Levoit Core 400S review

The Levoit Core 400S is a cheap-to-run air purifier that works well in large spaces without taking up tons of space.
By
Updated on May 27, 2024
Written by
Danny Ashton
Danny is the founder of HouseFresh and has been writing about air purifiers since 2010. He is our lead tester and reviewer, and is also the human in front of the camera in our YouTube channel.

Our verdict

A solid air purifier that works well against VOCs and odors thanks to its bigger-than-average carbon filter. You’ll get good performance against other particulates, too, but its performance in our speed test showed that newer models such as the Levoit Vital 200S or Winix 5500-2 offer a better bang for your buck.

Levoit is one of the largest air purifier manufacturers worldwide. As part of the Arovast Corporation, their parent company has a track record of making innovative electronics, adding air purifiers to their roster in 2017. 

Their high-performance products come in different shapes and sizes, including the LV-H133, Vital 200S, and the premium EverestAir. However, their most popular purifiers undoubtedly belong to the Core range, which offers effective air cleaning tailor-made to different-sized spaces in the home. 

Each product in the budget-friendly Core line shares the same cylindrical design, a 3-in-1 filter, and smart features such as the VeSync app — which has over two million users. 

The 400S has been available to buy since 2021 and is designed for use in 400 sq. ft. spaces, like a large living room or kitchen, filling the void between the Core 300 and 600S.   

The lowdown on the Levoit Core 400S

“A solid option to consider with medium-sized rooms and those who value smart features like app support, auto-mode, and a screen that tells you current air quality levels. I still think most people would be better off with the slightly cheaper Vital 200S thanks to its removal pre-filter, but the Core 400S is worthy of consideration, especially if you prefer the cylindrical design”
— Danny Ashton, HouseFresh Founder & Senior Writer

Looking for some quick-fire facts on the 400S? Here are the key points from my full review. 

What we really like

High-quality filters, including large quantities of activated carbon
CADR to $ ratio is only $0.89
Lots of handy smart features, such as Auto mode and app connectivity
Super energy efficient, drawing 38 watts on its highest speed setting
Runs whisper-quiet on Sleep mode

What we think could be better

Newer models performed better in our speed test
Newer models are often cheaper, making the 400S only a good deal if it’s on sale
Design isn’t all that exciting

The Levoit 400S has an RRP of $219.99 and delivers a CADR of 247 CFM when tested against dust, working out at $0.89 per CADR. Looking at other units designed for use in similar-sized spaces, you can pick up a Coway AP-1512HH for $229.99 with a CADR of also 247 CFM or the Winix 5500-2, which can usually be found for $149 on Amazon and has a CADR of 243.  

HouseFresh rating:★★★★☆
Time to clean our 728 cubic feet test room (with the device running at top speed):22 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 (4.8 air changes per hour):378 sq. ft.
Clean air delivery rate (CADR):Dust: 247 CFM
Smoke: 244 CFM
Pollen: 269 CFM
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):11.2 lbs (5 kg)
Filter life:6 months
Noise level in decibels (as reported by manufacturer):Lowest fan speed: 24 dB
Highest fan speed: 52dB
Electricity consumption in watts (as reported by manufacturer):Standby mode: 0 watts
Highest fan speed: 38 watts
Estimated running cost (electricity consumption + official filter replacement):$157.94 per year
Cost per CADR cfm (based on dust CFM as reported by AHAM):$0.89
Manufacturer’s warranty:2 years
Country of manufacture:China

Ordinary design with some extraordinary features 

The 400S might not set the world alight with its appearance but is well-designed with some useful surprises in store.

White electrical appliances aren’t exactly aesthetically groundbreaking. In fact, the 400S’s design is very similar to its Core siblings, so it’s not getting any originality points from me. 

But it’s by no stretch an ugly design, and it sits comfortably in my living space without attracting too much attention.

Its slender profile actually makes it a lot easier to live with than the much bulkier Core 600S, so that’s certainly a plus. But the 400S is quite large compared to smaller units, such as the Medify MA-25.

From above, however, the design starts to come to life. I love the air outlet grill, and its capacitive controls look modern and sophisticated. 

