Does an air purifier stop mould? Experts explain how it can help tackle the spread of mould

They have good news and bad news

The Beko ATP5100I Air Purifier being tested in a room with a wooden table and pale green walls
(Image credit: BlueAir)

If you struggle with mould in your home you will look for any way to stop it coming back. In your quest to achieve this you might be wondering does an air purifier stop mould? We’ve asked the experts to find out if the investment will help.

At Ideal Home, we’ve tested some of the best air purifiers on the market. And while this tried and tested appliance can certainly improve your air quality and remove airborne pollutants from the air, you might be wondering whether it can also get rid of damp in your home. After all, many of us struggle with excess moisture and mould in our homes as a result of poor ventilation, leaks, and cold weather. 

Left untreated, mould can prove detrimental to your house and your health. And while an air purifier might not be the mould solution you were looking for, you shouldn’t rule it out completely. Here’s why. 

Does an air purifier stop mould?

If you’re wondering how to get rid of mould on walls or how to clean mould off fabric, you’ll no doubt be familiar with the risks that come with having mould in the house. Ideally, you should get rid of mould as soon as possible, but does an air purifier stop mould?

Chris Michael, Managing Director of Meaco, explains, ‘An air purifier will not stop mould as this is a moisture-based problem, and you need to think about where that moisture is coming from. A dehumidifier would be best if the moisture is being created by normal lifestyle routines (bathing, showering, drying washing, cooking etc).’

In fact, the best dehumidifiers are perfect for those who have a moisture problem and want to get rid of damp. But sadly, an air purifier doesn’t work in that same way. 

The Beko ATP5100I Air Purifier being tested in a room with a wooden table and pale green walls

(Image credit: Future / Amy Lockwood)

Instead of drawing in and collecting the moisture from the air, an air purifier re-circulates the air while capturing airborne particles and pollutants in the process. This won’t reduce the moisture levels. 

However, that doesn’t mean that an air purifier can’t help those with mould problems. Chris adds, ‘Where an air purifier is useful is in capturing mould spores. These are the ‘seeds’ released by mould to help it spread and multiply. It is the mould spores that people are allergic to.’

This also means that if you tackle the damp problems in your home and remove the mould that’s taken over your house, an air purifier can stop mould from coming back and prevent it from spreading further. 

Of course, you should also make sure to use an air purifier if you are actively removing mould from your home. 

The Blueair Blue Max 3250i Air Purifier by the side of a bed with green linen bedding

(Image credit: Future / Amy Lockwood)

Lars Dunberger, Technology Development Manager at Blueair, explains, ‘Airborne mould particles have been shown to cause irritation in eyes, skin nose, throat, and lungs. During the cleaning process to remove mould from your environment, spores are likely to become airborne. To get rid of mould spores from indoor air, a high-performing air purifier certified for mould removal should be used.’

Doing this will pay off in the long run, though, and using an air purifier can also help to remove the mouldy, musty smell from your home. However, you need to take care of this appliance if you want to reap its mould spore and odour-removing benefits. 

Cristina Raboj, Global Proposition Manager at Philips, explains. ‘It’s important to remember that even if you do have an air purifier, you need to look after it, or its effectiveness will diminish. Changing the filter regularly is a simple bit of TLC that will help ensure it’s operating at peak efficiency in your home.’

‘But, to prevent mould in the long run, you have to tackle the cause at its source. Mould thrives in damp, dark moisture-rich places, so keeping your home as dry and well-ventilated as possible is key to preventing a build up.’

Chris Michael headshot
Chris Michael

Chris has been advising on humidity solutions and dehumidifiers since 1991 and is well known within the dehumidifier industry across the world as a lead on innovation and sustainability. Since the mid-90s Chris has been a guest speaker at numerous conferences to teach museum conservators how to measure relative humidity. With a wealth of experience in the industry, Chris is committed to helping provide low-energy and low-noise solutions appliances that improve the lives of customers.

The best air purifiers for mould - our top picks

If you're looking for an air purifier that will help to remove mould spores from your home, we've picked a few of our favourites below. 


Do air purifiers really get rid of mould?

Unfortunately, no. An air purifier cannot get rid of mould as mould is caused by a build-up of excess moisture in your home. To successfully get rid of mould, you’ll need to tackle the source of the moisture, clean the mould off, and use a dehumidifier to remove this excess moisture. 

An air purifier can prevent the spread of mould spores, though. This can ultimately prevent mould from spreading throughout your home and even improve the musty smell you may have in your house. 

How long does it take for an air purifier to remove mould?

An air purifier will not get rid of mould, but it can capture mould spores. Depending on the magnitude of the problem, an air purifier can trap these mould spores in as little as 30 minutes. 

However, you’ll need to tackle and get rid of the mould to stop these mould spores from returning. 

Is a dehumidifier or air purifier better for mould?

Experts agree that the best appliance for mould is a dehumidifier, as this appliance can successfully reduce the moisture levels in the home and prevent mould from getting worse. But, like an air purifier, a dehumidifier won’t get rid of mould. It’ll just help to remove the excess moisture from the air, which can stop it from spreading and affecting your home even more. 

An air purifier might not stop mould, but it’s still an appliance you need on your radar. 

Lauren Bradbury

Lauren Bradbury is a freelance writer and major homes enthusiast. She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in English and Creative Writing from the University of Chichester in 2016, before dipping her toe into the world of content writing. After years of agency work, writing everything from real-life stories to holiday round-ups, she decided to take the plunge and become a full-time freelancer in the online magazine world. Since then, she has become a regular contributor for Real Homes and Ideal Home, and become even more obsessed with everything interior and garden related. As a result, she’s in the process of transforming her old Victorian terraced house into an eclectic and modern home that hits visitors with personality as soon as they walk through the door.