Last updated: January 14, 2023.
How much does it cost to run an air purifier? Find out here (results based on 243 air purifiers). Also, get 10 tips to reduce your electric bills & use this calculator to see your running costs.
Following on from the study of 243 energy efficient air purifiers, the below reveals the impact air purifiers have on electric bills.
- Air purifiers cost between $0.02 and $0.32 per day to run, on average.
- It costs between $0 and $0.86 per year to run an air purifier in standby mode.
- Air purifiers increase electric bills by 0.5% to 8% (i.e. $0.60 to $9.62 per month).
See the cost to run the most energy efficient air purifiers by room size, and reduce your running costs and carbon footprint with the 10 practical tips below.
The results below are based on the energy efficient study here: Air Purifier Power Results [243 Analysed | Most Efficient Revealed].
- How much does it cost to run an air purifier?
- Are air purifiers expensive to run?
- How much do air purifiers increase electric bills?
- Air purifier electricity cost calculator
- Reduce the cost of running an air purifier – 10 practical tips
- Final thoughts
How much does it cost to run an air purifier?
Air purifiers cost $0.12 to run per day, on average, in the US.
It costs $0.85 per week, $3.69 per month and $44.24 annually to run an air purifier.
This is based on the average power consumption of 243 air purifiers, assumes 16 hours of active mode and 8 hours of standby mode per day, and uses the average price per kWh in the US (i.e. $0.15).
The most common daily running cost for an air purifier is $0.14 per day, $0.96 per week, $4.18 per month and $50.17 per year.
Air purifiers cost from $7.19 to $115.48 to run per year.
The table below summarises the average, most common, highest and lowest running costs for air purifiers over various durations.
|Air purifier consumption category||Annual running cost ($0.15 per kWh)||Monthly running cost ($0.15 per kWh)||Weekly running cost ($0.15 per kWh)||Daily running cost ($0.15 per kWh)|
As you can see, the overall cost to run an air purifier varies considerably.
To get a more accurate sense of the running cost of air purifiers let’s look at the costs by room size.
Cost to run an air purifier by room size
It costs $3.95 per month to run an air purifier designed for a medium sized room (i.e. 300 sq. ft. to 399 sq. ft.).
The cost to run an air purifier increases along with room size.
Per month, it costs $1.72 to run an air purifier designed for a very small room (less than 100 sq. ft.). This cost increases to $2.50 for small rooms that are 100 to 199 sq. ft. The cost increases again, to $3.34 per month, for small-medium rooms (200 to 299 sq.ft.).
On average, it costs $4.44 per month to run air purifiers designed for medium-large rooms (400 to 499 sq. ft.). The cost increases to $5.28 for large rooms (500 to 599 sq. ft.).
It costs $6.51 per month, on average, to run air purifiers designed for very large rooms (600 to 699 sq. ft.).
The table below provides a summary of the average cost per month to run air purifiers designed for different room sizes.
|Room Size||Square footage||Average monthly running costs (15c per kWh)|
|Very small||<100 sq. ft.||$1.72|
|Small||100-199 sq. ft.||$2.50|
|Small-medium||200-299 sq. ft.||$3.34|
|Medium||300-399 sq. ft.||$3.95|
|Medium-large||400-499 sq. ft.||$4.44|
|Very large||600+ sq. ft.||$6.51|
As you can see, the average cost to run air purifiers increases with room size. This is because more power is required to deliver enough clean air to fill the increases in room size.
As a result, it’s important to choose an appropriate air purifier designed for specific room sizes.
These figures are the average running costs by room size. But how much does it cost to run the most energy efficient air purifier in each room size category? Let’s take a look.
Cost to run the most energy efficient air purifiers
It costs between $0.72 and $2.79 per month to run the most energy efficient air purifiers on the market.
Unexpectedly, the running costs don’t increase linearly with room size when it comes to the most energy efficient air purifiers.
Some of the air purifiers designed for larger room sizes are more energy efficient than their smaller room counterparts.
