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The Best UV Air Purifier of 2021 – Our Top 8 Picks

By Nitrotech

Having clean air in your home is important. It reduces the transmission of bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens and eliminates that "stuffy" feeling common in many homes. One fantastic way to immediately improve your home's indoor air quality (IAQ) is with a UV air purifier.

UV air purifiers suck in the air within your home, blast it with UV-C light, and exhaust it back into the home. The UV-C light is at a specific wavelength that kills viruses, germs, bacteria, mold, and more.

Along with disabling these pathogens, many UV air purifiers remove volatile organic compounds (VOCs), too, further improving the IAQ of your home. Continue reading to learn about the best UV air purifiers and how they help your home!

Disclosure: We may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases. This does not impact our reviews and comparisons. All opinions are our own we pride ourselves on keeping our articles fair and balanced. For more info see our disclosure statement.

UV Air Purifier Summary Table

Use the below table to see the differences between each UV air purifier quickly. You can easily make a comparison and determine which one is best for your home or business.

Scroll past the table comparison for more information about all of the top six UV air purifiers.

The Best UV Air Purifier

The EnviroKlenz has many features that provide remarkable air purification in your home, including two UV-C bulbs, a HEPA filter, a four-speed blower, and the EnviroKlenz Air Cartridge which removes 99.9% of viruses and bacteria from the air.

EnviroKlenz provides a truly systemic approach to improving air quality by attacking it from all possible angles; that is why it is our top choice for the best UV air purifier. Check out our detailed EnviroKlenz review here for all the details.

How a UV-C Air Purifier Works

The Best UV Air Purifier of 2021 – Our Top 8 Picks

Air purifiers with UV-C lights have a somewhat simple function- they suck air in through a filter, blast it with ultraviolet (UV) light, then blow it back out into the room. The filter catches viruses, germs, bacteria, mold, and other pathogens, and the UV-C light inactivates them.

Many studies show that UV-C light is an effective method of killing these pathogens, including the novel coronavirus that causes the COVID-19 illness. As such, UV-C air purifiers effectively reduce the spread of diseases and improve your indoor air quality.

For the most part, all UV-C light air purifiers work the same way. However, they all have varying sizes and specifications, while some have extra features (like photocatalytic filters). These differences lead to varying pros and cons, which we'll explain in our individual reviews below.

Is a UV Air Purifier Right For You?

Portable air purifiers are great solutions for improving the indoor air quality in your home. Besides removing and killing airborne viruses, bacteria, mold, and germs with UV-C light, most UV air purifiers have carbon and HEPA filters.

The filtration also collects coarse particulates and pollen from the air, which could irritate your respiratory tract, make you feel "stuffy," and even cause asthma flare-ups.

However, if your home already has excellent air quality, a UV air purifier might be unnecessary and even be overkill. Alternatively, if you have a UV-C purifier in your central HVAC system already, that device will purify all the air within your home.

In that case, you likely wouldn't need a portable UV air purifier, too (unless you have an unducted room or area). It's also worth noting that UV air purifiers can't filter allergens that settle to the floor (but that's what a vacuum is for).

What We Look For in Air Purifiers

When we rate UV air purifiers, there are many features and specifications we consider. Here are our top considerations.

Effectiveness - How Well It Cleans The Air

The effectiveness of the UV air purifier is essential. For example, some low-end UV air purifiers don't filter very much air or filter the air too fast, which may not provide long enough UV-C exposure to inactivate pathogens.

That is why the placement of UV lamps for longer exposure is important, along with the additional filtration through activated carbon, photocatalytic, and HEPA filters.

Ongoing costs

Like all good things, UV air purifiers cost money to maintain. However, they have relatively low recurring costs that shouldn't impact your budget too much.

Here are the main recurring costs that we take into account:

  • Filter costs and replacement frequency
  • UV light costs and replacement frequency
  • Operating energy costs

Room Size

There are UV air purifiers of all different shapes and sizes. And the room size the purifier can handle is important. For example, you wouldn't want to use an air purifier that can handle 120 square feet in a 250 square foot room- you'd have inadequate purification.

With that said- bigger isn't necessarily better- getting a UV air purifier that is oversized for your room likely won't provide any additional benefit. It will just cost you more money.


When reviewing any UV air purifier, safety is our number one concern, and it should be yours too. Some UV air purifiers use special filters or UV lights that produce ozone (O3) as a byproduct.

Ozone is not only harmful to the environment but can negatively impact your respiratory system and health too. As such, we avoid all UV air purifiers that produce harmful substances (and so should you).

