I took some time over my reviews in this section. In order to find the best basement air purifier , I had to narrow down exactly what to look for. I knew it had to be able to handle large areas, but also deal with certain types of basement pollutants and at the same time capable of dealing with strong odors typically found in musty basements. A tall order to say the least!
Even the cleanest basement often has 10 times as many pollutants as other areas of the house.
The air in your Basement is the most polluted air in the whole house. If you have one, you know all too well about that funky basement smell.
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Top 8 Basement Air Purifier Comparison Table
1. Alen BreatheSmart Air Purifier
The winner of our 2020 award for the best basement air cleaner goes to the Alen Breathe-smart.
If you read any of our other pages, you will see that we absolutely love this machine! But for very good reasons as you can read for yourself in our full review.
We have decided to give it our award for the best basement air filter too as it is excels at purifying the air in large spaces as it can handle areas up to 1200 sq. feet.
It comes equipped with sensors that evaluate the level of work that needs to be performed on the air in your basement and can automatically adjust the filtration procedure, so as to save power, while still producing the best result.
The controls are simple and well-designed for intuitive use and hidden out of sight to maintain the sleek look of this unit.
As we’ve stated before, it comes with a wide variety of front panel colors, mostly in fairly neutral colors, so you can match it easily to your home decor.
Another asset that allows it to work well in a Basement is the child friendly system that makes it safe to operate in rooms that children use, which basements often are.
Word of warning though, the manufacturer recommends that the filter needs to be replaced once every 9 months (approx), but depending on the air quality – you can easily stretch that out to over a year.
This machine consistently gets top reviews and excelled in every test. Both industry professionals and user reviews are amazingly positive.
- Choice of filters
- Sleek design
- Quiet fan
- Smart auto shut down when air quality is good
- Covers up to 1200 sq. ft.
- Fairly frequent filter changes required
2. Coway Airmega Air Purifier
Giving the Breathesmart a good run for it’s money. In 2nd place for the best basement air purifier category, we have the Coway Airmega.
If value for money was the only criteria we look at, this air cleaner would win the show. Able to clean rooms up to 1250sq ft for well under $400 is unmatchable by any other manufacturer. It really is fantastic bang for the buck.
Whilst the filter abilities and options aren’t quite as good as those made by Alen, they are still very good.
To provide even further savings, the Coway Airmega comes with a washable pre filter, so only the Hepa and carbon filter ever need replacing. However, even if you run this thing for 8 hours a day – you only need to replace these every 12 months, which is extremely good compared to it’s competitors.
Whilst the controls are not the most simple to understand, it does come with a ton of smart options including a timer function that would come in really hand downstairs in the basement.
Word of warning on this one, the manufacturer suggests this filter can clean the air fully in a space up to 1,560 sq ft. From my calculations, I think that would be a huge stretch. 1250sq ft would be the absolute max
- Can service a very large area for the money
- Lots of smart options
- Smartphone / Alexa compatible
- 5 year warranty
- Super quiet operation
- Controls take a bit of learning
- Covers a smaller area than the manufacturer will have you believe
3. IQ Air HealthPro Plus Air Purifier
The IQAir Healthpro is a very capable air purifier for basements.
The hyperHEPA filter is tough on musty air in the basement and one of the best filtration units money can buy.
This is a medical grade machine, which might be a bit of overkill for many households. The only reason it doesn’t get into the top two, is that all this power comes with a fairly hefty price tag. This air purifier is not cheap. But if you have chronic allergies or other medical issues that necessitate uber clean air, then you really have no other choice.
With over 800sq feet of coverage space, Such a large coverage area allows you to fight the mold in your basement or on the whole floor of your house. The unit is quite big and heavy, but thankfully it comes with caster wheels so it’s easy to move around.
The Healthpro plus comes with a 10-year warranty, a clear indication that the manufacturer stands by the quality of their product.
- HyperHEPA filter
- Big coverage area of 800 sq. ft.
- Very strong odor filter
- 10-year warranty
- Big price tag
- Quite a bulky device
4. Alen Breathesmart FIT50 Air Purifier
The smaller brother of the Breathesmart, the Fit50 is still capable of cleaning the air in basements up to 700 sq ft.
This unit is basically identical to the Breathesmart in every way except slightly less powerful and about 150 bucks cheaper. So its a great option if you don’t have a really big basement to clean.
What I really like about Alen is that they offer a lifetime guarantee on all their products, which says a lot about their faith in the build quality.
The Alen air purifier range is fully customizable. From the different filter options to the different color face plates so you can match it to your decor. This purifier looks awesome and modern, no matter which one you pick.
- Customizable filter system
- Customizable design
- Lifetime warranty
- Award winning filtration system
- Lack of a sleep mode
5. Fellows AeraMax 300 Air Purifier
The Aeramax 300 from Fellows has been around for a few years now. It consistently gets top reviews from users and experts alike.
