Holds a Master’s degree in Engineering and is keen on her own home’s climate. Sometimes we think that Carolina owns every single product she writes about – that’s how profound and insightful her reviews always are.
For 8 years, Richard had been working as an HVAC specialist and AC unit installer since his student years. Now, he’s our main consultant on every technical aspect that may arise during our tests and research.
Last updated: January 08, 2021
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An air purifier is a perfect way to get rid of Volatile Organic Compounds and formaldehyde, but picking the right one for this purpose is not an easy task. Thankfully, this guide is designed to aid you in your search for the best air purifier for VOCs. To help you choose the right model, we did our own unbiased research, picking the top 8 models on the market for our reviews.
When choosing our units, there were some features we focused on. They all needed to be effective at removing VOCs and formaldehyde from the air, plus get rid of a wide variety of other pollutants and allergens. The models in our reviews also have varying coverage areas to give you the perfect one for your home. Many of them also include features like Wi-Fi compatibility and air quality indicators for added convenience. For the best air purifier for VOCs, check out our detailed reviews and buying guide below.
Rather than having an air conditioner, heater, and air purifier as separate units, the Dyson HP01 gives you all of these functions in 1 stylish unit. It also comes in 5 color options, so you can get the perfect model to match the rest of your décor.
When used as a space heater, there are 2 heating options to choose from, including the jet focus mode for personal heating and the diffused mode to heat an entire room evenly. The tower fan cools down a room quickly, which is perfect during those hot summer months.
The air purifier is great for year-round use, with a sealed combination activated carbon and HEPA filter that can capture up to 99.97% of the allergens, VOCs dust, pollen, and mold spores in the air. It is powerful enough to send 77 gallons of air through the unit every second. A 360-degree oscillation moves the air around the room.
The included remote lets you control the functions from anywhere, plus it is magnetic, so you can stick it to the unit or any other metal surface. Other handy features include the 10 air speed settings, a sleep timer, and an auto-shutoff if the machine tips over.
What we liked: This handy lightweight unit has multiple functions for fewer machines in your home. The auto shut-off when tipped over and magnetic remote control are great additions as well.
What could be better: This model is a bit pricey, though it does have 3 functions, so may be worth the extra cost.
The AIRDOCTOR 4-in-1 Air Purifier uses 3-stage filtration to get rid of those unwanted odors, bacteria, germs, and VOCs. This includes a pre-filter, which is washable rather than replaceable to help save money, a dual-action carbon, gas trap, and VOC filter, and an UltraHEPA filter. These filters, combined with the fully sealed system, ensure the cleanest, purest air possible.
As well as the great filtration system, this model has other fantastic features, such as the WisperJet fan that is quieter than most air purifier fans, even on the highest speed, and a filter indicator light that tells you when to change them.
The controls are simple, letting you adjust the 3 speeds, set a timer, choose Auto Mode, and even dim the lights for nighttime use. There is also an ionizer button that lets you turn this off or on as needed.
The AIRDOCTOR 4-in-1 Air Purifier is lightweight at 23 pounds, plus it includes built-in handles on the sides to make it easy to move it around your home. It has a huge coverage area of 900 sq. ft., so it great for small homes, apartments, or offices.
What we liked: We liked the professional-quality filtrations system and the huge coverage area. The WhisperJet fan and Night Mode dimmer also makes it perfect for bedroom use.
What could be better: This model is a bit more expensive than many of the others on the market, though its large capacity and addition of an ionizer may make it worth the cost.
If you’re on a budget but still need the best air purifier for VOCs and formaldehyde, the Oreck AirVantage Plus has a great low price without skimping on the features.
This model uses 3-stage filtration, which includes a carbon filter, a HEPA filter, and a VOC filter. Combined, these pieces trap all of those contaminants in the air that are 0.3 microns or larger, including pet dander, dust, pollen, allergens, odors, and much more, leaving your air fresh and clean.
There are 3 speeds settings to choose from, the lowest of which includes Silence technology for quiet operation. You can set a timer for 8 hours or less, and an auto-shutoff turns it off when the timer is up. The controls on both the machine and the remote are simple to use for easy adjustments to the settings.
