to keep the birds. It is easier to clean floorboards. 
  • Replace the air conditioning filters at least monthly

When you are conscious of danders, you can control them and ensure that they do not cause any form of harm.

Dander is the by-product of the new growth of a bird’s feather. When the feather of a bird is forming newly, it is coated with a substance called keratin. As the feather matures, the keratin begins to dry off, thus breaking off into smaller particles called Danders. 

In external conditions, dander is not harmful. This is because outdoor birds are in constant motion, thus causing the dander to scatter around. However, this is not the case for pet birds kept indoors. For these birds, the danders tend to build up and get to concentration levels that harm the human system. This is why you need to get rid of them.

There are three important air purifier features to consider when purchasing one specifically to remediate bird dander. First of all, a large, high-quality True HEPA filter is necessary to filter bird dander, particularly fine bird dust. Next, it’s of utmost importance that the purifier you select has an efficient fan and motor. This is important because optimal airflow is necessary to ensure effective air purification. Finally, it’s imperative to choose an air purifier that is safe for your bird’s health. Some air purifiers emit ozone as they circulate air; ozone can be harmful to birds. Notably, HEPA filtration systems do not emit ozone.

Bird dander can trigger an array of allergic reactions. The most common reaction triggered by bird dander is allergic rhinitis, better known as hayfever. Similar to the symptoms allergy sufferers experience in other instances, bird dander may cause sneezing, coughing, sore throat, postnasal drip, and watery, itchy eyes. 

Another common allergy symptom results in under-eye circles also referred to as allergic shiners. In severe cases, allergic reactions could cause labored breathing, reduced lung capacity, and even weight loss. Although a good air purifier can certainly reduce the presence of bird dander in your home, if your reactions are severe, you may consider avoiding birds altogether.

So… which air purifier is best for you?

Each of the air purifiers reviewed herein is effective at filtering bird dander. As noted above, one of the three most important purifier features to consider is the type of filter the purifier is equipped with. Selecting a purifier equipped with HEPA filters will effectively remediate bird dander, especially the ultrafine, powder-like dander that some birds spread. Moreover, air purifiers with a powerful fan and motor are essential to ensure adequate airflow. Finally, choosing an air purification system that does not emit harmful ozone is necessary for your bird’s health.

Carefully selecting the best purifier for your space, however, is a personal choice. Although each of these air purifiers will successfully remove bird dander from the air, choosing a purifier that best fits your intended space is important. Be mindful of the size of the room in which you’ll use the purifier, and pay special attention to the square footage the purifier is suitable for. If noise is a concern, also be mindful of the noise levels of the purifier at different fan speeds. 

Other considerations to make include energy efficiency, preferred user interface, whether or not it’s equipped with auto mode, if the purifier has a timer, and the cost and ease of filter maintenance. Ultimately, each of the above air purifiers will effectively address bird dander, so making these other personal considerations will help to narrow down the best one for you.

Last update on 2024-04-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

About the author

Teddy Booth

Teddy joined HouseFresh in 2019 as a senior content producer, producing written content as well as product photography and YouTube videos. He supports Danny as a product tester and is our lead how-to writer.