Best Air Purifier for Pets: Comprehensive Buyers’ Guide

If you’re searching for the best air purifier for pets, you’re in the right place. Below you’ll find tons of great information about eliminating pet-related allergies and pet odors once and for all. Feel free to read through, or use our handy table of contents below.

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Our pets are our friends and our companions – they’re part of the family. They’re with us through the good times and the bad, ready and willing to offer their comfort and support. Because of just how close the bonds are that we form with them, it’s no surprise that so many people suffer through the unnecessary discomfort of pet-related allergies and lingering odors.

I know that I have had to deal with both of those issues, and if you’re here reading this you probably have too. But just how many other people are having the same troubles?

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, more than 56% of all households in the United States have at least one pet. In fact, over 60% of pet owners have multiple animals. This translates into far more than a hundred million Americans who face air quality issues, animal dander-related allergies, and stubborn pet odors on a daily basis.

Best Air Purifier for Pets

Whether you’ve been reading through so far, or you skipped ahead from the table of contents, here is the part that you’re probably most interested in: our expertly-crafted list of our top picks for the best air purifier for pets.

So without further delay, here are our top three choices:


Rating: 9.3 / 10
Covers up to 326 sq.ft.
Removes particles > 0.3 microns
Three-Stage Filtration System
CADR 315

Rating: 8.5 / 10
Covers up to 390 sq.ft.
Removes particles > 0.3 microns
360-Degree Airflow
CADR 250

Rating: 8.3 / 10
Covers up to 350 sq.ft.
Removes particles > 0.3 microns
Auto-Adjusting Speed
Three-Stage Purification

Coway AP-1512HH

TrueHEPA Filter Removes Particles Down to 0.3 Microns

1, 4, and 8-Hour Timers

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The Coway AP-1512HH is one of the top air purifiers on the market right now, thanks in part to how well it works in homes with pets.

One of Conway’s Mighty Air Purifier’s strongest features is its four-stage filtration system that starts with a washable pre-filter for trapping pet hair and large particles before moving onto a carbon odor filter that traps unpleasant odors, a TrueHEPA filter for microscopic particles down to 0.3 microns in size, and finally a Vital Ionizer that uses negative ions to further freshen the air in your home.

Additional features of the Coway AP-1512HH include:

  • 3-speed air flow control
  • Built-in filter replacement indicator
  • Energy-saving Eco Mode
  • 1, 4, and 8-hour timers
  • Rated for rooms up to 326 square feet

Overall, the Coway AP-1512HH Mighty Air Purifier is very likely the best choice for anyone seeking relief from pet allergies and odors, as well as any other air quality issues in small-to-medium sized spaces.

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Honeywell 50250-S

Removes 99.97% of Airborne Particles

CADR of 250

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Another great choice, the Honeywell 50250-S is a smart buy in the mid-range air purifier category.

A long-leading, iconic air purifier, the Honeywell 50250-S 99.975 Pure HEPA Round Air Purifier is easy to recognize thanks to its compact, round design. Through the utilization of two separate filtration mechanisms – an odor-trapping carbon pre-filter and a permanent PureHEPA micron filter – the 50250-S is able to remove up to 99.97% of air airborne pollutants.

Some other reasons you should consider the Honeywell 50250-S:

  • 360-degree air flow works great to clean larger spaces, quicker
  • Three speed settings for maximum purification flexibility
  • Industry-leading five-year warranty
  • Lightweight, easy-to-transport design
  • CADR of 250

If you’re on a budget and want an air cleaner for pets that is going to make a big improvement in your home’s air quality, the Honeywell 50250-S is a good choice that will definitely generate results.

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Winix PlasmaWave 5300

Three-Stage Air Filtration

Built-In Air Quality Sensor

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Rounding out the top three best air purifiers for pets, the Winix PlasmaWave 5300 is our number one pick for buyers on a tight budget. Although lacking the performance and many of the high-tech features of more expensive units, the PlasmaWave 5300 Air Cleaner Model delivers great value for the money and is positively a leader in its class.

Why the Winix PlasmaWave 5300 stands out:

  • Three-stage air purification includes a carbon pre-filter, TrueHEPA primary filter, and a PlasmaWave ion generator
  • Energy Star approved for low long-term costs
  • Built-in air quality sensor adjusts purification speed as needed
  • Captures up to 99.97% of particles down to 0.3 microns in size
  • Rated for up to 350 square feet

The biggest downside of the Winix PlasmaWave 5300 is its short warranty – just one-year. Compared to the three and five-year assurances offered by other brands, this is significantly less impressive. But all-in-all, for the price, the PlasmaWave 5300 is still a great value.

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Best Air Purifier for Pets 2017?

All three of our top picks for the best air purifier for pets and dust fit into different needs and budgets. No matter which of them you choose, you can rest assured knowing that you’ll experience a significant improvement in the air quality in your home.

