Wyze Air Purifier Review | PCMag

Wyze Air Purifier Review | PCMag




If you’re concerned about breathing in wildfire smoke, dangerous off-gas from new furniture, or the dander from a pet, you should consider a smart air purifier. Most models suitable for large rooms are quite pricey, but the Wyze Air Purifier is an affordable alternative at $169.99. It features a 360-degree High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) and activated carbon filter that promises to remove a variety of unwanted or harmful particles from the air in fairly sizable rooms. The unit is a bit of an eyesore but it operates quietly, features Wi-Fi connectivity for app and voice control, and offers basic air quality data. Most importantly, it filters the air just as competently as devices that cost several times as much. Connected Dyson models, including the Editors’ Choice-winning Purifier Cool TP07 ($549.99), offer many additional perks, including an oscillating tower fan to cool you and individual measurements of various air pollutants. But if you’re looking to improve your indoor air quality without spending a bundle, the Wyze Air Purifier is a solid choice. 

Note that at the time of this writing, the Wyze Air Purifier is sold out. A Wyze spokesperson tells me that it should be back in stock on the company’s website near the end of August 2022.


Wyze Air Purifier: All the Basics

Wyze is known for offering low-frills smart home devices at affordable prices, and its first air filtration product is no exception—it’s one of the least expensive models with Wi-Fi we’ve tested. 

The base model comes with a standard Allergen filter preinstalled, but Wyze also offers this machine with a Wildfire filter for $174.99 or a Formaldehyde filter for $194.99. For this review, the company sent me a unit with a preinstalled Wildfire filter. The circular filters measure 11.3 by 8.1 inches (HD). They’re interchangeable in the purifier. 

The Wildfire filter for the Wyze Air Purifier


The Wildfire filter
(Credit: Angela Moscaritolo)

All three filter options combine True HEPA with activated carbon to remove particulate matter (microscopic particles) and gaseous pollutants including bacteria, dust, mold, odors, pet allergens, pollen, tobacco smoke, viruses, and VOCs (volatile organic compounds, or potentially harmful gases from things like cleaning products and paint). To be classified as True HEPA, an air filter must be capable of removing at least 99.97% of airborne particles down to 0.3 microns in size.

Wyze says the Allergen filter is sufficient for most common household air pollutants and that the Wildfire filter « is particularly effective against smoke generated from wildfire, industrial processes, and traffic. » 

The Formaldehyde filter has a manganese catalyst layer to more efficiently remove chemical gases such as VOCs and formaldehyde, which many household items, such as carpets, flooring, furniture, rugs, insulating materials, particleboard, plywood, paint, varnishes, and wallpapers, release. If you smoke or live with someone who does, have a brand new or newly remodeled home, or you’re redecorating, you might want to spring for the more expensive Formaldehyde filter. 

Back panel of the Wyze Air Purifier


The lightweight unit has a handle on the back, so it’s easy to move around
(Credit: Angela Moscaritolo)

Measuring 18.5 by 9.5 by 9.4 inches (HWD), the Wyze Air Purifier doesn’t take up too much floor space. It weighs around 9 pounds and has a handle on the back, which makes it easy to relocate. The device covers spaces up to 550 square feet, which is impressive considering its size and price. In comparison, the similarly priced Smartmi P1 ($179.99) works only for rooms up to 320 square feet.  

The Wyze Air Purifier looks rather utilitarian and is available only in black; it might clash with your decor. However, in light of its price, we can’t complain too much. If aesthetics are a primary concern, or you’re short on space, we recommend either the Smartmi P1 or the Ikea Starkvind ($259), a side table with a hidden air purifier for rooms up to 215 square feet.

Top view of the Wyze Air Purifier


On top, the Wyze Air Purifier has an air outlet and four buttons
(Credit: Angela Moscaritolo)

The Wyze Air Purifier has inlets on the front and back, as well as an outlet on top. Room air enters through the inlets, then passes through the filter which scrubs the air clean and then releases it through the outlet. Because the purifier blows clean air straight up, not forward, this device does not double as a cooling fan like pricier competitors. The Dyson TP07, for instance, features a large oscillating fan to cool you and more quickly distribute purified air throughout the room. 

The Wyze Air Purifier has four fan speeds: Min, Mid, Max, and Turbo, as well as an Auto Mode, which automatically adjusts the fan speed based on the real-time indoor air quality. The device features a built-in laser particle sensor that measures the density of PM2.5 (particulate matter smaller than 2.5 microns in size). 

