Best Air Purifier For Kitchen Smells & Odors – Detailed Reviews

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Do you dread cooking at home because the smell permeates through your whole house and sticks onto your clothes and furniture? Though they don’t smell unpleasant initially, long term exposure to these odors in your home can cause a lingering greasy odor that is really hard to remove when you want to. If you are trying to sell your house, this immediately turns off any potential buyer.

In order to prevent that from happening, short of not cooking, is to invest in a good air purifier that can capture all these undesirable smells and odors from your kitchen and home. Besides ridding your home of the cooking smells, air purifiers can also help with the odors from the sink and rubbish disposal area. 

While most air purifiers would do a decent job, some can do a much better job because of certain features. We did the research and shortlisted the air purifiers you see below. With the holiday season coming up, we expect to see a lot more cooking and these air purifiers would be a great deal for your money.

Below, you will find a list of 5 best air purifiers from reputable international brands, all geared towards management of smells and odors, each with their pros and cons clearly stated.

Coverage AreaWarrantyFilter
Replacement
Filter
replacement
costs
Germ Guardian AC4825E167 sq. ft.3 years6 to 8 monthsLow
Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier360 sq. f.t1 year12 months High
Mooka Air Purifer120 sq. ft.3 years3 to 6 monthLow
TaoTronics TT-AP001161 sq .ft.1.5 years3 to 6 monthsLow
Levoit LV132129 sq. ft.2 years6 to 8 monthsModerate
Best Air Purifier For Kitchen Odor And Smells

You’ll also find a buyers’ guide where you can read our rationale when deciding how to rate these products, and hopefully you can use it yourself when making future purchases.

In a Hurry? This Is Our Winner!

Germ Guardian AC4825E Air Purifier

Best Overall Air Purifier For Kitchen Smells And Odors

Product Overview

  • Dimensions: 9” x 5.5” x 22”
  • Weight: 8.55 lbs
  • Coverage area: 167 sq. ft. (15sqm)
  • Clean air delivery rate (CADR): 118㎥ / hr
  • HEPA Filter replacement frequency: Once every 6 to 8 months
  • UV bulb replacement frequency: Once every 10 to 12 months
  • Warranty: 3 years

The Germ Guardian is an air purifier for a medium sized room of about 167 sq. ft. For its air purifying capabilities, it features a 4 in 1 filtration system that consists of a HEPA filter, activated carbon filter, ultraviolet light and Titanium dioxide filter

The HEPA filter acts to remove the fine particulate compounds in the air such as pet dander, dust and pollen while the activated carbon filter targets gaseous compounds like the cooking odors. Lastly, the UV light and titanium dioxide is responsible for deactivating any viruses and bacteria that may get through the HEPA filter. Ahead of these is a pre-filter which helps to trap larger particles like hair and fur while extending the life of the HEPA filter. With such a comprehensive filtration system, homeowners will not need to worry about any kitchen smells and odors in their homes when this purifier is working.

Designed as a tower model, the Germ Guardian purifier is a space efficient model that will not take up valuable space in your house. It can be easily slotted into a corner of the room without causing any hindrance to human traffic. However, because it is a tower design, it may sometimes topple when our pets or children get a little too close due to the higher centre of gravity.

When it comes to customization, there are 3 fan speeds to choose from depending on your air quality and needs. For homeowners intending to use this in their bedroom as well, they can opt for the low fan setting which is ultra quiet and would not hinder their rest. There is also a on/off button for the UV light bulb so users can choose to use the air purifier without the UV light for better energy savings.

With a warranty of 3 years, this air purifier also has one of the longer warranty on the market. This ensures that the user is protected longer against defects and malfunction while also highlights how confident the manufacturers are regarding their product. Another positive about this air purifier is that the replacement filters are very affordable and this results in savings in the long run.

One complaint about this air purifier that some users have voiced out is that it emits a plastic burning smell for about 10 to 15 mins during the first few uses. However, the smell does go away after the first few uses and does not return.