Another great feature is the filter indicator light. This comes on when the filters need to be replaced, so there is no guessing. This model is perfect for small rooms like home offices, bedrooms, or even a nursery.
What we liked: What we liked about this unit were the great low price and the compact size. It also features a 3-stage filtration system, plus it includes a filter indicator light, so you always know when they need changing.
What could be better: Though the low speed uses the Silence Technology, the other speeds settings don’t, so this unit can be quite loud on high.
Purifying the air in your home shouldn’t be hurting the environment, which is what makes the Blueair Classic 480i such a great unit to check out. This model is AHAM verified for its performance and CADR, plus it is certified by Energy Star for energy-efficiency and CARB for its electrical safety and ozone emissions.
As well as eco-friendliness, this unit has a ton of other great features. These include the dual protection filters and HEPASilent technology that combine to remove 99.97% of allergens, bacteria, and viruses. The filters are all recyclable as well.
Other handy features are the air quality sensors that monitor the air quality in your home and adjust the fan speeds as needed, a filter change indicator that tells you when they’re dirty, a handy timer, Auto mode, Night mode, a steel housing for durability, and wheels for moving it around your home.
As well as the control panel on the air purifier, this model is also Wi-Fi compatible for use with the Blueair Friend app on your Android or iOS device or Alexa using voice control. The Wi-Fi compatibility lets you monitor and adjusts the air quality from almost anywhere.
What we liked: This model has a lot to offer that some others can’t compare to. Its housing is durable, the filters are recyclable, it runs quiet, especially on Night mode, and is Wi-Fi compatible.
What could be better: This unit is quite large and heavy, though the wheels help you move it around if needed.
There are a few reasons why the Hathaspace HSP001 is the best air purifier for removing VOCs from an office or home. This model is very quiet, even on the highest setting, lightweight, and has a sleek look that will fit nicely in any space.
The Hathaspace HSP001 has a 5-in-1 purification system that includes a cold catalyst filter, a cellular-activated carbon filter, an antibacterial filter, a true HEPA filter, and an ionizer that can be activated separately from the rest of the filters to be used only when needed. Together, this filtration system removes allergens, pet hair, dander, dust, pollutants, smoke, and odors, leaving your room smelling fresh and helping you breathe easy.
Other great features include the air quality sensor that monitors the air in real time, the Auto Mode that adjusts the fan speed automatically as needed throughout the day, 3 fan speeds, a timer, remote control for setting adjustments from anywhere in the room, and a whisper-quiet sleep mode that also dims the lights for the best sleep possible.
What we liked: Unlike some other units, this one has a sleek, modern look. It runs quietly, even on high, has an auto mode, and includes a handy remote control.
What could be better: Though the air quality detector helps monitor the air around the unit, it may not be entirely accurate, showing good quality all the time. Turning the machine off and on again could reset this for a proper reading.
The NuWave OxyPure Large Area Smart Air Purifier uses a 5-in-1 filtration system that is more advanced than other models on the market. This system consists of a stainless steel pre-filter, a Bio-guard filter, an Ozone Emission Removal filter, and a combination HEPA and activated carbon filter.
The first three in this list are cleanable, with 20-year lifespans, which saves you a ton of money on replacements. Together, these filters remove VOCs, Formaldehyde, odors, bacteria, smoke, pollen, and anything else 0.09 microns or larger.
There are simple controls for adjusting the settings, plus you can download the OxyPure Wi-Fi app that allows you to change the settings on your unit and monitor the air quality of your home from almost anywhere.
Other handy features include the 360-degree air intake, the whisper-quiet Sleep Mode, the 6 fan speeds, and the color-coded 6-level odor and air quality monitors. There is also an Eco Mode, which runs the unit on the lowest setting. When poor air quality is detected, the unit switches to the highest setting until the quality improves, then switches back to low.
What we liked: The cleanable filters and 6 fan speeds are great additions to this unit. The Eco Mode helps save on energy costs, while the OxyPure app allows you to maintain the air quality of your home at all times.
What could be better: This model is pretty expensive at about $700. It also weighs almost 40 pounds, which could make it tough to move around.