Overall, the most energy efficient air purifier is the Powermatic – PM1250 (get more details on Amazon, here). This shop air purifier, designed for 600+ sq. ft. areas, costs $2.25 per month to run. It’s cheaper to run than the most energy efficient air purifier designed for a medium sized room (300 – 399 sq. ft.).
The most energy efficient home-style air purifier is the Blueair – Joy S (more details on Amazon.com, here). This costs just $0.72 per month to run.
The table below provides a summary of the cost, per month, to run the most efficient air purifier in each size range. Also included for convenience are the most efficient model names (based on a study of 243 of the most energy efficient air purifiers on the market), along with Amazon links.
|Square footage||Monthly cost to run most efficient air purifier||Most efficient model overall||Amazon link|
|<100 sq. ft.||$1.03||BLACK+DECKER – BAPT01||See product|
|100-199 sq. ft.||$0.72||Blueair – Joy S||Get product details|
|200-299 sq. ft.||$2.14||GermGuardian – AP5800||See price & features|
|300-399 sq. ft.||$2.41||Blueair – 3431101000||Get details here|
|400-499 sq. ft.||$1.91||Carrier – CARRIER-18S||See design and specs|
|500-599 sq.ft.||$2.79||Carrier – RMAP-XL||See product here|
|600+ sq. ft.||$2.25||Powermatic – PM1250||Check it out here|
Source: most efficient air purifier.
These running costs assume 16 hours in active mode and 8 hours in standby mode per day.
Speaking of standby mode, let’s take a look at how much it costs to run air purifiers in standby mode.
Cost to run an air purifier in standby mode
It costs between 0 and $0.86 per year to run an air purifier in standby mode.
On average, it costs $0.25 per year to run an air purifier in standby mode.
This assumes the device is in standby mode for 8 hours per day, and assumes a cost per kWh of $0.15.
The table below shows the average, most common, highest and lowest standby running costs, across various durations.
|Electricity consumption category||Per hour (standby only)||24 hrs (in standby only)||Weekly (standby only at 8rs p/d)||Monthly (standby only at 8rs p/d for 31 days)||Annually (standby only at 8rs p/d)|
Just 5.3% of the most energy efficient air purifiers don’t consume any electricity in standby mode.
Now that we know how much it costs to run an air purifier, let’s put the cost into perspective.
Are air purifiers expensive to run?
No. Air purifiers are not expensive to run.
However, if their usage is substantial then the running costs can be considerable.
I’d consider 16 hours in active mode and 8 hours in standby mode per day to be substantial usage (while also being realistic usage). As a result the average annual running cost, at $44.24, is expensive, in my opinion. But others might not have the same opinion.
What people consider to be expensive is quite subjective.
So let’s get some context by comparing the running cost of air purifiers with other household appliances.
The cost to run an air purifier, $3.69 per month on average, is equivalent to:
- How much it costs to run a PS5 for 80 hours of gaming.
- The cost of running an electric fireplace for close to 17 hours.
- The cost of charging an electric car to two thirds of its capacity.
Let’s add some more perspective by looking at the impact on electricity bills.
How much do air purifiers increase electric bills?
Air purifiers increase electric bills by 3.2% (i.e. $3.69 per month), on average.
The average US monthly electricity bill is $115, so an increase to $118.69 is not substantial.
This increase, however, is based on the average cost to run the most energy efficient air purifiers.
Even the most energy efficient air purifiers can increase electric bills by up to $9.62 per month. This represents an 8% increase in electric bills, which is considerable. Less energy efficient air purifiers will increase monthly bills even more.
The most energy efficient air purifier will increase electric bills by just 0.5% (i.e. $0.60 per month).
Ultimately, even the most energy efficient air purifiers will increase electric bills by 0.5% to 8%.
The increase ranges from quite low to a considerable increase. And less efficient air purifiers will have an even more substantial impact.
To work out the exact increase on your electric bill, use the following air purifier electricity cost calculator.
