Brad the Painter is reader-supported. As an Amazon Associate I may earn a commission from qualifying purchases. This costs you nothing extra.

Today’s Best Air Purifiers for Mold, Smoke, Dust, Viruses…Even Paint Smell

The best air purifier is the one I bought for myself. I did not want to spend so much, but now I am glad I did. Others don’t compare. Here are 3 good air purifiers for 3 budgets.

Just above you see the one that I bought, but on this page, I review the best air purifiers today.

They all have strengths but cannot do it all: it’s not quite like working in the NASA High Bay Clean Room (see photo just below).

the best air purifier in the world is one wall in a Nasa clean room
One wall of a Nasa clean room IS the best air purifier in the world. I painted there!!

All 3 units I review here are:

  • capture Coronavirus, mold, allergens wildfire smoke, etc
  • relatively quiet
  • have reasonably priced replacement filters (because they last)
  • capable of removing all or some VOCs and paint smells etc.

Sticker shock? Yes, but serious illness is MUCH MORE EXPENSIVE. Your health has to come first.  The EPA wrote a great PDF on air purifiers. Download one.

We looked at them all, and have eliminated the also-rans. Here are only the best air purifiers based on health considerations.

Health is why I bought the IQAir. I’m not paid by that company to say that. I just want healthy lungs! See me demo my unit in the video at the bottom of the page.

To understand why you need this, read “All About HEPA” post.

Short-List of the Best Air Purifiers Today

Read full reviews below.

  1. IQAir GC HealthPro Plus – made in Switzerland, filters pollutants 100x smaller than normal HEPA and takes out odors as well. Reasonable price for basic models and some very high-end models as well.  There is a compact version of the Plus I really like. Filter links below.
  2. Dri-Eaz HEPA 700 Air Scrubber – Made for restoration pros, hospitals, schools etc. Excellent unit. Filters link below.

  3. Mila Air Purifier   –  For lower budgets, but still a very good machine.  Nice selection of filters (link below).

  4. For small rooms and lower budgets, the AirDoctor 2000, AirDoctore 3000 or the AirDoctore Medify Air MA-112. All have HEPA. Medify air purifiers have no carbon filter for odors.
  5. Lowest Budget, but an OK little unit: the Filtrete Smart (for very small rooms). Hepa filter and even has Alexa/Wi-Fi.

Brad’s Advice: Having owned a high-end air purifier for years, I will say this:
Buy a bigger one than you need and run it on low.
The filters last longer and the machine is far less hard-working because you can run your purifier on slower settings (and it’s quieter too).

Today’s Best Air Purifiers

IQAir, is the best on the market, hands down.

Best for the money:

Of the models they make, I recommend either of the two models in the IQAir Health Pro Series is designed to filter out a wide range of gaseous organic and inorganic chemicals. [If you have too much money, you can get the IQAir CleanZone, which has the same filter types as the HealthPro Plus, but is much more quiet and cleans a larger area (4,000 sq. ft.). And it’s prettier.]

I don’t recommend the GC MulitGas unit. It has a slightly different filtering system and costs a few hundred dollars more, and while it is good, it is not as good HealthPro series. (My opinion.)

Why get a HealthPro? It’s the HyperHEPA filters. They remove particles down to .003 microns! Wow. Normal HEPA does not do this (.3 microns, 100x larger).

“HyperHEPA” air filters are activated carbon, gas cartridges, and post-filter sleeves.

Here is a list of all the air purification filters for the IQAair models I recommend.

You get what you pay for and this has a lot to offer.

It does, as verified by myself, remove odors from paint. Amazing. See me work it here.

I most recommend:

HealthPro Plus

Filters 99.5% of particles smaller than .003 microns. Just wow. Also filters gases and odors. Moves 40 cubic feet per minute at lowest speed, up to 300 CFM at highest.

I list the filters on this page.

HealthPro Compact

Does all that the above “Plus” does, but does not filter gases and odors (no V5 filter for odors).

Uses only two filters: PreMax and HyperHepa, which is probably all you need.

Uses the same filters as the above Plus model, except for the V5. You cannot use carbon filters in the Compact.

