The best air purifiers available in Australia

Everything you need to know about the best air purifiers available in Australia (and what makes them the best).

Best air purifier overall
Philips Series 1000 Air Purifier
Philips Series 1000 Air Purifier
4 out of 5 stars
4
Discounted to
$272.50
Type
Large area purifier
Filtering
Pre-filter, Active Carbon and HEPA Filter
App or Smart features
No
Best cheap purifier
Welcare Desktop Air Purifier
Welcare Desktop Air Purifier
3.5 out of 5 stars
3.5
From
$169.95
Type
Small room purifier
Filtering
Pre-filter, Active Carbon and HEPA Filter
App or Smart features
No
Best purifier for smart homes
Samsung Air Purifier
Samsung AX5500 Air Purifier
3.8 out of 5 stars
3.75
From
$599
Type
Large area purifier
Filtering
Pre-filter, Active Carbon and HEPA Filter
App or Smart features
Yes, Samsung SmartThings
Best purifier fan
Dyson Hot + Cool Purifying Fan-Heater
Dyson Pure Hot+Cool
3 out of 5 stars
3
From
$699
Type
Purifier fan-heater
Filtering
HEPA filter
App or Smart features
Yes, Dyson Link
Best bedside purifier
Dyson Pure Cool Me
Dyson Pure Cool Me
3 out of 5 stars
3
From
$324
Type
Small room purifier-fan
Filtering
HEPA filter + Active Carbon Filter
App or Smart features
No
Brodie Fogg
Editorial Lead
Read More
May 31, 2022
10 min read

The 2019-2020 Australian bushfires led to a huge spike in interest for air purifiers. The smoke haze became so bad that many couldn’t escape it, even indoors. Naturally, many began researching solutions to clear the air in homes and offices and air purifiers began to sell out across the country. Unfortunately, what makes for a good-quality and efficient air purifier isn't regulated by any governing authority and there are many models available that simply aren't equipped to deal with bushfire smoke. That's why researching your options is so important.

Outside of the bushfire season, people typically use air purifiers to combat everyday airborne allergens and toxins. Pet dander, pollen, and dust are just a few examples of nasty particles that can cause you grief. A good air purifier will filter out all that and more if you know which questions to ask before purchasing.

How much coverage do you need? Some are suited to smaller bedrooms but spend a little more money, and you could get something with enough grunt to cover an entire apartment or office. Are features like scheduling and smart home compatibility important to you? Does the air purifier in your shopping cart have True HEPA filtering? And how much will you need to spend on filter replacements? (and how often?). We’ve taken all of these questions into consideration when reviewing some of the best air purifiers you can purchase in Australia.

Our top pick

What is the best air purifier you can buy?

Thankfully, you don't need to spend a fortune to get an air purifier that covers most of the basic needs we've outlined in the introduction above. There are some premium options that offer fancy bells and whistles, such as advanced smart home and automation capabilities and Air Quality Index (AQI) tracking but for a bona fide HEPA-grade air purifier, you don't need to look any further than the Philips Series 1000 air purifier, which is available at a much more generous price now that it has been on the market for a few years.

Compare the best air purifiers

Here are some of the best air purifiers we've reviewed that you can buy in Australia.
Model
Price
More info
Type
Coverage
Filtering
App or Smart Features
PM2.5 readout?
Philips Series 1000 Air PurifierPhilips Series 1000 Air Purifier
From
$279
Large area purifier63²Pre-filter, Active Carbon and HEPA Filter
Icon No  Dark
Icon Yes  Dark
Welcare Desktop Air PurifierWelcare Desktop Air Purifier
From
$199.95
Small room purifier12.36²Pre-filter, Active Carbon and HEPA Filter
Icon No  Dark
Icon No  Dark
Samsung Air PurifierSamsung AX5500/AX500K air purifier
From
$599
Large area purifier60²Pre-filter, Active Carbon and HEPA Filter
Icon Yes  DarkSamsung SmartThings
Icon Yes  Dark
Dyson Hot + Cool Purifying Fan-HeaterDyson Pure Hot+Cool Purifier Fan
From
$699
Purifier-fanN/AHEPA filter
Icon Yes  DarkDyson Link
Icon Yes  Dark
Dyson Pure Cool MeDyson Pure Cool Me Personal Purifier Fan
From
$324
Purifier-fanN/AHEPA filter + Active Carbon Filter
Icon No  DarkNo
Icon No  Dark
Mitsubishi Air Purifier Product ImageMitsubishi MA-E85R-A Air Purifier
From
$1199
Large area purifier60²Pre-filter, Active Carbon and HEPA Filter
Icon No  Dark
Icon Yes  Dark

