How do select the best air purifier for smoke?
We have a number of guides that help answer this question (this is the best one for cigarette smokers) but the there are really three things to look for if you are a smoker looking for a bit of relief. First, you’ll want a lot of activated carbon. Second, you need an air purifier that moves a lot of air. Third, make sure it has a good “True HEPA” filter. The HEPA filter will filter the larger particles and is a better choice for cleaning other contaminants from the air when you aren’t enjoying a cigar or cigarette. We made a series of charts just for smokers that compare the key features between some of our favorite purifiers…
Will an air purifier help if there’s a forest fire or wildfire?
Definitely. Since you’re not really dealing with the gas or smell as much as you would be with tobacco or other things you might smoke, a smaller machine will probably help remove any particles and a bit of the smell. However, if you’re closer to an active fire (and aren’t in danger) a purifier will probably be a bigger help keeping the air in your home fresh. You should keep windows closed and make sure your HVAC system isn’t pulling air in from your home’s exterior.
Airnow.gov is a great resource for checking current conditions, but as a general rule of thumb…. if you can see smoke in the air it’s best to limit your exposure. And, since you might need to seal up your home’s interior for an extended period of time; a purifier does make sense.
Is an air purifier for smoke good for other things you might smoke?
We get this question a lot. For the most part, the answer is yes. However, since cigars, cigarettes, or marijuana are substantially different in terms of the smoke they produce you’ll want to think about what you want the purifier to do. For example, if you’re smoking some Cohibas with your friends there will be a lot of smoke produced in a short amount of time. So look for a more powerful purifier that does a better job circulating air. If you’re smoking weed (in a state where it’s legal) you’ll probably be more concerned with its pungent smell. So look for something with a lot of activated carbon. Finally, if you’re smoking cigarettes indoors you’ll probably need more of a marathon style purifier since the smoke removal is more of an ongoing job. While cigars and weed are more of a sprint… cigarettes will require a purifier that lasts a long time between filter changes, isn’t too loud, and offers a prefilter.
Is a smoke filter the same thing as a purifier?
Generally speaking, the two terms are interchangeable when it comes to household smoke removal. When you start looking for large scale systems for commercial or industrial use you’ll want to know the difference… but that’s not our area of expertise.
Is a purifier a smoke removal machine?
The short answer is no. If you’re smoking indoors a purifier is more of a smoke mitigation tool. Think about it… while you smoke you’re introducing more and more smoke into the room. Even the best purifier for smoke is not going to remove all of the smoke in a room. So before we move to the next question please remember that a purifier is not a safe way to alleviate exposure to secondhand smoke. It helps with smell and removes some of the gases, and traps a few particles… but at the end of the day, smoke is really hard to filter.
Will an air purifier help with removing the smoke smell after a house or apartment fire?
A little. But you’re best bet is to call a professional on this one. Or if you’re more of a die hard DIY-er you might consider an ozone generator. Ozone works great for removing smoke damage but never expose loved ones (pets included) to ozone. It’s a very strong irritant and can potentially damage your respiratory system. Never use an ozone generator as an air purifier.