IQ-AIR three stage filtering
IQ-AIR three-stage filtering

Note on filters:

Forget about the “time” of replacement. When you replace depends on how much you use it.

Typical needs: 10 hrs/day on speed 3 (low), the pre-filter will go 1.5 years, the HyperHepa 3-4 years.

Designed for spaces up to 1100-1200 sq ft.

My advice on filters:  

Buy at the time of sale: Always have one set in the closet

A nice video

Dri-Eaz HEPA 700 Air Scrubber

This Dri-Eaz 700 is the pro’s choice as the best portable air filter for mold removal, restoration, remediation, etc.

  • Highly portable and lightweight
  • Made in the USA
  • Monitors HEPA filter life so you can anticipate when you will need a new one
  • Only 1.5 amps on the Low setting
  • Rugged housing
  • Limited lifetime warranty

I like to go with professional equipment when I spend this much. 

This air scrubber can filter all of the air in a 7,000 cu. ft. space –wait for it– SIX times over in one hour.


It can remove odors/fumes with the optional activated carbon filter and 1″ prefilter before the HEPA filter.

There’s an app to monitor and adjust the scrubber remotely.

best portable air purifier used in schools as shown in this corporate shot
The best portable air purifier used in schools as shown in this corporate shot

It can process (low to high) 275-700 cubic feet per minute of air.

It does have an optional activated carbon filter that adsorbs odors and fumes
ead here about how you configure your filters.

Nice to have a phone app that remotely monitors and controls it: (Apple here and Google Play here).

The unit comes with the HEPA filter only. I’d recommend the prefilter to make the more expensive HEPA filter last longer.

  • Included Filters: 2-in. MERV 8 Pre-Filter and Primary HEPA Filter
  • Replacement filters are very reasonably priced because they last so long in normal settings.


The older 500 model was not hospital-compliant without adding a filter. The 700 is.

Weight: 42 lbs. Bit heavy.

They have a great video that will make you want it!

Medium Budget: The Mila Air Purifier Review

See this amazing little unit here.

Okay, made in China, breaking my rule, but wait…

  • Choose your level of filtration (up to H 14)
  • VOC’s and odors are (mostly) carbon-filtered, depending on choice
  • Lightweight
  • Phone app
  • Most quiet of any machine in my review (24 db) on low

Detects when you enter the room and switches to low and quiet. The smartphone app runs at the level for each room size. Both are very nice features.

They have 7 types of filters (use only one at a time).

I have researched these and put them all on this Mila Air Purifier Filters page.

Designed for a 1,000 sq-ft room…but that might be a stretch for this little unit.


Looks like R2D2, without the lip.

The name? After the founder’s daughter. Nice.

Currently testing, coming soon, my reviews of:




Low Budget: Filtrete Smart Air Purifier (5 sizes)

For a very nice price, you do get HEPA in all models.

If you click on a product and it’s “Unavailable”, try the product without extra filters. You can buy filters via the links below.

“Table Top”

BIG TIP: The “Large Room” air purifier is the best deal for the money, for rooms about 300 sq. ft. (17′ square).

Four Models
  1. A small “Table Top Device” is for a desktop (small spaces) like your immediate cubicle/desk etc. Hepa for about 50 dollars. Wow. Does not have “True Hepa” (but filters most junk. Uses the A/D/H replacement filter.
  2. The “Medium Room” is for rooms about 150 sq. ft. (10′ x 15′). Under a hundred clams. Nice, but the “Large” is the same price and pushes more air through. True Hepa, but does not work with Alexa. Uses the F2 replacement filter.

    “Large Room”
  3. The “Large Room” costs about the same as the “Medium”, so livin’ large is a no-brainer. Uses the F2 replacement filter.
  4. The “Extra Large Room” …Okay, 350 sq. ft. is not ‘extra large’ but for the price, it’s the best you will find for that size room. True Hepa, but does not work with Alexa. Uses the F2 replacement filter.

I say the Large Room is the best deal.

Let me know if you get one?

Here is the New York Times article on air purifiers in schools, keeping them open in Covid virus times.

Any comments?

Leave a Comment