can an air purifier help with smoke

Can an air purifier help with smoke? Smoke and other forms of air pollution can affect you negatively, and that is why it is natural to resort to air purifiers.

However, people sometimes ask, “Does air purifier help with smoke?” Can it really play a role in reducing symptoms and improving indoor air quality?

In order to answer this pressing topic, we must take a closer look at the features and performance of air purifiers in the fight against smoking.

But, should you give it a try?

It is hard work for air purifiers to remove the smell of smoke, but you can still rely on an air purifier with a HEPA filter to eliminate smoke residue from the air. 

Understanding More about Second-Hand Smoke

understanding more about second-hand smoke

While it is common knowledge that smoking tobacco is bad for your health, you may not be aware of how severe the effects of secondhand smoke may be.

When smoking, both inhaled and exhaled smoke have carcinogens that can cause serious health problems, although inhaled smoke is more directly from the source of the burning tobacco.

There are thousands of compounds in tobacco smoke, and hundreds of them are known to be harmful to human health.

The health effects of secondhand smoke are many, including:

  • Mild discomfort
  • Respiratory diseases
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Cancer

It is quite unfortunate that second-hand smoke kills people who have never smoked in their lives.

And that is why people use air purifiers to improve the air quality, especially in an office setting where others may smoke. 

Switching to Air Purifiers to Handle Smoke

switching to air purifiers to handle smoke

Tobacco smoke, forest fire smoke, and other types of smoke can lower indoor air quality and put people’s health at risk.

As a result, people frequently look for ways to lessen their exposure to smoke and the particulates it produces. Air purifiers are a common choice.

But, what role do air purifiers play in lowering secondhand smoke levels?  Let’s find out more about it. 

Can an Air Purifier Help with Smoke?

air purifier assist in smoke reduction

Thankfully, modern-day air purifiers are quite capable of removing smoke and improving indoor air quality.

To get a better idea about how these appliances prove effective against smoke, you need to understand a little about the way they work. 

How Do Air Purifiers Work?

An air purifier takes in air from a room, processes it through a set of filters to remove contaminants like dust and chemicals, and then returns the filtered air to the space.

The good news is that using an air purifier can help eliminate smoke from the air, as is the case with allergens like mold and pollen

How Do Air Purifiers Help with Smoke?

how do air purifiers help with smoke

An air purifier can help eliminate smoke odors and remove many of the dangerous chemical components.

A HEPA filter and activated carbon are the two major components of air purifiers designed to eliminate cigarette smoke.

True HEPA filters are tested to guarantee that they remove particles of 0.3 microns in size, 99.97% of the time.

Therefore, the best strategy to prevent the spread of toxic compounds and unpleasant aromas from secondhand smoke is to use an air purifier, especially when someone is smoking.

Fact: The HEPA filter can effectively trap cigarette smoke since its particles are between 4 and 0.01 microns in size. 

Factors Affecting the Way Air Purifiers Help with Smoke

factors impacting air purifiers' effectiveness on smoke

It is true that air filters are effective against smoke, but many factors have a role to play here.

For instance: 

Smoke Particle Size

The efficiency of air purifiers in eliminating smoke depends on the size of the smoke particles:

  • Filters are better able to trap coarse particles (those with a size greater than 2.5 microns).
  • Particles with sizes between 2.5 and 0.1 microns are more troublesome.
  • The smallest 0.1-micron particles are the most challenging to collect.

Smoke particles are large enough to be captured by a high quality air purifier, which is why the right use of purifiers is effective against smoke.  

The Use of Quality Filters

the use of quality filters

The filtration capacity of an air purifier can have an impact on how well a purifier works to remove smoke particles from the air.

You should use an air filter using HEPA filters. These filters have a complex, mazelike design because of the dense layer of fibers used in their construction.

The filter works by capturing smoke particles in its complex fibers as air flows past it.