The touchscreen control panel features eight intuitive icons to cycle through the settings, allowing you to switch between the four fan speeds, set a timer for between 1-24 hours, activate sleep mode and kill the lights for a quieter operation with less distraction, or lock the controls from meddling kids or pets. 

What’s most exciting about the 400S is its smart technology, which uses a highly accurate air quality sensor to monitor your space’s current pollution levels. This data is relayed in real-time through LED color rings and even provides an exact PM2.5 reading through its digital display, which isn’t often found on budget-friendly units. You can also activate Auto mode, which will change the purifier’s speed settings to combat changing particulate levels.

I was really impressed with how quickly this feature kicked in, reading the room and changing on cue whenever we introduced a new pollutant source.

Indicator colorAir quality statusAuto mode fan speedPM 2.5 range
🔵 BlueVery GoodSleep Mode0 – 35 ug/m3
🟢 GreenGoodLow (1)36 – 75 ug/m3
🟠 OrangeModerateMedium (2-3)76 – 115 ug/m3
🔴 RedBadHigh (4)> 115 ug/m3

On top of all that, you also get access to Levoit’s VeSync app. This enables you to operate the unit remotely, monitor air quality readings, and create schedules for your unit to kick in before you return from work.

Connecting to the app only took a few minutes and is a standout feature for the 400S. 

We tested the app on both iOS and Android devices, and they both worked perfectly. You can even connect this unit to your Alexa or Google smart speaker, too, if you’d like to bark orders at your purifier from across the room. 

Impressive levels of odor-busting carbon filters

For those looking for an air purifier to combat unpleasant odors, the 400S is a better choice than the more powerful 600S. 

Levoit’s 3-in-1 filter includes a pre-filter to capture large particles, an activated carbon filter to tackle odors and VOCs, and a primary filter to remove the most minuscule particulates from the air. 

At this point, I should mention that when the 400S was first released, its filters were advertised as meeting the medical-grade H13 HEPA standard. However, this terminology has recently been removed following a complaint made by rival manufacturer Dyson.  This came as a bit of a bombshell to the air purifier world, but it shows that using HEPA isn’t the be-all and end-all many thought it to be. When we tested the 400S for ourselves, we saw firsthand that it could remove the smallest PM1 particles in a single pass. 

When it comes to carbon filtration, the bigger the better. The standard 400S filter contains 250g of carbon, which is more than the larger 600S unit. If you upgrade your filter to the Toxin, Smoke, or Pet edition, the amount of carbon increases to 400g, matching the quantity included in the $500 EverestAir, which boasts some huge filters. 

One disappointing aspect is that you can’t remove the pre-filter to clean away clogged particles. Although you can use a vacuum cleaner to lightly remove any build up, it can be awkward and far less thorough than other styles we’ve seen elsewhere on the market.

It’s super simple to install and replace these filters. All you have to do is twist the body of the purifier, slot in the cylindrical filter with the tabs facing up, and reassemble the unit. Check out our short video below to see just how easy it is. 

Tip

All new filters come inside a plastic wrapper. Be sure to remove this before installing the filter into the unit. 

The Core 400S cleared our test room in 22 minutes

The 400S offers excellent cleaning performance, competing with high-performing units.


After getting our hands on the Core 400S, we put it through the HouseFresh clean air speed test. This is where we see how well each purifier performs in our 728 cubic foot testing lab (AKA home office) when pitted against a room full of incense smoke. 

To measure our results, we use the highly accurate PurpleAir indoor sensor and time how long it takes for the purifier to reduce levels of PM1.0 ug/m3, PM2.5 ug/m3, and PM10.0 ug/m3 to zero. 

Air cleaning speed, compared

The Core 400S cleared the space of all pollutants in just 22 minutes, which is around what we’d expect of an air purifier with a CADR of over 200 CFM. This was faster than the Alen BreatheSmart 45i ($428.00) and the Mila ($439.99) by 12 and 13 minutes, respectively.

However, this time falls short of the more powerful (and much larger) Core 600S ($299.99) and highlights that the 400S isn’t quite as speedy as some of its newer rivals. Comparably, the Winix 5500-2 completed the test in 20 minutes ($159.99), and the Levoit Vital 200S took 18 minutes ($189.99).

