The Best Air Purifier With Washable Filter For Great Air Quality

Ian Mutuli
Updated on
Ian Mutuli

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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Are you looking for a means to improve your indoor air quality? Then try using air purifiers! They safeguard homes from mold spores, airborne pollutants, chemical gases, and household odors. But since replacing air purifier filters frequently is hectic and costly, you can use washable filters. Our article explores the best air purifier with a washable filter for great air quality.

The best air purifier with a washable filter we reviewed is the Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier. It purified a large area well using its 3-stage filtration that contained a True HEPA filter, the latest PlasmaWave technology, and a washable carbon filter. Our second best choice is BlueAir 211 Air Purifier which only came second because it could clean medium to large rooms and was aesthetically pleasing. The third air purifier with a washable filter we selected is the Blueair Blue Pure 411 Air Purifier since it uses two fabric pre-filters and a collapsible carbon filter to eliminate odor, smoke, and mold.

Pros and Cons of Buying Air Purifiers with Washable Filters

Pros:

  • Reusable filters can catch airborne particles such as dirt, dander, dust, pollen, and spores.
  • Saves lots of money by not purchasing replacement filters
  • The maintenance of the washable pre-filter does not need a lot of time.
  • You can clean the washable air filters as often as you would like.
  • Frequent cleaning only makes them highly efficient.
  • Comes with a fancy light that can be suitable for uniquely lit evenings
  • Perfect for areas with mold or microorganisms causing allergies
  • Very silent air purifier during use
  • Has a warranty of 2 years

Cons:

  • Most air purifiers with washable air purifier filters eliminate up to 2 microns and are not larger. This makes removing allergens, viruses, or bacteria difficult.
  • Air purifiers with washable filters in huge rooms make them dirty faster, and more cleaning is needed.
  • Cleaning some filters (e.g., carbon filters) can eventually destroy them, reducing their effectiveness.

Our Top Picks: The Best Air Purifier with Washable Filter

1. Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier with True HEPA, PlasmaWave, and Odor Reducing Washable

Sale
Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier with True HEPA, PlasmaWave...
  • True HEPA filter captures 99.97% of airborne pollutants; dust...
  • Washable AOC Carbon Filter, made from activated carbon granulars...
  • PlasmaWave acts as a permanent filter to safely break down odor,...
  • Smart Sensors gauge the air and our Auto Mode adjusts the fan to...
  • CADR rated for 360 square feet room size. Suitable for medium and...

The Winix 5500-2 air purifier is the best among all the Winix air purifiers. It was a great choice; we sought a wide area filter. Also, this model used a 3-stage filtration that contained a True HEPA filter, the latest PlasmaWave technology, and a washable carbon filter. These three filtration stages helped trap about 99% of airborne allergens and boost the purifier's performance. Additionally, it got rid of air pollutants that we could breathe in. When the filter needed to be replaced, an indicator light went on.

This air purifier also came with a washable Advanced Odour Control (AOC) carbon filter to add more protection to the HEPA filter. Besides, it left fresh scents in our rooms, removing household odors. It was an optional filtration measure that we could switch on or off.

Image Credits: amazon.com

Since this model came with a permanent pre-filter, we cleaned it after every two weeks. On the other hand, the carbon filter should be washed every three months. We, however, replaced the filters every twelve months with the help of a filter replacement indicator.

Image Credits: amazon.com

One of its noteworthy features was Auto Mode. It tested the air quality and adjusted the fan as required. It also had a Smart Sensor, which worked when Auto Mode was used. These smart sensors detected lighting levels and automatically adjusted the LED intensity and the fan speed to match the environment.

Furthermore, it came with four different speed settings. This enabled us to set the speed limit to Low, Medium, High, or Turbo. It also changed the color to show the air quality; hence we always knew why there was a different fan speed. This model is ideal for individuals who want an air purifier with a washable filter for their mid-sized to large rooms. It worked well to remove dust, chemicals, and also odors.

Image Credits: amazon.com

This all-rounder purifier with washable filters could cover up to 360 square feet (33.45 sq. meters). Even though most air purifiers with washable filters are silent enough to use in bedrooms, this Winix 5500-2 model was the quietest. It was designed to fine-tune the lighting. Similarly, when left in Auto Mode with lights off, it automatically shifted to Sleep Mode. This reduced the fan speed and faded the lights to avoid disturbance at night. Included was a remote control for the convenience of changing settings from anywhere in our room. Lastly, it came with a 1-year warranty.

