which is better ionizer or air purifier

Which is Better? Ionizer or Air purifier?

What is an Air Purifier?

If you do a search for air purifier on Amazon,  you’ll come up with brands like 
Levoit and BlueAir that appear at the top of the results.

There are a few other big brand names but they all have the same thing in common.

They all use a combination of a HEPA filter, a carbon filter, and a pre-filter to clean the air.

So when you mention air purifier, what you’re talking about is a air filtering machine.

This is what the industry has said that is the best way to clean air. Who am I to argue?

But if you go down into the results of Amazon a few pages, you start to find air purifiers that use other types of technologies besides the standard HEPA and Carbon.

The Sharp Plasmacluster is one of the first ones you come across that does anything to stray from the straight and narrow.

Plasma cluster is an ionizer that releases both positive and negative ions simultaneously.


A little further into the search results and you find other companies like Guardian Technologies and Air Oasis that are also doing something different.

Ultraviolet light with photo catalyst and  Bipolar are terms that you see associated with these air purifiers that are at the core; Ionizers.


What is an Ionizer?

A simple ionizer is a machine that emits negative ions into the airstream.

The ions because of polarity, combine with the contaminants in the air.

After which they become too heavy to float and fall to the surface.

That’s the simple version.

Other versions of ionizers combine ultraviolet light and titanium to create  super ions that actually kill the contaminants in the air before causing them to be too heavy to float.

Bipolar ionizers like the plasma cluster technology, release negative and positive ions at the same time.

As soon as the ions are emitted from the machine, they begin snapping together, trapping and oxidizing all the contaminants in the air in the process.


As you can see, Modern ionizers are pretty sophisticated.

Which is better? Ionizer or air purifier?

So you may ask yourself, if these ionizers can actually neutralize and kill contaminants like viruses and bacteria in the air?

Why would I want an air purifier that just filters them?

Get ready for the Big “O”.

The answer is ozone.

Even if it’s a negligible amount, and most companies claim that it is of course,

There is one thing that they can’t get away from and that is that Ionizers manufacture ozone as a byproduct.

Ozone is a lung irritant if you breathe too much of it.
Which is kind of the opposite of what you want out of a air purifier.

But if you’re willing to go down that rabbit hole, you may find that the benefits outweigh the risk with these ionizers.

Which is better? Ionizer or air purifier?

The standard air purifier with the HEPA and carbon filter combination is a easy answer.

There is no risk involved in simply filtering out contaminants from the air.

Not to mention, that HEPA filters these days are insanely effective.

And ionizers do have a chance of manufacturing some ozone as a byproduct.

Even if it’s a safe amount, it’s understandable if you don’t want to mess with it.

But personally, I like the ideal of having an air purifier that has both HEPA filter and ionizer technologies available to me.

For instance the Sharp plasma cluster that we talked about a little earlier,

The plasma cluster ionizer is a extra feature that you can turn on when you want it, or leave off when you don’t.

I like the ideal of having the option of turning it on if I want to.

I also like the ideal of the science behind the plasma cluster technology.

So which is better?  Both is better.

Published by

Dennis Reed

Dennis Reed Owner and Author @ BreatheBetterAir.org