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Air purifier troubleshooting tips

Image Credit: Flickr

At the time when the air around is so dirty and unhealthy to breathe, air purifiers are kind of a lifesaver. The air purifiers absorb the air pollutants like VOCs, bacteria and viruses, allergens, smoke, mold, etc., pass them through its filter, and then release the clean air in your house. They help in cleaning the air in your house and keeping us healthy. However, while removing the pollution from the air around you, the air purifiers can face some issues. Like any other appliance that you use inside your home, your air purifier can also malfunction. Although the bigger and serious problems need expert help, you can solve some air purifier issues on your own. Here are some air purifier troubleshooting tips for some common issues. 

Some tips for air purifier troubleshooting

Even if some problems are not very serious and complicated, they can hinder the functioning of the air purifier. Therefore, it is necessary to identify the issue and find its solution on time, to avoid any severe problems. You can find the solutions to some common problems in the following air purifier troubleshooting tips: 

1. Air purifier not turning on

If you push the power button and the air purifier doesn’t turn on, there may be three possible causes behind it. First, check if the power cord is plugged in, if not, plug it in and then turn on the power button of your air purifier. But, if the cord is plugged in and the purifier is still not turning on, check the power outlet. Make sure that the power outlet is not damaged and the cord is properly connected to it. And if the cord and outlet are both properly connected but the air purifier is still not working, check the power rating.

Power rating means the electrical power required by the air purifier to properly function. The power rating is mentioned in the product details and manual of the air purifier. If the power rating of your air purifier and outlet do not match, the operation of the air purifier will be hindered. An inaccurate power rating can even damage your appliance. Always connect your air purifier to an outlet that matches the power rating of your appliance. One more thing to remember is to never use the air purifier if the power cord is damaged. Contact the support team of your purifier’s brand and get the issue fixed. 

2. Air purifier controls unresponsive

The control system of air purifiers either has push buttons or touch buttons. A properly functioning control system is necessary for optimum use of the air purifier. An unresponsive or non-functioning control system can pose usage issues to the air purifier. If this issue arises, check if the power cord of the air purifier is plugged into the outlet or not. If not, plug the cord in the proper outlet then use the purifier.

Some bestselling air purifiers for you to choose from:

One other reason behind unresponsive controls can be an improperly placed filter cover. Check the filter cover and if it is improperly placed, take out the filter cover and put it back as per the instructions mentioned in the manufacturer’s guide. Besides the above-mentioned reasons, the controls of your air purifier can become unresponsive due to some malfunctioning in them. If you find a malfunction or defect in the controls, contact the manufacturer’s support team and share the issue with them for help. 

3. Lack of proper airflow

An air purifier is of no use if there is no proper airflow. Lack of proper airflow can be caused if you forgot to remove the filter packaging before placing it in. So, if you did forget to remove the packaging, take out the filter, remove the packaging from it, and then put back the filter in its place. Another thing to check for proper airflow is the fan speed. If the fan is at low speed, adjust the fan speed to a higher setting or put it on auto mode. Auto mode helps in removing the pollutants while running the fan at a higher speed for proper airflow.

However, if the fan speed and filter are not an issue but, you are still facing airflow issues, it may be due to a stuffed area near the purifier. About 15 cm of the area around the air purifier should be clear of any obstruction. The purifier needs enough clearance around it for proper airflow and functioning. 

4. Lack of proper air purification

An air purifier is meant to remove pollutants from the air and make it clean. If for some reason, it is failing to perform its primary function, you need to solve the issues as soon as possible. Some reasons behind the air purification system not working may be horrible air quality, too wide coverage, dust built-up on the filters, objects obstructing airflow around the purifier, and wrong placement of the purifier. The solution for terrible air quality is to ventilate the room before using the air purifier. Just remember to close the doors and windows before turning on the air purifier.

Image Credit: Flickr

Make sure that the room size and capacity of the air purifier match. If you place it in a room that is bigger than its capacity, the air purifier will fail to perform its basic function. Also, cleaning the filter of your air purifier from time to time is compulsory to get clean air. Check if any object is blocking the airflow near the airflow and if there is any obstruction, clean the area around the air purifier. One more thing, never put your air purifier in the corner of your room. Place the purifier somewhere in the middle, without any obstructions for proper airflow and air purification. 

5. Air purifier making unusual noise while running

If the air purifier is making any unusual noises while running, you need to turn off the purifier and find the source or reason for the noise. An incorrectly installed air filter is one of the most common reasons behind the noises. Check the filter to make sure it is installed properly and that it fits the cover. While checking the filter, also make sure that the filter is not too dirty or damaged in any way.

Some recommended filters for air purifiers:

  1. LEVOIT Air Purifier Replacement Filter
  2. Germ Guardian FLT4825 HEPA GENUINE Air Purifier Replacement Filter
  3. Philips AC1215 1000 Series Activated Carbon Filter
  4. Mi Air Purifier HEPA Filter

In case the filter is not usable anymore, replace it with a new one. You can replace the filter on your own without any hassle by following simple air purifier troubleshooting tips. However, if there is no issue with the filter but, there is still some strange noise coming from the air purifier when you turn it on, there could be something stuck inside it. In that case, don’t open the appliance and contact the support team or an expert for help. 

6. A bizarre smell coming from the air purifier

The air purifier is supposed to distribute clean and fresh air inside your house but, if you notice any strange smell, it needs to be fixed. The source of any weird smell can be smoke or odor emanating from inside the house or from the outside. So, if you notice any such smell, open the doors and windows of your house for ventilation for about an hour. Keep the doors and windows closed while using the air purifier.

Install a vent or exhaust in the kitchen of the house to get rid of any smell arising due to cooking. Strong smell and smoke can badly affect the performance of your air purifier, therefore, it is necessary to take care of the smell on time. Some air purifiers also have deodorizing air filters and the product used in them (like activated carbon) can create a bizarre smell. So, always get the original filter from a trusted seller when replacing the old one. 


Like any other appliance, an air purifier runs into some issues sometimes during its lifespan. Air purifiers work hard to clean the unhealthy air inside our house and keep us healthy. Air purifiers can be good for our health in many ways. Therefore, when they fail to operate appropriately, it can be harmful to your health in the long run as well. However, it is not possible or reasonable to call an expert for every small issue. You can fix some issues on your own by following simple steps. Follow the above-mentioned air purifier troubleshooting tips to keep your air purifier in good working condition and the air inside your home clean.

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