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5 Best Commercial Air Purifiers

By
Updated on January 25, 2024
Written by
Danny Ashton
Danny is the founder of HouseFresh and has been writing about air purifiers and indoor air quality since 2010. He is our lead tester, conducting all the tests we use to evaluate air quality products. That is why you will always see his name attached to our reviews.

With many of us spending a large proportion of our time in commercial spaces, whether for pleasure or running a business, the last thing we need is to worry about the air we breathe. But the Covid-19 pandemic changed all that.

However, thanks to nearby traffic, industrial pollution, or even exposure to germs and viruses from the people we meet, we all find ourselves increasingly vulnerable to poor air quality

Investing in an air purifier is one of the most effective ways to improve the air quality in your commercial space. Those equipped with HEPA filtration can capture particles as small as 0.1 microns, which the EPA state offers an excellent solution to eradicating airborne bacteria and viruses. 

As well as helping control bacteria and viruses, an air purifier will also keep mold, dust and even rodents at bay. By filtering out any polluting particles that pass through the purifier, the contents of your space will also reap the benefit of cleaner air — keeping valuable stock, equipment and tools in tip-top condition.  

If you plan to also work in the same room as your air purifier, then be sure to look at how much sound is generated as even 60 dB can be too high for concentration work, so look for units that create less noise if people are going to work close by.

Be aware of companies selling overpriced air purifiers targeting commercial customers. In its simplest terms, an air purifier is a fan and a filter. We have seen many examples of overpriced units marketed to businesses and schools that overpromise yet fail to deliver.

In nearly most cases, you are better of with a unit from a brand that has been around for several years and is backed up by many third-party tests, including the ones we conduct here at HouseFresh.

Why You Can Trust Our Recommendations

We don’t recommend air purifiers we haven’t reviewed and tested in our home lab after buying them with our money. That way, we can be honest about our findings.

This is a breakdown of our thorough home testing process:

1️⃣ We use the Purpleair Indoor sensor to track levels of PM1, PM2.5,  PM10 and VOCs to see how effective every air purifier is at removing pollutants

2️⃣ Using an energy meter, we see how much power is used at each level of fan speed

3️⃣ Sound can be important, especially if people work in the same space. Hence, we use a sound meter to identify how loud and quiet each air purifier is

Once we have all the data on performance and calculated costs in the short and long-term, we can compare all our units.

When looking to recommend the best air purifiers for a commercial setting, we kept in mind the following:

High CADR level – Commercial spaces are usually larger than residential, so you will need lots of power to clean all the air in the area as quickly as possible.

HEPA filter – HEPA-based filtration has decades of academic data to back it up and is proven to remove even tiny particles like viruses.

Activated charcoal filter – For dealing with gasses and strong odors, you will need activated carbon filtration – and large amounts if you have severe issues with VOCs or other gas pollutants. 

If you don’t want to read our complete list and just want to find out what the best air commercial air purifiers are right now, then check out our top picks below:

The Best 3 Air Purifiers For a Commercial Space

👑 BEST OVERALL💰 FOR TIGHT BUDGETS🛋️ FOR LARGE SPACES
Levoit Core 600SSmart Blast MiniAustin Air HealthMate
AIR CLEANING SPEED ⚡15 minutes17 minutes36 minutes
CADR 👩‍🔬410 CFM (697 m³/h)435 CFM (740 m³/h)Not provided
FILTER TECHNOLOGY 💨H13 True HEPA filter with Activated CarbonH13 HEPA FilterCarbon Filter, HEPA Filter, Pre-Filter, Large Particle Pre-Filter
MAX ROOM SIZE 📏635 sq. ft. – 1588 sq. ftup to 915 sq. ft.750 to 1500 sq. ft.
WEIGHT ⚖️13.7 lbs (6.2 kg)59 lbs (26.8 kg)47 lbs (21.3 kg)
OUR REVIEW 🔍Levoit Core 600S reviewSmart Blast Mini reviewAustin Air HealthMate review
PRICE 💵$249.99$599.00$715.00

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

Be sure to check out our complete list of commercial air purifiers, as you might have specific needs that are not met by our top three choices:

1. Best Overall: Levoit Core 600S

The fastest at cleaning our test room of particulate pollutants managing to clean our room of all particles in 15 minutes. This is one of the best-performing air purifiers on the market, especially considering its cost.

The Levoit Core 600S is the most powerful in the Core range and has a CADR of 410 CFM, which will be enough to clean the air in even the largest commercial spaces. It comes with smart features like a screen that shows the current level of air quality and can be set to automatically adjust the fans depending on the current level of pollutants. 

