Live Science Verdict
The IKEA FÖRNUFTIG is an affordable air purifier with a sleek, neutral design that fits into any home décor. However, it lacks the power to be a truly effective air purifier.
Replacement filters are cheap
No True HEPA filter
No VOC filter
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The IKEA FÖRNUFTIG Air Purifier is the Swedish retail giant’s bestselling air purifier. It’s incredibly cheap compared to other air purifiers and beautifully designed, which may explain why it’s flying off the shelves. IKEA emphasizes the affordability and accessibility of the FÖRNUFTIG and says it’s ideally suited to small to medium-sized rooms.
Dimensions: H 18 in, W 12 in, D 4 in
Weight: 5.86 lbs
Filters: HEPA filter
Max noise: 60 dBs
Max power use: 14watts
Coverage: Up to 107 square feet
Modes: 3 fan speeds
Warranty: 1-year limited
Energy Star Certified: No
Smart features: None
They highlight its multi-layered filtration system, which includes a fabric pre-filter and a HEPA filter to remove airborne particles and pollutants. Unfortunately, the FÖRNUFTIG does not have a VOC (volatile organic compounds) filter to absorb harmful gases and odors emitted by household cleaners and other chemicals. Still, you can purchase this separately on the IKEA website. For transparency, we were sent an IKEA FÖRNUFTIG with an additional VOC filter.
Curious about the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG air purifier, we decided to put it to the test in our own home. Over a week, we conducted various air quality tests to evaluate its performance, features, functionality, and design. We also considered the latest user reviews to see how previous purchasers have received this sleek and compact air purifier.
While we were happy with the overall performance of the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG, it didn't quite make it into our guide to the best air purifiers and best air purifiers for allergies, as it was lacking in several areas.
IKEA FÖRNUFTIG: How we tested
While testing the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG Air Purifier, we wanted to see how it would improve the air quality in a 140-square-foot bedroom. We used an air particle meter that detects tiny particles ranging from 0.3 to 10 microns to measure its effectiveness. Before switching on the FÖRNUFTIG, we measured the room's ambient air quality. Then, we ran the purifier at its lowest setting and measured the air quality after 30 minutes. We repeated the same process with the highest setting to compare the results.
We challenged the purifier by lighting matches and burning incense cones, introducing larger particles into the air to further evaluate its performance. We measured the particle levels before and after running the purifier for 30 minutes on the lowest and highest settings. This allowed us to assess how well the FÖRNUFTIG handled these larger particles.
IKEA FÖRNUFTIG: Functionality
The IKEA FÖRNUFTIG air purifier has a range of features and functions to help improve your home’s air quality.
- Affordable and accessible: IKEA is keen to point out how cheap and easy this air purifier is to run - and they’re not wrong. It’s also incredibly light and easy to move about your home, with a soft handle and a lightweight design.
- Simple manual control: The FÖRNUFTIG features super simple and intuitive controls. A manual control knob on the front allows you to adjust the fan speed according to your preference… and that’s it! There are no Smart or connected features, which can be a negative for some, but an advantage for others who don’t need or want a Smart device to monitor their air quality and react accordingly.
- Filtration system: The air purifier utilizes a multi-layered filtration system to capture and remove airborne particles, pollutants, and allergens. It consists of a pre-filter, a HEPA filter, and an optional activated carbon filter for odor reduction.
- Three fan settings: Offers a choice of low, medium and high fan settings.
- Quiet operation: The air purifier is designed to operate quietly, making it suitable for use in bedrooms, offices, and other areas where noise may be a concern. The exact noise level may vary, but IKEA claims it to be around 32-52 decibels, which is quiet compared to other air purifiers. We couldn’t record a reading above 25 dB on the lowest setting, which is super-quiet compared to other air purifiers.
- Energy efficiency: IKEA emphasizes energy efficiency with the FÖRNUFTIG. It is designed to consume low amounts of power, making it an economical choice if you want to keep your air purifier on all the time.
- Filter replacement indicator: The purifier notifies you when to check and possibly replace the filter.
- Room coverage: The FÖRNUFTIG is designed for small to medium-sized rooms. IKEA recommends using it in spaces up to approximately 100 square feet (10 square meters).
IKEA FÖRNUFTIG: Design
The IKEA FÖRNUFTIG Air Purifier has a compact design, making it versatile for placement on a floor, table, desk, or even hanging on the wall. It has a sleek white exterior with a neutral gray fabric screen, which blends well with any décor. If you prefer to keep it out of sight, its compact size allows for easy storage or hiding behind other furniture.
Measuring only four inches thick and 18 inches tall, with an additional stand, it resembles a slim brick with a fabric handle for portability. It weighs under six pounds and is much lighter than many other air purifiers we’ve tested at home. It offers three fan settings and a single particle filter layer, keeping things simple.
The IKEA FÖRNUFTIG doesn't feel cheap either. It has feet that can be mounted underneath, allowing it to sit on a floor, shelf or table. If you prefer to mount it on a wall, it already has pre-fitted mounting holes on the back too, and you can remove the fabric handle for a more streamlined look.
Overall, the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG Air Purifier is attractive and functional. Its compact, lightweight construction and simple controls make it easy to use and move around your home. Whether on display or tucked away, it adds a touch of modern aesthetics to any living space.
