Why does your car need an air purifier?

Because cars and vehicles tend to be a small, enclosed space, environmental hazards can easily creep in. Everything from cigarette smoke, to allergens such as dander and pollen, can inhabit the air you’re breathing while in your car. Not to mention scents like human body odor, pets, or even food smells.

Small particles that float in your air are inhaled and pulled deep into your lungs every time you breathe. Some of these particles can actually be harmful to you, causing everything from allergies to asthma, or even cancer in some extreme cases. Picking an air purifier for your car can be an easy and simple solution to removing odors from your vehicle as well as improving the air quality you’re breathing while in the car, making for a healthier, and cleaner, drive.

6 Greatest Air Purifiers for Your Car to Get Rid of Smoke, Dust, and OdorsFeatures to consider while choosing a car air purifier

There are many different features to consider when shopping for an air purifier for your car. Some of them will be filter purifiers, and some of them will be ionizers. Some will fit in your cigarette outlet and some will need to be plugged in. Finally, others will be more portable, while some models will do best by staying in one place. It’s important to look at the variety of features such as the type of purifier, the type of filers used (if any,) the dimensions, warranty, and any extra features offered by the different air purifiers and figure out which is the best one for the needs of you and your car or space.

Ionization vs. filtration vs. both

Car air purifiers tend to come in three different varieties: those that purify the air through ionization, those that purify the air through a filtering system, and those that use a combination of both filters and ionization. There are pros and cons to all models, and none are better than the others, it just depends on what you’re looking for.

Ionization uses negatively charged ions which then attach to molecules, making them too heavy to inhale, so you can’t smell them any longer, though sometimes ionization can cause a bit of an ozone scent that may or may not be off putting to you.

Filters tend to use a system of multiple different types of filters, such as charcoal and HEPA to capture molecules and debris to purify the air. And car air purifiers that use a combination of both use filters and ionizers to purify the air. If you’re looking for a combination purifier, check out our second choice, the autowit Fresh Mini Car Air Purifier, which also fits nicely in a car’s cupholder.

Which filters it uses

Most air purifiers that use a filter tend to use a system of filtration, meaning there’s more than one filter inside the air purifier. Many of them have a pre-filter stage, which collects larger dust and debris, then a charcoal filter, which removes toxins, and then often a HEPA filter. HEPA stands for “high efficiency particle air” which basically means it’s a filter meant to trap very small particles from the air. HEPA-like filters can do a very good job of purifying air, but true HEPA filters can capture particles as small as 0.3 microns and scent molecules, helping contribute to a healthier environment.

True HEPA filters can’t be cleaned, however, which means once they’ve reached the end of their lifecycle, they’ll need to be replaced. If you’re looking for an air purifier with a true HEPA filter, check out our choice for the best high-end air purifier, the Philips GPC20GPX1.

Number of negative ions per cm³

Negative ions are typically measured per cubic centimeter. Healthy, outdoor environments tend to have high negative ions, anywhere from 2,000 to 4,000 negative ions per cm3, and lower levels of ozone and pollutants. So, most ionic purifiers aim to add negative ions to your space and lower pollutant levels. The negative ions are attracted to each other, and they cluster around and attach to microscopic particles in the air. This makes those particles heavier, which means they sink, and will no longer be inhaled by people. This is good because very small particles tend to be pulled furthest into the lungs when breathed in. Negative ions can be beneficial to your health when they occur at proper levels and they’re really good at removing pollutants and contaminates from the air, including unpleasant scents and smells such as cigarette smoke and body odors. If you’re interested in an ionic air purifier look to the autowit Fresh Mini Car Air Purifier, which is our choice for the Best Portable Air Purifier.


The dimensions of your car air purifier and one of the most important considerations when trying to decide which model to purchase.

If your air purifier is too big for your car or space, or to be easily portable, you’ll be irritated by its cumbersomeness or unable to even use it as often as you’d like. And if it’s too small, it may not have the required power to effectively purifier the air of the space you’re asking of it.

If you’re looking for a small air purifier, perhaps for a smaller car, check out our Budget Pick the FRiEQ Car Air Purifier, which one is also one of the best ionic air purifiers as well, and if you’re looking for a larger air purifier that could maybe tackle a bedroom or an office space besides a car look to our choice for Best for Heavy Pollution the Airthereal Day Dawning ADH80.


We all hope that there’s never any need to use a warranty for any of our purchases, but the truth is nothing lasts forever. Some air purifiers have longer life spans than others, and of course sometimes accidents happen. If you’re interested in an air purifier that comes with a good warranty, then look no further than the Airthereal Day Dawning ADH80 which comes with a 2-year limited warranty.

Extra features

6 Greatest Air Purifiers for Your Car to Get Rid of Smoke, Dust, and Odors

Extra features on your air purifier can take your machine from something that is useful, to something that may even be enjoyable. Many of the air purifiers on this list come with LED lights to help illuminate your car, or with simple one-touch buttons in order to make it easy to use. The Pure Car Air Purifier comes with two extra USB ports, so you don’t lose the charging space in your car when the air purifier is plugged into the cigarette lighter, the Airthereal Day Dawning ADH80 has an optional child lock to keep young children from changing the settings, and the autowit Fresh Mini Car Air Purifier is an essential oil diffuser as well as an air purifier, so it can remove noxious odors and release pleasant ones all in one machine.