Those with large homes will need an air purifier to get rid of all of those VOCs, odors, and viruses floating around in the air. The Alen BreatheSmart 75i has a coverage area of 1300 sq. ft., so it is great for those with a lot of space. This model also comes in 8 color options for the front panel, so you can pick the one that matches your home.
Inside this unit is an H13 medical-grade true HEPA filter with an antimicrobial layer. Together these remove 99.99% of airborne particles 0.3 microns or larger. This includes bacteria, fungi, pet dander, smoke, odors, VOCs, and much more.
Another handy feature is the Smart Sensor technology, which uses a color-coded system that displays the air quality in your home in real time.
There are 5 fan speeds, including the Turbo, so you can quickly clean the air or just maintain the quality as needed. Auto-mode even adjusts the speed automatically when harmful particles are detected by the sensor. Best of all, this model is quiet, so it won’t disturb your sleep.
What we liked: The best features that the Alen BreatheSmart 75i has to offer is the huge coverage area, the medical-grade HEPA filter, and the Smart Sensor technology. The multiple color options are a bonus.
What could be better: This unit is rather expensive, and the lifetime warranty is only included when you sign up for their filter subscription.
The Honeywell HPA300 air purifier takes care of all of those unwanted germs, bacteria, and allergens that could be contaminating the air in your home. This includes things like dust, pollen, pet dander, smoke, viruses, and mold spores.
This model has a decent coverage area of 465 sq. ft. and circulates the air up to 5 times every hour. The air passes through a pre-filter that captures odors and VOCs and a HEPA filter that removes any other particles that are 0.3 microns or larger. Filter change indicator lights ensure that the filters are changed regularly to keep them doing their jobs.
The controls are located on the top of the unit and touch-sensitive, making them easy to use. There are 3 air cleaning levels, plus a Turbo level to quickly remove those unwanted VOCs. There is also an auto-off timer for running the unit for 2, 4, or 8 hours. A control panel dimmer keeps those lights low, which is a must for bedroom units.
What we liked: The large coverage area and 4 cleaning levels make it easy to clear the air in almost any room. The auto-off timer and the dimmer switch are also great features.
What could be better: There are a couple of issues with this unit. The Honeywell replacement filters are pricey, though you can find third-party filters to save a bit of money if needed. The front panel doesn’t snap in very tightly, so could come loose if jostled.
Things to Сonsider
The air quality in our homes can change from day to day and season to season. Apart from dust and pollen, there are also those VOCs, which you can’t see, but are still in the air you breathe. The best way to get rid of all those unwanted particles in the air is to use a quality air purifier. The air is pulled into the unit, and all those nasty extras are filtered out, leaving pure, clean air behind. Of course, not all models have identical features, so check out the sections below for everything these units may have to offer.
What are VOCs and why to get rid of them?
VOCs, or volatile organic compounds, are the gases that are emitted from a wide variety of products that you buy for your home. These products include things like paint, cleaners, fuels, varnishes, cosmetics, and much more. Though you may notice the VOCs more from liquid products, they exist in solids as well, like craft materials, building materials, and even some furnishings, such as mattresses and couches.
Though the VOCs released by the products you buy will dissipate over time, there are some adverse reactions to having them linger in your home. These can include symptoms like fatigue, nausea, dizziness, headache, nose and throat discomfort, skin reactions, and conjunctival irritation. Long-term exposure can lead to some more serious issues, like damage to your kidney, liver, or central nervous system and loss of coordination. There is also some evidence that some VOCs can cause cancer in animals, which puts any pets in your home at risk.
To avoid any of these symptoms, from the mild to the severe, clearing the VOCs out of the air is a must. When using products that contain VOCs, do so with your windows open to circulate the air and release them from your home. Using an air purifier, like the Dyson HP01 or any of the other models in our reviews, can also help eliminate them from the air.
Features to consider when choosing an air purifier for VOCs
When choosing a new air purifier for VOCs, there are a few features to consider. This will ensure that you’re getting the best model for the issues you’re dealing with and the size of your home.
