Best Air Purifiers with Permanent Washable Filters 2020

One thing that I may be able to tell about you from your persevered quest to find the best air purifier with washable filter is; that you’re a thrifty homeowner. While there’s absolutely nothing wrong in opting for an air purifier with permanent filter over traditional air purifiers that require frequent filter replacements, such frugal shopping may require added research and lengthened periods of reading reviews.

We here at best kitchen buy, aim at helping you find the best exchange for your investment. In today’s review, we’re breaking down how air purifiers with washable filters compare to standard air purifiers that demand filter replacements; with respect to efficiency, upkeep costs and manual maintenance. You can go through all our findings in the buying guide discussed below in the article, Meanwhile, if you’re here just to find the best air purifier with washable filter for your money, here are our top 5 recommendations!

Best Air Purifiers with Washable Filters

  • All filters are permanent; can be washed and reused
  • Ion generator eliminates finer particles that make it through the physical filters
  • Energy Star rated
  • AHAM Certified
  • Individually switched on/off oscillating function aids uniform distribution of clean air
  • iFD filter performance doesn’t match up to that of a true HEPA filter
  • Rated for a rather small area coverage at 170 sq. ft.

The QuietClean oscillating air purifier from Honeywell is in true sense, an air purifier with washable filter. Unlike some models in this list, all filters in this air purifier are washable and reusable, Meaning, all you spend to get and use this air purifier for all of its service life is the product cost you pay upfront. No filter replacements, no recurring costs! If you’re looking for the best air cleaner with permanent filter, this one might just be your best pick.

The air purifier works with a commendable efficiency in 3 discrete stages. The washable pre-filter acts as the preliminary filtration stage while trapping larger suspended particles including hair and pet dander. The subsequent iFD filter traps smaller particles measuring as small as 2 microns. Although the effective result is quite satisfactory for sparsely polluted regions, the performance compares weak against filtration standards of a true HEPA filter. For better filtration, we suggest Honeywell HPA300 which has a dust CADR of 320 but doesn’t have washable filters.

On the positive side, the Honeywell QuietClean isn’t as delicate as a traditional HEPA filter and hence doesn’t lose efficiency upon being washed. The third stage of filtration is an ionizer that compensates for the slight loss of efficiency in physical filtration. The air purifier, further is available at a very reasonable price point besides having zero running costs. Additionally, despite being a permanent filter air purifier, you can replace them if you feel that the air cleaner has declined in terms of performance.

  • 5 level filtration makes for a highly efficient air cleaning mechanism
  • Washable pre-filter and activated carbon filters help you keep the upkeep costs low
  • The system includes a True HEPA filter which is known to follow unrivalled filtration standards
  • Rated for a room coverage of 300 sq. ft.
  • Dedicated pet filter removes pet hair and dander; ideal air cleaner for pet owners
  • Comes with a set of 12 ultimate pet filters
  • Quiet operation
  • Takes up considerable floor space
  • Bright “PLASMAWAVE” light that might irritate some

The HR900 from Winix is essentially an upgraded version of the eminent Winix 9500 . The purifier suits best to people that have profound love for pets but are have allergies; living in moderately polluted cities. It is also ranked number one on our list of best air purifier for pets. The enhanced air purifier employs 5 stages of filtration that work at individual levels to eliminate a separate set of pollutants, allergens and irritants. Out of the 5 filter stages, the true HEPA filter stays at the top for taking out most of the finer suspended particulate in the air with the highest precision.

The filtration starts with the inlet of air being passed through the washable pre-filter. This filter traps larger particles in the air to ensure that the subsequent filters work at the best of their capacities. The air then passes through the ultimate pet filter that traps pollen, pet dander and other allergens ahead of the true HEPA filter. Subsequently, the true HEPA filter eliminates even finer particles that could measure as low as 0.03 microns with an efficiency of 99.97%. To put the numbers in context, most bacterial species measure larger that that number! So, you can be assured of the outflow of air being free from all kinds of particles that could trigger your allergies.

Following this stage, the indoor air is corrected for odor and gaseous compounds including cigarette smoke and VOCs. The activated carbon filter is washable and hence can be reused once saturated. Finally, the last stage of filtration is Winix’s patented PlasmaWave technology which is essentially an ion generator. As opposed to traditional alternatives, the PlasmaWave generates both positive and negative ions to have a greater effect on some airborne particles. You can however, turn this feature on/off individually.

The air purifier serves well to spaces that span less than 300 sq. ft. Although not extensive, that’s commendable expanse for a moderately price air cleaner. For areas larger than this, you get dedicated air purifiers for large rooms that are designed to cover a larger space with higher precision. Most importantly, it has a lower maintenance cost than other alternatives. Out of the 4 physical filters, the pre-filter and the activated carbon filters are washable and reusable. While it had been best if the HEPA filter too was washable; it isn’t!

Actually, HEPA filters are too precise and hence delicate to be washed and reused with the same efficiency over and over again. It’s highly unlikely that you’d find an air purifier with washable HEPA filter. To minimize your running costs here, you can ensure that the replacement costs are feasible and that the HEPA filter’s life is significantly long. For the HR900, the true HEPA filter last a year if use the purifier on the highest setting for 12 hours a day. Moreover, the True HEPA filter replacement is readily available on Amazon.