Pros

  • Comprehensive filtration system with HEPA, activated carbon and UV light
  • Space efficient design
  • Quiet at low fan setting
  • UV light can be turned off if not using
  • 3 years warranty

Cons

  • Tower design may get toppled over by pets
  • Burning plastic smell during the first few uses

What the fans love: “The smell of the litter box was the primary reason I purchased this air purifier. After using this air cleaner regularly for about two years, I can confidently say that it effectively and completely removes the smell of the litter box, helps control the amount of hair that floats around the room, and generally does a very good job keeping dust from accumulating in the room.”


Best Air Purifier For Kitchen Smells And Odors Buyers’ Guide

Common Causes Of Smells And Odors In The Kitchen

Whenever we smell something funny or odd in the house, chances are it is coming from the kitchen. Because of the activities we do in the kitchen such as cooking, washing and disposing of rubbish, there is a high chance that the kitchen is the culprit behind any mysterious smells in the house. Here are some common causes of the bad smells and odors that may come from the kitchen.

  • Rubbish disposal 
  • Rotting food
  • Dishwasher
  • Moldy and dark corners

Besides being a nuisance, these sources of odors can also cause significant health problems due to the bacteria and viruses that may grow in these areas. Therefore, homeowners need to be vigilant and diligent in removing these sources of odors in their kitchen.

Considerations When Choosing Kitchen Air Purifier

Coverage Area

When choosing your air purifier, you need to find out the size of your room as accurately as possible to avoid disappointment. The easiest way to find out the size of your room is to measure the length and breadth of your room and then multiply them together.

Once you have an idea of the actual size of your room, you can look at the models of air purifier that you are interested in. Almost all manufacturers will list down the coverage area of their humidifiers in the product overview. These give you a good indication of what size room the air purifier is best for. 

When looking at these values provided by the manufacturers, I would probably round them down by about 20%. For example, the manufacturer may say that the air purifier can cover an area of 500 sq. ft. but I would take away 20% from that and estimate the coverage area to be about 400 sq. ft. This is because these values were probably measured in an ideal environment where there are no leaks or drafts in the room. In real life, we may have leaky windows, wall cracks, door gaps that may contribute to the reduced air quality.

Replacement Filter Maintenance

For many of our homes, the kitchen is probably one of the dirtiest places in the house. Because of the activities that go on in the kitchen, there is more grease, more smells, more mold spores and just generally more airborne pollutants. In such situations, the filters used in the air purifiers would get saturated and choked faster and require replacement more frequently. Therefore, homeowners should consider getting models whereby the replacement filters are affordably and reasonably priced. In the long term, this can save the homeowners a large sum of money.

Presence Of Activated Carbon Filter

As mentioned earlier, an activated carbon filter is essential to adsorb odors from your rooms. Gaseous compounds like odors can only be removed using this special type of absorbent filter. A normal HEPA filter can remove particulate compounds but not odors. Therefore, if you are struggling with cooking smells and odors in your home, look for an air purifier with an activated carbon filter. Something for homeowners to take note is that these filters do require replacements as well. Therefore, homeowners will need to check with the manufacturers the replacement frequency and see if it suits your needs.

Presence Of True HEPA Filter 

While HEPA filters cannot do anything against gaseous compounds, they work wonders against solid airborne particles. It is worth noting that some solid airborne particles may also emit smells and odors. Examples of these are mold spores and tobacco soot. With a true HEPA filter, your air purifier will be able to remove these from the air and improve the air quality significantly while also removing the odor from these pollutants.

Warranty

For any electrical appliances, the length of warranty is always something to consider. Obviously the longer the warranty, the better it is for the consumer. A long warranty is also suggestive that the company is very confident of their product’s longevity and durability. Generally in the air purifier sector, a warranty period of 1 to 2 years is quite reasonable and anything beyond that is considered good.

Portability

Air purifiers can come in a few different designs. The common models are compact, tower and wall mounted. Each design would have its pros and cons and suitability in different situations. If there are multiple rooms in your home affected by smoke, getting a portable air purifier would be a safe bet. Alternatively, home owners may opt for a whole house air purifier but it is still limited by corridors and doorways. 

