If you want to know how to tell if an air purifier is working properly, you are not alone. Many purifier owners are uncertain about whether their device is working normally or not. I invite you to read this detailed informational guide so you can clear your doubts. Let’s get started!
How to Tell If an Air Purifier is Working? Quick Answer
In order to know if your air purifier is working correctly or not, you can do the following to find out:
- Check the Air Blowing Out: Evaluate the consistency of air blowing from the purifier’s outlet to determine its functionality.
- Have a look at the Air Filters: Regularly inspect the filters for dust accumulation. The debris and dust accumulation can hinder the air purifier’s performance.
- Assess the Operating Sound: Monitor for steady operational sounds. Also, note any unusual noises that might indicate mechanical problems.
However, that’s not all! Continue reading to learn why the purifier is having issues and what are the 5 best ways to test its performance. I also share some effective troubleshooting steps you can take to make sure your device works with complete potential. Let’s dive deeper into the details!
Read also: How Long to Run an Air Purifier for the Best Result
1. Examining Airflow and Operating Sound
The airflow and noise method is the simplest way to determine whether air purifiers are working or not. You need to see:
- Air Blowing: Place your hand in front of the outtake of the purifier and see if it is throwing out air. The airflow should be regular and consistent. If not, then there could be a problem.
- Monitor Noise: Check if the air purifier is making an operation noise. If the voice on the highest settings is too meek to even hear above ambient sound (40 dbs), then something is wrong.
- Rattling Sound: Too loud of noise should be alarming as well. Especially if you hear loud thuds, grinding, or rattling. Ideally air purifier sound is consistent vacuum cleaner-like.
2. Do the Air Purifier Filter Test
One more easy way to check if an air purifier is working optimally is to check the filters. Here are things that you need to note:
- Dirty Filter: If the Pre and HEPA filters have air pollutants like dust, hair, and debris attached to them then the air purifier is working.
- Wear and Tear: If the air filters have worn out and aged then it is a good and bad sign at the same time. Worn out filter means your purifier was working well but in its current state most likely it is not capturing pollutants very well. You will need a filter replacement for your air purifier to work.
- Clogged: If the airborne particles have completely blocked the filters that not even air can pass through then the air purifier is not working. Running it on is only straining it.
3. The Indoor Air Quality Monitor Test
If you are still confused after the airflow and filters test because the indoor air quality might not be as you expected, then you need an indoor air quality monitor.
Let me save you time. The following are my favorite products that will let you know about the surrounding atmosphere quality and whether the air purifier is working or not.
Qingping Air Quality Monitor
Airthings 2930 Wave Plus
Temtop Air Quality Monitor
4 Color Coded Indicators, SmartPhone that provides detailed stats, Touch Screen Display
Shows CO2, VOC, Humidity, Temp, and Pressure. Can be powered by 2 AA Batteries
Histogram Chart to track indoor Air Quality, 6 Color, and Level Indications
The app takes time to update
It has a limited radius that will display AQ status
It lacks TVOC indication
3.35"D x 2.69"W x 3.4"H
4.75"D x 4.75"W x 1.4"H
6.06" D x 1.81" W x 8.9" H
4. Visual and Digital Indicators
To keep an eye on indoor air quality, visual indicator lights, and digital displays are quite reliable. Here is how they can help:
- Indicator Lights: Most air purifiers have sensors inside that detect airborne particles in the atmosphere and display overall air quality through color codes.
- Data Display: Some modern air purifiers are equipped with LED screens that are able to display real-time data while the purifier is working. It can include values of PM2.5, formaldehyde, and VOC. The stats can also be shown via bar graphs. You can pinpoint how poor air quality turned into clean air.
5. Sound Level of the Air Purifiers
As I mentioned above in the Airflow Test section, operating noise can be quite a vital indication to tell if your air purifier is functioning properly. Understand that a working air cleaner will make a buzzing sound as it has a fan inside. In case it is not, then there could be a problem.
Read also: Why is My Room So Dusty? 7 Important Reasons to Know
Grinding, rattling, or loud noises are also worrisome. Working purifiers will only produce steady, consistent sound.
Fixing Issues In Your Air Purifier
By now you have probably figured out if your air purifier is working efficiently or not. So how can you fix it? No need to do another search. Read below for answers.
1. Poor Air Circulation by Air Purifier
Poor air purification might be due to the following reasons:
- Fan not Spinning: This could be due to some blockage inside. Check if the air purifier’s vent is not obstructed. Clear them up and it should resolve that.
- Dust Guard: The air purifier’s performance can be affected negatively if dust accumulates on the dust guard. Clean it to get the air flowing as it should.
- Loud Noise: If the air purification is taking more time than usual and the machine is making louder noise then check the filters. It is a possibility they are clogged.
If the issues persist or the noises coming out of the air purifier are rattling or grinding then it is recommended to call customer service. This is basically indicating that the air purifier is faulty.
2. An Air Purifier is Operating at a Reduced Speed or with Intervals
If your purifier is working with a reduced speed then in this case, the appliance might benefit from a basic reset procedure.
- It is suggested to turn off the air purifier for a minute and then turn it on.
- Following this, assess the unit when it is powered on for proper functionality.
- If this step proves ineffective, power off the air purifier.
- Then attempt to connect it to a different power outlet.
This is recommended in case the issue arises from the current power source.
3. Filter is Jammed
Air purifiers utilize HEPA filters to clean indoor air. The airborne particles collect over the filters and after some usage, the filters can be clogged.
Read also: 12 Benefits of Air Purifier: Check Why it Best for Clean Air
The good thing is most machines come with lights that indicate filter replacements. Hence it will turn on when needed. You must change the filter to keep the air purifier running.
4. Unpleasant Smells Despite the Air Purifier Running
If you notice no pleasant smells then the air purifier is not working properly. The solution is simple. You need a new filter as the old one might have been worn out or may contain mold spores. As soon as you change, you will feel the difference.
How Will You Know if a Filter Replacement is Required?
If the air purifier does not work despite air filter cleaning:
- Try clearing the vent.
- Remove any blockage in the air vent way.
After none of this works, you will need to replace the filter entirely. As I said before some air purifiers have indicators that inform you if it’s time to get the filter changed.
How long does it take to notice a difference with an air purifier?
To notice a difference with an air purifier it takes 30 minutes to an hour. However, this can fluctuate depending on the size of the room and how powerful the air purifier is.
How do you know if the HEPA filter is working?
To know if the HEPA filter is working, check the airflow of the air purifier and the filters. Alternatively, you can monitor through the air quality indicator devices.
Best Air Purifier For 1500 Sq Ft: 5 Great Models of 2023
Air Purifier For Radon: Is it Really Helpful
Best Wall-Mounted Air Purifier: Top 7 Picks To Buy in 2023
Summing up how to tell if the air purifier is working and improving air quality, there are a few things you can do. Firstly put a hand in front of its vent and feel its airflow. It should be consistent, otherwise, the machine must have issues.
Alternatively, you can check the filters. If they are clogged or there is any debris, then clean them up. The operational noise can also tell you. No noise means the air purification system is not working, and loud thuds, or rattling also means that there could be some problem with your device.
Lastly, you can fix issues with your purifier by cleaning it thoroughly, opting for a reset, and replacing its filter.
Danny is a passionate writer who loves to share his knowledge about air purifiers. He’s been writing for 10 years, and he’ll share all that experience with Very Well Home viewers to help you make the best decision when it’s time to buy an appliance!