Cigarette smoke can be as harmful as it can be annoying. If you’re a smoker or live with a smoker, you could benefit from an air purifier. The right air purifier will effectively remove the smoke and its odor in no time.
Finding the best air purifiers for smoke isn’t an easy task. With so many options available, which one should you choose? The choice is easy once you know what to look for.
Why Use an Air Purifier for Smoke?
Living with a smoker or being one yourself does have an impact on indoor air quality. Not only are you dealing with lingering smoke, but it can also discolor curtains and cause an unpleasant odor.
If you have young children or other people living with you, they run the risk of secondhand smoke. This can be caused by a burning cigarette or even the exhaled smoke.
Keep in Mind
Using an air purifier that specializes in cigarette smoke, you can reduce the risks. An air purifier uses a small motor and fan to draw air in and filter it through a media. Clean air is then emitted back out into the room for you and your family to enjoy.
Apartment-dwellers who live next door to heavy smokers are often affected by the smoke. Many consumers have reported great success with an air purifier that eliminated issues, mainly bad odors.
How to Find the Best Air Purifiers for Smoke
When you’re hunting for the best air purifier for your home, it’s wise to take your time. With the vast array of choices on the market, it can be challenging to find the right one for you. So we’ve gathered a few points worth considering before settling on a unit.
HEPA Filter Type
One of the most crucial parts of an air purifier is the filter. Now, the most common filters used in air purifiers are HEPA filters. These come in different types, but the most common are True HEPA and HEPA-grade.
True HEPA filters are the most effective and will remove up to 99.97 percent of airborne pollutants. They will also capture particles as small as 0.3 microns (2).
HEPA-grade filters, on the other hand, will only capture up to 99 percent of pollutants. It may not seem like a major difference, but True HEPA is more effective for smoke.
If you want to take it the extra mile, look for an Advanced HEPA, or medical-grade HEPA filter. This will capture up to 99.95 percent of pollutants at the tiny size of 0.3 microns (3). To be blunt, it leaves nothing but pure air.
Another major issue with smoke is the odor. This can sometimes be quite pungent and even linger on furniture, clothes and hair. If you want to be able to have guests without anyone suspecting you’re a smoker, an activated carbon media is a must.
Activated carbon or charcoal filters will absorb odors as well as fumes and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). What makes carbon so effective are the millions of tiny pores. As odors, gases and fumes pass the pores, they’re absorbed into the charcoal and kept securely (4).
When the particles are trapped, the carbon changes them from gas-form to solid-form. The solid particles are then passed on to the HEPA filter and trapped there.
For this reason, activated carbon filters may not last as long and require frequent replacement. Most air purifier media will last anywhere from two to six months.
Size and Room Coverage
Size and room coverage are two important factors to consider, as well. Now, the room coverage or size doesn’t necessarily determine how effective the unit is. For instance, you can’t place a small purifier meant for 100 square feet, in a large room and expect it to make a difference.
Consider the room where the purifier will be placed. If you have young children or infants, placing a small unit in the nursery can help to prevent risks of secondhand smoke.
On the other hand, if you or another in the house often smoke indoors, having a larger unit is beneficial. Bigger air purifiers can cover areas up to and over 1,000 square feet.
One downside to a vast room coverage is the size of the unit. Large air purifiers are notorious for being cumbersome, heavy and not-so-good-looking. However, manufacturers are beginning to change up the designs, and you can find units that might even compliment the room.
Many air purifiers come with different fan options and modes. These can be very beneficial in a household with smoke as you can adjust the fan to suit the room.
Auto modes are favored by many consumers due to the effortless operation. When in auto mode, most units rely on air quality sensors that monitor the air and then set the fan speed accordingly. Many will even notify you of how polluted your air is by a color-changing light on the display panel.
The Best Air Purifiers for Smoke of 2021
An air purifier can have great benefits in a household with a smoker — or even a smoking next-door neighbor. After our expert team picked out the top choices for our list, we researched each unit thoroughly. Some of the major points we looked for were the quality of the filters and room coverage.
With no further ado, here are the best air purifiers for smoke.
1. Elechomes Air Purifier with True HEPA Filter
The Elechomes air purifier is an all-around winner in our book. It’s fitted with a three-stage filtration system which includes a True HEPA filter. You get different modes to accommodate the room and mood.
A nice addition to this purifier is an aromatherapy mode to help set a soothing and relaxing mood. This purifier is excellent for homes with smokers due to the round filter. The round structure enables it to clean more air, more efficiently.