How Does An Air Purifier Work

Air purifiers work by moving air through filters that clean the air and then recirculating the “cleaned” air back into the room. The key to their effectiveness lies in these filters. Most air purifiers now contain multiple filters that are responsible for cleaning different components of the air it sucks in.

HEPA filters

HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filters are the cornerstone of all air purifiers on the market now. It is a filter that is usually made of fibreglass in a maze-like tangle of fibres. To satisfy HEPA requirements, a candidate filter must remove 99.97% of particles of diameter 0.3 μm, with even greater filtering efficiency for larger and smaller particles.

HEPA filters require regular replacement and filters can last between 6 months to a year before it needs a replacement. When purchasing an air purifier, it is worth considering how frequently the filter needs replacing and the cost of a replacement filter to get a feel of the true cost of your air purifier.

Buyers should also always opt for True HEPA filters or Absolute HEPA filters. These are real HEPA filters that can work as advertised. Avoid filters that claim to be “HEPA-like” or “HEPA-type”. These are not true HEPA filters and will not work as well in improving the air quality

Activated Carbon Filter

This is an adsorbent type filter that is made from processed carbon. The carbon is processed into an extremely porous form to increase surface area for absorption. The main objective of this filter is to capture volatile organic compounds and gaseous compounds. Unlike a HEPA filter, activated carbon filters cannot trap particles like dust and pollen. However, it can capture and remove odors and gaseous chemicals that HEPA filters are weak at.  Therefore, activated carbon filters usually act as a pre-filter to a HEPA filter.

 An activated carbon filter also requires replacement when it becomes saturated. Buyers also need to check in with the manufacturers regarding the replacement frequency and how expensive a replacement is.

UV Light filter

Some air purifiers contain an ultraviolet light filter that is advertised to be able to kill bacteria and viruses. It achieves this by using UV rays to break down the chemical bond between virus DNA and hence rendering them inactive. The biological principles are sound but critics are not convinced that a UV light filter is really effective in killing viruses. Their argument is that air passess too fast through the light for the UV rays to have any effects. For now, the jury is still out so buyers do have to weigh the additional costs against the potential benefits and see if it is worth it for them.

Another criticism of UV light filters is that it may produce ozone. Ozone is a by-product from the breakdown of oxygen and can cause a variety of respiratory symptoms in humans. However, numerous testing have shown that the amount of ozone produced, if any, is extremely low and falls well within the safe range of human exposure.

UV light filters are not replacements for HEPA filters but act as an adjunct to them. UV light filters do not require replacement unless the light bulbs blow.

Negative Ion Filter

These filters may also sometimes be known as ionic filters. They work by producing negatively charged ions that can attach themselves to particles floating around in the air. The ionized particles then settle on surfaces which allows for them to be wiped away. The main advantage of these filters is that they are extremely quiet as they do not require a fan.

These filters were very popular in the 1990s and early 2000s. However, they are now displaced by HEPA filters. Part of the reason is because ionic filters may produce ozone that can cause respiratory problems in humans. However, numerous testing have shown that the amount of ozone produced, if any, is extremely low and falls well within the safe range of human exposure.

Ionic filters do not need replacements as air does not pass through them and they will not get clogged up.


Best Air Purifier For Kichen Smells And Odors Product review

Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier

Best Air Purifier For Large Kitchen

Product Overview

  • Dimensions: 15” x 8.2” x 23.6”
  • Weight: 15.4 lbs
  • Coverage area: 360 sq. ft. (33sqm)
  • Clean air delivery rate (CADR): 360㎥ / hr
  • HEPA Filter/Carbon filter replacement frequency: once every 12 months
  • Warranty: 1 year

The Winix 5500-2 air purifier is a unit designed for larger rooms that can go up to 360 sq.m in size. It comes armed with a 4 stage filtration system that includes a washable pre-filter, a washable activated carbon filter, a true HEPA filter and the latest PlasmaWave technology. The pre-filter will be the first line of defense against the larger airborne particles, while the cooking odors and any finer particles will be managed by the HEPA and carbon filter. Lastly, the PlasmaWave filter acts to neutralize bacteria and viruses. For any pet owner, this purifier got you covered and you can be assured of fresh clean air at home.