The coverage area of the units in our reviews refers to the size of the room that it works best in. Coverage areas aren’t determined by the size of the machine or the type of filters they use. Instead, the coverage area is chosen concerning the CADR, or the Clean Air Delivery Rate. The CADR rating tells you how effective the air purifiers filters are for reducing smoke, dust, and pollen in the air. It is measured in cubic feet, using particles that range from 0.10 to 11 microns. The higher the value of the CADR, the quicker the unit can filter the air inside a room.
Unfortunately, the CADR rate isn’t always included in the list of features when you’re looking at air purifiers, though it may be listed in the user manual inside the box. Instead, the coverage area is displayed. The higher the coverage area of the model you choose, the quicker it circulates the air through the air purifier, which means it has a higher CADR rate.
When choosing a new model, make sure the coverage area is one of the first features you look at. A small coverage area, like the Oreck AirVantage Plus, is great for small bedrooms or home offices, though they won’t work well in a large open living area. This is because they can`t circulate the air in such huge spaces. If you’re trying to circulate the air in a large office space or an entire open-concept home, a model like the Alen BreatheSmart 75i, with its 1,300 sq. ft. coverage area, is a better option. Larger coverage areas can handle smaller rooms but smaller ones don’t work well in larger ones.
The filtration system is another important feature to look at when choosing a new air purifier, especially when looking for one that filters VOCs out of the air. All of the models in our reviews include a HEPA filter, which removes particles out of the air that are 0.3 microns or larger from the air you’re breathing. The downside is that those VOCs are smaller than 0.3 microns, so can’t be removed by a HEPA filter on its own.
That’s why a few of the models, like the Dyson HP01, combine activated charcoal filters with their HEPA filters since this extra layer catches those VOCs and traps them. Other models use a separate activated charcoal filter, like the carbon pre-filter in the Honeywell HPA300. This removes the VOCs from the air as it passes through the pre-filter and the HEPA filter takes care of all of those other particles, like the pollen, dust, mold spores, and much more.
There are also some other filters added to the units in our reviews, which can filter out even more than the VOCs and larger particles. Some models can even help to remove bacteria and viruses from the air. This helps to prevent any illnesses in your home from spreading by eliminating the germs from colds and flus that your family members may be dealing with. The more filters there are in the machine, the more effective they are at cleaning the air in your home of any of those unwanted particles.
Another important feature to look for is the fan speeds on the air purifiers. Most models have 3 or 4 speeds to choose from, so you can turn it up on high to clear out the air when it’s particularly bad and down to medium or low to maintain the air quality. Some models go much higher than this for air speeds, like the Dyson HP01, which has 10 speeds, so you have a wide variety of speed options to choose from.
There are also a few other speed options to consider before picking a new air purifier. Some models have a Turbo mode, which is an extremely high fan speed that is used to quickly circulate the air and clear out any unwanted particles and odors. Many of the units in our reviews also include an Auto Mode, which adjusts the fan speeds automatically as the air quality in your home changes, turning it up when needed and back down again when the air is clean again. This helps maintain the air quality without any action on your part.
A timer is another great feature you may want in a new air purifier for VOCs. This feature allows you to choose a specific time that you want the air purifier to run. When the timer runs out, the unit turns off unless you are there to add more time or turn it on without setting the timer. Some models, like the Honeywell HPA300, have set timer options of 2, 4, and 8 hours to choose from. Units like the Oreck AirVantage Plus let you pick the time, up to 8 hours, that you want the unit to run. This allows you to set it while you’re at work or for a certain amount of time during the day without leaving it running continuously when it may not always be needed.
No matter how well your air purifier works, you aren’t going to want to use it very often if it is too loud. A noisy machine will drown out conversations, the television or stereo, and make it impossible to sleep. Luckily, the manufacturers of these units have taken this into account and created a wide variety of models that run much quieter than the old models. The lowest settings on these machines are almost inaudible in most cases, though the highest or Turbo settings may be a bit noisier. They still shouldn’t make it difficult to talk to others in the room but you may not want to sleep with the air purifier on the highest settings.
A lot of the units in our reviews have also included a Night Mode, which runs the unit on a lower setting to make it easier to sleep with one of these units in your bedroom. As a bonus, this mode usually dims the lights as well as running quiet, making it even less disturbing to run it at night, even when next to the lightest sleeper in the house.
