Hunter QuietFlo Air Purifier Reviews
The Hunter QuietFlo air purifier is one of the air purification products from Hunter, a US company well-known in the indoor comfort industry.
It’s particularly suitable for people who want an air cleaner which is quiet, affordable and capable in removing allergen particulates and some gases (odor and smoke).
Cost: $98 to mid $200, depending on the model.
**** Suitable for 155 to 403 sq. feet ****
Hunter Air Purifier Models – Past and Present
Hunter has produced many types of Hunter HEPA air purifiers in the past and these models (Hunter Hepatech, Hunter Permalife and Hunter QuietFlo) are pretty popular, as shown by thousands of internet search of different Hunter air purifier models per month.
However, it is important to note that the company does not produce Hunter Hepatech and Hunter Permalife anymore. In addition, some Hunter QuietFlo models have also been phased out, including the popular Hunter Tower QuietFlo with ionizer.
Unfortunately, many vendors still carry and sell the old models, often without giving a warning to the customers that the models have been discontinued.
Although the replacement filters for the discontinued models are still available, we advise you not to buy the old models of Hunter HEPA air purifiers as there is a big risk that they will stop producing the replacement filters in the future. Not to mention the trouble associated with honoring the warranty if that need arises.
Below are different models of Hunter Quietflo air purifier which are currently available:
- For room size 155 sq. feet: Hunter QuietFlo 90 True HEPA air purifier.
- For room size 225 sq. feet: Hunter QuietFlo 85 True HEPA air purifier and the digital version and energy-saving version of it (Hunter QuietFlo 245 True HEPA air purifier).
- For room size 403 sq. feet: Hunter QuietFlo 401 True HEPA air purifier and the programmable version (Hunter QUietFlo 402) or energy-saving version of it (Quietflo 525).
This review is for the current model only (Hunter QuietFlo 90, 85, 245, 401, 402 and 525).
Who Needs Hunter QuietFlo Air Purifier ?
Hunter QuietFlo air cleaner works well to clean up:
- Lint and pet hair
- Pet dander
It also has some capability in removing some gases, including light smoke and odor, such as pet, cooking and chemical (paint, carpet) odors.
However, its peak performance is only for capturing pollutants sized 0.3 micron or above, and the unit has a reduced capacity in dealing with pollutants sized smaller than 0.3 micron. Among these are gases, smaller bacteria and viruses, s smaller dust, and pet danders.
In order to capture those smaller particles, an air purifier machine should have pounds of carbon filter. Hunter Quietflo has some, but not enough carbon filter to deal with a lot of smaller particles.
Hence, this air purifier is best for people who want an affordable and quiet air purifier, which does an excellent job for all around cleaning as well as reducing the symptoms of mild allergy or mild allergy-induced asthma. It’s not suitable for people with more severe problems of asthma, allergy, and for those who have multiple chemical sensitivities and are immuno-compromised. It’s also not recommended for getting rid of heavy smoking as well as bad pet odor problem.
Hunter QuietFlo Air Purifier Filtration System Reviews
All the current models of Hunter QuietFlo air purifiers utilize a two-stage filtration system:
- STAGE I: Air is drawn into the machine’s front grill. The incoming air is promptly filtrated by a carbon prefilter which retains bigger allergen such as lint and pet hair, as well as some bigger bacteria, pollen, smoke, odor, pet dander and other inborn pollutant.
- STAGE II: Air passes the second filter, which is a TRUE HEPA filter, and clean air is then expelled through the top part of the air purifier.
The company claims that this true HEPA filter retains 99.97% of pollutant with the size of 0.3 micron or more. Indeed, a true HEPA filter should retain that much of pollutant. However, unless the unit has a tight housing which prevents the by-passing of air, it’s very likely that the theoretical value for pollutant retainment of a true HEPA filter cannot be achieved.
Allergy Buyers Club, a selective allergy store, conducted a particle counter test to assert this claim, and found that Hunter QuietFlo air purifier retains 98% instead of 99.97% of pollutant with the size bigger than 0.3 micron. So its actual efficiency in capturing pollutant of 0.3 micron and more is lower than the theoretical value of a true HEPA filter.