Best air purifier overall

Philips Series 1000 Air Purifier

Price
From
$279
Coverage
Up to 63m²
Noise
Up to 33 decibels
HEPA filtering
Yes

The Philips Series 1000 has been the most impressive air purifier we've reviewed so far. Its top-notch performance is only made sweeter by its affordable price tag (and reasonable asking price for filter replacements).

Not only is it a generous price (with HEPA filter replacements costing $59.95 each) but it’s also one of the quietest and covers more ground than some more expensive air purifiers. It might not offer a PM2.5 readout (important for monitoring smoke levels) like some pricier models, and there are no scheduling or app monitoring features but it does offer a general air quality indicator with a simple colour-coded readout (red’s bad, purple is unhealthy but getting better, blue-violet is almost there and blue is fine and dandy).

WiFi connectivity and companion apps are important features, but smarter features fetch a higher price tag. The Philips Series 1000 does everything a reliable air purifier should do at a friendlier price than most.

Best cheap air purifier

Welcare Desktop Air Puriifer

Price
From
$199.95
Coverage
Up to 12.36²
Noise
Up to 50 decibels
HEPA filtering
Yes
Welcare Desktop Air Purifier

Despite the name, the Welcare Desktop Air Purifier is far too large to fit on the average home workstation but it's still a solid little performer with up to 12.36² room coverage. Like the Philips Series 1000 Air Purifier before it, the Welcare Desktop Air Purifier's distinct lack of WiFi or app features are disappointing but justified by its more affordable price, coming in below $200. We've found it to be more suitable as a bedside purifier companion, even if the little turbine is capable of producing quite a racket. 

It's not easy to find a true HEPA air purifier in this price range, and it's simple colour-based air quality indicator will suit many just fine.

Best purifier for smart homes

Samsung Air Purifier (AX5500)

Price
From
$599
Coverage
Up to 60²
Noise
Up to 50 decibels (auto)
HEPA filtering
Yes
Samsung Air Purifier

It’s hard to make an air purifier exciting but making it a little bit smarter is a breeze.

The Samsung AX5500 ticks all the right boxes for a connected air purifier (True HEPA filtering with PM10, PM2.5 and PM1.0 readouts), but its user-friendly app and smart home capabilities (like Google Home and Samsung SmartThings support) give it the edge over a lot of the competition.

There are some missed opportunities to educate users on what all those figures in the app mean but we still appreciate the extra data. The Samsung AX5500’s biggest downfall is its price tag (especially considering its unremarkable 60m2 coverage) but for some, the added comfort of remote monitoring and smart scheduling will make the higher price tag worth it.

Best air purifier-fan

Dyson Pure Hot + Cool Purifying Fan Heater

Price
From
$699
Coverage
N/A
Noise
Up to 64 decibels
HEPA filtering
Yes

If you’re already a fan of Dyson’s air convection tech, its range of cooling, heating and purifying hybrids might be the best pick for you. As our reviewer Jacqui noted, the Dyson Pure Hot Cool Purifying Fan Heater might be a little too pricey and a little too noisy but it’s one of the few hybrid solutions on the market that will give you a PM2.5 readout (smoke), app monitoring and scheduling and remote control.

The ability to check the air quality of your home while you’re at work or on holiday is invaluable if you have small pets or children at home while you’re away. For many people, that reassurance will be worth the price tag alone.

And to top it all off, you also get the added benefit of both cooling and heating, which is going to be essential as we journey further into Summer.