Pros:

  • Perfect for Large Rooms
  • Built to last
  • Has a Sleep Mode for Silent work with no disturbance
  • The price is not that high if you consider all the features
  • LED indicator easily shows the air quality
  • Easy to clean
  • Simple to maintain

Cons:

  • No color options, only black
  • Filters need to be regularly cleaned
  • Heavy and huge design
  • Costly replaceable filters
  • The Turbo setting may be loud for some users
  • Switches automatically to night mode when lights go out, even during the day
  • Only the pre-filter is washable

2. Blueair Blue Pure 211+ Air Purifier

Sale
BLUEAIR Air Purifier Large Room, Air Cleaner for Dust...
  • SIMPLE ONE-BUTTON CONTROL: Easily adjust fan as-needed with one...
  • CLEAN AIR IN MINUTES: Blueair's HEPASilent technology, delivers...
  • ONE OF THE QUIESTEST AIR PURIFIERS: Quieter (31 dB) than whisper...
  • COMBAT ALLERGENS: Helps reduce allergens and pollutants that...
  • REMOVES ODOR & PARTICLES DOWN TO 0.1 MICRON: Ideal for smoke &...

The Blue Pure Air 211+ cleaner is ideal for medium to large rooms. It came with a color customization feature which made it not look like an air purifier with its whole aesthetic. Its outside pre-filters were available in five different colors, and it was up to us to get a color that matched our interior decor. Included in the kit are dark blue and grey pre-filters. We could also purchase other colors separately.

Image Credits: amazon.com

This air purifier with washable filters competently cleansed the air for medium-sized to large rooms. It covered an area of 400-600 sq. Ft. (37.16 sq. metres-55.74 sq. meters) with the help of a 3-stage filtration system.

These included:

– The washable fabric pre-filter was the outer filter that caught the big contaminants. For example, dust mites, hair, or fur.

Meanwhile, the particle filter helped to eliminate irritants like allergens, pollen, mold spores, and even pet dander. This helped to reduce air congestion.

Lastly, the carbon filter eliminated odors and other gases. Therefore, the filter system of this Blue Pure model eliminated 99% of the air pollutants. All the filters were reusable. It was suggested that we replace them every six months.

The CADR rate of this air purifier with washable filters was 350, which helped to eliminate nasty particles or smells from the air. It worked at a rate of 350 cubic feet per minute. This boosted filtration and ensured no escape from pollutants because of the cleaning power.

We could use it either day or night because it was very quiet. The noise level was a significant aspect of the air purifier. This Blue Pure had a low noise level, even at the highest speed. We only had to switch the device to the low setting at night and relax. Finally, this purifier was very energy efficient and saved us a lot of money.

Pros:

  • Stylish and sleek design that does not interfere with your room’s decor
  • Very powerful
  • Air is drawn out in 360 degrees
  • It is a quiet operation
  • It has a relatively high CADR
  • Compact and portable
  • Simple to set up and use
  • Energy star rated
  • Low in power consumption, only uses 1.5 Watts
  • Color customization
  • Five color options for the pre-filter

Cons:

  • Quite expensive
  • Quite large
  • Has very high operating costs
  • Not the right fit for getting rid of allergens from the air
  • Only the pre-filter is washable

3. Blueair Blue Pure 411 Air Purifier with a Washable Filter

Sale
BLUEAIR Bedroom Air Purifier, Small Room Air Cleaner...
  • SIMPLE ONE-BUTTON CONTROL: Easily adjust fan as-needed with one...
  • CLEAN AIR IN MINUTES: Blueair's HEPASilent technology, delivers...
  • CERTIFIED QUIETEST AIR PURIFIER: Quiet Mark approved - quieter...
  • ASTHMA plus ALLERGY: Removes 99.99% of pollen, helping reduce...
  • REMOVES ODOR & PARTICLES DOWN TO 0.1 MICRON: Ideal for smoke &...

