8 Common Honeywell air purifier problems (and how to fix them)

Updated on April 15, 2024
Written by
Teddy Booth
Teddy was a senior content producer for HouseFresh between 2019 and 2024 producing written content as well as product photography. He supported Danny as a product tester and lead how-to writer.

As with all electrical devices, ensure your air purifier is unplugged before trying to perform any of these solutions, especially when opening up the unit. Always consult the manual before doing anything.

Honeywell is a big name in the air purifier game, and if you have one of their units, you’ll know why. Honeywell is on a mission to manufacture air purifiers to provide clean air for our homes at prices that won’t break the bank. 

And with over 25 years of making units, they are doing a great job at achieving this. Check out our list of the 9 Best Honeywell Air Purifiers Available In 2023 to see why.

Honeywell has earned their title as ‘The Doctors choice’ as the high-efficiency fans and filters they use in their units are proven highly effective at drastically improving air quality in homes, offices and doctor surgeries.

But, as with any electrical device in the home, these units can sometimes falter. It can be frustrating when things don’t work as they should, so we wanted to look at the most common problems in Honeywell air purifiers and give you tips on solving them.


Have you turned the unit off and back on?

Sometimes all it takes is turning the unit off and back on again. It doesn’t take much time, so it’s always worth a shot before looking into other solutions.

Problem 1. My Honeywell air purifier won’t turn on

The most common problem with any device is when it just won’t turn on in the first place. Here are some things to try before buying a new unit.

❓ Is the unit plugged in?

Admit it; we’ve all made this mistake before, so you first need to check that the unit is plugged in properly and that the power to your outlet is switched on.

❓ Has it blown a fuse?

Any device that uses electricity is usually fitted with a fuse as a safety precaution. The fuse blows when too much electrical current passes through it, stopping it from setting on fire. If the fuse has blown, the unit will no longer work. It’s fairly easy to replace with a new fuse; just consult the manual first.

❓ Are you using the correct power rating?

Ensure that the power rating on your Honeywell unit matches the power of your wall socket. If they’re not the same, the unit won’t turn on.

ModelPower SupplyRated Power
HPA300110-120 V87W
HPA200110-120 V70W
HPA100110-120 V62W
HPA5300110-120 V62W
HFD320110-120 V38W
HPA8350B110-120 V62W
HPA030110-120 V54W
HPA080110-120 V40W

Problem 2. There’s no air coming out of my Honeywell air purifier

When an air purifier works as it should, it will discharge clean, filtered air into your home. If you notice that the unit isn’t doing this, it means there is a fault. Luckily there are a few solutions to try before you jump online to buy a new unit.

❓ Is there a problem with the fan?

If no air is coming out, it usually means the fan has a fault. It can sometimes become lodged with dust, hair and/or other larger particles from the air. Is the fan spinning free without any blockages? If something is in the way, give it a good clean so the fan spins without hindrance.

❓ Is the motor running correctly?

The motor powers the fan, so the unit won’t push air out if there’s a fault here. You can usually tell if there is a fault with the motor if:

  1. You cannot hear it working
  2. It’s making an unusual noise
  3. There is a burning smell coming from the motor

Now, unless you know what you’re doing, we suggest you contact Honeywell customer service before trying to fix the motor yourself.

❓ Do the filters need changing?

Often, when no air is coming out of the unit, it’s because no air can pass through the filters. This is usually caused by the filters being blocked with dust and other larger particles. If the pre-filter looks clogged, you can remove it and vacuum the dust. If the HEPA filter is full, it will need replacing.

❓ Is there enough air getting into the unit?

Make sure that your air purifier isn’t too close to other objects or walls which may be blocking air from getting into the unit in the first place.

Problem 3. There’s a flashing light on my Honeywell air purifier display

There’s nothing more annoying than a flashing light when you don’t know why it’s blinking. The lights are there to show you which function on your air purifier is active, and none of them should be flashing unless necessary.

❓ Do the filters need changing?

On most Honeywell air purifiers, the unit will let you know when the filters need replacing by displaying an indicator light on the control panel. This light won’t go off until you replace the filters and reset the function. 

Once you’ve installed new filters, simply follow this process to reset:

  1. Press the reset button
  2. Hold down for at least five seconds
  3. Release the button and wait for the light to go out

If the light doesn’t go out, check you’ve installed the replacement filters properly before trying our next solution.

❓ Is one of the buttons stuck?

If one of the buttons is stuck, it might be causing the lights to malfunction. Press all the buttons individually and give them a wiggle to ensure they’re not jammed. Also, give them a clean to ensure no dirt or dust is causing them to stick.

❓ There could be a fault with the electrics

If none of these solutions work, there might be a fault with the circuit board in your control panel. 

Don’t open up the electrics on your air purifier for your safety. It’s always best to contact Honeywell customer service.

Problem 4. My Honeywell air purifier is making a strange noise

Air purifiers aren’t meant to be noisy; when they are, it should sound like the gentle whirring of a fan spinning and the motor powering it. When your Honeywell is functioning normally, it will sound like this:

If you notice any other strange noises coming from your unit, try one of these solutions. 

