Do Air Purifiers Remove Pet Hair?


If you are someone who owns a pet or wants to get one soon, then you are probably concerned about the price you have to pay for all that furry love! Many people are allergic to pet hair and dander, and they seek for solutions to get rid of them while keeping their pets within the house. If that sounds like you then you have come to the right place.

If are wondering ‘do air purifiers remove pet hair’, the short answer is yes! While regular cleaning, dusting, and vacuuming are good, your pets will start shedding as soon as you put the vacuum cleaner away! Furthermore, vacuum cleaners cannot trap the hair and allergens that are floating in the air. Hence, you need a more effective and constant solution like an air purifier.
Things That Cause Pet Allergy
If you have an allergic reaction to pets, it’s your immune system that vehemently reacts to something that is otherwise harmless. While snuggling with a pet on the couch may be one of your life’s biggest pleasures, your furry friend produces certain substances that can cause allergies. The immune system specifically reacts to the protein molecule present in the allergens found in the following:
Pet dander refers to the dust and skin flakes that your Fido or Bella sheds in addition to hair. The microscopic dander stays on the pet’s furs and coats, and you can inhale that dander when you snuggle with your kitty or pooch. Pet hairs are the biggest trouble makers and you can see them everywhere in your house – carpet, under and over the furniture, etc. They can bundle up and trap dust and other animal wastes such as urine and saliva. As the pet gets older, they tend to shed more hair than before. Dust often get accumulated with the pet dander, saliva, and hair. It may also attract common household allergens such as mold spores and pollens. Dust mites feed on the pet dander and multiply, causing more allergies. Pet saliva is another substance that causes allergic reactions. When your furry friends lick their fur, the saliva sticks to their coat, just like dander. Accidental pet urine or cat spray on your cushion or furniture is another source of allergens within the house. Stats Related To Pet Allergies
As per the Asthma And Allergy Foundation Of America (AAFA), nearly 30% of the US population suffers from some type of pet allergy. Interestingly, cat allergies are more common than dog allergies. 

According to the National Pet Owners Survey conducted in 2015-16, over 79 million American households own a pet. This is a 56% rise from the data collected in 1988.

In a study by the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (ACAAI), approximately 50 million people in the United States suffer from nasal allergies, and this includes 40% of kids and 30% adults.

Another data collected by WebMD showed that at least  1 in every 5 people in the United States has some kind of allergy or asthma symptoms that can be aggravated by allergens.
Do Air Purifiers Remove Pet Hair And Pet Dander?
The air purifiers (see reviews) are effective at getting rid of both pet hair and dander when they are airborne and floating. Having an air purifier operating in the house can greatly minimize the amount of pet hair in the surrounding environment. An air purifier comes equipped with a HEPA filter or HEPA-type filter that are capable of trapping 99.97% of the contaminants such as pet hair, dander, dust, mites, pollen, etc.

Even though the air purifiers do their job and remove pet hair and dander that are airborne, you will still need to vacuum clean those substances that stick to your cushions, carpet, couch, and bed. You must vacuum clean (see dust mite vacuum reviews) the house at least once or twice every week to see a marked reduction in pet hair and dander.

If your pets like to spend a lot of time playing outside or going for a walk with you, they may bring a lot of allergens sticking to their fur and coat. This can further aggravate your allergies as there will be much more pollutants in the house than just hair and dander, hence an air purifier is an important investment you can make to keep your environment free of allergens.

For more information: 25 Cleaning Tips For Allergy Sufferers
Factors To Consider When Buying An Air Purifier
The air purifiers come with different capacities and a wide range of features to choose from. As there are so many brands and models available, it may be tough for you to make a choice. Your decision will further be impacted by the type of pet you have, whether your pet stays indoor or outdoor, and so on. Here are a few things you must consider when buying an air purifier for your home.

HEPA- filter: If you are allergic to pet hair and dander, I would recommend that you invest in buying an air purifier that comes with true HEPA filters. They are designed to remove about 99.97 percent of particles that are as small as 0.3 micrometers. Hence, they not only capture large particles like pet hair but also microscopic germs, dander, and dust that can trigger allergies.

HEPA-type filter: While there is a slight difference in the name that some customers may not even notice, the HEPA-type filters are only capable of trapping particles that are about 2-4 microns in size. Hence, air purifiers that contain HEPA-type filters are suitable for people who just want to get rid of pet hair. These devices don’t cost much but bear in mind that they cannot remove pet dander or other microscopic pollutants. 

Ionizers: These are special types of air purifiers that work by ionizing the substances. They attach a kind of electric charge to the allergen particles so that they stick to the walls or floor. As the ionizers usually do not accompany a fan, there’s not much air passing by, hence a lot of issues go unaddressed. Plus, given the fact that the pet dander, hair, and allergens are deposited on surfaces, they can be easily disturbed and become airborne. They also produce ozone, which is known to be a harmful pollutant.