A small, oblong display on the front shows the real-time indoor Air Quality Index (AQI) rating with a colored ring and a number. Green (0 to 50) means the air quality is good, yellow (51 to 150) indicates a moderate level of air pollution, and red (more than 150) indicates an unhealthy level of air pollution. 

Wyze Air Purifier Display


A small oblong display on the front shows the real-time indoor Air Quality Index (AQI) rating, based on PM2.5 levels
(Credit: Angela Moscaritolo)

The Wyze Air Purifier doesn’t come with a remote, but you can control it from your phone, with your voice, or via the buttons on the device. On top, it has four buttons: On/Off, Auto Mode, Fan Speed (lets you cycle from slowest to fastest fan speed), and Sleep (turns the display off and sets the fan to the lowest speed). 

It also has a Child Lock, which prevents little hands from fiddling with the buttons. To enable the Child Lock, simultaneously press the Fan Speed and Sleep buttons for three seconds. When enabled, a lock icon illuminates on the display.

When it’s time to replace the filter, an indicator light flashes on the display and you receive a notification in the Wyze app. The Allergen filter should last between six and 12 months, depending on how often you use the machine and the amount of pollution in your home. The other filters have shorter stated lifespans: between five and 12 months for the Formaldehyde filter, and between four and 12 months for the Wildfire filter. Wyze sells replacement Allergen, Wildfire, and Formaldehyde filters for $34.99, $39.99, and $59.99, respectively. 


Wyze Air Purifier App and Voice Control 

The Wyze Air Purifier supports Wi-Fi, which means you can control it and monitor the real-time indoor air quality from your phone via the Wyze app (available for Android and iOS). 

In testing, it took only a couple of minutes to set up the Wyze Air Purifier and connect it with the Wyze mobile app. To start, you need to download the Wyze app and create an account if you haven’t already done so. I use many other Wyze smart devices, including the Bulb White, Bulb Color, and Cam Floodlight, so I am very familiar with the app; it typically offers a seamless setup experience, as is the case with the Air Purifier. 

Bottom view of the Wyze Air Purifier


Installing the filter
(Credit: Angela Moscaritolo)

To add a device, tap the plus sign in the upper right corner > Add Device > Home > Wyze Air Purifier > Begin Preparation. At this point, the app instructs you to open the bottom cover on the unit and remove the plastic packaging around the filter. Next, plug the purifier into a power outlet, press the On/Off button to turn it on, then press the Auto and Fan speed buttons for five seconds simultaneously until the Wi-Fi icon begins flashing (this indicates the device is ready for setup). To complete the setup, press Begin, select your Wi-Fi network, enter your Wi-Fi password, name the device, and install any available firmware updates.

You should then see the Wyze Air Purifier (or whatever name you gave it) in the Home tab of the Wyze app, along with any other Wyze devices you use. When you tap into the Air Purifier, the app shows your real-time indoor AQI rating. If you opt to share your location, the app also displays your real-time outdoor air quality. 

AQI readings within Wyze app


The app shows your real-time indoor AQI rating
(Credit: PCMag)

Below the AQI ring are four buttons: Auto, Sleep, Off, and Manual. The Manual button opens a menu from which you can toggle the Child Lock, adjust the fan speed, or set a timer for the air purifier to automatically turn off after a set amount of time (one hour, two hours, four hours, eight hours, or a custom duration up to 24 hours). 

A light bulb icon in the top right corner of the app opens an Insights page with a graph of your indoor AQI history (PM2.5 levels) over the past 24 hours. If your air purifier was off during that time, you won’t see any data on the graph. The Insights section also shows the density of various outdoor pollutants and pollens (grass, weed, and tree). 

Wyze Air Purifer settings in the Wyze app


The Wyze app lets you control the Air Purifier and monitor your air quality
(Credit: PCMag)

Most competing smart air purifiers offer a lot more indoor air quality insights, including individual measurements and history graphs for various pollutants. In addition to PM2.5, the Dyson Purifier Cool TP07, for example, continuously monitors your indoor temperature and humidity, as well as PM10 (particulate matter up to 10 microns in size, including dust, mold, and pollen), NO2 (nitrogen dioxide and oxidizing gases, such as gas stoves and car exhausts), and VOC levels in the air. When a certain type of pollutant causes a decrease in air quality, the TP07 calls out the offender on its display. 