In terms of customization, this air purifier comes with an AUTO mode that is designed for convenience and efficiency. When using the AUTO mode, this unit is able to adjust its fan speed automatically based on the real-time air quality. This is made possible by a smart air quality sensor that detects and displays the indoor air quality in real time. This is a very useful feature for users that like that just want the job done without too much overthinking

Besides the air quality sensor, there is also an odor sensor and a light sensor. During Auto mode, the odor sensor detects the amount of odor in the environment to adjust fan speeds. The light sensor detects the amount of ambient light within the environment to adjust the brightness of the LED indicators.

Another mode that deserve a mention is the Sleep mode that is activated automatically when the room is darkened. The sleep mode ensures a quiet and energy efficient operation through the night that doesn’t disturb the user. Once the light is turned on again, the purifier will return back to Auto mode. For homeowners big on convenience, you will also appreciate the remote control that allows easy and convenient adjustment from the comfort of your couch.

There are 2 limitation to this air purifier. Firstly, there is no way to override the auto sleep mode. Therefore, if your house is fitted with dim lighting, this purifier will just be functioning at the low setting as it is in “sleep mode”. Secondly, the filter replacement is one of the most costly ones on the market. Thankfully, the replacement frequency is only once a year but these do add up if you intend to use the air purifier for a long time.

In summary, this is an air purifier loaded with features which can be really useful if you know how to make use of them. It is a little on the pricier side but it justifies the price tag with its quality. 

Pros

  • Comprehensive filtration system
  • Auto mode for convenience
  • Sleep mode with dimmed lights and quiet fan
  • Remote control enabled
  • Real time air quality sensors

Cons

  • Unable to override the automatic sleep mode
  • Expensive filter replacement

What the fans love: “This machine is amazing! In about an hour all smoke odor was gone and so far when set on “auto” it has kept the air fresh. The fan on the low setting is so quiet you have to hold your hand over the exhaust to see if it is running, even on the “high” setting it is quiet enough for a normal conversation. It is not overly large and being only about 7-8″ deep it fits against a wall making it less noticeable. The front access panel is held in place with magnets so it opens very easily making cleaning or changing filters a breeze”


Mooka Air Purifier

Best Portable Air Purifier For Kitchen Odors

Product Overview

  • Dimensions: 7.5” x 6.9” x 6.9”
  • Weight: 3.05 lbs
  • Coverage area: 120 sq. ft. (11sqm)
  • Clean air delivery rate (CADR): 50㎥ / hr
  • HEPA Filter replacement frequency: once every 3-6 months
  • Warranty: 3 years

The Mooka air purifier is designed for small spaces up to about 120 sq. ft. It features a simple but effective HEPA filter combined with activated carbon filter to filter out 99.97% of dust, pollen, pet dander, pet fur and pet odor. This is perfect for babies, children, elderly or just anyone looking to improve the air quality in their home. A unique feature about this purifier is the efficient way it purifies the air. It is designed with a 360 degree air intake and discharge that can maximize fresh and healthy air in all directions. This significantly improves the circulation in the room no matter where you position it.

While other air purifier has the edge in customization, the Mooka air purifier takes the other route by implementing a minimalist control that uses just one button to turn on/off the unit and control the fan speed. There are only 2 fan speeds for this unit which makes it very easy to operate and suitable for homeowners who doesn’t fancy a complicated control panel.

 For homeowners intending to use it during their sleep, this air purifier comes with a quiet mode where noise is reduced to less than 35 dB. That is definitely a very comfortable and acceptable noise level for the bedroom and would hardly disturb anyone’s sleep. 

However, buyers must note that the light for this purifier is very bright and there is no option to turn it off. For users who are sensitive to light during sleep, this might not be so suitable. If you are willing to DIY, the LED light may be removed by pulling off the bottom and disconnecting the LED lights from their clips.