However, this value is actually good enough, especially if you compare this machine with most air purifiers in the market today. And more importantly, users of Hunter QuietFlo air cleaner have reported good results, such as reduction of allergy symptoms as well as elimination of odors and dust. In fact, they report a noticable reduction of dust that has collected n curtains, blinds and so on. And speaking of blinds, check out zebra shades from Affordable Blinds.
Having said that, if you have more severe problems and wanted an air purifier with more efficiency than above, then you should get a premium air purifier, which is usually made by companies dedicated in producing air purifiers only. For instance, IQAir air purifiers, Blueair air purifiers, Alleraire, and so forth. (See air purifier reviews page for more information on this).
These air purifiers definitely live up to its HEPA theoretical value. Moreover, most of the premium line filtration system often exceed the HEPA capabilities, and manage to get 98-99% of ALL pollutant retained in their filtration systems.
Note the word ‘ALL’ here. This encompasses all pollutant sizes, not only the ones sized 0.3 micron and above. Our estimate is, if Hunter QuietFlo is subjected to particle counting for all pollutants, it may retain 70-79% of pollutants, based on the particle count of its closest competitor, Honeywell Enviracaire.
Features of Hunter QuietFlo Air Cleaner ~ A Review
- Price: the cost of Hunter QuietFlo is right on the mark for its power as determined by the room-size suitability and filtration capability. The most powerful one (Hunter QUietFlo 401, 402 and 525, suitable for room up to 403 sq. feet) are in the mid $200 range. Its closest competitors, Honeywell Enviracaire and Hamilton Beach air purifiers are also in that price range.
- NOTE: If you want to compare the three of them, note the room size suitability as well, since the more power a machine has, the more expensive it is.
- It’s easy to change the filter.
- Filter replacement reminder. All the current model of Hunter QUietFlo air purifier have filter reminder feature to remind you to replace the filter. However, the filter reminder in this machine works on clocking mechanism. So it does not measure the actual usage. In order for a machine to measure actual usage, it has to be equipped with a sensor which measures air flow and/or pressure. If you wanted a machine which is smarter than this, you should look at the Asian-made air purifiers, such as: Winix Plasmawave, Rabbit Air, Neo Air or Airgle. These machines have good filtration capability and are full of bells and whistles.
- Automatic shut-off feature when the machine is opened up.
- Quiet. Hunter QuietFlo air purifier has 3 fan setting: low, medium, and high. At low and medium setting, its noise level is at 41 and 45 decibels, respectively, which is like the library noise. If you can sleep in the library, then you certainly will be able to put this machine in your bedroom.
- Portable (19 lb in weight) and it has a slim design.
- When operated in a room according to the recommended maximum size and with an 8-foot high ceiling, Hunter QuietFlo air purifier produces 5 changes per hour. This exceeds the recommended 2 air changes per hour. This feature, coupled with its filtration efficiency, makes Hunter HEPA air purifier exceptional.
- It’s easy to use. In addition, programming options are available for some models.
- Some models have energy-star certification. Unfortunately, this company does not give a more detailed information on the wattage.
Reviews on the Drawbacks of Hunter QuietFlo Air Purifier
- Filter replacement is rather expensive. Although Hunter HEPA air purifier is generally not expensive to buy, in order for it to be effective, its filter has to be replaced quite often. Its HEPA filter, which ranges from $40-80 a pop, should be replaced yearly, whereas its carbon prefilter ($24 for a pack of two prefilters) should be changed every three months. All in all, you should expect to spend over $100 annually for filter replacement.
- A minority of customers complain that the motor of Hunter HEPA air purifier break down after over one year of use.
- Some customers complain of plastic smell for 2 weeks after they bought the unit.
All in all, Hunter QuietFlo air purifier is a good air purifier to have if you want a quiet and affordable air purifier with a very good efficiency for a small to medium-sized room. Its overall features are good enough that it earns a three and a half star rating from Allergy Buyers Club out of its five star rating system and truly represents value for money.