Air quality detector
Units like the Hathaspace HSP001 include an air quality sensor with their other features. Air purifiers with this feature can actually monitor the air quality in your home in real time, so you are always aware of any issues that may need to be dealt with. This way, you can turn the fan speed up when the air quality is bad and down again when the unit has done its job and removed all of the harmful and unwanted particles from the air.
The Auto Mode included with some units also works well with the air quality sensor. When the air quality is low, the Auto Mode automatically switches to a higher fan speed to eliminate those nasty particles that are contaminating the air. When the sensor shows the air quality is good, the Auto mode lowers the speed to maintain that level of quality.
Though it isn’t a common feature on air purifiers for VOCs, a unit with Wi-Fi capability is handy to have. Along with the unit, there is an app that you can download onto a Smartphone or tablet, which you can use to adjust the fan speeds, modes, and timers the same way you would with a remote control. As well as giving you full control over the unit from across the room or another room of your home, you can monitor the air quality and adjust the settings when at work, out to dinner, or visiting friends. You can also turn the unit on or change the speeds when you’re on your way home to ensure the air quality is perfect when you walk in the door rather than leaving the unit running all day when no one’s home.
Dimensions and weight
The dimensions of the unit may not seem important until you try to fit the unit you’ve purchased into the room you need it for. The bigger it is, the more space it’s going to take up, especially when you consider that you need to keep it a few feet away from any walls and furniture to ensure the proper airflow through the machine. If you’re concerned about space, measure the area you have available and buy a unit that fits in that space without sacrificing the features you want.
The weight will only be an issue if you’re planning on moving your air purifier from room to room. The heavier it is, the harder it will be to carry. Some of them, like the Blueair Classic 480i, do have wheels to make it easier to move around for an easier process. Lighter units are easier to move when needed, with or without the wheels.
Though you expect the products you buy to last for a while, this isn’t always the case. That’s why you need a good warranty to cover you in case the air purifier you buy isn’t working as it’s supposed to. Though a 1 or 2-year limited warranty is fine, many of the models go higher, like the 5-year limited warranty on the NuWave OxyPure Large Area Smart Air Purifier. Some models also include a lifetime warranty, though there may some fine print involved with this. The Alen BreatheSmart 75i has a lifetime warranty, though it is only valid if you sign up for a replacement filter subscription, so be sure to check the fine print before buying one.
Most of the filters in our reviews will need to be changed about once each year. This can vary depending on the air quality of the area you live in. For instance, more polluted areas or those living in areas near wildfires may be dealing with lower air quality at times, so the filters may need to be changed more frequently.
Yes, an air purifier can help with allergies. They help remove those allergens from the air, including pollen, dust mites, dust, mold spores, smoke, and much more. The air in your home will then be purer and cleaner, reducing your allergic reactions and allowing you to breathe easier.
Yes, an air purifier can help to fight the transmission of viruses, including Covid-19, SARS, and other recent viruses. The air purifier needs to have a HEPA filter as part of its filtrations system to trap these viruses, though. All of the models in our reviews include this type of filter, so any of them can be purchased to help combat virus transmission.
With so many different air purifiers for VOCs, formaldehyde, and other harmful pollutants on the market, it can be difficult to choose the perfect model. Though all the units in our reviews are great options, we do have a few top choices.
Our favorite is the Dyson HP01, which is an air purifier, heater, and fan all in 1 great unit. This powerful machine has a combined activated charcoal and HEPA filter, 10 speeds, a sleep timer, an auto-shutoff for tipping, 360-degree oscillation, and dual heat zones.
The AIRDOCTOR 4-in-1 Air Purifier has 3 filters, including a washable pre-filter, plus an ionizer. It also includes a huge 900 sq. ft. coverage area, built-in timer, simple controls, a WhisperJet fan, and dimmable lights for using it at night.
The Oreck AirVantage Plus is a great budget-friendly model, with 3 speeds and Silence Technology on the low setting. This small room model also includes simple controls, a remote control, a timer, and a filter indicator.