The Blueair Blue Pure 411 with a washable HEPA filter is on our list since it uses two fabric pre-filters and a collapsible carbon filter to eliminate odor, smoke, and mold. It functions via electrostatic filtration, removing 99.97% of airborne particles on five air changes an hour in a 161-square-foot room. Its sound levels are 17 – 46dB making it the ideal bedroom choice.

Image Credits: amazon.com

The best feature of this unit is its 360 airflow that enables better air distribution. Additionally, it has easy-to-use controls consisting of a smile button that you can use t turn on or control the settings.

Pros:

  • Great for small to medium-sized rooms
  • Three-part filtration system
  • Energy Star certified

Cons:

  • HEPA filters emit a strange odor

4. Honeywell AirGenius 5 Air Cleaner

Honeywell HFD320 AirGenius 5 Air Purifier Cleaner/Odor...
  • TOWER AIR PURIFIER – Help make the air in your home cleaner...
  • HELPS REMOVE MICROSCOPIC AIRBORNE PARTICLES - This quiet air...
  • EFFECTIVE AIR CLEANING AND CIRCULATION –Honeywell Air Purifiers...
  • PERMANENT FILTERS – Home air purifier includes a Permanent,...
  • A BRAND YOU CAN TRUST – Backed with a 5-year warranty,...

Honeywell is a very reliable brand for purifiers, dehumidifiers, or heaters. This is an efficient and easy-to-use model. This air purifier with a washable filter was very effective as it had multiple layers of filters. It came with three cleaning layers: a pre-filter, a main filter, and an odor-reducing filter.

Image Credits: amazon.com

For other people, it was the top air purifier with a washable filter because of the iFD filter it used. Also, it eliminated 99% of particles in our air. All three filters were washable. This purifier was ideal for people looking to purify a medium-sized room of approximately 250 square feet (23.23 sq. meters). Moreover, it was perfect for anybody who kept pets as it reduced allergens and gases.

Honeywell AirGenius 5 Air Cleaner came with smart touchscreen controls that gave it an exclusive look and made it easy to read. We could choose from 5 different cleaning levels on its touchscreen according to our preferences or needs. The five cleaning levels included Allergens, Sleep, Max, Germs, and General Clean. Also, it was technically progressive and had a sleek look to it. It was silent and offered a 2-12-hour automatic shut-off function for added convenience.

Pros:

  • Automatic shut-off timer
  • Energy Star rating
  • Five levels of air cleaning

Cons:

  • Costly as compared to regular air purifier

5. Airdog X5 Air Purifier

Airdog X5 Air Purifier for Home Large Room, Up to...
  • [Nanoscale Active Filtration] Rather than merely collecting, the...
  • [Patented Washable Filter] Do you know that HEPA filters that are...
  • [Larger Purification Coverage] Designed with a wide 360° air...
  • [Knowing Your Home’s Air Quality] With the built-in air quality...
  • [Quieter Than a Whisper] The Airdog washable filter air purifier...

Airdog X5 air purifier has permanent TPA filters, which are fully washable and reusable. It utilizes electrostatic filtration to eliminate even the tiniest pollutants.

Image Credits: amazon.com

The X5 has powerful motors that allow two complete air changes an hour in a 900 square feet room. We found the air purifier highly user-friendly, with an Auto mode, which monitored the air quality in our space and adjusted the purifier'spurifier's four fan speeds to combat pollutants. It also had a handy sleep mode that automatically shut off the lights.

The only downfall we experienced was a slight drop in CADR or room coverage when we compared this unit to others in its price range. However, it is a great air purifier with permanent or washable filters. 

Pros:

  • Advanced filters eliminate a greater range of particle sizes.
  • Easy to wash and reinstall filters
  • It comes with a handy air quality indicator
  • Runs whisper quiet at its lowest speeds

Cons:

  • On the expensive side
  • Quite large, so it will need adequate space

Factors to Consider When Buying the Best Air Purifier with Washable Filters

When purchasing an air purifier with washable filters, there are factors you should consider to ensure that you get the best one for your needs. Some of these factors include:

1. Filter Efficiency

The efficiency of the washable filter is a crucial factor to consider. The filter should be able to remove a high percentage of pollutants and particles from the air, such as dust, smoke, pollen, and pet dander.

2. Room Size

Consider the room size where you plan to use the air purifier. Choose an air purifier with the appropriate coverage area for your room size.