IKEA FÖRNUFTIG: Performance
We put the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG air purifier through its paces with a series of tests. First up, we checked how well it improved ambient air quality. We used an air particle meter to compare air particles before and after running the purifier for 30 minutes on the lower fan setting. We then repeated the test using the highest setting.
The performance of the lower setting was not particularly impressive, as it only achieved a reduction of 38.2% in tiny particles measuring 0.3 microns and 39.1% in particles measuring 2.5 microns after 30 minutes. However, there was an improvement when we switched to the highest setting, resulting in an 84.4% reduction in 0.3-micron particles and an 85.7% reduction in 2.5-micron particles within the same timeframe.
Next, we did the incense test. We checked the air particles after burning three cones in a closed room for at least 10 minutes. Then we ran the FÖRNUFTIG for 30 minutes on the lower and higher settings. On the lower setting, it reduced 2.5-micron particles by just 46.6% but it did manage to remove an impressive 94% of larger 10-micron particles. On the higher setting, it did much better, reducing particles measuring 2.5 microns by 98.3% and particles measuring 10 microns by 99.9%.
Lastly, we lit up a series of matches to see how well the purifier could suck up the nasty particles they emit on burning. On the lower setting, it didn’t manage to absorb any of the particles in the atmosphere - in fact, we found all particles had increased after 30 minutes! Switching to the higher setting and running the air purifier for another 30 minutes yielded much better results. The IKEA FÖRNUFTIG reduced 0.3-micron particles by 97.3%, 2.5-micron particles by 97.3% and 10-micron particles by 100%.
Our tests show that on its highest setting, the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG can perform really well, but it’s doubtful anyone would want to run it on its highest setting all the time, as it’s noisy and will use more energy, costing you more on your household bills.
Overall, we were frustrated by how the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG performed during these tests. Despite its affordability, stylish design, and good performance at a higher setting, it needs more power at its lower levels and a better filter to compete against its rivals in the air purifier market.
IKEA FÖRNUFTIG: The good
We were instantly impressed by the design of the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG when we unboxed it. Compared to other bulky and heavy air purifiers made of plain white plastic, it felt refreshing and lightweight. It's like a breath of fresh air, both literally and figuratively. The slim profile of the FÖRNUFTIG saves space, and the fabric cover resembling tweed adds a stylish touch.
We appreciated how easy it is to move around the house. It's so light you can carry it from room to room without hassle or effort. Plus, its simplicity means you don't need to consult the manual to figure out how to turn it on or adjust the fan settings. For those who prefer a straightforward user experience, the absence of complex smart or connected features is positive.
Overall, the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG combines an attractive and modern design with practical features, making it a standout option for aesthetics and user-friendliness.
IKEA FÖRNUFTIG: The bad
It comes down to performance. The IKEA FÖRNUFTIG doesn’t operate as an effective air purifier on its lower settings. Our at-home testing revealed it could only be effective at improving air quality at the highest fan speed, which is likely to be much too noisy for most households.
Although we appreciate the ease of use, it's important to note that the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG has a limited number of settings compared to other air purifiers on the market. It offers just three fan speeds without any auto setting, night mode, or air particle sensor. The simplicity may appeal to those who prefer a straightforward experience, but we think an auto-mode would be a great addition.
In terms of filtration, the FÖRNUFTIG uses a single HEPA filter for the air purification process. If you want to enhance its performance further, you’ll have to purchase an additional VOC or gas filter from IKEA.
IKEA FÖRNUFTIG: User reviews
The IKEA FÖRNUFTIG has received an impressive rating of 4.6 stars out of 5 on the IKEA website. Users have expressed their satisfaction with various aspects of the air purifier. One of the key highlights is its ease of assembly or wall installation, allowing for a hassle-free setup. Additionally, users appreciate its affordability and attractive design, making it an appealing choice.
Quite a few customers say their air quality has improved after purchasing the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG, with one happy reviewer saying, "This unit is amazingly quiet and very efficient. We noticed a significant improvement in the air quality of our bedroom within just a few hours."
However, there have been some negative reviews as well. Some users have raised concerns about the effectiveness of the FÖRNUFTIG in removing dust, dander, and other particles from the air. Additionally, a few users have found the highest fan speed to be too noisy for everyday use.
Overall, while the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG has garnered positive reviews for its ease of installation, affordability, and quiet operation, there are mixed opinions regarding its effectiveness in removing certain particles from the air and the noise level at the highest fan speed.
Should you buy the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG
If you’re looking for a basic air purifier with manual controls and a cheap price point, the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG could be ideal - but don’t expect your air quality to improve dramatically without having it on its noisiest setting.
If the IKEA FÖRNUFTIG isn’t for you
If you're in search of an air purifier that combines affordability and potentially higher performance than the FÖRNUFTIG, the KOIOS EPI810 is worth considering. With a coverage area of up to 269 square feet, it is suitable for small to medium-sized rooms, effectively purifying indoor air.
Another option is the Levoit H132, which boasts a compact and simple design. Standing just over 12 inches tall, it features an H13 True HEPA filtration system, three timer settings, and a dimmable night light, providing comprehensive air purification.
If you're looking for a straightforward air purifier without fancy extras or the need for smart app connectivity, the Coway AP-1512HH could be the perfect fit. It offers effective air purification without any bells and whistles. One standout feature is the Eco mode, which automatically adjusts the purifier's power based on the level of air pollution, saving you energy and money.
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!