This story is part of Tips for the homeCNET’s collection of practical tips for getting the most out of your home, inside and out.

An air purifier can go a long way toward reducing potentially harmful allergens in your home. If set and maintained properly, it can help rid rooms of volatile organic compounds that harm indoor air quality. A portable air purifier is especially useful as it can be moved from room to room to provide relief when needed.

Here we will go through the steps to install a standard room air purifier.

Read more: The best air purifiers for 2022

Installing an air purifier

To understand the basic steps for installing a portable air purifier, I consulted several user manuals from different air purifier manufacturers. Specifically, I looked at the installation instructions from Honeywell, A shark, Levoit and Crane. The steps are simple but important to ensure your air purifier is performing optimally.

Step 1: Install the air filter

Air purifiers come with at least one air filter, sometimes more. Before you begin, you will need to remove all filters from their packaging and follow the directions to install them into your air purifier. Some models come with the filter already in place, but it still needs to be removed from its packaging before use. If your air filter is already installed, check that it is still in its packaging before you start using your air purifier. If it is in its packaging, remove it and reinsert the filter.

Step 2: Position it for use

Most air purifiers require a certain amount of space away from walls, furniture, or other objects in your room to function properly. Again, check your specific owner’s manual for exact clearances, as they will likely vary from make to make and model to model. Shark suggests setting its unit “at least” 3 inches from walls, while Levoit suggests a minimum of 15 inches, and Crane says its unit should be at least 3 feet from walls.

Depending on the size of your room, these distances can make a big difference and can help you decide which unit to buy. If you want to use your air purifier in a smaller room, having to install it three feet from the wall (as Crane’s user manual suggests) can become an inconvenient tripping hazard.

Step 3: Avoid blocking the bars

Whatever spacing the manufacturer suggests, you also want to make sure the grilles are clear of furniture, curtains, and other obstructions that could interfere with the air purifier’s performance. Always face the purifier towards the room and not towards a wall or furniture.

Still have questions? Read more about how to position an air purifier for best performance and learn how to clean and maintain an air purifier so that it lasts as long as possible.

Other things to note

Note that these steps may vary slightly depending on the specific model you have. Be sure to consult your product’s user guide before you begin to ensure you follow proper use and care instructions. If you have any questions, consult the manufacturer directly.

For some other simple home hacks, consider adjusting the temperature of your water heater, weather stripping your windows and doors and changing the rotation of your ceiling fan.

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