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How Much Electricity Does an Air Purifier Use?

How Much Electricity Does an Air Purifier Use?

Of the many appliances in the average home that require electricity, air purifiers are not the most energy-intensive by any means. Washing machines, dishwashers, refrigerators and air conditioners all use significantly more electricity than air purifiers, and even smaller appliances like toasters and coffee makers are much more energy intensive. That being said, you probably aren’t running your toaster 24 hours a day!

Find out how to calculate exactly how much electricity your air purifier uses, what factors affect its energy consumption and how to optimize its efficiency in this article!

What do air purifiers use electricity for?

Air purifiers generally use a fan to pull in contaminated air, send it through some kind of filtration or purification (mechanical or chemical filters or a UV air purification system), and push cleaned air back into the room.

The air purifier’s fan tends to be the main source of energy consumption. Air purifiers that use a UV disinfection process also require electricity to generate light, but the energy consumption is usually minimal.

Factors that affect an air purifier’s energy consumption

The square footage the air purifier covers

There are air purifiers available for a vast range of spaces, from small one-room devices that cover just a few hundred square feet to powerful whole-house air purifiers that cover 4,000 sq. ft. or more.

Of course, the larger the space, the higher the volume of air to be cleaned. A higher volume of air will require a more powerful fan to achieve an acceptable clean air delivery rate (CADR), and a more powerful fan will use more electricity.

How many hours the air purifier runs per day

For optimal air cleaning, it’s best to leave your air purifier on all day every day. They are designed for constant use and only consume a little bit of energy at a time. However, those who are concerned about the electricity cost of a constantly running device may choose to turn it off while they’re at work, or only run it while they’re asleep.

The setting used

Air purifiers generally have more than one setting. The power consumption rate provided by the manufacturer is usually based on the highest setting, so you can save energy by running your air purifier at a lower setting.

It’s best to use the highest setting when first turning on the air purifier to efficiently clean the air, but it’s fine to switch to a lower setting once the device has been running for a couple of hours. Some air purifiers are even equipped with a sensor that tests the air quality and automatically adjusts the device’s setting accordingly!

How to calculate an air purifier’s electricity cost

To calculate the cost of an air purifier’s power consumption, you’ll need:

  • The power of the device (in watts)
  • The number of hours it runs per day
  • The cost of electricity in your area (in dollars per kilowatt hour)

An air purifier’s power is generally expressed in watts (W). In order to calculate how much it will cost to run, we first need to determine the amount of energy used in kilowatt hours (kWh).

(power in watts x hours used daily) / 1000 = kWh per day

Then, all you need to do is multiply the result by the cost of electricity in your area to determine the daily cost of running your air purifier.

kWh per day x cost of electricity = daily cost of running the device

Calculating an air purifier’s electricity cost: an example

As an example, let’s take Sanuvox’s Sanuvair S300 residential UV air purifier, which covers up to 4,000 sq. ft. Its power is 180W, and let’s say it’s being used all day (24 hrs) in the province of Quebec.

(180W x 24) / 1000 = 4.32 kWh per day

Use a nationwide average to calculate electricity cost for the first 40 kWh used per day. We’ll use that rate to complete your calculation.

Despite being powerful enough to provide air cleaning for an entire large house, the Sanuvair S300 air purifier only costs $0.27 per day in electricity use, and that’s when running continuously at the highest setting.


How to optimize your air purifier’s energy efficiency

While air purifiers don’t use a lot of electricity, there are things you can do to make them even more energy efficient:

  • Clean/replace the filter: If your air purifier has a mechanical filter, the most important thing you can do to optimize energy efficiency is clean or replace the filter regularly. Mechanical filters are designed to trap dust, hair and other particles, but as they become saturated, it will be more and more difficult for the fan to push the air through.
  • Choose the right air purifier for your space: Choose an air purifier with a coverage area that’s as close as possible to the size of the space you want to use it for. An air purifier that is rated for less will have to work overtime and at higher fan speeds to improve the air quality, and an air purifier that is rated for more will use up more energy for no reason.
  • Use auto mode: If your air purifier is equipped with an air quality sensor, put it on auto mode so that the fan speed will automatically adjust based on the air quality level detected.
    Put your air purifier in the right place: Place your air purifier in a central location that is unobstructed to ensure smooth air flow.
  • Close doors and windows: Keep doors and windows closed to prevent additional pollutants from coming in as the air purifier is trying to clean the air.


Get energy-efficient air purification from Sanuvox!

With the rising cost of living and the climate crisis, it is completely valid to be concerned about your energy consumption. Fortunately, breathing cleaner air with the help of an air purifier doesn’t come at a high cost—for your wallet or the planet!

Sanuvox offers a range of residential and commercial UV air purifiers that are very effective at deactivating and help to reduce all kinds of chemical and biological contaminants. Browse our online shop or contact us today to explore our energy-efficient options!

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