Carbon air filters: These products are only designed to trap nasty gasses in the indoor air. They are ineffective at removing pet hair or pet dander. However, if you want to get rid of the pet odor or smell then you may look for products that contain activated carbon air filters.

Photo Electrochemical Oxidation (PECO): Pet hair and dander carry proteins that can easily break down and pass through the traditional filters. Some air purifiers come equipped with a proprietary technology called PECO that offers two-stage filtration. The first stage filters large particles like pet hair and dander, while the second stage involves PECO technology that works at destroying the microscopic allergy-producing proteins
Top 3 Affordable Air Purifiers That Remove Pet Hair
Now, that you know the answer to ‘do air purifiers remove pet hair’, you may want to look for the best product that suits your needs. I have reviewed various products and after carefully weighing their pros and cons, here are the top 5 air purifiers that outperform.
1. WINIX HR1000
The new and upgraded Winix HR1000 is in several ways better than its predecessors. Although not the most expensive product, it is one of the best air purifiers to be offered by this Korean manufacturer. People with pet allergies can greatly benefit from this product as it comes with true HEPA filter plus PlasmaWave technology. It also includes a powerful fan, a washable pet-filter, and an activated carbon filter to remove pet odor. Smart features like wi-fi control and smart sensors further make it a product for the new generation.

Quiet operation Good coverage Impressive performance Good value for money
May cause Electromagnetic interference 2. Hamilton Beach 04384
It’s rare to find a good quality air purifier under $50 and the Hamilton Beach 04384 will impress you with such good features at an affordable rate. It can help you deal with your pet allergies for a lifetime, offering you an amazing value for money. If you are not much concerned about pet dander and just want to get rid of pet hair and pet odor then this product is perfect for you. It comes equipped with a HEPA-type filter that cannot be washed but cleaned with a vacuum cleaner. The filter is capable of capturing 99% of 2.5 micrometers particles. Here are some of the pros and cons:

No yearly HEPA filter replacement Reasonably priced Removes pet odor Compact size
Only 1-year warranty Noisy operation No true HEPA filter 3. Blue Pure 411
If you wish to go with something that has been tried and tested for years then opt for the air purifier by Blueair, a giant brand that has established its potential in this industry. You may have seen their big and bulky devices in meeting halls, hospitals, and schools, but do you know that they also have a budget option – the Blue Pure 411. They use a certified particle filter instead of true HEPA filter, but with the help of HEPASilent technology, they can capture up to 99% of 0.3 microns particles. It also comes with an activated carbon filter to remove pet odor. Let’s look into the pros and cons:

Stable performance Runs quietly Lightweight
No true HEPA filter Other Methods To Remove Pet Allergen
Pet hair and dander shed from your Fido’s coat and fur all the time, but they are at their peak when your pet shakes or gets some attention from owners. While air purifiers do their job at removing the airborne particles that we usually don’t notice with naked eyes until they trigger allergies, here are some other ways to reduce pet allergen within the house.
1. Bathing your pet regularly
Grooming your pet regularly can significantly reduce the amount of dander your pet sheds daily. Bathing once a week is a good start and make sure you use the special shampoo for dogs to keep their coat healthy. Give them a balanced diet as recommended by the vet and keep them hydrated to prevent the skin from becoming dry and flaky.
2. Restrict the area of activity
If one person in the family has pet allergy then restrict your dog’s or cat’s area of activity by ensuring that they do not go to that person’s room. This will reduce the amount of pet hair and dander the person is exposed to while sleeping. Get a cozy bed for your pet so that they don’t have the urge to relax on your bed or couch all the time.
3. Frequent cleaning
When you have a pet in the house and worse if you have pet allergies, frequent cleaning of the house is an important method to control the dust and dander. Take a wet cloth and dust the furniture and vacuum clean the carpets, beds, and rugs. Wash the rugs and beddings in hot water once a week to remove dust mites and allergens.

If you are going to remove your pet hair from your bedding, you can have a look at this article: How To Remove Pet Hair From Bedding
Related Questions Does an air purifier remove pollutants?
Besides providing protection from pet hair and pet dander, the air purifiers can also remove dust mites (see 24 ways), mold spores, and air pollutants such as kitchen smoke and formaldehyde. If someone in the family has respiratory problems such as asthma, air purifiers can bring relief
Can air purifiers reduce pet odor?
If you own a cat or dog, you will know that it’s not just hair and dander shedding everywhere, but also the nasty smell that you have to deal with every day. Fortunately, the air purifiers come with carbon activated filters that have the ability to trap the airborne chemicals and bad odor.

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