Best air purifier for bedrooms

Dyson Pure Cool Me

Price
From
$324
Coverage
N/A
Noise
Up to 63.3 decibels
HEPA filtering
Yes
Dyson Pure Cool Me Purifier

Let's get one thing straight: we don't recommend the Dyson Pure Cool Me as an air purifier alone. Sure it offers a little extra support for filtering out smoke and dust but it's more of a personal fan than it is a fully-fledged air purifier. Dyson doesn't advertise the Pure Cool Me's coverage range but it's intended for smaller areas, such as bedrooms and nurseries. It will also set you back $320 - $499, which is a small fortune considering its limited capability. With that said, it is a superb little cooling/purifying solution for your office or bedside table if you can justify the price.

Dyson also means it when it says this is a 'personal purifying fan' and the 70-degree oscillation arc will make sure it's you and you only copping its cool breeze. If that's likely to cause a bit of drama around who gets the Dyson and on what days, you might be better off investing in something with a more generous airflow.

How we rate the best air purifiers in Australia

We’ve reviewed several air purifiers already but to cover the scope of what’s available out there, we analysed the price, coverage, HEPA filter efficiency, filter replacement cost and availability, alongside less important nice-to-have features, such as app control, and scheduling.

If a manufacturer wasn’t transparent enough with its testing and filtering efficiency, they were removed from the list.

We also removed all products that used meaningless marketing jargon, such as 'HEPA-type', 'HEPA-like' and any 'Permanent HEPA' brand that didn’t require filter replacements. Manufacturers also lost marks if they didn’t specify coverage size (an important consideration). Air purifiers that were transparent about their PM2.5 filtering and CADR (clean air delivery rate) were also given bonus points.

We disregarded any product where there was a conflict of information (e.g. products that make simultaneous claims of 'HEPA' and 'EPA' filtering or mixed messaging on coverage).

We’ve also removed products that aren’t currently available in Australia, such as the Rabbit Air MinusA2.

Lastly, we removed manufacturers that didn’t provide enough information about replacement filters. For example, the TruSens range, which is stocked by JB HI-FI doesn’t list any information on filter replacement pricing and when we got in touch with the customer care centre, we were told to get in touch with a local reseller. JB HI-FI also doesn’t stock replacement filters on its website.

Overall, that left us with a small list of options for air purifiers available in Australia.

Frequently asked questions about air purifiers

Answering some of the most common questions people have before buying an air purifier.
Absolutely. As we’ve discussed above, some work better than others of course. Air purifiers with HEPA-grade filters and pre-filtering do the best job of filtering out small and large particles but most air purifiers (unless they are super dodgy) will improve the quality of the air in your house or apartment somewhat. It’s just important that you buy the right air purifier for your needs (e.g. health concerns vs. general wellbeing) and living space (the square-metre size of your room).

Yes. An air purifier that uses both HEPA filtering for fine particles and a pre-filter for larger particles might be your best defence against dangerous smoke levels in the home.

HEPA filters can catch particles as small as 0.3 micrometres with 99.97% efficiency, which covers most airborne toxins and allergens. They will do a reasonable job of catching larger nasties too. However, for the most efficient filtering of smoke particles (measuring at 2.5 micrometres or PM2.5), a combination of HEPA and pre-filtering is most efficient.

For example, the Philips and Samsung range of purifiers use an Active Carbon pre-filter that can catch gases and other TVOCS (Total Volatile Organic Compounds).

Some air purifiers (such as Samsung's AX5500 Air Purifier), are even specifically designed to give you a PM2.5 readout so you can tell exactly how much smoke’s managed to creep its way into your house.

Air purifiers are not a panacea for all your air pollutant problems and for people living with allergies or respiratory conditions like asthma, the 0.03% of particles that slip through can do some damage. Read on for more tips on keeping your house allergen and smoke-free.

HEPA, or High-Efficiency Particulate Air, grading is the measurement standard for air filtering. HEPA filters are often used in medical settings to minimise the risk of spreading airborne viruses and bacteria. Usually, medical-grade HEPA filters are used in conjunction with anti-microbial UV (ultraviolet) filters that eliminate bacteria and viruses caught by the HEPA filter.

HEPA filters are also commonly used in high-quality vacuum cleaners for the same purposes, trapping finer particles instead of kicking them into the air.

There are plenty of air purifier solutions that claim to have HEPA-graded filtering. However, since there is no regulatory authority that monitors the claims made by air purifier manufacturers. This makes buying an efficient air purifier difficult as many domestic solutions use “HEPA-like” filters that don’t adhere to the medical grading system.

