3M Filtrete Ultra Clean air purifier Review
3M’s Filtrete Ultra Clean Air Purifier is relatively well-known for its affordability, as with many products produced by the brand.
With so many reviews found online, you may wonder if their low price point affects the effectiveness in terms of performance and reliability.
In this article, we will explore the true effectiveness of 3M’s air purifier — whether it is truly a cost-effective device or simply a cheap gimmick. We’ve also compared it to another outstanding air purifier — the Cosmo Prime air purifier — so you know exactly how it fares.
1. Effectiveness — types of filtering processes
While 3M’s purifier retails at a very competitive price of $167 onwards, they do not utilise HEPA filters, which are relatively known and widely used in the industry.
Instead, 3M uses an electret (passive electrostatic) filter media. Unlike regular HEPA filters, 3M’s filtrete filter uses electric charge from friction caused by the air passing by its rectangular-shaped fibres. This only helps to attract and capture medium-sized particles including dust and pollen, whereas HEPA filters are able to capture even microparticles.
3M’s air purifier is suitable for a room up to 34m² and has a Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) of Dust 274, Pollen 312, Smoke 197. Read more about the CADR and other useful indicators here.
Cosmo, on the other hand, relies on a 3-in-1 filtration system that uses a true HEPA filter. These filters are medical-grade, in-house engineered H13 HEPA technology. They have pores that are up to 20 times finer than average HEPA filters.
A HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) filter captures 99.97% particles of up to 0.3 microns. These filters are airtight and consist of a dense sheet of small fibres pleated and sealed in a metal or plastic frame. Read more on how true HEPA filters really work here.
Cosmo’s 3 in-1 filter function
- 1st layer filters out large particles like dust and hair
- 2nd layer filters out micron particles like pollen and dust mites
- 3rd layer neutralises odours in the air and absorbs formaldehyde
As opposed to 3M’s limited coverage, Cosmo air purifier is suitable for a room up to 80m² — which is roughly the size of a 4-room flat in Singapore!
2. Cost-effective — filter replacement & maintenance
It is important to clean and change out filters in order to prevent the opposite effect — dirty purifiers may release dust particles and dirt into the air if improperly maintained. With that, you will want to take the cost of filter replacement into consideration as well.
3M’s system alerts you with a warning light when the filter is in need of replacement. You can clean your 3M’s filters to prolong its lifespan a little. However, some reviews state that although accessing the filter is simple, the accordion style of the filter makes it tough to clean. Furthermore, filters lose efficiency even if they look clean when they are worn out, so you’ll need to replace your 3M’s filters often with a new filter.
Although 3M’s filters are generally cheaper ($17 onwards),, 3M’s filters have to be replaced once every 3 months, which is more frequent than Cosmo.
Depending on your usage along with the room’s air quality, it is recommended for you to switch out your HEPA filter once every 12 to 18 months.
Since you won’t need to replace the filter so often, you’ll be able to save more money in the long run. It is also more eco-friendly, as you won’t be throwing out old, dirty plastic filters every few months.
3. Runs silently — no more noise disruptions in the night
Nobody wants a noisy, distracting air purifier in their workplace or at home. Hence, it is important for air purifiers to be able to run peacefully and quietly in the background.
3M filtrete air purifier has a 58dB noise output. Based on many air purifier reviews, it was stated to be relatively quiet, except for the highest speed setting.
The Cosmo air purifier has a low noise level setting at just a soft whisper of 20dB. Their purifier also emits blue light, which is great for light sleepers to get fall asleep easily.
4. Smartphone access with automatic fan speed
As many rely on smartphones plenty these days, it is way more convenient to control and monitor your home devices via your smartphone.
3M has an app called “Filtrete Smart”, which allows you to monitor and understand your home’s air quality from your smartphone. It also notifies you when it is time to switch out your filter.
The app allows you to:
- Track the lifespan of the 3M filters
- Receive filter change notifications based on real-time usage
- Keep track of your filter type and size
- Order replacement filters
Read more on what else the app can do here.
Cosmo also allows you to sync your purifier with your smartphone for real-time updates and information on the air quality in your room.
There are 2 ways you can control your Cosmo Prime Air Purifier — using the controls on the top of the device, or via the Smart Life App (available on Google Play Store and Apple Store.
From your smartphone, you are able to:
- Control functions such as the fan speed via your device
- Monitor the air quality even when you’re not at home
- Receive real-time updates on air quality along with LED indicators
- Enable ‘Child Lock’ so that your toddler can play with the air purifier while all features are locked in place
5. Warranty, delivery times and trials
As 3M’s products are mainly sold through various retailers, the delivery times may differ. They come with a 1-year warranty and do not offer trial services for you to test out.
Cosmo prime air filters are delivered on the same day of purchase, free-of-charge. They also come with a 5-year warranty and even offer a 20-day trial for you to test and see if the filter is to your liking.
3M VS Cosmo — which air purifier is right for you?
There are many different types of air purifiers that would be suited to different people, this would depend on your personal preferences and needs. If you don’t mind having to constantly switch out the filters and are on a tight budget, then the 3M Filtrete Ultra Clean air purifier would be better for you.
But for those who suffer from allergies and want a quality air purifier that effectively cleans the air, then Cosmo Prime air purifier would be the winning option.
The Cosmo Prime air purifiers filter 99.7% of all air pollutants including dust mites, pollen and so on. Their 3-in 1 filter function ensures that the air released back into the space is clean and fresh. Check out 6 other reasons why Cosmo is Singapore’s top ranking air purifier here.
Check out more reviews-cum-comparison guides here:
Written by Angeline