There’s a timer you can set to turn the purifier off automatically. This is a great feature as it helps to save electricity. Also, if you often forget to turn it off, this will be extra helpful.
Why We Love It
The three-stage filtration includes a pre-filter that captures larger particles such as hair and lint. Next, there’s the True HEPA filter which captures up to 99.97 percent of the tiniest particles. Last, but not least is the activated carbon filter. It absorbs odors such as smoke, benzene and formaldehyde.
As we briefly mentioned above, the shape of the filter is where its powers are. Because of the 360-degree coverage, it will filter more air at a time, removing harmful substances from the cigarette smoke.
During the night or quiet hours, activate sleep mode. When in this mode, the purifier operates at a super-quiet level, producing only 33 decibels.
When you need deeper relaxation, you can add a few drops of your favorite essential oil. Open up the small compartment at the top of the unit, add a drop or two, and close it again. As the air purifier releases clean air, it will infuse it with the oil, creating an aromatherapy spa at home.
Fan Speeds and Timer
You can choose between three fan speeds to suit your needs. When required, set the timer to a specific hour between one and eight to automatically shut the unit off.
This purifier is the perfect addition to a bedside table or office desk; it’s compact and lightweight. However, don’t judge it by its size. It will effectively cover an area of up to 215 square feet.
Keep In Mind
Replacement Filters Are Difficult to Find
Unfortunately, when it becomes time for a replacement, the filters are tricky to get your hands on.
|Recommended Room Coverage||215 square feet|
|Special Features||Timer, sleep mode|
2. RabbitAir BioGS Ultra Quiet
This modern-looking air purifier will not only look ultra-stylish in your living area, but it will also improve the air. The RabbitAir BioGS 2.0 is fitted with a four-stage filtration system that includes a washable pre-filter and a HEPA filter
It will effectively remove smoke and other pollutants from your indoor air while deodorizing the room. There are a whopping five speeds to choose from to suit the quality of the air. When on low speeds, it’s virtually silent, excellent for a good night’s rest.
The BioGS 2.0 is backed by an incredible five-year warranty and lifetime 24-hour technical support. It’s Energy Stay certified and uses only a small amount of energy when activated.
Why We Love It
A Pop of Color
We have to mention this: the BioGS 2.0 is available in three color options. One is a classic white, the next is a leafy green and the last is royal blue. These color options, combined with the architectural design, make this a unit you’d want to have on display.
The four-stage filtration effectively removes pollutants of all sizes. The pre-filter catches large particles such as lint, hair and dust. Then when needed, you can wash it and put it back in for an improved operation.
Next, we’ve got an activated carbon filter, which absorbs unpleasant odors as well as smoke and fumes. This filter will also capture any VOCs that might be present as well as cooking odors.
The BioGS HEPA filter will capture up to 99.97 percent of particles at the size of 0.3 microns. It traps contaminants and allergens such as pet dander, pollen, dust mites and any smoke that might’ve escaped the carbon filter.
This purifier is also equipped with a negative ion generator. These will bond with positive particles such as dust, and make them too heavy to float in the air. The particles will then fall to the ground where you can remove them by vacuuming or sweeping.
Many homeowners worry about ionizers due to the risk of ozone. Thankfully, this one doesn’t produce harmful levels. There’s also the option of turning it off if not wanted.
Keep In Mind
Too Much Light When in Auto Mode
Most customers prefer to use the auto mode due to its effectiveness. However, many said it was obnoxious at night since it featured bright LED lights and kept changing between fan speeds.
|Recommended Room Coverage||625 square feet|
|Special Features||Optional ionizer|
3. Levoit Compact Air Cleaner With Advanced HEPA Filter
If you’re often bothered by the smell of cigarette smoke, this compact air purifier is for you. The Levoit LV-H126 is a small purifier with lots to offer.
It’s equipped with a three-stage filtration system that includes a pre-filter and an advanced HEPA filter. You get to choose between three fan speeds to suit the room, and it can cover up to 161 square feet.
During the night, activate sleep mode, and enjoy a peaceful night’s rest. The compact design enables it to be placed anywhere in your home.
Replacement filters are affordable and easy to come by. When a replacement is needed, the indicator will let you know right away.
Why We Love It
Advanced HEPA Filter
We go on and on about the effectiveness of a True HEPA filter, but this one takes it one step further. It’s equipped with an advanced HEPA filter that captures up to 99.9 percent of airborne pollutants.
It effectively removes cigarette smoke, dust, pollen, allergens and mold spores. The activated carbon filter will take care of any unpleasant odors present after smoking or even cooking.