Others claim to use HEPA grade filtering but fail to offer more crucial information, like the filtering efficiency and coverage. Others simply don’t offer any kind of pre-filtering for larger particles such as smoke.

The short answer? You don’t clean a HEPA filter. While some brands claim to have washable HEPA filters, your best bet will always be to replace your HEPA filter. We realise that sounds incredibly wasteful and expensive but washing HEPA filters disintegrates the ultra-fine fibres that catch all the dust and air pollution so you can’t count on the 99.97% efficiency.

This is especially pertinent if you’re using an air purifier for medical purposes. Washing a filter could put you at risk.

If the indicator on your air purifier is telling you it’s time for a replacement and you don’t have a spare filter on hand, you can try cleaning the air purity sensor with a cotton tip or, if you must, giving the filter a light vacuum with a soft brush head.

Certain brands have set (and publicly available) sustainability goals. For example, most Philips air purifiers are made with over 90% recycled materials.

Megaphone
What to look for when shopping for an air purifier

Here's what to look out for when you're buying an air purifier in Australia:

  • Avoid “HEPA-like” or “HEPA-style” filters
  • Avoid “Permanent HEPA” or “washable filters”
  • Check for room coverage (e.g. square metre coverage)
  • Check price and availability of filter replacements
  • Check for PM2.5 filtering claims
  • Check if it has pre-filtering
  • Check for certification and testing by organisations such as AHAM and ECARF

More tips on reducing exposure to bushfire smoke

In the event of a bushfire or any other event that reduces the air quality in your area, there are a few extra steps you can take to help reduce your exposure to smoke and dust .

Unfortunately, without sealing your home, fine particles like smoke will always find a way inside. While completely hermetically sealing your home won’t be an option for most Australians (especially renters), there are a few steps you can take to minimise air leakage. The first and most obvious is closing all doors and windows (especially where an air purifier is present). Next, consider using door snakes (or draft stoppers) around the house to minimise the airflow through the gaps. It’s not going to be airtight but it’s a simple, budget-friendly solution that’s bound to help. Next, look for any errant gaps around windows and doors. If spot a gap where smoke and particles can enter, you can always use a silicone sealant (like Sealys from Bunnings) to temporarily plug the gaps (though this probably isn’t recommended in rental properties). There are also more rental-friendly tapes, such as Rust-Oleum available through hardware stores. It’s also worth checking things like cat flaps, architraves, fixed vents, floorboards, chimneys and downlights for air leakage. For a more comprehensive guide on sealing your home, head over to yourhome.gov.au.
Yep, as tough as it sounds, vacuuming more regularly is a must for people living with lung disease or respiratory issues. It’s not going to help with the airborne smoke but when that smoke settles, it’s best to catch it before it embeds itself too deep in your carpet. Vacuuming more regularly is particularly important for people renting in apartments where the carpet hasn’t been replaced for a long time. Lastly, shoot for a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter if you can manage to track one down. If vacuuming every single day sounds like a chore you're just never getting around to, you might want to consider getting some automated assistance with a robot vacuum cleaner.
Out and about, a face mask could help limit your exposure to bushfire smoke but not just any facemask sold at the chemist or supermarket. To effectively filter out bushfire smoke, you will need a P2-grade face mask (typically sold at hardware stores). You also need to check the packaging and make sure the mask you’re buying is capable of filtering out PM2.5 particles. You also need to make sure that the mask is fitted correctly. Any gaps will allow toxic bushfire smoke to enter, rendering the mask near useless.
Worried about how much energy you'll consume running an air purifier all day, every day? Compared to a typical air conditioning system, the air purifiers we've tested are surprisingly energy efficient. Still, if it's the smoke you are worried about and not everyday allergens, we'd recommend downloading a quality weather monitoring app so you can schedule your air purifier accordingly.
Light Bulb
Build your smart home

Looking to add more automated gadgets to your smart home? Check out a few of our round-ups for some of the smartest home helpers in the market:

Brodie Fogg
Written by
Brodie Fogg
Brodie Fogg is the Australian editorial lead at Reviews.org. He has covered consumer tech, telecommunications, video games, streaming and entertainment for over five years at websites like WhistleOut and Finder and can be found sharing streaming recommendations at 7NEWS every month.

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