To control the Wyze Air Purifier by voice, you need to first connect it with Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. In testing, I had no problem pairing it with both digital helpers via their respective apps, and controlling it with voice commands such as « Hey Google, turn on Wyze Air Purifier » via a Nest Mini and « Hey Alexa, turn off Wyze Air Purifier » via an Amazon Echo.  


Testing the Wyze Air Purifier

To test its performance, I pit the Wyze Air Purifier against the $699.99 LG PuriCare 360 Single Filter Air Purifier With Clean Booster (the half-sized version of the pricier Dual Filter model I reviewed last year), which also has a cylindrical True HEPA filter and can handle rooms up to 310 square feet. 

As mentioned, the Wyze Air Purifier rates your air quality as good (green), moderate (yellow), or unhealthy (red). The LG PuriCare 360 has four levels on its air quality rating scale: good (green), moderate (yellow), unhealthy (orange), and poor (red). 

I conducted the test in my 135-square-foot office with sage smoke; both air purifiers initially reported the air quality as good (green). For the first part of the test, I lit a sage bundle within equal distance of both devices, wafted the smoke in their direction, and timed how long it took the air quality indicator light on each one to change to red. 

The Wyze Air Purifier and LG PuriCare 360 Single Filter side by side


Left to right: Wyze Air Purifier, LG PuriCare 360 Single Filter
(Credit: Angela Moscaritolo)

I repeated this test six times, making sure to purify the air back to a « good » level between rounds. The Wyze Air Purifier quickly recognized the sage smoke each time, never taking longer than 3 minutes 11 seconds to report an unhealthy level of air pollution. The LG model took as long as 4 minutes to shine red in these tests, but that might be because it has an extra level on its rating scale. 

Between tests, the Wyze Air Purifier often reported the air quality as good, whereas the LG PuriCare 360 indicated that it was moderate. When this happened, it typically took several minutes of additional purification before the LG device shined green and agreed that the air quality was good. This outcome wasn’t entirely surprising given that the LG model features a PM1.0 sensor that can detect ultra-fine particles smaller than PM2.5. 

For the second part of the test, I compared their air purification abilities. After wafting the sage smoke at them for four minutes (enough time for both devices’ indicator lights to shine red), I placed the sage bundle outside and turned off one machine. I then set the other machine to its highest fan speed and timed how long it took to purify the air quality back to a « good » level. I repeated this test three times for each machine. 

Wyze Air Purifier and LG PuriCare 360 Single Filter side by side with burning sage bundle


I used sage smoke to compare air purification abilities
(Credit: Angela Moscaritolo)

In the first round, the Wyze Air Purifier only took 11 minutes 15 seconds to clear the smoke, but the LG model was a bit faster at 10 minutes 48 seconds. In the second round, the Wyze Air Purifier surprisingly outpaced the LG model, taking 12 minutes vs. 17 minutes, respectively, to return to green. In the third round, the LG was speedier, taking 16 minutes 55 seconds to purify the air vs. 18 minutes 26 seconds for the Wyze Air Purifier.

The LG PuriCare 360 costs $500 more, so I expected it to outperform the Wyze Air Purifier. Considering its low price, the Wyze Air Purifier exceeded my expectations in these tests. 

Another perk? The Wyze Air Purifier runs pretty quiet. At their highest fan speeds, the Wyze Air Purifier and LG PuriCare run at 58 and 57dB, respectively, according to readings from the NIOSH Sound Level Meter app(Opens in a new window). At its lowest fan speed, the Wyze model produces just 28dB of noise, which I almost can’t hear at all, whereas the LG runs at 34dB. 


Low-Frills Air Filtration

A smart air purifier with app connectivity and a coverage area greater than 500 square feet can easily run you north of $500. The Wyze Air Purifier ticks both boxes and starts at just $169.99. It features a 360-degree True HEPA filter and four fan speeds, plus an Auto mode that adjusts the airflow depending on real-time pollution levels. The purifier also offers impressive purification performance for large rooms and we like its variety of filter options. Pricier models such as the Dyson Purifier Cool TP07 offer more features, including an oscillating fan and additional measurements for humidity, NO2, PM10, temperature, and VOCs. But the Wyze Air Purifier is an excellent alternative at a much lower price.

Pros

  • 360-degree True HEPA filter

  • Wildfire and Formaldehyde filter options

  • Easy to set up and use

  • Supports app and voice control

  • Quiet

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The Bottom Line

The affordable Wyze Air Purifier uses a cylindrical True HEPA filter to rid the air of dangerous pollutants in large rooms, and it features Wi-Fi connectivity for app and voice control.

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