The reason I rate this unit as a good mid sized air purifier for the basement, is it’s good coverage area of 600sq ft coupled with a decent 4 stage filtration system specifically designed to help allergy and asthma sufferers.
It offers really good value for money as one of the cheaper options on my list whilst delivering un-compromised cleaning results.
The only real downsides of the aeramax 300 are that it’s quite a loud air purifier and has bright lights that can’t be switched off. So, whilst this wouldn’t be a suitable unit for the bedroom, I can still highly recommend it for the basement, where these downsides don’t matter as much.
- Powerful 4 stage filter
- Great price for 600sq ft coverage
- great design
- Easy operation
- Loud on highest fan setting
- Bright light you can’t switch off
6. Blurair BluePure 211 Air Purifier
The Bluepure range from Blueair has a very funky modern design. It’s a welcome change from Blueair, who have finally come out of the dark ages with their old bulky looking purifiers.
Once again, like the Aeramax above, this is only really a medium sized basement air purifier (up to 540sq ft). With 360 degree filtration and a really good set of filters, this unit does an incredible job
The downsides of this particular model however are the relatively high maintenance costs and lack of smart options.
One really advantageous point with this air purifier though, is that it’s extremely energy efficient. Even on a high setting it’s only using about 60W.
Typically basement air purifiers are down there for the mold and damp conditions, so they tend to be running for for long periods of time. This is where the bluepure has a real advantage over it’s competition.
- Very modern, cool design
- Super Quiet
- Low energy consumption
- Award winning filtration system
- Lack of smart features
- Fairly high maintenance costs
7. Alen T500 Tower Air Purifier
With slightly over 400sq ft of coverage, the Alen T500 is a great budget basement air purifier Not especially big ones, but it will do a good job in medium sized basement rooms. That’s about as good as you can get for the cheap options though.
What a great option this cheap basement air filter is though. Made by Alen arguably the best air purifier manufacturer out there right now. With their amazing filter technology, Alen units usually come with a bit of a price premium, but not so for this fantastic Tower purifier they make.
To keep costs down the Alen T500 comes with a washable pre filter and a lifetime warranty.
Whilst it can’t clean quite as large of an area as some others on the list, it is very portable thanks to the tower design, so you can move it about the room with ease. Even move it into other rooms when required.
- Very Portable
- Washable pre filter
- Large coverage area for a budget price
- Lifetime warranty
- Quite loud at the highest fan setting
- Not tested independently by AHAM
8. Airthereal APH260 Air Purifier
Talk about value for money. At close to $100, you will not find another air purifier with as much filter technology packed inside with the ability to service 350sq feet.
Whilst this unit can’t service large spaces, it can do a really good job in medium and small basements.
On top of the whopping 7 different air filters you will find inside the machine, it also comes with three different smart options including, air quality monitor, sleep mode and a filter change alert. At this price, smart options are usually unheard of. For this amount of tech at such a low price, it’s no wonder why this air purifier gets such rave reviews on amazon.
- 7 different filters
- 355 sq ft coverage
- Cheapest air purifier for the coverage space
- Good smart options
- Can be loud on high fan settings
- Power cord is quite short
Despite modern building practices that aim to alleviate the problems associated with poor basement design, there are some logistical issues that can’t be overcome. For instance, in many cases it’s impossible to install functioning windows, which would obviously aid ventilation.
Basements with carpeting impair the air quality since the carpets absorb moisture which is usually abundant in the basement. Such absorption helps to cause high humidity, which in turn creates a favorable environment for mold formation.
Due to higher moisture levels, gypsum wallboards become a common source of black toxic mold. Mold spores get into the air, allowing them to easily move around the room to settle on other surfaces in order to grow.
Basements usually have limited ventilation, which is another key requirement for mold growth. Poor air flow also leads to a build up of dust and bacteria.
Even if you don’t spend too much time in the basement, the polluted air can easily flow to upstairs rooms. That’s why I would recommend all the homeowners with rooms below the ground floor to get an air cleaner for their basement.
A solid air purifier with a high-quality filter can keep the air in your basement clean and prevent serious health problems for you and your family.
After doing extensive research, I picked what I believe to be the best 8 air filters for Basements. These units all offer the best value for money at different price points and I truly believe they will do a better job of keeping your air as clean as possible than other models out there.
There are a few standout filters that a good basement air purifier must have. Making sure your new device has the following three filters inside will ensure you are getting the best air purifier for basement areas. Whether they be Finished or Unfinished.