As with all the CORE S series air purifiers, it has app support and can be adjusted from any location on Earth. Those worried about working will be happy to see a maximum sound level of 55dB and for such a high level of air cleaning power, the fact that it costs just over $50 a year will make your financial team happy. 

What We Really Like:

👍 Great air cleaning power to $ ratio – 73 cents per CADR
👍 Air quality sensor gives you the exact amount of 2.5ug/m3 in the air currently and changes color
👍 Costs less than $50 to use 24/7 365 days a year
👍 Weight is light enough to be able to move to different rooms if required

What We Think Could Be Better:

👎 Pre-filter is attached to the filter so it can’t be removed to clean
👎 Air quality sensor is on the back so might have issues when there is a small space between the wall and air purifier

SPECS & FEATURES

HouseFresh Rating:★★★★★
Time to clean our test room:15 minutes
Air purifier technology:H13 True HEPA filter with Activated Carbon
Recommended room size:635 sq. ft. – 1588 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 (low – high):26 – 55 dB
Filter life:6 months
Warranty:2 years
Estimated energy consumption:$51.51 per year

2. Best for Offices: Smart Blast Mini

The Smart Blast Mini is not a small air purifier, but it does a great job of cleaning much air without creating too much noise. At its highest speed, it only hit 49dB, which is one of the lowest we have seen and especially impressive considering this unit cleaned our test room in 17 minutes.

The Smart Blast Mini has a CADR of 435 CFM, one of the largest we have tested here at HouseFresh, weighing 59 lbs. Thankfully the Smart Blast Mini comes on wheels and is easily moved to new locations. 

Recently, Smart Blast air purifiers have been used by singers at concerts to reduce the risk of COVID-19. They are not the cheapest units, but given the power level and small amounts of sound, you can easily see how these air purifiers could be a great investment for a commercial environment. 

What We Really Like:

👍 High CADR with a maximum of 49dB is perfect for rooms where people are concentrating. 
👍 Wheels allow for the large unit to be used in different locations
👍 Fair-priced filters that only need replacing every two years
👍 Simple functions you are not paying for any bells or whistles

What We Think Could Be Better:

👎 Would be good to see activated charcoal included as standard
👎 Uses a high level of power 130.9 watts at the highest speed

SPECS & FEATURES

HouseFresh Rating:★★★★☆
Time to clean our test room:17 minutes
Air purifier technology:H13 HEPA Filter
Recommended room size:915 sq. ft.
Clean air delivery rate (CADR):435 CFM (740 m³/h)
Dimensions (in inches / in cm):22.6L x 13W x 24.8H inches (57.5L × 33W × 63H cm)
Weight (in pounds / in kg):59 lbs (26.8 kg)
Noise level (low – high):36 – 49 dB
Filter life:33 months
Manufacturer’s warranty:1 year
Estimated energy consumption:$277.70 per year

3. Best for Gas Pollutants: Austin Air HealthMate

Most consumer air purifiers are aimed at particulate pollutants like pollen, dust and bacteria. This means that if you have any issue with VOC or gas pollutants like formaldehyde, you will find most air purifiers are just not good enough. The Austin HealthMate comes with 15 lbs of activated carbon and zeolite, perfect for removing gas pollutants from your air.

The Austin has been making air purifiers since the 1990s and has the U.S. government as a client. While it’s likely overkill for most homes, for commercial applications, the Austin Healthmate is at the top of our list for those worried about gas pollutants. 

The combined filter includes HEPA and Activated charcoal and lasts five years before needing replacement, which means their filter costs align with even the most budget air purifier. It requires a lot of power to drive air through the large fan, so it uses quite a bit of energy, and it hits 62dB, which is an issue for those wanting to concentrate while it is running. 

What We Really Like:

👍 15lbs of activated carbon and zeolite, which is one of the most significant amounts we have seen for a commercial air purifier
👍 While it’s heavy, it has wheels, so it can easily be moved
👍 Filters are not cheap but only need replacing every five years, so costs work out to be some of the most affordable in the market
👍 A simple 3-speed control switch

What We Think Could Be Better:

👎 Doesn’t have smart features or auto-mode
👎 Hits 132 watts at the highest speed so is a little power hungry

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 (low – high):40dB – 62dB
Filter life:5 years
Warranty5 years
Estimated energy consumption:$138.76 per year

4. IQAir HealthPro Plus

If there is one name you will know from the world of air purifiers it will be IQAir. Founded in 1863, the Swiss company is one of the first manufacturers of air purifiers in the world. The IQAir HealthPro is their main model and includes their proprietary HyperHEPA filter and V5-Cell that includes 5 lbs of activated carbon.