❓ Is there something caught in the fan?

If there is a rattling sound coming from your air purifier or you can hear something moving around when it’s turned on, something may be caught in the fan area. Luckily, you can try a few things:

  1. Spin the fan manually and remove any object caught in there
  2. Pick your Honeywell up and give it a shake. If there’s something in there that shouldn’t be, you’ll be able to hear it. Locate and remove.

❓ Is it the motor?

The motor is the only other part of your air purifier that should be making a noise. If there is a strange noise coming from this, we suggest contacting Honeywell customer service over trying to fix it yourself.

Problem 5. My air isn’t getting any cleaner

If your air isn’t getting any cleaner, your Honeywell isn’t doing its job. You can easily test the air quality in your home with devices like the QingPing Lite or the Huma HI-120. There are a few simple solutions to get your air purifier back to work.

❓ Is the HEPA filter full?

The filters in your Honeywell need to be changed periodically as they get full of particles over time. Once the filters are full, they will no longer clean the air passing through them. A light on the control panel will indicate when your filters need replacing, but it’s always best to check for yourself when your air purifier isn’t performing as it should.

❓ Is the pre-filter dirty?

The pre-filter is designed to capture larger particles from the air in your home, like dust and dander prolonging the life of your HEPA filter. Over time, the pre-filter will become visibly dirty; when this happens, air won’t pass through, affecting how much clean air comes out.

If the pre-filter can be removed, it can also be cleaned. Try using a vacuum cleaner to remove the captured particles or a moist cloth to wipe down the pre-filter.

Problem 6. There’s a strange smell coming from my Honeywell purifier

The purpose of your purifier is to clean the air in your room, which includes removing odors. Something is wrong if the unit itself starts to produce a smell.

❓ Have you removed all of the packaging?

When you get your new Honeywell air purifier home, you must remove all the packaging. It’s not only the exterior packaging you must remove, as manufacturers usually wrap each filter in plastic to keep them clean. 

If you don’t remove this packaging, two things will happen:

  1. Air won’t be able to pass through the filters rendering them useless
  2. The plastic will start to produce a burning smell

❓ Has the motor burnt out?

As with any electrical device that runs on a motor, sometimes it can burn out. This produces a smokey/burning smell and can even produce smoke. If you notice this smell, it’s best practice to turn the device off immediately and contact Honeywell customer service.

Problem 7. My Honeywell air purifier keeps turning itself off

Air purifiers are designed to be turned on and left alone; there’s no reason you should have to “check-up” on it throughout the day. If your unit keeps turning itself off, this is not only a fault but is also extremely annoying.

❓ Is the unit working too hard?

When purchasing an air purifier, it’s paramount that you get one that’s suitable for the size of the room you’re operating it in. If the room is too big for the unit, it may shut itself down as it’s working too hard. 

Check that your unit’s specifications match the size of the room you’re using it in. If they don’t match, you may have to consider getting a secondary unit suited to your space. 

Honeywell ModelRecommended Room Size
HPA300465 sq. ft
HPA200310 sq. ft
HPA100155 sq. ft
HPA5300500 sq. ft
HFD320250 sq. ft
HPA8350B600 sq. ft
HPA030170 sq. ft

❓ Is the unit on Auto mode?

Some of the newer models contain an Auto mode which controls the fan speed depending on the air quality. When the unit senses the air quality is maximized, it will switch off until the quality drops again.

Check if your unit is set to Auto mode; it will indicate if this is the case on the control panel.

Problem 8. My Honeywell air purifier won’t turn off

It’s frustrating when your air purifier won’t turn on, but it’s equally frustrating when it won’t turn off. 

❓ Are the buttons jammed?

With all that dust and dirt being pulled into your air purifier, you’ll get some of it on the unit. Some of these particles may get stuck in the control buttons, making them jam and become inoperable. 

Give your unit a thorough clean with a wet cloth and wipe on and around the control buttons.

❓ Is the unit unplugged?

We’ve all made this mistake at least once in our lives (I know I have more than once), so it’s always best to check this before anything else. 

How to contact Honeywell

If non of these top tips solve your problem, the Honeywell Store website contains loads of information, including FAQs on specific products and instructional videos. Also, it has product manuals that can be downloaded.

If you need to get in touch with Honeywell about any problems with your air purifier, you can contact them through their online technical support form or call them 12 a.m. Monday through 9 p.m. Friday (EST) on 1 (877) 841-2840.

Find the manual for your Honeywell air purifier

Honeywell ModelManual
Honeywell HPA300Manual
Honeywell HPA200
Honeywell HPA100
Honeywell HPA5300Manual
Honeywell HFD320Manual
Honeywell HPA8350BManual
Honeywell HPA030Manual

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About the author

Teddy Booth

Teddy was a senior content producer for HouseFresh between 2019 and 2024 producing written content as well as product photography. He supported Danny as a product tester and lead how-to writer.

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