Excellent Sleep Mode
One common complaint about air purifiers’ sleep modes is bright LED lights. However, this purifier has no lights in sleep mode and operates at a whisper level of 32 decibels.
Filter Reminder Wheel
We admit it, this filter replacement indicator might not be as high-tech as others, but it’s still very useful.
Levoit recommends that the filters are replaced every six to eight months. To help you remember, you can set the reminder wheel. When you replace the filter, turn the wheel to match the current month you’re in. Then when it’s time for a new filter, the wheel will let you know.
Front Panel Output
This air purifier extracts air from the back, filters it, and then emits it out of the front. It funnels clean and purified air straight at you to enjoy.
Keep In Mind
Can Dry the Air
A few customers noticed that the air purifier seemed to dehumidify the air as well.
|Recommended Room Coverage||161 square feet|
|Special Features||Sleep mode, filter reminder wheel|
4. Renpho Air Purifier for Smokers
The Renpho True HEPA Air Purifier is an excellent little unit that runs quietly and covers up to 103 square feet. The three-stage filtration system will capture and remove cigarette smoke, pollen, allergens, dust mites and unpleasant odors.
It’s simple to use and is controlled by a single button — so there’s no need to get the manual out every time. You can choose between three fan speeds and a sleep mode for a quiet, peaceful rest.
This purifier is an excellent addition to any small to medium-sized room. It fits perfectly on a bedside table or next to a crib to purify the air for your little one.
Why We Love It
The Renpho purifier uses no harmful UV-C light that could produce ozone. It has also earned a couple of certifications such as the CARB and Intertek ETL-certification. The unit is covered by a one-year warranty and lifetime support.
Compact but Powerful
You shouldn’t judge this air purifier by its size; it might be compact, but it’s powerful. Place it in any small room and the three-stage filtration will remove any pollutants present. It’s the perfect addition to a bedroom or kid’s room to avoid any lingering second-hand smoke sneaking in.
For a peaceful night’s sleep, set the purifier to sleep mode. In this mode, the unit operates at a super-quiet level of 37 decibels.
Filter Replacement Indicator
When it’s time for a replacement, the unit will let you know. It will begin to flash on the front panel — this will be around every six months.
Keep In Mind
Expensive Replacement Filters
When it’s time for a replacement, this purifier fell kind of flat. The replacement filters are quite expensive and not affordable in the long run.
|Recommended Room Coverage||60 to 103 square feet|
|Warranty||One-year buyer assurance and lifetime support|
|Special Features||Nightlight, replacement indicator, sleep mode|
5. Blueair Blue Pure 121 Air Purifier
For larger rooms, this Blue Pure air purifier is an exceptional choice. It features a three-stage filtration system with a washable pre-filter.
You can personalize this air purifier as you like by changing up the pre-filters. These come in different colors such as grey, dark blue, beige and pink.
Although this purifier doesn’t contain a HEPA filter, it will capture smoke and the odors it creates. The unit runs on very little energy and is, therefore, Energy Star rated. Filters are recyclable, so you won’t have to feel guilty for replacing them every six months.
Why We Love It
The tall, sleek look of the purifier is a classic Scandinavian design. Colors are easy on the eye, and it’s a breeze to fit into any room.
The three-stage filtration will capture anything from large particles such as hair to viruses. It quickly absorbs smoke and eliminates any signs of the bad habit.
You can run this purifier without taking a huge toll on your monthly bills. It uses less energy compared to similar models — when at high speed, the unit will only use 60 watts.
To ensure you get pure air without the need for earplugs, this purifier uses specialized polypropylene media. When at low speed, it processes more air while being ultra-quiet.
Keep In Mind
No HEPA Filter
We do not recommend this air purifier for anyone dealing with allergies or asthma. It doesn’t contain a HEPA filter and won’t remove the smallest allergens.
|Recommended Room Coverage||620 square feet|
|Special Features||Washable pre-filter|
6. Medify MA-40 Medical-Grade HEPA Filter
If you’re tired of dealing with the aftermath of cigarette smoke, check this out. The Medify MA-40 air purifier uses a medical-grade HEPA filter that captures up to 99.97 percent of airborne pollutants.
This is a great addition to large living spaces since it will cover up to 1,300 square feet in one hour. There are four fan speeds to choose between to suit the room, or set it to auto mode.
The design might be large, but it’s highly durable and scratch-resistant. To keep curious fingers from causing trouble, activate the child lock.
Why We Love It
Medical-Grade HEPA Filter
Even if no one in your household is dealing with allergies or asthma, this filter could still be beneficial. It has a slight edge over True HEPA and will be more thorough at removing every trace of cigarette smoke.
