In recent years, air purifiers have become a common household facility.
Some of the more popular air purifier brands in Malaysia are Coway and Cuckoo. If you’re here, it means you’re looking for one as well. And you probably have a question in mind; the ultimate question that every homeowner ask:
Do air purifiers actually work?
If yes, how do I choose one? Which are the best air purifiers in Malaysia?
In this post, we’ll share with you ways to choosing the right air purifier for your home, plus some recommendations on some of the best air purifiers to consider.
But first, let’s get some common misconceptions about air purifiers cleared up.
3 Common Misconceptions about Air Purifiers
People generally have many misconceptions about buying an air purifier, especially when it comes to understanding its benefits and more so – if they really need one in the first place.
There are limitations to what an air purifier can do.
1- Medical Effects of Air Purifier
Air purifiers cannot directly improve your health, lighten allergies or heal any respiratory illnesses.
There is little to no medical evidence that says otherwise. So, if a salesperson claims an air purifier can improve your health, they are simply pointing out untrue facts.
What it can, however, is to provide your home with clean air. This is especially helpful for people suffering from respiratory allergies or asthma.
There is a difference between easing and healing.
2 – Humidifying Effects of Air Purifier
Air purifiers cannot solve your molding issues at home or prevent mold growth. It is not to be confused with a a dehumidifier.
If you want to optimize or control the moisture level in your home, a dehumidifier can help with that, not an air purifier.
3 – 99% Clean Air?
Any air purifier in Malaysia that guarantees 99% clean air should be taken with a grain of salt. Air purifiers are only effective in filtering large particles or airborne particles IN THE air.
But once those particles rest on the surfaces in your home such as rugs or carpets, they are essentially still there. There’s no 99% guarantee that an air purifier can remove all airborne particles in a room.
What air purifiers do rather, is that they help to provide cleaner and healthier air for your household.
Here’s a list of what air purifiers help to remove from the air:
- Indoor toxins
- Smell from fresh paint
- Smell from construction materials
- Smell from plastic material that gives off mildly toxic gases
With this information in mind, let’s move into how to choose an air purifier for your home in Malaysia.
There are many things to consider, beyond just the brand of the air purifier you’re aiming to buy.
Here are the main things to consider:
- Type of filters
- Area of coverage or room size
- CADR rating
- AHAM verified mark
- Operating cost involved
- Noise level acceptance
- Latest price of air purifier and its purchase mechanism
Type of Filters in an Air Purifier
In general, there are 4 main filters installed in an air purifier:
Pre-filter: It captures macro particles like coarse dust, hair, or fur. It is the initial filtration system and serves as the first entry point for air in your home.
Fine Dust Filter: It filters small and tiny particles like fine dust. It also serves as the second layer of protection.
Activated Carbon Filter / AC Deodorization Filter: This filter contained activated carbon beads that are weaved together. It removes unpleasant odor or harmful gases such as ammonia vapors, bleach, and bad smell.
HEPA Filter: High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter. It is made from synthetic fibers that are tightly woven together. It can capture particles as small as 0.3µm. Meaning that ultra-fine particulates such as pet allergens, cigarette smoke, virus or germs can be captured easily.
If you did your homework, the most important filter is the HEPA filter.
Based on industry standards, it can capture more than 99.97% of air particulates. That’s a significant amount of unwanted particles being filtered out in your home!
But you shouldn’t hang on to that number too much.
The value is obtained from a confined lab setting. But in everyday life at home, the actual efficiency of the filter will be far less than that.
And there you go.
These are the filters that operate inside an air purifier. Knowing what filters are in there will better equip you with the know-how to getting the best air purifier for your home.
Fun fact: AirAsia’s flights are also using HEPA filters as one of their many sanitation modes to remove pathogens from the air in-flights.
Does Room Size Matter?
Yes, it does. An typical air purifier has a filter coverage of 25m2 to 120m2.
So the typical air purifier can effectively filter air in one room. But how does one know the exact coverage of an air purifier?
You can do that by checking their specifications. Take, for example, the Coway Breeze AP 1018F has coverage of 33.9m2.
Now what’s left to know is the room size at which the air purifier will be placed. We know this isn’t something on top of your mind. But you can always check back with your contractor or measure it yourself.
Tip: It is always recommended to choose a model that is designed to filter room size larger than the current room size. This is so that your air purifier can operate on an optimal noise level.
How Noisy Can an Air Purifier Get?
Hearing comfort is another factor you ought to take into account.
If you’re running it all day long, the noise level from the air purifier must be on a level you’re comfortable with. The noise level can be found on the packaging itself.
In general, 50 decibels is suitable for most living areas and they are barely noticeable anyway. If you’re concerned about this, remember to check back with the seller on the air purifier’s noise level.
What is CADR Rating?
CADR stands for a clean-air delivery rate. It essentially measures the speed of an air purifier in removing unwanted particles.
There is no standard as to how CADR rating should be associated with a particular room size. But the recommended number can always be found on the packaging itself.
Be sure to check it out.
Tip: CADR rating only shows the cleaning capacity of an air purifier, not its cleaning capabilities.
What about AHAM Verified marks?
Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) is the association that created the CADR rating.
Having an AHAM verified mark simply means your air purifier complies with the industry standards of safeness, efficiency and performance.
Though it is not mandatory to have the certification, most air purifiers have it anyway.
This is something you should look out for so that you know the air purifier is safe and trustable.
What is the hidden cost to owning an air purifier?
Besides getting the price of an air purifier at face value, there are other costs you should think about too.
Having an air purifier running 24/7 would potentially increase your utility spending.
Also, the filters need to be changed and cleaned as well. But how frequently do we need to change or clean them? And does it apply to all types of filters?
We compiled a simple list of answers to these questions. Here are their maintenance breakdowns:
- Pre-filter: Clean once every 2 weeks
- Fine Dust Filter: Clean once every 2 weeks
- Carbon Filter/ Deodorization Filter: Replace every year
- HEPA Filter: Replace every 2-3 years
Replacing the filters will incur an additional cost but there’s a catch to this and it goes to their service offering.
Typical Service Offerings of Air Purifier
As mentioned earlier, the cost of owning an air purifier isn’t as obvious as it seems. But it shouldn’t discourage you from getting one yourself.
Some companies sell service and maintenance as a one-off service. But most big brand companies such as Coway and Cuckoo packaged them into convenient combos.
These combos include other perks such as free installation, periodic maintenance, filter checks, part replacement, and more. Interested buyers like you can get them through either lump-sum payment or monthly rental payment.
With all these benefits, you do not need to pay cash upfront or worry about maintenance work. How convenient is that?
Latest Price of Air Purifiers in Malaysia
The pricing of an air purifier varies based on its model and area of coverage.
The latest price of an air purifier offered at HOMA2u ranges between RM79 to RM142 on a monthly payment basis. For retail prices, the price starts around RM2500 and could go up to RM4240 depending on the model you choose.
See the list of air purifiers offered at HOMA2u.
FAQ: Is Coway or Cuckoo Air Purifier Better?
A question we usually get is if a particular air purifier brand is better than the other.
The honest truth – is while the brands are comparable in functions, the choice you might make comes down to the form factor, intuitiveness of its user interface, how energy efficient it is, how efficient it is at cleaning the air, its portability, and cost-effectiveness.
Feel free to reach out to team HOMA2u and ask us about recommending you the best air purifier, based on our experience.