Don’t get me wrong I’m not a total supermarket snob as WalMart can be great for buying certain groceries and sports good but when it comes to complex electronics it can be tricky to find the right product.
Walmart stock mainly low priced air purifier around the $50 – $300 mark. In it self this is not a bad thing, cheap purifiers can be OK as long as you are using in a small room and just want to remove large particles like pollen.
The problem lies with some of the air purifiers that Walmart has chosen to stock:
1. Avoid Sharper Image for Air Purifiers (branded as Ionic Pro)
Back in 2006 a study by the University of California showed that Sharper Image ionic air purifiers actually released unhealthy concentrations of ozone. Ionic air purifiers unlike HEPA use ionic particles to attract particles in the air so they fall to the floor as dust but also emit small levels of ozone (which can cause respiratory problems.) Source
The Ionic Pro Combo comes with a free car air purifier and costs $79.94 – which sounds great but in practice ionic purifiers just move dust around and break fairly easily. Customer service according to the Walmart customer reviews is terrible at Ionic pro (sharper image) so keep that in mind.
Sadly when it comes to this purifier the cheap price = cheap product.
2. Avoid the $50 Holmes Air Purifier
Holmes can make some great purifiers but the $50 purifier is one you should avoid. The majority of the reviews are negative with people having issue with :
- Noise – need to have TV on to cover it
- Wattage – uses a lot of power for a small unit
- Filters – Replacements cost a lot
3. Take a Look at the $95.51 Holmes Air Purifier
Paying an extra $50 pays dividends with this air purifier from Holmes. With a 5 star rating on over 85 customer reviews this air purifier really works well and is still under $100.
The only issue seems to be the cost of the filters but if you can choose to get an extra HEPA filter and tape it to the outside as a pre-filter like one WalMart customer mentioned you can extend their life.
One customer even said that this air purifier “saved their life"!
The main point is that this air purifier can really work well even with such a small investment.
Have you had much experience with buying air purifier from WalMart? Any horror stories you want to share or any great “budget” items like the $100 Holmes air purifier that exceeded expectations? Please send them my way through the comments below.