Ionizer Air Purifier Pros Cons (Benefits & Dangers)

  • Author: Irene Mills
  • Date: September 26, 2022
  • Time to read: 6 min.
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In recent years, ionizer air purifiers have become more and more popular. 

You will often find them marketed as a low-cost alternative to your far more traditional air purifier.

Some may even say that ionizer air purifiers are even better than their counterparts. I set out to discover whether that was actually the case.

What follows is an in-depth look at the Ionizer air purifier pros and cons. I want you to learn how they work, the main benefits, and even the dangers. 

Basically, we are going to leave no stone unturned in helping you to determine whether an ionizer air purifier is right for you!

Ionizer Air Purifier Pros Cons

Let’s start by keeping things simple. I want to give you an overview of the pros and cons of using an air purifier.

I will be expanding on some of these points throughout this page.

However, if you want a quick rundown of the basics, you are covered here.

Pros

  • Can help to purify the air.
  • Cost less to run than a normal air purifier
  • Quiet
  • Can remove unpleasant smells from the air.

Cons

  • Not brilliant at removing pet fur or dander from the air.
  • Do not work in incredibly dusty environments.
  • Produce ozone
  • Some can make the area around the air purifier dusty.

Do Ionic Air Purifiers Work?

There is no denying that ionic air purifiers will help to remove dust particles from the air.

What is up for debate is whether ionic air purifiers will remove enough dust from the air to make using one worthwhile.

One study seemed to suggest that a major commercial ionic air purifier would have no issues removing dust from the air. 

However, it seemed to be a lot more effective when there was nobody else in that room. 

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As soon as the ionic air purifier had to put up with the hustle and bustle of daily life, it became a lot less effective.

Another study indicated that for there to be any noticeable impact on the quality of the air, the ionizer air purifier would have to be a little bit stronger than the average commercial air purifier. 

However, it did claim that ionic air purifiers do have the potential to work.

In my opinion, ionic air purifiers do work. 

However, you can’t expect them to work in an incredibly dusty household. 

If you have cigarette smoke, pet hair, and dust floating about all the time, then give an ionic air purifier a skip. It won’t work. 

However, if you have a little bit of dust and work hard to keep your home clean otherwise, then give an ionic air purifier ago. It may help to clean up the last of that dust.

Ionizer Benefits

Ionizer air purifiers can remove some dust from the air. You won’t be able to remove everything with an ionizer, but in less dusty homes, it may be just enough for you to be able to enjoy a bit of clean air.

As I said before, it can also help to break up some of those nastier smells.

For example, some people have found that ionizers can help to break up that smoky smell from burned food, and may even reduce the smell of cigarette smoke. 

It may not be able to remove it completely, but it should get rid of enough to make being in that room far more pleasant.

Ionizer air purifiers are a lot quieter than normal air purifiers too. 

While you would probably be reaching for that ‘off’ button rather sharpish when you sleep with a normal air purifier, an ionizer is an almost dead silent. 

You can keep it running all night without any issues. It consumes a lot less power than traditional air purifiers. 

Ionizer Air Purifier Dangers

The big concern with ionizer air purifiers is that most of them will give off ozone.

Not only is this going to be damaging to the environment, but it is also going to be incredibly damaging to your health.

Various countries around the world have started to introduce laws that limit the amount of ozone that gadgets like ionizers can give off.

However, some would argue that these laws don’t go far enough. Exposure to any ozone is always going to be a bad thing.

Remember, at the moment, there is a big push toward helping to repair this planet. 

If everybody was running ionizers, pumping ozone into the atmosphere, we probably wouldn’t get very far.

Ionizer Air Purifier Side Effects

Air Purifier Ionizer Good or Bad?

Constant exposure to an ionizer air purifier may lead to the following side effects:

  • Pain in the chest
  • Throat irritation
  • Constant coughing 

Most people actually purchase air purifiers because they want to eradicate the dust from the air so it doesn’t exasperate their pre-existing conditions.

For example, asthma suffers. The thing is that there is some evidence that ionizer air purifiers can end up making these conditions a lot worse.

So, if you are suffering from asthma, if you get an ionizer air purifier, then you can’t expect your symptoms to get better. 

In fact, you may find that you end up dealing with your symptoms a whole lot more often.

The less ozone an ionizer air purifier produces, the lower the chances of these side effects occurring is.

Do Ionizers Produce Ozone?

Some ionizers do produce ozone. 

However, some of the latest air purifiers on the market either produce none or very little. 

You will want to look at the manufacturer’s technical specification for any ionizer air purifier that you buy. 

The ozone output will be buried pretty deep inside of the technical specs, but it will be there. 

Manufacturers don’t necessarily like to talk up the idea that their product is damaging to the environment, after all.

Do Ionizers Really Clean the Air?

Recent studies have shown that ionizers can remove some particles from the air, but not all of them. 

Those particles aren’t just going to magically disappear either. One of two things will happen:

  • The particles will be sucked into the air purifier and stay there.
  • They will be ‘knocked out of the air and come to rest around the air purifier. This is why it is often dustier around air purifiers.

The thing is that while these ionizers may remove a limited number of particles from the air, those dust particles could always come back.

An ionizer isn’t really going to be doing a permanent clean of the air. 

You will still have to put a bit of effort into dusting things up and cleaning out the ionizer, almost daily.

Ionizers are never going to properly clean the air if you live in a very dusty home, or if you have pets.

Final Thoughts – Air Purifier Ionizer Good or Bad?

I do tend to lean heavily toward the ‘bad side of things for air purifier ionizers. While there is some evidence that they work, they do not work especially well. 

Add in the fact that the ozone production may cause some serious side effects and you end up with a bit of equipment that you probably don’t want in your home. 

Give them a skip and find other ways to keep the air clean. It will be to your benefit.

This wraps up this article about the Ionizer air purifier’s pros and cons.

Looking For Air Purifier Guides?

If you’re looking for more air purifier resources, consider checking out our other posts on air purifiers.

irene mills author of freshairdevices

(writer & chief editor)

Irene Mills is eager to help others create an indoor allergen-free home. She has years of experience testing out air purifiers, dehumidifiers, and other products designed to help with indoor air quality. Learn more about me.