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Planning To Buy An Air Purifier Amid Falling AQI? Know the Costs, Other Factors


With the Air Quality Index (AQI) in the poor category in Delhi-NCR for more than a month or so, air purifiers are much in demand. A lot of households may already have air purifiers, now people are moving to the next level of having one in every room. The AQI in the national capital was 293, which indicates poor quality, on Friday morning, according to the India Meteorological Department (MD).

Delhi’s AQI reached a high of 450 on November 3, and has been consistently above the 300 mark between October 27 and November 8 this year. On November 10, for the first time in 15 days, the AQI level fell below the 300 mark to 260, still in the poor category. An AQI value of 50 or below denotes good air quality and anything above 300 represents very poor. This being a recurrent problem every year now, more and more people are realising the need to have air purifiers at home.

The air quality of Delhi continues to remain in the ‘poor’ category on Friday. According to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR), the city’s overall Air Quality Index (AQI) stood at 293 on Friday morning.

No wonder, the air purifier market seems to be growing. The global air purifier market was valued at $12.26 billion in 2021 and is expected to expand at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR ) of 8.1 per cent from 2022 to 2030, according to data provided by O2 Cure, an air purifier company. The India air purifier market was pegged at $100.41 million in 2021, and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 34.6 per cent from 2023-2028, according to data from Expert Market Research, a research firm.

If you are planning to buy, replace or add another air purifier to your house, weigh the costs, features and other factors before deciding on one.

Initial Cost

There are various kinds of air purifiers available in the market. The prime differentiator between these are the filters. Some of the air purifiers you will currently find are those with HEPA filters, activated carbon air purifiers, ionic air purifiers, and UV air purifiers. A single air purifier can have multiple filters too.

“An air purifier uses 6 stages of intense air purification that uses evolved technology to remove the finest impurities. The pre-filtration stage cleans the air of PM (particulate matter) by using an integrated filter (pre-filter mesh, medical grade H14 HEPA filter and granular activated carbon filter),” says Rajiv Kenue, executive vice-president, electrical consumer durables, Havells India.

According to prices displayed on online shopping platforms, the cost of home air purifiers’ is in the range of Rs 5,000 to Rs 1,49,000. The price range usually depends on the type of filter used, apart from the size, brand and other factors.

Recurring Cost

The cost you pay initially is not one-time and you will eventually need to pay for replacement of filters, repairs, maintenance etc.

It is essential to check the lifespan of filters as the major maintenance cost is replacement of filters. Some filters may last longer on regular cleaning. “The cost of replacement usually ranges between Rs 1,500 and Rs 2,500 depending on the brands and have a span of around six months. As this will be a recurring cost, it is best to figure out the cost of replacement of filters beforehand,” says Kenue.

The cost of air purifier filters depends upon the grade and size of the filters used. The smaller the size, the more frequently you may have to change it. Remember that frequent changes may cost you more in the long term. The frequency of filter replacement also depends on the usage.

Another recurring cost is the power charges. According to Kartik Singhal, founder, O2 Cure, and managing director at Zeco Aircon Limited, an average air purifier consumes power that ranges from 65-100 Watts per month. This is somewhat similar to how much power a fan consumes and may not translate into too high a cost.

“The life span of filters lasts for 30,000-hrs without any maintenance. While for a passive air purification product, the power consumption is up to 80 Watts, the life of the filters can cover one full season,” he says.

Other Things To Consider

One of the key aspects to check before buying an air purifier is determining the room dimension. “For this, match the size to the coverage area that is usually mentioned in square feet (sq. ft) of each device. A smaller one will not clean the air entirely,” says Kenue.

Be mindful of the Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR), which indicates how much air the purifier cleans during a given period. The higher CADR, the better it is.

Remember to check the energy star ratings as it can help reduce power bills. “Also, check the noise levels from the fan when running at top speed, which should be around 35 decibels. Do not opt for models with the above 55 decibels rating,” says Kenue.



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