How Often Should You Clean An Air Purifier / Filter? Find Out Here!

August 2, 2021

When Should I Clean The Filter In An Air Purifier?

Air purifier devices are one of the best machines on the market to improve the indoor air quality inside your home, but if you don't keep the air filter, carbon filter and pre-filter inside of your purifier clean, it could lead to even more indoor air pollution.

You will eventually need to buy a replacement filter for your air purifier when it reaches its end of life, but in the meantime, you should be cleaning the device regularly, by a standard for a HEPA filter type, this is annual to twice a year depending on how much you use your purifier. 

To help you figure out what factors affect how often you need to clean your purifier, as well as how often to clean the other filters in your devices such as the carbon filter and pre-filter, we have composed an informative short guide below.

Why Do Air Purifiers Need Cleaning? 

It's important to clean your air purifier regularly on a schedule so as the high-efficiency air purifier can be working at its maximum. A clean air purifier will make sure it can trap all bad microscopic particle types in the air and harmful pollutant gases. 

If you fail to clean your purifier often then it can contribute to the entire house becoming full of mould spores and dust mites again, as the filter will not be able to catch the airborne mould spore and will instead transmit them back into the air. 

Not only will a well-maintained air filter work better, but it can increase the lifespan of the air purifier type, making it a better investment. 

How Often Should I Clean The Filter In My Air Purifier? 

Performing air purifier maintenance once in a while will not be effective at keeping the air quality safe, some air filter type will need changing and cleaning more often than others, while some are reusable and just need washing.

Should I Choose a Hepa Filter Or a Carbon Filter

So as you can understand how and often to clean your air purifier, you should understand that a regular air purifier is made up of a pre - filter, carbon air filter and a HEPA filter, all of which need cleaning and replacing often so as your machine can be improving indoor air quality.

How Often Should I Clean My HEPA Filter?

Typically, the HEPA type of filter in a purifier will need cleaning every three months and replacing every 12-18 months, however, this period of time can be affected by other factors.

Some HEPA filter might also be washable with normal cold water, while others are non-washable HEPA filter types which will need either vacuuming or replacing fully when they get dirty.

How Often Should I Clean My Carbon Air Filter?

Carbon air filters in your device will need to replaced every three to six months when they get full of indoor air pollution, they can be re-used 1-3 times too and some might be a washable filter, but you should always check with the manufacturer if it is not clearly stated. 

How Often Should I Clean My Pre-Filter?

Pre-filters need filter replacement after every month of use, these should not be washed and only last for short periods of time due to them taking the full brunt of the dirty air particles.

What Factors Affect How Often I Should Clean My Purifier?

As we mentioned above, the cleaning guidelines for the filter types above are just averages, if you use your purifiers for allergy or they are on all the time, then you might want to clean and replace the type of filter more often according to your needs. 

Do Air Purifiers Remove Carbon Monoxide

We've listed some common factors to consider when arranging your filter replacement schedule below. 

  • How dirty the indoor air quality is (if you have pets or live near the city for example).
  • The frequency of how much you use your purifier. 
  • Filter type.
  • Water quality you use to wash your washable filter with, some mineral deposits can clog a permanent filter.

If your not sure whether or not your filter needs cleaning and your device does not have a filter check indicator, then try checking these symptoms below to see if the filters need changing. 

  • There is noticeable dust on the filter. 
  • Allergy and asthma symptoms are getting worse again. 
  • There is a musky odor happening.
  • Your home looks dustier again with mould formation.

Our Step By Step Guide To Cleaning Your Air Purifier 

Cleaning an air purifier is not hard and anyone can do it, how you clean the filters inside of your device will come down to whether or not they are washable, so bear this in mind when following our step by step guide below. 

  • Step One - Wear a face mask and gloves to protect yourself from the allergens and pollutants on the device, especially if you are an asthma sufferer.
  • Step Two - Unplug the device and wipe it down with a damp cloth. 
  • Step Three - Use a vacuum to remove any dust on the inside of the grill, then take it apart to gain access to the interior. 
  • Step Four - Gently vacuum or brush the dust off the interior with care, if your filter is washable soak it in hot water if very dirty or just clean it with cold water. For non-washable filters vacuum them. 
  • Step Five - If you wash your air filter leave it to dry in sun for a couple of hours, a wet filter can grow mould, so it's very important to let it dry out before reinstalling.
  • Step Six - Reinsert the clean filter, put a new pre-filter and voila, your purifier is ready for use again!

Last Words 

To round up our cleaning guide, cleaning your air purifier should be done three months or once a year if you have a high-quality permanent HEPA filter, changing the pre-filter in your device should be done every 30 days too. 

Make sure to maintain the filters inside of your purifier to get the best indoor air quality possible and increase the lifespan of the device.

Kirsten Carter
Kirsten Carter is a freelance content writer who specialises in writing about travel, technology and health. When she's not traveling between her home of Tanzania and England, she writes for her blog Rightminded Travelling and features on a variety of different travel and technology sites.

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