Cigarette smoke and all kinds of smoke in general is something that should not stick inside your home or office for too long. After all, smoking should not imply that you should be spending your time inside places where breathing is hardly even possible and, undoubtedly, dangerous. Fortunately, there are devices that can help you purify the air indoors to a great extent and help you keep both your body and the space around you cleaner. Intuitively, these devices are called air purifiers, and in this article we will talk about the best air purifiers for smoke under $100.
You may also want to check out our best negative ion generators article, if you’re looking for alternative options.
The negative health effects of smoke
Before we talk air purifiers, however, let’s say something about the very famous negative health effects of smoke. First of all, cigarettes themselves contain about 600 ingredients, many of which are dangerous for our health. Lighting the cigarette creates a set of chemical reactions which leads to the creation of more than 7000 different chemicals present in the cigarette smoke, and a very large number of those are toxic and even carcinogenic. Not only that, but the particles of which cigarette smoke is consisted are usually 0.3 to 0.5 microns in size and they can be very hard to get rid of once they enter your home or office. However, inhaling them is relatively easy, and this, furthermore, makes it easier for you to develop asthma, allergies, breathing difficulties and lung diseases, skin, eye, and nose irritations, cancer, and cardiovascular problems like stroke and heart attack.
The dangers of second-hand and third-hand smoke
Scraping the surface a little bit more, there are three types of cigarette smoke one should be aware of. The first type is the sidestream smoke which is basically the smoke that comes out from the end of the cigarette once the cigarette is lit. Some of the components found in sidestream smoke are tar, nicotine, carbon monoxide, benzene, cadmium, arsenic, cresol, and lead.
The second type of smoke is the mainstream smoke which is the smoke that the smoker exhales while they’re smoking. It is consisted of many of the components found in sidestream smoke, and together with it they create second hand smoke. Second-hand smoke can cause cancer on different body parts such as the brain, larynx, breast, liver and the stomach, and it can furthermore cause lung infections in children, trigger asthma attacks, and even increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome.
If it was up to us, we would’ve had the story finish with second hand smoke. However, cigarettes also create third-hand smoke is basically the chemicals of cigarette smoke that are found on the furniture, windows, walls, clothes, and other objects that you happen to have around the house or office. You might think that this smoke doesn’t even deserve to be called smoke and wonder how it can cause you any problems. However, third hand smoke can drastically affect your and the health of the people who dwell in your house or work in your office.
One can come into contact with third-hand smoke by inhalation, ingestion, or by touching contaminated objects. As you can imagine, this can put children into great risk of being exposed to third-hand smoke since they’re constantly playing with different objects. However, everyone else, including yourself, is always going to be exposed to third-hand smoke as long as the smoke is present in your house or office. The effects that third-hand smoke can have over one’s health are still being researched. However, the possibility of the smoke being hazardous to the health hasn’t been disputed.
What are air purifiers?
Ventilating the rooms is sometimes not enough, and it is especially not very helpful when there’s some heavy smoking going on inside or when there’s an insufficient flow of air. Luckily, we can rely on science and technology when it comes to getting rid of the harmful cigarette smoke, and air purifiers are one of the best ways to deal with this hazardous pollutant.
Air purifiers are devices which are designed to remove the matter in the air that can impose risks to someone’s health. Such matter can be dander, pet hair, and, of course, cigarette smoke. The design of certain air purifiers makes them more efficient into eliminating the smoke in the air than other purifiers, and you should always look for a purifier for smoke when you want to eliminate smoke from your house or office. We will talk about choosing the right air purifier for smoke a little bit later in the article.
How do air purifiers work?
Air purifiers can ‘get the job done’ in one of two ways: they can either purify the air by releasing chemicals that bond with the air pollutants and make the pollutants stay on different surfaces and not fly in the air or they can actually eliminate the pollutants from the air and from the objects in your home or office. Let’s take a brief look into some of the technologies that are used in air purifiers.