  • Permanent HEPA filter – involves zero recurring costs
  • Highly Economical
  • Large room coverage of 340 sq. ft.
  • Additional UV germicidal chamber – produces a sanitized stream of clean air
  • Optional ionizer (can be turned off individually)
  • Primary particle is HEPA type (substandard to their True HEPA counterparts)

The slender built tower type air purifier from Envion is one of the most budget-friendly models that you could lay your hands on (both upfront and maintenance costs). Surely, the best air purifier with permanent HEPA filter in this price range. The cleaner has a decent range of area coverage; approved for rooms measuring 340 sq. ft.

The filtration is brough about in 3 stages, each employing a different filter media. To begin with, the air is cleaned off suspended particles including pollen, dust mites, pet dander and mold spores (check best air purifiers for molds) once it moves through the permanent HEPA type filter. The filtration efficiency at this stage is sure impressive for an air cleaner with washable filter, it however, is inferior to a genuine true HEPA filter. Your domestic air quality needs to be severely degraded to notice the difference nevertheless. This implies, if your only concerns are allergens and other larger pollutants, the purifier works just fine for you.

The filter’s inefficiency in physically trapping fine bacterial pathogens is compensated by the UV germicidal technology. In combination, the HEPA type filter and the UV chamber deliver an air quality outflow similar to that of a true HEPA filter. The remainder of neutral particles are eliminated from the stream of clean air using the optional ion generator. All in all, therapure TPP240 is a very reliable air purifier in terms of cost-efficiency, effectiveness and durability.

  • Washable activated carbon filter
  • Reliable performance of true HEPA filter
  • Higher room coverage of 360 sq. ft. – Ideal for large rooms
  • Runs quiet, even on the highest of the 4 fan settings
  • Smart Sensors and Auto mode; optimal performance adapted to pollution levels
  • Replacement HEPA filter is cost-effective and lasts well
  • HEPA filter needs replacement at intervals
  • No air quality indicator

Ideal for moderate sized living rooms, bedrooms, kitchens or office spaces of up to 360 sq. ft., this air purifier from Winix is a yet another budget-friendly air purifier for small spaces with reusable filter. Besides being easy on the pocket, the set of air purifying technologies employed in this model are efficient, safe and effective.

This air purifier has a 3-stage purification system including a True HEPA filter, an activated carbon filter and a patented permanent filter named as PlasmaWave. The first stage is the HEPA filter that traps almost all suspended pollutants and allergens of size as small as 0.3 microns. The subsequent activated carbon filter is a washable and reusable filter that can be reinstalled upon washing once it reaches saturation. The activated carbon filter accounts for gaseous pollutants like VOCs and other unwanted odors like cigarette smoke or pet odor.

The third stage permanent plasmawave filter creates hydroxyl ions to break down gaseous molecules of indoor pollutants without producing ozone as a by-product. The combination of these three filters effectively takes out hazardous pollutants, potential allergens and gaseous chemicals and odors. You can read more about it in our in-depth review of Winix 5500-2.

As evident, the air cleaner comes with the reliability of a true HEPA filter; which means it is not a permanent filter. As with any true HEPA filter, this one too cannot be washed or recycled without affecting its efficiency. However, the filter lasts quite long (up to a year based on usage) and hence costs lesser than other alternatives over the long run. Moreover, the replacement filter is very economical and easily available on Amazon.

The air purifier tells you when it’s time to replace the true HEPA filter through the LED filter replacement indicator. Also, the package includes a remote control so that you can set the fan speed without having to get up from the couch. To top it all, the air purifier is covered with a 1-year warranty form the manufacturer.

  • Extremely budget-friendly
  • Built-in UV bulb to kill bacterial pathogens
  • Permanent carbon filter accounts for odor and is washable
  • The primary electrostatic filter wipes clean effortlessly
  • Commendably low energy consumption
  • Quiet on all fan speeds
  • Adjustable night light
  • Produces trace amount of ozone
  • No true HEPA standard of filtration

Further down the price range, we have an incredibly low-priced tower air purifier with reusable filters. This one features a three-stage filtration system that constitutes of electrostatically charged plates, a carbon filter and a sanitizing UV chamber. The cumulative effect is clean stream of air that’s free from suspended particles, foul odor and disease-causing pathogens.

The electrostatic plates act as the preliminary stage of filtration wherein particles as small as 0.01 microns are charged and consequently deviated out of the airflow. Once the air is free from suspended particles, the permanent carbon filter helps the air purifier in removing odor, gases and prominent VOCs. As the tertiary and final stage of filtration, the UV bulb kills bacteria and other pathogens to leave the outflow completely sanitized.

As the purifier’s performance declines, you simply have to wipe clean the electrostatic plates and you have your filter ready to serve you all over again. Being available at such attractive price while having eliminated the need of filter replacements, the air purifier is definitely one of the best investments for people looking for a durable air purifier with reusable filter.

