Purchasing appliances to help keep your air clean can be a large decision. Given the prices of small appliances, you don’t want to rush the purchase and skip the research. Usually, the biggest decision when buying air purifiers is figuring out whether you need a UV light or not.

While a basic air purifier with just a filter, will clean your room and keep contaminants out of your breathing air, you won’t trap viruses and other bacteria with only a filter. Using UV light allows viruses, bacteria, and other germs to be killed before being released back into the air.

Thankfully, most air purifiers are extremely clear on what they do and how well they clean. Whether you get one with only a filter, or you choose to get one with a UV light, the great thing is, your air will be cleaner either way.

Air Purifiers

The basic process of an air purifier is to pull contaminants from the air, trap them in a filter and push clean air back into the room. Air purifiers work well during certain seasons where there are a higher amount of contaminants or irritants in the air such as:

  • Smoke from fire season
  • Pollen from allergy season
  • Dust from mulch or soil from spring landscaping

Air purifiers can even remove contaminants from the air that come from burning candles, cooking fumes, and typical dust that settles in your home. Air purifiers are great for people who are extremely sensitive to dust, pollen, or smoke particles, and in some cases, they can allow people to stop taking medicines when they are at home.

Air purifiers are recommended for those who are renting or buying a previously owned home since you aren’t sure what pollutants your house has been exposed to, or if the air ducts have been cleaned regularly. Even if you use an air filter for your A/C unit, an air purifier will catch more of the stuff floating around the room throughout the day.

You also have to remember to change out the filter however often your specific brand tells you to so that it can work to maximum efficiency. If your filter is clogged or completely obstructed by dust and dirt, it is no longer cleaning the air around it and may even push pollutants back into the air.

(Source: Kool Breeze, USA Purifiers)

UV Lights

Now, most people think that air purifiers are more than enough to remove all the contaminants from the air, however, air purifiers don’t kill any bacteria, viruses, or germs in the air. Most of the time they will recirculate these things through the air or they will just sit on your air filter contaminating more air.

UV Lights are powerful enough to kill bacteria, viruses, and any other germs in your air and the great thing is, you can buy air purifiers with UV lights already installed in them for extra sanitizing of your air.

UV lights are great purchases for those who have lowered or weakened immune systems. Killing the viruses, bacteria and other germs in the air will help to prevent you from becoming sick and keep your house cleaner. It’s usually recommended to put UV lights in the room you spend the most time in so you can get maximum benefit, but you can usually move it around with ease if necessary.

Some people have concerns that exposure to UV light is dangerous and while they aren’t entirely wrong, the UV light that is used to kill off viruses and bacteria is only strong enough to kill these things. The wattage of your UV light is not going to be high enough to cause a problem with your skin or anything else.

Now, even if you have a UV light in your air purifier, you still have to change out the filter from time to time to ensure good airflow and maximum efficiency.

Type of Cleaner

UV Lights


  • Kills bacteria
  • Kills Viruses
  • Kills any germs in the air
  • Kills mold and mildew
  • Cons

  • Some may not work
  • Some may expose you to too much UV light

Air Purifiers


  • Collect pollutants
  • Collect pollen, dust, and hair from the air
  • Collects mold and mildew
  • Cons

  • Doesn’t kill germs, viruses, or bacteria
  • Doesn’t kill mold or mildew

Final Thoughts

While both air purifiers and UV lights are great purchase options for your home, UV lights do help substantially more with actually disinfecting the air and keeping more harmful bacteria and viruses from your lungs.


company icon