But if you’re looking for the best air purifier for pets 2017, we’ll go ahead and narrow it down to our number one choice: the Coway AP-1512HH.

We picked the Coway AP-1512HH Mighty Air Purifier because of its powerful performance, compact size, and stylish appearance. Not only does it work extremely well at cleaning the air in small-to-medium sized spaces, but it does so while remaining out of sight, blending in with your home’s furnishings.

If you’re on a very tight budget, both the Honeywell 50250-S and the Winix PlasmaWave 5300 will work well for you, but if you can afford to invest just a few extra dollars, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the added value that the Coway AP-1512HH offers.

Why Do Pets Cause Allergies?

It’s a common belief that it is animal hair which causes allergies in humans, but that isn’t exactly the case. Most pet-related allergies are caused by animal dander – tiny, sometimes microscopic, pieces of dead skin and small dried proteins that are excreted through the pet’s saliva, urine, and pores.

Because of the tiny size of these particles, it’s easy for them to become airborne and circulate throughout your home via your air conditioning unit and ducts. Very few HVAC filters are designed to catch contaminants so small, so they will continue to recirculate throughout your home until they eventually land and build up on your carpet, bedding, and furniture.

What about Pet Odors?

Similarly, pet odors are gaseous contaminants which are also able to freely move through your home’s air conditioning system without being stopped by standard filters or cleaners. As a result, they tend to stick around and linger long after dander has settled from the air.

To truly combat pet odors, you need to use an air purifier that includes a gas-neutralizing carbon filtration stage along with a TrueHEPA air filter that can capture microscopic particles.

How Do Air Purifiers for Pets Work?

Air purifiers for pets work by following an old practice: filtering dirty air by making it pass through a fine filtration material. It’s just like how a doctor’s mask or firefighter’s breather works. Humans have been using different materials to filter air for thousands of years.

Electric air purifiers work by utilizing a fan to pass air across a filter with microscopic openings. For example, TrueHEPA filters are able to block particles in the air down to 0.3 microns in size. This works great for common allergens like pet dander. After these contaminants are trapped, the clean air is simply recirculated out into the room.

While TrueHEPA filters are sufficient in most situations, the top high-end (medical-grade) air purifiers currently available can capture particles as small as 0.1 microns – leading to an almost perfectly clean breathing environment. Modern air purifiers also use a variety of other tools and techniques, including electrostatic charges and particle ionizers to eliminate nearly all pet dander and pet odors.

What Is CADR?

Even if you’ve only spent a few minutes looking at the best air purifiers for pets, you’ve probably seen one term come up over and over: CADR.

What exactly is CADR?

The acronym stands for Clean Air Delivery Rate, or the measurement of how many cubic feet of air that a purifier is able to process each minute.

For the most part, units with higher CADRs are going to be larger and able to cleaner bigger spaces. When you’re looking at mid-grade and high-end air purifiers, however, you’ll see that many smaller units will still have a high CADR thanks to their enhanced processing powers.

Comparing CADRs is a great way to judge how well different units are going to perform against each other. While the Clean Air Delivery Rate isn’t the only measure of how good of a choice a specific air cleaner is (other features to consider include upgraded technologies, design, and energy consumption), it can be a good baseline to use for comparison.

As a rule of thumb, if you’re looking to purify the air in a bedroom or office, you should aim for a CADR of around 250. For larger living rooms and multi-room spaces, opt for a unit with a CADR of 350.

How Do HEPA Filters Work?

Just about every mid-range and high-end air purifier for pets will advertise that they use HEPA filtration, but what exactly does that mean? First off, HEPA stands for High-Efficiency Particulate Air. It’s the widely accepted standard for residential and commercial air purification. And if you’re suffering from allergies and odors from pets, you absolutely need HEPA filtration.

Not all HEPA filters are the same, however. For maximum results, you need to choose an air purifier that utilizes TrueHEPA or PureHEPA filters. These two air filter types are both certified to trap contaminants as small as 0.3 microns – perfect for stopping pet dander and other microscopic irritants.

HEPA filters use small, interwoven mats of glass fibers to stop even the smallest particles from passing through, while still allowing clean air to flow freely back into your home.

Do I Really Need an Air Purifier for Pets?

If you’re one of the 100 million+ people that are living with animals, yes you probably do need an air purifier, whether it’s to reduce pet odors, or stop pet dander-related allergies dead in their tracks.

It isn’t just for you, however. Investing in the best air purifier for pets that fits into your budget will also improve the air quality for everyone else in your home, even if they aren’t suffering from noticeable allergies. And that’s not to mention the health of your pets who, at closer to ground level, are more susceptible to airborne and subsequently landed contaminants than the rest of us.

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