One of the most common designs of air purifiers includes the use of fans and filters. The fans help the air purifier circulate the air through the filters, and it is the job of the filters to, furthermore, ‘process’ the air and eliminate the hazardous pollutants from it.
Among the most commonly used filters for air purifiers are the HEPA filters, and air purifiers that are HEPA-based will very often have a pre-filter and an activated charcoal filter.
True HEPA filters can remove at least 99.97 % of particles that are 0.3 micrometers in size, and they are very convenient for removing smoke particles.
Before the air comes to the HEPA filter, however, it has to pass through a pre-filter, and it is the pre-filter that ‘catches’ the larger particles in the air. Pre-filters are as far as pet dander, hair, and other pollutants go.
Water air purifiers
Many air purifiers rely on water when it comes to air filtration. The water in the purifier catches pollutants such as pollen and dust without the use of any chemicals, which makes these kinds of air purifiers one of the healthiest ones.
Ti02 air purifiers
TiO2 or Titanium Dioxide is an oxide of titanium that is a photocatalycist, which means that it can accelerate a photoreaction. When removing air pollutants, some air purifiers rely on photocatalysis. During photocatalysis, light energy destroys many hazardous particles that can cause asthma and allergies.
Electrostatic or ionized air purifiers
Electrostatic air purifiers have multiple layers or collector plates through which air can pass. The collector plates generate charged air or gas molecules (ions) which attract the air pollutants to them. Once this happens, the pollutants and the ions stick to the filter layers of the air purifier and remain there until they are removed by cleaning. These air purifiers are great for removing odors, gasses, and smoke.
Ultraviolet germicidal irradiation
UVGI use UV lamps that eliminate microorganisms that can be found in the air. Air purifiers that rely on this technology will usually have a fan that forces the air to pass next to the UV lamps and then the UV lamps sterilize the air. After the air is sterilized, the dead microorganisms such as viruses, bacteria, and germs are removed from the air purifier.
There are air purifiers that produce ozone that oxidizes the molecules of pollutants such as mold and removes the odor from the air. These air purifiers are not to be used in the presence of people in the room because it is very unhealthy to inhale ozone.
The benefits of using an air purifier for smoke
No matter which technology they rely on, air purifiers are a great way to purify the air and protect you from the hazardous cigarette smoke. No matter which air purifier you decide to buy, there are many benefits of having it in your home or office.
A purifier can help remove any unpleasant smells and odors, but that’s not the only thing it can do. Since they remove smoke, microorganisms, hair, dander and other particles that could be present in the air you’re breathing, purifiers are also very effective in making many health conditions more bearable and they can lower the risks for certain diseases. When it comes to smoke-related health problems, air purifiers are great for reducing eye, nose, and skin irritations, asthma and asthma attacks, allergies and chest pain. Furthermore, they can potentially prevent cardiovascular and respiratory problems, improve your immune system and reduce the risk of cancer.
Things to consider when buying an air purifier for smoke
When buying an air purifier for smoke, we recommend you choose one with a true HEPA filter, a pre-filter and an activated carbon filter. These kinds of air purifiers can capture and eliminate many of the particles found in smoke and they can also protect you from pet hair, dander, sand and dust. Then, you should also consider the size of your room and the purifier’s area of coverage and make sure that the purifier can be efficient for purifying air in a room the size of yours. Furthermore, it’s important to get a purifier that conserves energy, comes with a 3-5 year warranty, and has a design that you find attractive.
Now that you know a little bit more on air purifiers, let’s talk about the best air purifiers for smoke under $100.
#1 Germ Guardian True HEPA Filter Air Purifier, AC4825
Suitable for large and medium-sized rooms, the Germ Guardian AC4825 will protect you from smoke, dust, mites, germs, pet dander and mold spores. The purifier ‘fights’ against different kinds of pollutants with the help of different technologies. With a true HEPA filter, a UV C light, a pre-filter and an activated charcoal filter, the AC4825 is the ideal way to filter the air in your home or office. The purifier is also energy efficient and it can be adjusted to work quietly.