Noise levels, compared

In addition to speed, we measure how much sound the purifier creates at each speed setting. This helps paint a picture of what life will be like if you use the unit in a bedroom or living space. 

The 400S recorded just 24 decibels on its lowest fan speed, which is quieter than a whisper, making this unit ideal for use in quiet spaces around the home.

At the other end of the spectrum, we heard 52 decibels at its top speed. This equates to the sound of light traffic nearby or a refrigerator’s hum. It’ll be noticeable but not too imposing.

When comparing these sound levels to other air purifiers, we see that the 400S ranks amongst the quietest units in its class, creating less sound than the Winix 5500-2, although not quite as quiet as the Alen BreatheSmart 45i.   

But of course, sound is a highly subjective matter, so here’s a video showcasing how loud the unit operates when cycling between fan speeds. 

The cost to run a Levoit Core 400S: $157.94 per year

A closer look at the long-term running costs involved in running the Levoit Core 400S

1. Electricity costs: $57.96 per year

With energy costs on the rise, it’s important to understand what you’ll have to pay when using a new electrical appliance.

After connecting the Core 400S to our energy use monitor, we saw that the unit drew a meager 38 watts at its top speed setting. Using the average kWh costs provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, we estimate that this purifier will add $60 to your annual electricity bill. 

This is a pretty reasonable price for an air purifier that can circulate the air twice an hour in a 1,005 sq. ft. space. In comparison, a slightly older unit with a similar CADR, such as the Honeywell HPA300, would cost almost four times as much, drawing 76 watts at its top speed setting.  

2. Filter costs: $99.98 per year

Another key cost to consider is filter replacements. As mechanical filters such as HEPA or activated carbon work by trapping pollutants inside, over time, they’ll become saturated, lose efficiency, and eventually need replacing. The filter’s lifespan can vary greatly between manufacturers, with some lasting a couple of months and others years.

As you’d expect with Levoits Core range, filter replacements are affordable and easy to come by. A genuine replacement will cost $49.99 and offer you between six to eight months of protection. These are some of the cheapest replacements on the market, coming in much lower than the likes of Alen, whose 45i filters will set you back between $69.99 and $119.99, but are competitively priced alongside other budget brands like Winix, with filter replacements for their latest 5500-2 model on sale for $43.99.

Genuine Replacement Filter
Replacement 3-In-1 filter for the Core 300 by Levoit.

And the great thing is that you will find a wide range of generic filters on Amazon that will fit your Levoit Core 400S. This drops the long-term filter replacement costs dramatically, with some unofficial filters costing as little as $25 per unit, while providing the same lifespan. 

Generic Replacement Filter (2-Pack)
A set of two 3-in-1 filters compatible with Levoit Core 400s.

Bottom line: Is the Levoit Core 400S worth it?

The 400S is a great air purifier, but purchasing one only makes sense when it’s on sale.

It’s hard not to love the Core 400S. It ticks many boxes (including a punchy CADR of 247 CFM without taking up lots of space) and boasts high-spec smart features and filters that contain an impressive amount of activated carbon, all while clearing our test space of all pollutants in less than half an hour.

However, in a fast-paced industry, the 400S is starting to lag behind the latest crop of purifiers, such as the Levoit Vital 200S and Winix 5500-2. These units all share the same smart features and involve similar long-term running costs. But they completed our clean air speed test almost 5 minutes faster than the 400S and came with lab-certified H13 HEPA filters for added peace of mind against even the smallest particles. 

If you want an air purifier that uses minimal energy and offers maximum protection from VOC and odor, the 400S is a solid choice, but for me, it only makes sense if it’s on sale or part of a promotion.

SOURCES

We calculated yearly costs associated with running the Levoit Core 400S 24 hours a day, 365 days per year utilizing the latest average energy prices as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics of $0.174/kWh as of May 2024.

Last update on 2024-07-13 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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About the author

Danny Ashton

Danny is the founder of HouseFresh and has been writing about air purifiers since 2010. He is our lead tester and reviewer, and is also the human in front of the camera in our YouTube channel.

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