Air purifier electricity cost calculator
Not interested in average running costs and don’t fancy doing the math to work out your costs?
Simply enter your air purifier wattage, usage and the price you pay per kWh into the calculator below to see how much it costs you to run your, or any, air purifier.
Now that we know the running cost of air purifiers, let’s take a look at ways that we can reduce the costs.
Reduce the cost of running an air purifier – 10 practical tips
- Power off. Keeping your air purifier completely off is the most effective way to reduce the running costs. Using the device less, turning it off instead of leaving it On in standby mode, and always turning it off when you leave the room will help reduce your running costs.
- Use lower speeds. Lower speeds require less power and, therefore, cost less to run. Consider lowering the speed setting if it’s comfortable.
- Make it more effective. Making the air purifier more effective will mean that you’ll need to run it less and/or you can comfortably reduce the speed setting. This will help reduce the running costs. Here are some specific considerations:
- Open windows, doors and vents to help remove polluted air.
- Close windows, doors and vents to help reduce the ingress of air pollution and retain cleaner room air.
- Avoid placing the device near a source of clean air – you don’t want to clean clean air.
- Place the air purifier in an open space and/or near to the source of the pollutant. This helps capture polluted air and deliver clean air throughout the room.
- Consider using a ceiling fan, if one is available and if it’s energy efficient, to help with air circulation. Ceiling fans are the most energy efficient electric fan at moving air.
- Room size matters. As you saw in the table above, the cost to run an air purifier increases with the area size that it was designed to clean. Using the appropriate air purifier for your room will help keep your running costs low.
- Pollutant type matters too. Choosing the most effective air purifier for your needs will mean that you’ll reduce the amount of time that you need to use it. The power consumed, and therefore the running costs, varies when it comes to removing smoke, dust and pollen from the air. Check out the most energy efficient air purifiers for removing smoke, dust and pollen, here.
- Consider upgrading to a more energy efficient model. Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) per watt is a key performance indicator for air purifier energy efficiency. I go into more details about this here: Air Purifier Power Results [243 Analysed | Most Efficient Revealed]. For convenience, I used the key findings of the study above and listed the most efficient models along with their running costs.
- Keep filters clean. Keeping air filters clean will mean that the device will not have to work harder to clean air in the room. Working harder requires more electricity which, in turn, increases running costs.
- Don’t forget about the sensors. Modern air purifiers may have sensors to help automate the delivery of clean air. If your device uses sensors, make sure to keep clean and unblocked so they don’t use electricity unnecessarily.
- Consider switching energy provider. Many utility providers offer significant discounts to attract new customers. Consider shopping around as this can reduce the cost of running all of your appliances, not just your air purifier.
- Consider a night saver tariff. If you use your air purifier and other appliances overnight, it might be cost effective for you to avail of a tariff that offers discounts for off-peak consumption. If relevant to you, consider getting in touch with your energy provider.
Reducing the cost to run your air purifier will also reduce your carbon footprint. If you’d like to reduce your carbon footprint even more, consider using Green energy. Many electricity providers offer a Green energy plan.
Even the most energy efficient air purifiers will increase your electric bills by 0.5% to 8%, on average.
As a result, it’s important to choose and use the most energy efficient air purifier for your needs.
I hope that this post helps you choose the appropriate model, while also helping you to reduce your running costs.
This has the added benefit of keeping our carbon footprint low.
Want to know more about energy efficient air purifiers? Check out my recent study: Air Purifier Power Results [243 Analysed | Most Efficient Revealed].
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James, Eco Cost Savings co-founder and Editor-in-Chief, is also our experienced in-house energy management and sustainability expert, and manager of our network of sustainability consultants.
Before his journey into sustainability, James studied engineering. Additionally, he has experience in HVAC installation, and data analysis. A self-proclaimed practical environmentalist, and avid penny pincher, James established Eco Cost Savings to share his and his colleague’s expertise with the aim of helping to reduce energy bills and carbon footprints at scale.