In terms of portability, it doesnt get much lighter and more compact as the Mooka air purifier. Weighing barely over 3 lbs, this purifier can be carried by anyone, even a child. It is also compact and small enough to be transported between rooms depending on where your pet is.

Essentially, this is a no frills, portable air purifier that will get the job done with minimal fuss. It is priced reasonably both in terms of the machine and the replacement filters and is a great match for anyone on a budget.

Pros

  • Portable and lightweight
  • Priced reasonably
  • Easy to operate
  • Quiet

Cons

  • Lack of customization
  • Bright light that cannot be turned off

What the fans love: “Really good air purifier for a small room. It made a noticeable difference after only a few hours and I literally can’t sleep without it. Since I’ve been using the Mooka air purifier I’ve been able to breathe SO much better, and haven’t had any allergy/ sinus/ breathing issues since. This is a really great, small, quiet, and efficient air purifier for a small/med space!”


TaoTronics TT-AP001 Air Purifier

Best Budget Air Purifier For Kitchen Smells

Product Overview

  • Dimensions: 8.5” x 8.5” x 13.54”
  • Weight: 3.8 lbs
  • Coverage area: 161 sq. ft. (15sqm)
  • Clean air delivery rate (CADR): 150㎥ / hr
  • HEPA Filter/Carbon filter replacement frequency: once 3-6 months
  • Warranty: 1.5 years

The TaoTronics air purifier is designed for smaller rooms of up to 161 sq. ft. It comes with a 3 stage filtration system that consists of a pre-filter, HEPA filter and an activated carbon filter. Between these 3 filters, it would have removed almost all of the airborne toxins and odor from a home with cigarette smoke. Besides these, this air purifier is also effective against pollen, dust, pet dander and other allergens. While there is nothing fanciful about this, it gets the job done effectively with minimal fuss.

Depending on your needs, you may choose from 4 different fan speeds from Low to Turbo. At the low setting, users should expect a noise level of about 25 dB which is almost indiscernible while it can go up to 45 dB at the turbo setting. If users are intending to use this during bedtime, even the high fan setting will be comfortable and silent enough not to disturb your rest. 

An additional feature of this air purifier is the gentle night light at the top of the unit. You may choose the brightness levels from dim to bright or even turn it off if you are sensitive to light. With the dim light, it can be suitable for a young child’s room who may ask for a night light to accompany them to bed.

In terms of ease of use, this air purifier comes with just 4 buttons that are clear and easy to control. All the settings can be easily adjusted with these 4 buttons and really improves the user-friendliness of this unit. Another factor that adds to the ease of use is the portability. Weighing just under 4 pounds, this air purifier can be easily transported between rooms for different uses. 

The limitation of this air purifier is that the filter does need to be replaced more frequently than most other brands on the market. Granted that the replacement filters are not expensive, the increased frequency of replacement may still add up quickly over time.

In summary, this is a compact air purifier that can effectively clean the air in a small room. The 3 stage filtration is functional and quiet during operation. For users looking for a convenient and hassle-free experience, this is the one for you.

Pros

  • Quiet operation even during high fan setting
  • Functional and adequate filtration system
  • Portable and compact
  • Easy to operate and use

Cons

  • Filter require frequent replacement

What the fans love: “I really like this unit. It is easy to use. The noise is very soft, and not at all disruptive. Kind of like soothing white noise in the background. It looks nice. I can tell that my air seems cleaner. The filter is easy to remove and replace. Overall I’m happy with this purchase!”


Levoit LV-H132 H13 True HEPA filter Air Purifier

Best Air Purifier For Musty Smell

Product Overview

  • Dimensions: 8.5” x 8.5” x 14.5”
  • Weight: 6.6 lbs
  • Coverage area: 129 sq. ft. (12sqm)
  • Clean air delivery rate (CADR): 12㎥ / hr
  • HEPA Filter/Carbon filter replacement frequency: every 6 to 8 months
  • Warranty: 2 years

The Levoit LV-H132 air purifier is designed for smaller rooms of up to 129 sq. ft. It comes with a 3 stage filtration system that consists of a fine pre-filter, true HEPA filter and an activated carbon filter. Between these 3 filters, it would have removed about 99.97% of airborne allergens such as pollen, dust and mold. Besides these, this air purifier is also effective against strong odors and other fine particulate pollutants. While there are no fancy UV lights or ionizing filters, it gets the job done effectively with minimal fuss.