Moreover, air purifiers with HEPA filters have shown impressive efficacy during times of wildfire.

Fact: Research shows that HEPA-filtered air purifiers significantly reduce indoor particle concentrations resulting from wildfires compared to residences without purifiers.   

Activated Carbon Filters and Smoke Odor Removal

activated carbon filters and smoke odor removal

Filters made from activated carbon are effective against both smoke odors and the VOCs (volatile organic compounds) found in cigarette smoke.

A carbon source undergoes activation by being heated to very high temperatures, at which point it becomes very porous.

The interior surface area of a little pellet of activated carbon can be comparable to an entire football field.

Adsorption of chemicals, smells, and gases into activated carbon occurs when these substances pass through its porous surface.

Activated carbon filters out the odor-causing molecules from the air and replaces them with clean, odor-free air. 

An Important Consideration

Extensive testing has shown that activated carbon filters are quite good at reducing smoke odors.

They are frequently employed in air purifiers designed to combat wildfire smoke or tobacco smoke.

Air purifiers that use both HEPA and activated carbon filters are more successful at removing smoke particles and odors from the air and promoting a healthier indoor environment.

Air Purifier Placement and Coverage Area

air purifier placement and coverage area

A well-placed air purifier is crucial for effective smoke elimination.

If nearby wildfires are to blame for heavy smoke infiltration into the home, the living room would be an ideal location for an air purifier to eliminate the haze.

It is also important to think about how big the air purifier is and how much space it covers.

Larger rooms or open floor plans may be too much for an air purifier with a limited coverage area to handle.

Fact: The air purifier's ability to effectively circulate and filter air, trapping smoke particles and improving indoor air quality, depends on its location and coverage area. 

The Impact of Proper Maintenance

the impact of proper maintenance

To keep air purifiers functioning at peak performance and remove smoke effectively, routine maintenance is essential.

Wiping down the device’s exterior and interior on a regular basis helps avoid the collection of dust and debris that could reduce the device’s effectiveness.

If you want your air purifier to keep catching smoke particles properly, you should replace the filter as directed by the manufacturer.

If you follow the purifier’s maintenance instructions, you can find and fix any problems that may be hindering its efficiency, including blockages or malfunctions.  

Fact: Filters lose efficiency and indoor air quality suffers when they are not replaced regularly. 

Limitations of Air Purifiers in Removing Smoke

limitations of air purifiers in removing smoke

Understanding the limitations of air purifiers is crucial since they play a vital role in lowering smoke particles and improving indoor air quality.

Even if you have a purifier with a high-quality air filter, you still might have to deal with smoke because of things like burning forests or people smoking indoors.

They are primarily designed to clear smoke from an enclosed area.

A holistic strategy is required to tackle smoke successfully.

Maintaining adequate ventilation to allow for the free interchange of stale air for clean air is also important.

When used in conjunction with air purifiers, these preventative methods can lessen the negative effects of secondhand smoke on people’s respiratory systems. 

Additional Considerations for Smoke Removal

Using air purifiers with a higher CADR rating can provide more effective filtration and speedier smoke removal in instances where smoke pollution is severe.

If you want to lower the amount of smoke in the air, air purifiers with a higher CADR rating will get the job done more quickly.

additional considerations for smoke removal

Multiple air purifiers, strategically placed in a bigger room, can remove smoke from every corner of the room.

Maintaining a cleaner indoor environment is also possible through routine cleaning and vacuuming, which removes collected smoke particles from surfaces. 


Can an air purifier help with smoke?  It is true that air purifiers can help reduce the number of smoke particles in the air and raise the overall quality of the air in a room.

Air purifiers can reduce the dangers associated with smoke inhalation by capturing and removing a large percentage of smoke particles using modern filtering systems like HEPA filters and activated carbon filters.

However, in extreme smoke conditions, it is imperative that people take immediate action to protect themselves, such as evacuating to a safe area or going to a designated clean air shelter.