Large but Compact
This might be a bit confusing, but this unit is both compact and large. It’s 25 inches tall, but very slender and isn’t as cumbersome as other units with similar room coverage. It is on the heavier side, though, weighing 20 pounds.
The sleek-looking top panel is made of tempered glass. This will keep it clean and without scratches.
Easy Filter Change
When it’s time to replace the filter, simply open up the back, remove the old and install the new. It’s super easy and doesn’t require any special tools.
Keep In Mind
When at high speed, this purifier is a bit too loud for our liking. However, when in sleep mode or low fan speed, it’s surprisingly quiet.
|Recommended Room Coverage||1,300 square feet|
|Special Features||Tempered glass panel, ionizer, air quality sensor, sleep mode, child lock|
7. AeraMax 100 Air Purifier
For small to medium-sized rooms, the AeraMax 100 is a great choice. This purifier uses a four-stage filtration system that removes mold, dust and, most importantly, smoke.
It’s fitted with a True HEPA filter as well as an activated carbon media. To keep the filter safe, it’s treated with an AeraSafe antimicrobial treatment that prevents bacteria or fungi from forming on the HEPA media.
The air purifier uses PlasmaTrue Technology that creates an ionized field. This field helps to eliminate airborne pollutants such as dust and mites.
One worry about this purifier is the ionizer due to the risk of ozone production. However, this does not produce any harmful levels of ozone.
Why We Love It
Having to change an expensive HEPA filter every other month will quickly take its toll. Luckily, this purifier’s True HEPA filter will last up to 12 months, depending on the air quality.
On the other hand, the carbon filter absorbs odors and pollutants like a sponge. This requires more frequent replacement. The manufacturer recommends replacing it around every three months.
Most air purifiers are cumbersome and can look misplaced in a room. However, this purifier has a tall, sleek look that adds a nice modern touch to any room. It’s available in white and black.
When in auto mode, this purifier will monitor the air quality of the room and adjust the fan speed. It will also notify you of the quality by changing the color of the LED display.
Several customers had a bit of fun when testing the sensitivity of the sensors. All reported quick results and odors were gone in no time.
Good for Bedrooms
This air purifier will cover a room of 100 to 200 square feet — an ideal size for bedrooms and nurseries. If you have a smoker in the house and don’t want the smoke in your bedroom, this is an excellent choice. The activated carbon filter absorbs cigarette smoke and the smell it causes.
Keep In Mind
Not as Quiet as Others
Despite the small size, this purifier does produce quite a noticeable humming sound. It can be annoying during the night, but on low speed, it’s more like white noise.
|Recommended Room Coverage||100 to 200 square feet|
|Special Features||PlasmaWave Technology, AeraSafe Antimicrobial treatment, air quality monitor|
|Fan Speeds||Not specified|
Detailed Comparison Chart
|Product||Best||Recommended Coverage||Filter Stages||Warranty||Special Features||Fan Speeds|
|Elechomes Air Purifier||Relaxing Moments||215 sq ft||3||N/A||Timer, sleep mode||3|
|RabbitAir BioGS Ultra Quiet||Quiet Operation||625 sq ft||4||5-year||Optional ionizer||5|
|Levoit Compact Air Cleaner||Sleep Mode||161 sq ft||3||2-year||Sleep mode, filter reminder wheel||3|
|Renpho Air Purifier||Small Rooms||60 – 103 sq ft||3||1-year||Nightlight, replacement indicator, sleep mode||3|
|Blueair Blue Pure 121 Air Purifier||Design||620 sq ft||3||N/A||Washable pre-filter||3|
|Medify MA-40 Medical-Grade HEPA Filter||HEPA Filter||1,300 sq ft||3||N/A||Tempered glass panel, ionizer, air quality sensor, sleep mode, child lock||4|
|AeraMax 100 Air Purifier||Filter Protection||100 – 200 sq ft||4||N/A||PlasmaWave Technology, AeraSafe Antimicrobial treatment, air quality monitor||N/A|
Creating a Smoke-Free Environment
If you’re a smoker or live with someone who is, an air purifier is a must-have. Smoking poses multiple health risks, such as heart attacks and cancer. However, secondhand smoking can be just as harmful, especially when children or infants are exposed (5).
When searching for the best air purifiers for smoke, the quality of the filter is crucial. A True HEPA filter will capture smoke particles while an activated carbon media will absorb odors. Creating a smoke-free home environment is essential for the well-being of you and those around you.