It doesn’t come cheap, but the IQAir HealthPro would support a commercial location to keep the air from particle and gas pollutants. 

The IQAir HealthPro might look like a printer from the 1990s, but inside, you get access to the very best filter technology. Like many of the other air purifiers on this list, it’s got a simple system for changing speed with a dot-matrix screen and even a remote control to go with it. 

The only major downside is that this Swiss engineering doesn’t come cheap, both with the initial cost of the air purifier and with filter costs and energy usage. But if you want the best for your commercial location, you can’t get much better than the Healthpro Plus from IQAir.

What We Really Like:

👍 5lbs of activated carbon and zeolite for dealing with gasses and VOCs
👍 HyperHEPA is a H13 grade and last 24 months depending on usage
👍 While filter costs are higher than other air purifiers on the list, there is now several lower-priced generic filters available 
👍 Remote for adjusting the speed without having to go to the unit — an excellent option for those running it in a reception area

What We Think Could Be Better:

👎 No bells or whistles like auto-mode or app support
👎 Needs 215 watts to push air through the combination of filters which is one the highest energy usage we have seen in our tests

SPECS & FEATURES

HouseFresh Rating:★★★★☆
Time to clean our test room:25 minutes
Air purifier technology:HyperHEPA and V50-CELL gas and odor filter
Recommended room size:450 to 1125 sq. ft. 
Clean air delivery rate (CADR):300 CFM (510 m³/h)
Dimensions (in inches / in cm):28H x 18W x 16D inches (71H x 38W x 41D cm)
Weight (in pounds / in kg):35 lbs (16 kg)
Noise level (low – high):25dB – 69dB
Filter life:4 years
Manufacturer warranty:10 years
Estimated energy consumption:$165.04 per year

5. Alen BreatheSmart 75i

Alen is another brand that has long existed in the world of air purifiers. One of the main highlights for Alen units is that they come with a lifetime warranty if you choose the filter subscription. The Alen 75i is the largest, most powerful air purifier that Alen makes. It allows for customized filters with all the modern bells and whistles like auto-mode, app support and indicator color for current air quality. 

The Alen 75i is a large unit, but it manages to clean our test room in 24 minutes yet only generated 49dB and used less than 50 watts at it’s highest speed. 

One of the things I like about Alen is that they offer multiple choices when it comes to initial filters so that you can adjust the unit to your specific needs. 

If you need the ability to deal with more gasses and VOCs, you can choose the Fresh option with more activated charcoal or pay less for a pure HEPA filter that will perform better particle pollutants. 

What We Really Like:

👍 3.6 lbs of activated carbon with the Fresh filter option
👍 Auto-mode allows you to set and forget the Alen 75i so it only kicks in when it detects pollutants in your air
👍 Lifetime warranty is unique for Alen but shows their confidence in build quality
👍 App support allows you to connect multiple units and control them from anywhere

What We Think Could Be Better:

👎 Higher initial costs than some budget air purifier brands
👎 Filter costs are a little higher especially for those with more activated carbon

SPECS & FEATURES

HouseFresh Rating:★★★★☆
Time to clean our test room:24 minutes
Air purifier technology:True HEPA H13 filters with activated carbon pellets + Ionizer technology
Recommended room size:Up to 1,300 sq. ft. 
Clean air delivery rate (CADR):347 CFM (589 m³/h)
Dimensions (in inches / in cm):27H x 18.5W x 11.5D inches (68.58H x 46.99W x 29.21D cm)
Weight (in pounds / in kg):12.2 kg (27 lbs)
Noise level (low – high):24dB – 49dB
Filter life:12 – 15 months
Warranty:Lifetime (with product registration & active filter subscription)
Estimated energy consumption:$47.30 per year


Buying Guide for Commercial Air Purifiers: Why You Need an Air Purifier for Your Commercial Space

Traffic, industrial pollution, germs and viruses all mean that we all incrreasingly find ourselves increasingly vulnerable to poor air quality

​​Exposure can increase in commercial spaces. According to research from the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Volatile organic compounds are generated from paints, fuels, plastics and cleaning products which can cause eye, nose and throat irritation, headaches and liver damage. 

And do we even need to mention the dreaded Covid-19? Probably not by now. 

Investing in a quality air purifier is one of the most effective ways to improve the air quality in your commercial space. Air purifiers equipped with HEPA filtration can capture particles as small as 0.1 microns, which takes out viruses (including Covid). 