Air Purification Certifications

Industry certifications are an excellent identification that a UV air purifier is safe and does not produce harmful substances like ozone. One important certification is from the California Air Resources Board (CARB).

Basically, a CARB certification means the UV purifier meets its stringent requirements for emissions.

Another critical feature of UV air purifiers is HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filters. When a UV air purifier incorporates its UV-C lights with a HEPA-rated filter, the purifiers perform exceedingly well at catching and disabling pathogens and particles from 0.3 and 10 microns (µm) in size (depending on the HEPA rating).

UV Light Air Purifier Reviews

If you've made it this far in your research, you've probably learned that UV air purifiers are great and effective means to improve the indoor air quality (IAQ) in an area and combat the spread of viruses, bacteria, and germs.

Getting a UV air purifier for your home or business has never been easier; there are hundreds of different models available. Many of which could be delivered to you within a week. However, choosing the best one can prove to be a challenge.

So, we put together this "best of" list of 8 of the top UV air purifiers to help make your decision easier. We've done detailed research and testing, outlined the differences, and each model's core features and benefits, so you don't have to.

The EnviroKlenz Mobile UV Model is a premium air purifying solution with a wider coverage area. It performs up to three to five air changes per hour (ACH) in rooms as large as 1,000 square feet, which is a large space- 30 feet wide by 33 feet long, for example.

Note: For reference, an "air change" occurs when the entire air volume in the room is exchanged or transferred. In the case of this EnviroKlenz unit, it takes in all the air within a space as much as five times an hour!

Plus, it does so quietly. It has four user-selectable speeds, with the sound levels ranging from 54 to 62 dB, which is as quiet as outdoor rainfall.

Sure, the EnviroKlenz is quietly filtering the air very often, but is it doing it effectively? The short answer is yes. The long answer is it uses a combination of three VOC (volatile organic compound), pathogen, and particulate fighting purification technologies to improve the air quality in your home.

EnviroKlenz® Air Cartridge

The proprietary air cartridge reduces VOCs, destroys airborne toxins, eliminates noxious odors/chemicals, and kills pathogens with its military-grade EnviroKlenz technology.

Independent studies show that the filter removes 99.9% of gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria and viruses (0.025-micron sizes).

EnviroKlenz recommends replacing the air cartridge every six months; the replacements cost around $100 each.

HEPA Filter

The HEPA filter in the EnviroKlenz Mobile air purifier captures all types of airborne particulates, including:

The HEPA filter costs about $150 to replace but has a lifespan of about two years, depending on the air quality.

UV-C Lamps

The UV-C lamps in the EnviroKlenz unit are the third component that improves your indoor air quality. It has dual 9W bulbs that operate at a specific wavelength to zap the life out of any airborne pathogen it sees.

The bulbs last about 1.5 years before you need to change them and cost about $40. The unit has an indicator on the front that tells you when a bulb has burnt out.

The AirOasis IonicAir UV Purifier is a sleek, tabletop device that breaks down mold, bacteria, viruses, and VOCs on a molecular level. It has a small footprint of 4" x 4" and a height of about 16". It's small and isn't intrusive on a desk or end table. Plus, it can purify the air in large rooms, up to 600 square feet.

Note: AirOasis' typical airflow is only around 30 CFM, which means it will take quite a while to purify all the air in a room.

Unlike other air purifiers in this list, the IonicAir does not have a HEPA filter nor any type of filter. Instead, it purifies the air by zapping it with UV-C light and cold plasma ionization. This combination removes up to 99% of airborne particulates, including pathogens, mold, dust, pet dander, and smoke, according to third-party lab tests.

As such, this device has the least maintenance since you'll never have to replace a filter (you will have to replace the internal UV Purifier, which costs about $100, about every two years, though). Plus, it has a great lifetime warranty.

The only potential downside is that bipolar ionization technology can create a tiny amount of ozone. However, this device has a rating far below safe levels of 0.05 ppm (parts per million).

The GermGuardian Air Purifier is a budget UV air purifier with user-adjustable fan speed settings. It is a 4-in-1 device that attacks pathogens, pollen, and particulates from all angles.

It has a HEPA filter that removes 99.97% of allergens and dust down to 0.3 microns in size. Along with the HEPA filter, the GermGuardian has a pre-filter containing activated charcoal that captures larger particulates and eliminates odors.

Plus, it has an advanced UV-C light combined with a Titanium Dioxide (TIO2) treatment that kills germs, bacteria, and viruses.

Note: The filter has to be replaced every 6-8 months depending on the indoor air quality of your home, and it only covers rooms up to 167 square feet.

So, despite a large footprint of 6.75 x 10.25 inches and a tall height of 22-inches, it will only provide adequate purification for a single area about the size of an average bedroom.