Depending on your needs, you may choose from 3 different fan speeds, Low, Medium and High. At the low setting, users should expect a noise level of about 25 dB which is ultra quiet while it can go up to 46 dB at the high fan setting. If users are intending to use this during bedtime, both the low and medium fan speed will be comfortable and silent enough not to disturb your rest. 

In terms of ease of use, this air purifier comes with just 4 buttons that are clear and easy to control. All the settings can be easily adjusted with these 4 buttons and really improves the user-friendliness of this unit. The buttons are also really sensitive which may be a boon and a bane to some as it can get annoying when you accidentally change your settings just by brushing against it. Another factor that adds to the ease of use is the portability. Weighing just 6.6, this air purifier can be easily transported between rooms for different uses. 

The limitation of this air purifier is that the buttons are very sensitive and can be slightly difficult to adjust the settings properly. However, it is quite a minor point once you get used to it.

In summary, this is an air purifier which will serve most of your needs. It does a great job of cleaning the air without too much frills. For users looking for a clean functional unit that is priced reasonably, this is the one to get.

Pros

  • Adequate filtration system with pre-filter, HEPA filter and activated carbon filter
  • Quiet at low and medium setting
  • Night light feature
  • Light and portable

Cons

  • Can only clean a small room
  • Buttons too sensitive

What the fans love: “I really like this unit. It is easy to use. The noise is very soft, and not at all disruptive. Kind of like soothing white noise in the background. It looks nice. I can tell that my air seems cleaner. The filter is easy to remove and replace. Overall I’m happy with this purchase!”


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Where is the best place to put an air purifier?

A: Long story short.

  • Close to the odor source
  • Bedrooms and areas with high human traffic
  • On the floor if your main problem is pet fur and dust on the floor
  • Elevated if you are dealing with smoke and soot
  • 8 inches away from walls and furniture
  • 12 inches away from electronics

If you like the full story, check out our guide on the best practices when positioning your air purifier!

Q: Should we shut the windows and doors when using an air purifier?

A: Almost all air purifier companies we interviewed recommend that windows and doors be closed while running the air purifier This improves both air cleaning efficiency and also energy efficiency giving the user better air quality and improved savings.

Q: Does air purifier make air dry?

A: No. Air purifiers are unable to remove moisture from the air at all. Therefore it cannot dry up the air. Watch out for other possible reasons that might dry out the air such as a strong fan nearby. If low humidity is an issue, consider getting a humidifier.

Q: Can air purifier help with musty smells?

A: Yes. Air purifiers with an activated carbon filter will be capable of removing musty smells from your homes. Musty smells are generated due to the volatile organic compounds that mold and mildew produces. These gaseous compounds would get picked up by the activated carbon filter and then absorbed. 


Recap Of The Best Air Purifier For Kitchen Odors And Smells

Coverage AreaWarrantyFilter
Replacement
Filter
replacement
costs
Germ Guardian AC4825E167 sq. ft.3 years6 to 8 monthsLow
Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier360 sq. f.t1 year12 months High
Mooka Air Purifer120 sq. ft.3 years3 to 6 monthLow
TaoTronics TT-AP001161 sq .ft.1.5 years3 to 6 monthsLow
Levoit LV132129 sq. ft.2 years6 to 8 monthsModerate
Best Air Purifier For Kitchen Odor And Smells

Wrapping it up

Of the 5 products we reviewed, the Germ Guardian AC4825E was our favorite because we find that this air purifier has the best balance in terms of purification efficiency, safety and pricing. There are tons of awesome features that really make this air purifier shine. Perhaps the only limitation is the tower design which may topple over if you accidentally knock onto it. However, if you position properly in a corner of your kitchen, you should be fine!

Click here to get one now!

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Best Quiet Air Purifier

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