And for the dangerous VOCs, activated carbon filters save the day. 

🤔  What is a commercial air purifier?

A commercial air purifier is a high-capacity device that filters and purifies the air in large, non-residential spaces such as offices, schools, or industrial areas. It uses technologies like HEPA filters, activated carbon filters, UVGI, or electrostatic precipitators to remove a range of pollutants, ensuring improved air quality to safeguard the health of people in the space.

When looking to get an air purifier for a commercial setting, you should be aware of the different settings you might need as requirements can vary significantly:

1. When buying an air purifier for office spaces: CADR

Prioritize high CADR air purifiers with HEPA filters for common pollutants you find in this environment. Noise level is crucial to avoid disrupting the work environment, so you don’t want to have more than 60dB at the highest speed.

2. When buying air purifiers for hospitals and healthcare facilities: HEPA filters

Use air purifiers with HEPA filters and look for those that use at least medical grade filters, such as H13. You will need a high rate of air changes per hour, so you may need multiple large portable units to achieve this for large spaces.

3. When buying air purifiers for restaurants and food services: Activated carbon filters

For odor and smoke removal, activated carbon filters are ideal. High CADR is required for large spaces and high traffic. HEPA alone won’t be able to remove the gasses from the air, so you will need to look for an air purifier with a large amount of carbon measured in lbs.

4. When buying air purifiers for industrial spaces: Chemicals and VOCs

For chemicals, VOCs, or specific dust types, you need air purifiers designed for such pollutants. Activated carbon is the leading technology that will require large amounts to be effective. 

5. When buying air purifiers for schools and educational institutions: Noise

Choose an air purifier that can target a variety of pollutants – both particle and gas. Low noise level is essential in classrooms, so again, look for those that don’t go over 60dB and avoid any extra features that might get in the way, such as auto-mode or app support. 

6. When buying air purifiers for gyms and fitness centers: Energy efficiency

Air purifiers with activated carbon filters handle odors efficiently. High CADR purifiers are needed for larger spaces. Consider maintenance, energy efficiency, warranty and customer service in all scenarios. The specific needs of your commercial setting should direct your choice.

In most cases, you are best avoiding brands that are very new to the market, as there is less data to support they will not fail. 


Common Questions About Commercial Air Purifiers

🤔 What is the best air purifier for a big space?

Bigger spaces need bigger fans and filters; an easy way to compare different models is to look at their CADR scores. Those who want to clean the air in the biggest spaces will want a CADR of 250 CFM+.

🤔  Can you use an air purifier with open windows?

For those with major issues outside with their air quality, such as Wildfire or outdoor air pollution, you will want to keep your windows closed and run your air purifiers at the highest speed. For those looking to reduce the risk of viral infections like Covid-19, you will benefit from running air purifiers and increasing airflow by opening windows and doors.

🤔  Are expensive air purifiers better?

While expensive air purifiers often provide advanced features, more extensive coverage and enhanced filtration technologies, they are not inherently better. It’s essential to consider your specific needs, such as the space size and types of pollutants and evaluate reviews and ratings to ensure you’re making a suitable choice.

🤔  Is it better to have one large air purifier or multiple small ones?

This depends on your unique situation. For a large space, you will benefit from one unit as running and changing the filters will cost less But for complex layouts that need more than one air purifier can support, you can combine units. Their total CADR will be combined, allowing far more power than a single unit. Running multiple units will mean higher costs, but they provide ways to keep multiple spaces clean simultaneously. 

🤔  Can you use an air purifier with open windows?

For those with major issues outside with their air quality, such as wildfire smoke or outdoor air pollution, you will want to keep your windows closed and run your air purifiers at the highest speed. For those looking to reduce the risk of viral infections like Covid-19, you will benefit from running air purifiers and increasing airflow by opening windows. 


Wrapping Up

Some air purifier manufacturers will say that commercial customers need extra technology like UV-C or other new technology you have never heard of. Still, you just need the same as residential users – high-grade HEPA and activated charcoal. By avoiding these new technologies, you will get better performance for less money. 

Try to look for brands and models that are open about their CADR score and performance so you can choose the right air purifier for your commercial space. You will want to see multiple air changes per hour. depending on your situation, large spaces need a large air purifier or multiple units running simultaneously.

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

About the author

Danny Ashton

Danny is the founder of HouseFresh and has been writing about air purifiers and indoor air quality since 2010. He is our lead tester, conducting all the tests we use to evaluate air quality products. That is why you will always see his name attached to our reviews.