- True Hepa Filter– This is the most important of all filters. No matter where in your home you place your air purifier, it simply must have an original or true HEPA filter. Some companies will try to pass off ‘Hepa like’ filters as genuine, but they aren’t. They are a pale imitation using much cheaper material that simply won’t absorb the amount of pollutants that a true hepa filter will. The HEPA filter is the workhorse of any air purifier. It’s the one tasked with sucking up all of the tiny, microscopic dust and pollutants that make it through the prefilter
- Activated Carbon Filter– This filter is a monster odor eater. Basements are typically overrun by strong odors caused by mold spores and bad ventilation. If this is the case for you, then it’s imperative your air purifier has a carbon filter. The tiny pores of carbon are very attractive to odor particles that will cling to them when they pass through
- Ultraviolet Light– This is an interesting new comer to the world of air purifier filtration. It’s typically placed just after the hepa filter. In the rare case that any mold spores make it through the hepa filter stage, an ultraviolet light works as a safety measure. It works by emitting a UV-C light that can destroy the DNA structure of tiny microscopic germs and spores. Don’t worry though, it’s completely safe to us humans! Here at Freshairguide, we take our job seriously and wouldn’t recommend anything that might be dangerous to our health.
Any good basement air purifier worth it’s salt will have all 3 of these filters as all of them do in my list above, you shouldn’t have any trouble using my hand picked selection of the best air cleaners for basements.
Largely due to poor air flow, Basement air can be some of the worst in the entire house. Putting an air purifier down there can really improve the air quality in your basement and we highly recommend it.
In order to make sure you get the most out of your basement air cleaner, we’ve compiled a list of recommended tips:
- Place it in the right spot – Placing an air purifier up against the wall is not a great idea. In order to fully clean as much air as possible, the device needs good air circulation. So, make sure the rear vents are at least 3 feet away from any wall or table that might block it from doing its job as efficiently as possible.
- Close Doors and windows from time to time – We normally advise allergy sufferers to keep doors and windows closed all the time, so that the air purifier can do repeated full cycles of the air. That means it can filter all the air in the room fully, without being hindered by new air coming into the room. However, air in the basement tends to suffer more from a lack of ventilation. So whilst you want the air purifier to be able to cycle the air as often as possible, adding a little ‘fresh’ air via an open window or door from time to time would be beneficial.
- Don’t switch off the Air Purifier – This is the reason we advise getting an energy efficient air purifier for the basement. Typically in other rooms of the house, you can get away with periods of time when the machine is not switched on. Unfortunately air in the basement tends to be so bad, that you need to keep it running 24/7 in order to fully stop contaminants from entering and breeding. As soon as you turn the air purifier off, mold spores and other contaminants will start to settle on the furnishings and wood, which obviously defeats the purpose of an air purifier.
- Keep the air vents unobstructed – As we touched on in the first point, you want to make sure you keep the air purifier vents at least 3 feet away from any nearby obstructions like walls, tables or sofas. Usually an air purifier has 2 vents. One at the back and one at the front. It sucks in poor air from the rear and spits out the clean air from the front. Some air purifiers have 360 degree venting, which brings different challenges. Just make sure the air purifier can breathe!
- Change Filters when required – The main component of any air purifier is its filters. Just like if an air purifier uses poor quality filters, if those air filters are clogged up with dust and contaminants – it won’t work as well. A lot of modern air purifiers will tell you when they need their filters replaced, for others you will have to read the manual. Whatever the case, make sure you stay on top of the job, otherwise your air cleaner simply won’t be doing it’s job very well.
Why Does Mold Grow in Basements?
Mold loves to live in damp and dark places, which is exactly what most basements are.
Mold and Mildew spores are fairly unique in the fact that they don’t require any sunlight to grow.
Most basements lack adequate air flow and higher than normal levels of humidity, which adds another 2 areas that mold tends to thrive in.
As for the damp part. A lot of your homes internal piping starts and ends in the basement. If one of these pipes is leaking even slightly, it can provide a nice damp environment for mold formulation. You don’t even need leaky pipes, just the condensation that can form on cold pipes can be enough moisture.
How can you Improve the Air Quality in a Basement?
It’s actually very easy to improve the quality of the air in a basement by installing a good air purifier down there. They’re specifically designed to get rid of all the contaminants and odors that basements create.
A lot of the time, basements can suffer from dampness and excessive moisture in the air. If this is the case, you can help your air purifier out by getting a dehumidifier and allowing the two machines to work in unison.
Regular cleaning and washing any furnishings frequently will also go a long way to ensuring your basement air quality is good at all times.
Are Air Purifiers Good for the Basement?
Air purifiers are great in Basements!
Not only are they able to remove the airborne mold spores and dust, but they also help with air circulation. Something most basements are sorely lacking.
The Environmental Protection agency in the USA recently published what they believe to be the major problems we have with indoor air, and basements are responsible for most of them!
Whilst an air purifier can’t solve any issues with damp, it can comfortably deal with all the other issues that lead to poor basement air.
Well, there we have it. I hope you liked my reviews of the best basement air purifiers. As I touched on above. Typically, the larger the area you need to service, the bigger the air purifier and therefore, the bigger the price tag too. So finding a cheap but good air purifier for basements is an almost impossible task. You can still find value for money however, in the top 8 machines I listed above.
If Mold is the root cause of the bad air quality in your basement and you would like further options to consider, then check out our article on the best air purifier for mold.
This article was written by Fin Tatello – check out his author bio here