Live Science Verdict
Despite a lack of more sophisticated functionality, the Blue Pure 511 is an affordable starter air purifier that looks stylish in any home.
Easy to set up
Small enough for a desktop
No air quality indicator
Hard to tell what mode you are in
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The Blueair Blue Pure 511 is an air purifier for up to 180 ft² that uses HEPASilent™ technology to capture at least 99.97% of airborne particles down to 0.1 microns in size. It is the latest addition to Blueair’s fleet of air purifiers and the smallest device they’ve created. Yet Blueair says the Blue Pure 511 can purify spaces of 180 square feet within a remarkably short 12.5-minute timeframe. For larger areas, it can effectively clean up to 432 square feet in just 30 minutes, ensuring that you can enjoy clean and fresh air throughout your living space quickly and effectively.
Dimensions: H 13.4 in, W 7.9 in, D 7.9 in
Filters: Pre-filter, HepaSilent™ filter
Max noise: 49dBs
Max power use: 16 watts
Coverage: Up to 432 square feet
Modes: 3 fan speeds
Warranty: 1-year limited, which can be extended to 3 years upon registration
Energy Star Certified: Yes
This purifier boasts a modern and stylish design and comes with a choice of three washable pre-filter to pair with your home décor. These filters also prolong the life of the primary filter by capturing larger airborne particles such as pet hair, dust, lint and pollen.
Blueair 511 is energy-efficient. Being Energy Star-certified, it’s cheaper to run and better for the environment. It’s also Quiet Mark-certified and operates at low noise levels. This is down to a unique HEPASilent™ filter that requires less air pressure and consumes less energy during operation.
Compact yet powerful, manufacturers say the Blue Pure 511 is an ideal choice for dorms, nurseries, and small home offices. With that in mind, we tested it out in our office room at home, which measures around 150 square feet. Find out how we got on during our testing process.
Blue Pure 511: How we tested
The Blue Pure 511 claims to absorb 99.97% of airborne particles down to 0.1 microns. We tested the Blue Pure 511 in a 150-square-foot home office in our at-home trials. We measured ambient air quality before and after using the purifier for 30 minutes. Then we did the same measurements before and after burning matches and lighting incense cones.
We used an air particle meter to detect tiny particles from 0.3 to 10 microns to measure air quality before and after running the air purifier on the Everyday and Boost settings. This helped us evaluate how well Blue Pure 511 handled these larger particles at times when air particles were at their highest.
Blue Pure 511: Functionality
The Blue Pure 511 offers some good features for a small, starter air purifier, especially one at this price, including:
- Customizable design: Three Scandinavian-inspired washable pre-filters are available in classic muted gray, navy and blue tones. They also extend the life of the primary filter, catching large airborne particles such as dust, lint, pollen, and pet hair.
- Suitable for most spaces: The Blue Pure 511 purifies rooms measuring up to 432 square feet in just 30 minutes.
- One button control: Easy to set up and start using immediately; press once for Night mode, twice for Everyday mode and three times for Boost mode.
- Quiet during operation: The HEPASilent™ filter means that the Blue Pure 511 operates at a whisper-quiet 24dB at night and just 49dB on Boost mode, quieter than a normal conversation.
- Warranty: A 1-year limited warranty can be extended to three years if you register your appliance.
- Zero Ozone Verified: The Blue Pure 511 has been rigorously tested and confirmed to emit extremely low levels of ozone gas during its operation. Ozone is a molecule composed of three oxygen atoms and, in higher concentrations, can adversely affect respiratory health and the environment.
Blue Pure 511purOxygen P500: Design
Small and stylish, the Blue Pure 511 can fit into almost any home décor, though it can still be a talking point. The top of the unit is white matte plastic and features an attractive stencil-cut flower design. At the center is the power button and a mode indicator light. The top of the unit clicks neatly onto the larger base, which is covered by a washable fabric pre-filter, secured by a Velcro strip.
We like that you can customize the fabric filter to your taste, choosing from three colors to suit most decors. And of course, you can leave the fabric sleeve off entirely if you wish.
We also like that it’s small enough to feature on a coffee table, side table or even a desktop yet sturdy enough to sit on a floor.
Blue Pure 511: Performance
We tested the Blue Pure 511 at home, first assessing its impact on ambient air quality. Using an air particle meter, we measured air particles before and after running the purifier for 30 minutes on the Everyday fan mode. We then repeated the procedure using the highest Boost mode.
The initial results for the Everyday mode were pretty good, with an 85.37% reduction in 0.3-micron particles and just a 50% reduction in 2.5-micron particles after half an hour. These results would continue to improve if the air purifier was left to run for longer.