3. Noise Level

Some air purifiers produce a lot of noise when they are operating. Consider the noise level of the air purifier and choose one that produces minimal noise if you plan to use it in a bedroom or other quiet space.

4. Maintenance

Choose an air purifier that is easy to clean and maintain. Look for an air purifier with washable filters that can be easily removed, cleaned, and replaced.

5. Cost

Consider the cost of the air purifier and ensure that it fits within your budget. Also, factor in the cost of replacement filters and energy usage.

6. Brand Reputation

Look for an air purifier with good reviews and ratings from a reputable brand. A reputable brand ensures you're buying a reliable product that performs well.

7. Additional Features

Some air purifiers have features like smart controls, air quality sensors, and timers. Consider the important features to you and choose an air purifier that offers those features.

Frequently Asked Questions on the Best Air Purifier with Washable Filters

1. Is there a washable filter for air purifiers?

Yes, many air purifiers on the market feature washable filters. These filters are made to be cleaned and reused, which can save you money in the long run and reduce waste.

Washable filters typically come in two main types:

  1. Washable pre-filters: These are the first line of defense in an air purifier, capturing larger particles like dust, pet hair, and pollen. They are often made of washable foam or mesh materials you can easily rinse clean with water.
  2. Washable HEPA filters: HEPA filters are designed to capture very small particles, such as smoke, bacteria, and viruses. Some air purifiers feature washable HEPA filters that can be cleaned by gently washing with water or using a vacuum cleaner.

It's important to note that not all air purifiers come with washable filters, so be sure to check the product specifications before making a purchase. Additionally, even washable filters will eventually wear out and must be replaced, so follow the manufacturer's recommended cleaning schedule and replacement guidelines.

2. Is it worth buying air purifiers with washable filters?

Depending on your specific needs and usage patterns, air purifiers with washable filters can be worth it. However, suppose you're willing to clean the filter regularly and are comfortable with potentially sacrificing some level of air-purifying effectiveness. In that case, an air purifier with a washable filter can be a good investment. However, if you are looking for the highest level of air purification or if convenience is a top priority, you may be better off with an air purifier that uses disposable filters.

3. Are HEPA air purifier filters washable and reusable?

HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) filters are made with tightly woven fibers designed to capture the tiniest particles, including dust, pollen, and other airborne contaminants. While some air purifiers have washable pre-filters or other filters that can be cleaned and reused, most HEPA filters are not washable or reusable.

Washing the filter can damage the fibers, making them less effective at capturing pollutants and reducing their lifespan. In addition, washing a HEPA filter may not be enough to remove all the trapped particles, which can lead to the release of pollutants back into the air.

Therefore, it is generally recommended to replace HEPA filters according to the manufacturer's recommendations, which typically range from every six months to every two years, depending on your home's usage and air quality.

4. Is a washable filter better than a HEPA filter?

It depends on what you want to achieve with the filter and what contaminants you're dealing with.

Washable filters can be beneficial because they can be reused multiple times, saving money in the long run. However, they generally have a lower efficiency than HEPA filters when removing very small particles such as allergens, bacteria, and viruses. Washable filters better suit larger particles like pet dander, dust, and debris.

On the other hand, HEPA filters are highly efficient at trapping tiny particles, making them the best choice for people with allergies or respiratory issues. However, they need to be replaced regularly, which can be costly.

In general, if you're looking for the most efficient filtration for small particles, a HEPA filter is likely the better choice. A washable filter may be suitable if you're dealing with larger particles and want a more cost-effective option. It's also worth noting that some filters combine washable and HEPA filtration technology for optimal performance.

5. How often should you wash a washable air filter?

The frequency with which you clean a washable air filter depends on several factors, including the type of filter, the environment in which it is used, and the usage level. We recommend washing a washable air filter every three to six months or more frequently if used in a particularly dusty or polluted environment or more heavily than usual.

However, it is important to refer to the manufacturer's instructions for specific guidance on how often to wash the filter. Some filters may require more frequent washing, while others may be able to go longer periods between washes.

Additionally, inspecting the filter regularly and cleaning it as needed is important. If the filter appears dirty or clogged with debris, it should be washed or cleaned immediately, even if it has not been three to six months since the last cleaning. This will ensure that the filter is working effectively and helping to maintain good indoor air quality.

Ian Mutuli

About the author

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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