In this air purifier review, we look at IKEA's “Patrull” (meaning “patrol” in Swedish). It is IKEA’s first air purifier and looks like something from a Star Wars movie. It retails at £95.00 with replacement filters costing £20.00.
The IKEA Patrull is advertised as a general air cleaner, effective for filtering out pollen, dust, dust mite allergen, and tobacco smoke particles.

Pros:

  • Small and Light
  • Relatively Quiet
  • Moves a good amount of air

 

Cons:

  • X Poor Filtration Efficiency
  • X Not leakage-free
  • X No indication that the filter is full

Marketed as:

IKEA, a Swedish company, is the world’s largest retailer of flat-pack furniture, appliances, and home accessories. The IKEA Patrull air cleaner is the first and only air purifier currently offered by them. IKEA introduces the Patrull air purifier as “an easy way to get a cleaner, healthier indoor environment”, claiming that it “filters the air from pollen, dust, mites and smoke particles.”

Review:

The unit is relatively small, light and has an IKEA typical family-friendly design. The air purifier is made out of white plastic and has three fan speed settings. The IKEA Patrull air purifier's fan is relatively quiet on all three settings and manages to move a good amount of air.

IKEA Patrull Air Purifier Filter IKEA Patrull Air Purifier Filter

The filter of the IKEA Patrull air purifier is a Flimmer® filter that consists of polypropylene fibers - a synthetic filament. In this kind of filter, the fibers are electrically charged through the draft that is created by the fan. The idea behind this filtration technology is to capture particulate air pollution through electrostatically charged fine polypropylene hairs - so that the filter works basically like a mechanical nostril.

IKEA Patrull Air Purifier Filter Fine Polypropylene Hairs

The technology used by the IKEA Patrull air purifier itself is not new, and IKEA in the UK has been using it on a large scale for several years in its Croydon store. IKEA in Wembley is also using 45 large units that use the same kind of filter technology since the beginning of 2010. For stores like IKEA, this kind of air filtration technology is primarily used to minimise dust settlement and thus reduce cleaning costs.

Airflow & Filtration Efficiency:

During our tests regarding the ability to filter particle air pollution out of the air, the IKEA Patrull air purifier filtered out an average of 65% of particle pollution down to 0.3 microns on it's the first day of testing. This is close to the manufacturer's aim of achieving a 70% filtration rate at 0.3 microns. 90% of indoor air pollution, however, is smaller than 0.3 microns.

This means that the IKEA Patrull air purifier will effectively only capture a small fraction of particulate pollution, and blow most fine and ultra-fine pollution back into the room. A high-quality air purifier (such as an HealthPro 100 for example), provides a guaranteed and certified filtration efficiency of 99.5% of air pollution down to 0.003 microns.

The IKEA Patrull air purifier also does not provide any kind of gas and chemical filtration and would thus not be suited for people suffering from asthma or MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivity).

We did not test the IKEA Patrull air purifier's efficiency of capturing particulate air pollution over a longer period of time. In general, air purifiers that use electrostatic filtration tend to lose filtration efficiency quickly over a short period of time and thus require you to replace the filter often.

There are other problems though:

  • -The IKEA Patrull air purifier is made out of plastic and has a strong smell to it, which can cause irritation to people with MCS.
  • -The IKEA Patrull air purifier does not give you any indication when its filter is loaded and needs to be replaced. This kind of filter technology will always let a similar amount of air pass through the filter so that you have no direct indication how well it is filtering the air or not.
  • -The polypropylene hairs in the filter are sitting very loosely in the filter carton. If they are touched, or the filter carton or air purifier is shaken, the air purifier's efficiency rating in filtering the air can further significantly decrease.

Summary:

The IKEA Patrull air purifier has a relatively low price and has some efficiency in collecting larger dust from the air, but this air purifier does not seem to be designed with asthma or allergy sufferers in mind at all. Indoor air pollution does not only consist of large particulates, and achieving a 65% efficiency rate at 0.3 microns is not going to be enough to be considered an effective allergy or asthma air cleaner.

 

Specifications:

  Price:   £95.00
  Weight:   5.5kgs
  Size:   36 x 32 x 39 cm
  Filter type(s):   Polypropylene
  Frequency of filter change:   at least once a year
  Cost of filter:   £20.00
  Theoretical filtration efficiency (according to manufacturer):   Not given
  Airflow rate:   54-130 m3/h
  Adequate room size (according to manufacturer):   Not given
  Country of manufacture:   Sweden
  Power consumption:   8-32W/h
  Warranty:   Not given

References:

IKEA FAMILY Newsletter 27. Mai 2010
www.IKEA.co.uk