- True HEPA filter
- UV C light (optional)
- Activated charcoal filter
- Three speed settings
Successfully removes and captures different particles found in the air
Great for medium and large rooms
Nothing for this product
#2 Pure Enrichment PureZone True HEPA Air Purifier
The Pure Enrichment PureZone air purifier has all the necessary elements to protect you from different air pollutants. The air purifier comes with a true HEPA filter. This filter doesn’t let smoke odor, pet dander, hair and dust come near your nose. Furthermore, there’s a UV-C light inside the purifier that eliminates all sorts of micro organisms that could cause different kinds of respiratory infections. The purifier also has an auto off timer an a five year warranty.
- True HEPA filter
- UV-C light
- Auto off timer that shuts the purifier off after two, four or eight hours of use
- Five year warranty
Great for trapping dust, pollen, dander and pet hair
Actively eliminates viruses, bacteria, and germs
Is energy efficient
A bit loud when on the high setting
#3 Hamilton Beach TrueAir Specialized Pet and Odor Eliminator
The Hamilton Beach TrueAir Specialized Pet and Odor Eliminator is an air purifier that uses a true HEPA filter. The purifier captures pet dander, hair, dust, and mold spores and protect you from inhaling them. As its name implies, this purifier was specially designed to eliminate smoke, pet and other kinds of odors. The purifier does that with two replaceable activated carbon zeolite filters. With this TrueAir, you’ll have the flexibility to choose between three operation settings. Furthermore, you’ll be able to position it vertically or horizontally for greater convenience.
- True HEPA filter
- Odor eliminator made of two activated carbon zeolite filters
- Three filtration stages
- Three operation settings: Extra Quiet, Medium and Quick Clean
True HEPA filter eliminates at least 99.97 % of allergenic particles 0.3 micrometers in size
The odor eliminator is perfect for reducing smoke and pet odors
Can be used standing vertically or horizontally
The permanent HEPA filter is not washable
#4 VEVA 8000 Elite Pro Series Air Purifier
Smokers and people who often expose themselves to smoke can greatly benefit from the VEVA 8000 Elite Pro. This air purifier has a premium HEPA filter which has an extended life due to the four activated carbon pre-filters. The pre-filters in the purifier catch pet dander, pet hair, and dust. They also remove odors from smoke, cooking and more. The HEPA filter, of course, catches particles the size of 0.3 micrometers. The Elite Pro lets you breathe peacefully by catching and eliminating hazardous particles with a three-stage fan speed. The purifier is very safe to use, and is suitable for very large rooms.
- Premium HEPA filter with an extended life
- Four activated carbon pre-filters for odor elimination
- Three-stage fan speed
Protects against smoke, dust, mold, odors, pet dander, microorganisms, chemical vapors and more
Automatically shuts off if you remove the front panel for a safer usage
Its filters last very long and you can change them each six to 12 months
It’s ozone and ion free
Great for large rooms since it covers 325 sq. ft.
You need to replace the activated carbon filters after three months of usage
#5 LEVOIT Air Purifier for Home Smokers Allergies and Pet Hair, LV-H132
The LEVOIT LV-H132 is an air purifier that uses a three-stage filtration system. This filtration system helps you breathe smoke-free, dust-free, microorganism-free and odorless air. The purifier has a true HEPA filter, an activated carbon filter and a pre-filter for advanced filtration. It even has a Smart Filter Change reminder that lets you know when it’s time to change the filter. Great for small and medium-sized rooms, the LV-H132 offers you an ozone-free experience. It works very quietly and is the perfect purifier for both a day and a night setting.
- Three-stage filtration system: Pre-filter, True HEPA filter and High-Efficiency activated carbon filter
- Smart Filter Change reminder
- CARB certified
Great for small and medium-sized rooms
Purifies the air more than four times per hour
Works very quietly at only 25dB
Has a Night Light setting
Not suitable for larger rooms