The Therapure HEPA and UV Air Purifier is an affordable unit for a medium-sized space up to about 340 square feet in area. It's a sizable UV unit, standing 26-inches tall and 10-inches by 8-inches, but can complete up to 4.7 air changes per hour.

It uses a combination of UV-C light, a photocatalyst filter, a HEPA filter, and an optional ionizer to remove various airborne irritants, including dust, mold, particulates, bacteria, viruses, pet dander, and smoke. Its HEPA filter is easy to replace and lasts about one year.

It only has a 1-year warranty, which is less than average. It has three user-selectable fan-speed settings with an automatic off-timer to turn off when you are not home. Additionally, it has an LED filter change LED light, which keeps the guesswork out of filter change intervals.

The GermGuardian Elite Room Air Purifier is a unique, compact-sized UV-C air purifier that mounts directly to your outlet on your wall. It's about 7-inches tall and 3.5-inches wide with a slim depth of 2.75-inches.

The unit is portable, but you will need a spare outlet to connect it. This GermGuardian unit is tiny, and it could only purify up to a 100 square foot room. For another compact air purifier, check out the h0meLabs True HEPA air purifier, which sits on a floor or table instead of in an outlet.

Note: The small size of the GermGuardian makes it perfect for areas like bathrooms, laundry rooms, or small bedrooms. However, for a larger space, this air filter would be inadequate.

It has a quiet, built-in fan that sucks air in and passes it through the UV-C light, killing 98% of airborne pathogens.

The Black AirMedic Room Medical Grade HEPA Air Purifier is a commercial-size UV air purifier for your home, business, or school. It has a large coverage area of 1500 to 1800 square feet (assuming an 8-foot ceiling height), and it can move air at about 400 CFM.

To handle such a large area, you might expect this to be a large UV air purifier- and you wouldn't be wrong. It stands 20.5-inches tall with a 15×15 inch footprint - about the size of a small shop vacuum. And just like a shop vacuum, it's on wheels, which makes transporting it between rooms easy.

The AirMedic UV purifier is available in seven different colors, allowing you to get the best match for the inside of your home or office. It includes a carbon pre-filter that captures large particles and removes VOCs and odors. Its HEPA filter captures germs and pathogens as small as 0.3 microns.

It also has a UV-C lamp that eradicates viruses, germs, bacteria, mold, and other pathogens on a molecular level.

Note: This unit is perfect for large areas, but it is loud- at the highest fan setting, it is 75 dB. This is louder than average for air purifiers, but if you're in a large space, the extra noise probably won't be an issue.

The GermGuardian Hi-Performance Room HEPA Air Purifier is an ultra-silent, mid-range air UV air purifier for your home. It has a HEPA filter and a large, activated granular carbon filter that reduces VOCs and odors. It has a maximum coverage area of nearly 380 square feet with high CADR ratings.

This GermGuardian unit has external switches to turn the UV-C lamp and the ionizer on and off, which is uncommon amongst UV air purifiers. As such, you can leave the fan on and get the benefits of HEPA filtration without shortening the life of the UV lamp and ionizer.

It is 99.97% effective at reducing bacteria, mold, viruses, and other airborne pathogens. It does have an ionizer, so it might produce a small amount of ozone. However, this unit is ARB certified, and it is well under the federal ozone emissions limit.

The Medify Ma-50 HEPA and UV Air Purifier is a sleek system with 3 stage filter and UV-C that filters small particles, VOCs and disables pathogens. It has an H13 HEPA filter, which catches 99.9% of particles down to 0.1 microns.

Most air purifiers use HEPA filters rated to 0.3 microns, which isn't bad but not as good as 0.1 microns. Plus, this Medify unit has a prefilter to catch large particulates like dust and hair and an activated carbon filter to absorb odors and eliminate VOCs.

While it is a large system (25-inches tall), it has a sleek, modern appeal that allows it to blend in with the typical home decor. It is available in white, black, and silver colors and sucks in air from all four sides for fast and efficient filtration.

It has a simple touch panel control to turn on and off, control the 2-12 hour timer, and adjust the fan speed. Its filter lasts around 2,500 hours or three to four months before you need to replace it (the built-in LED indicator tells you when it's time).

UV Air Purifier Comparison Table

Breathe Easy

If you want to improve the indoor air quality in your home, a portable UV air purifier is a great solution.

Many studies show that UV-C wavelengths kill dangerous pathogens like viruses, bacteria, and mold.

So adding one to your home now will be a great way to prevent the spread of illnesses like COVID-19 and, in general, help you breathe easier.

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