However, rerunning the same ambient air test using Boost mode saw considerable improvements, with a 96.8% reduction in 0.3-micron particles and a 100% reduction in 2.5-micron particles within 30 minutes. We decided to use the Boost mode for the incense and match tests, as we knew these tests would create a lot of extra particles, which the Everyday mode might struggle with.
We measured air particles after burning three incense cones for over 10 minutes in our home office with closed doors and windows. We ran the Blue Pure 511 in Boost mode for 30 minutes and measured the particles again. It achieved a 97.8% reduction in 0.3 microns, a 94.7% reduction in 2.5-micron particles and a 100% reduction in 10-micron particles, which was impressive.
Moving on to the match test, we lit and burned down 10 matches to check the purifier's efficiency in capturing the particles emitted. Again, using Boost mode, it managed to remove 95.8% of 0.3-micron particles and 95.3% of 2.5-micron particles in just 30 minutes. It also removed 100% of the larger harmful 10-micron particles.
Based on our testing, we thought the Blue Pure 511 coped admirably well, given its small size and affordability. However, we’d suggest it may be better for users to use their Blue Pure 511 in Boost mode for a short while before turning it down to Everyday mode to get the best results.
Blue Pure 511: The good
We really enjoyed how easy it was to set up and operate the Blue Pure 511. After testing dozens of air purifiers requiring WiFi access, app downloads, and multiple settings and fan speeds, it was a relief to use something simple and user-friendly. There’s no worrying about setting schedules or voice-activated control. Simply push the power button once for Night mode, twice for Everyday mode and three times for Boost mode.
We also liked how compact and lightweight it was, so it’s easy to move from room to room as needed. The Night setting is also whisper-quiet, so it won’t disturb your sleep if you use it in your bedroom.
Blue Pure 511: The bad
Some users will inevitably be frustrated by the lack of extra features. Unlike other, more expensive air purifiers, the Blue Pure 511 doesn't have an air quality indicator, sensors that change setting depending on air quality, and any ability to set schedules. However, it’s fair to say that the simplicity is reflected in the very affordable price.
Like some users, we also found that the Blue Pure 511 wasn’t as user-friendly as it first appeared. It can be challenging to determine what mode you are in when the purifier starts, without listening to the fan intently. Then you need to tap the power button to change the setting. Unfortunately, while a section of the central dial does light up, it’s not clear what mode you are in from here either - you have to guess by repeatedly pressing the power button and listening to the fan's power. It would be much better if each of the lights representing the modes were better labeled somehow.
Blue Pure 511: User reviews
The Blue Pure 511 has an impressive average rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars on Amazon, and almost three-quarters of satisfied customers have given it a perfect 5-star rating. Just a handful of customers have rated it with fewer than three stars. They enjoy how easy it is to set up and start using immediately and how simple it is to operate. They also mention how quiet it is during operation, with one user remarking, “I do like the quietness of the Blue Pure 511 especially when running at lower speeds.” Pet owners, in particular, say using it appears to have reduced dust and pet hair in their homes.
However, negative reviews point out that the power switch can be hard to find as it “blends into its surroundings,” while the lack of an air quality indicator has frustrated some users who say they can’t tell if it’s working.
Should you buy the Blue Pure 511
The Blue Pure 511 is an affordable, user-friendly choice for anyone looking for a small and compact air purifier for their home. Just don’t expect to be blown away by the functionality.
If the Blue Pure 511 isn’t for you
If you like what Blueair does but want a larger air purifier with more functionality, the Blue Pure 211+ may be the perfect choice for you. With impressive performance and eco-credentials, it covers up to 600 square feet, making it an excellent choice for homes with larger rooms or office spaces.
Small enough for any desktop or shelf, the Levoit H132’s compact size and low price make it the ideal air purifier for someone looking to try their first air purifier at home. If you have a small apartment or simply want to use an air purifier in one room only, this might be the product for you.
Another affordable air purifier with a sleek, neutral design that fits into any home décor is the Sensibo Pure. It’s user-friendly and convenient to use and can be controlled remotely through the Sensibo app, allowing you to adjust settings, monitor air quality in real time, and receive notifications and insights about the air quality in your home.
Joanne Lewsley is a UK-based freelance writer and editor, covering health and lifestyle news and features. She mainly creates evidence-based health and parenting content and has worked with a number of global sites, including BabyCentre UK, Medical News Today, Fit & Well, Top Ten Reviews, and Yahoo!