Air Purifier with Washable Filter - Buying Guide

What’s the Difference Between Washable and Permanent Filters?

Both the filters require low-cost maintenance and are great money-savers when compared to traditional HEPA filters which needs to be replaced after use. Although washable & permanent filters are often confused to be identical, they differ from each other in terms of maintenance.

Washable filters are washed using soap and water periodically whereas permanent filters need a vacuum or dry cloth for cleaning as washing is not recommended for them.

Air Purifier Washable Filter vs Permanent Filter

What is a Washable Filter?

As the name proposes, an air purifier with washable filter is a one that you can wash with cleanser and water to evacuate the contaminants that it has gathered. This cleaning procedure takes a few minutes of soaking, upsetting, and washing. You can use a drying machine for drying the filter fast or you can simply leave it for an hour to dry out completely. After this, it is all set to get into the process again and accumulate more dirt. If you want to know exact steps for cleaning the filter, you can check our brief guide on cleaning HEPA filters in Air purifier.

You can purchase an air purifier with washable HEPA filter with forces to expel 99.97% of airborne particles or iFD washable filter with the capacity to filter 99.99% of airborne particles. Let the 0.02% not trouble you to an extreme, both of the filters, permanent and washable are solid and worth your investment and hence you can select any of them.

What is a Permanent Filter?

Permanent filters are not the washable ones and they don’t require water at all during their cleaning process. Even a bit of water involved in their cleaning can demolish them and you would end up buying a new filter for your air purifier. It doesn’t mean that they don’t require cleaning at all. Of course, they do, but it differs from the cleaning process of a washable filter.

Permanent filters are cleaned with the help of a vacuum cleaner as it sucks out all the dirt and other airborne contaminants hanging on the filter. Once the cleaning is done, it gets ready to be used again. Utilizing permanent filter has a convenient position over the washable filter in light of the fact that the maintenance procedure is a lot quicker and simpler to do. Yet, the washable filters might be cleaner than the ones that we simply clean with a vacuum cleaner.

How Using an Air Purifier with Permanent Filter Saves You Money?

The filters used in an air purifier require a monthly examination to determine if they need a replacement or not. This holds true especially for the homeowners who live in a bad air quality (ways to test air quality at your home) that is full of dust, allergens and pet dander. The environment loaded with airborne contaminants calls for frequent air filter replacements.

But, that’s not the case with the permanent air filters that you vacuum on a regular basis. They can cost more upfront, but they also result in low-cost maintenance along with the long term savings. They are environment-friendly as well because you don’t need to replace them every month. You just need to offer them proper cleaning regularly and they are all ready to be installed back in your air purifier. If you think that the air quality inside your home would require you to change filters more frequently, then you should invest your money in buying an air cleaner with a permanent filter. 

Tips to Clean Your Washable and Permanent Filters

To clean a washable filter, firstly you need to safely get it out of your air cleaner unit. Put it in a tub or sink and rinse it using soap and water. You can even use a gentle brush and mild detergent to wash off the sticky contaminants. Once it is cleaned properly, let it dry for an hour and then reinstall it back into the system. They should be cleaned at least once in a month to ensure constant airflow.

On the other hand, permanent air filters can be gently vacuumed every few months to eradicate all the air pollutants stuck on the surface. Make sure not to use water and other detergents while cleaning. Also, never abrade it by using any pointed or sharp object as it can ruin the filter and make it inefficient. 

Pros and cons of Air purifiers with washable HEPA filters

While an air purifier with a reusable filter may seem the most practical buying choice, they too have their pros and cons.

Pros:

  • Air cleaners with washable filters have the strength to trap all the known airborne contaminants incorporating dust, pollen, spores, dander or dirt.
  • You don’t need to invest a lot of time in their maintenance
  • You save money as you don’t need to replace them every month, especially when the indoors of your house are surrounded by good air quality.
  • You can magnify their efficiency by cleaning them regularly

Cons: 

  • HEPA filters are not effective in trapping pollutants like gases, fumes, odors and chemicals. There’s huge difference in HEPA type and true HEPA filters.
  • Periodic filter cleaning can degrade the efficiency of the filter
  • HEPA filters are also not good in eliminating viruses and bacteria

Conclusion

Pollution is no more limited to the outskirts of industrial towns. It’s the ‘air’ that we’re talking about and unfortunately, it moves. Following progressively increasing levels of unknown chemicals in the air, be it because of deliberate industrial emissions or ‘natural’ forest fires; the privilege of mere breathing clean air seems to be lost. 

Induced health problems in children and seniors owing to the pollution hazards being the bigger concern, even healthy people with a sensitive immune system may attract unwanted allergies if exposed to smoggy environment. Although localized, Air purifiers provide almost complete rectification of the problem. However, an air cleaner can be an overwhelming investment for some. And that’s only speaking o the upfront costs. Once, purchased, you’d then need to commit to frequent filter replacement costs with standard air purifiers.

A clearly better alternative to these is an air purifier with permanent filter or an air purifier with washable filter, as some people prefer to call it. These air cleaners with reusable filters are not only free from recurrent costs, but these are also less expensive to begin with. 

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