Should an Air Purifier be Placed on the Floor?

Should an air purifier be placed on the floor? There sure is a lot of talk about air purifier placement. 

But there are also several different types and sizes of air purifiers, so things could get confusing.

We’re here to clear up any confusion. 

First, we’ll address those asking if an air purifier should be placed on the floor. And then, we’ll dig deeper into other specifics around air purifier placement.

Air purifiers can be placed on the floor or on a table.

But that will depend on the air purifier’s size and how far off the ground the fan is. 

Ideally, the fan should be between 3 and 5 feet from the floor to access the optimal amount of airflow.

To clarify, if you have an air purifier that’s only 2 feet high, the fan will be 2 or fewer feet from the ground. 

In this case, putting it on a table will make more sense.

However, if you have an air purifier that stands 4 feet in height and the fan is at the top of the unit, then it’s already within the preferred parameters, and you could leave it on the floor.


Should an Air Purifier be Placed on the Floor? That Depends on Your Air Purifier.

First up, there doesn’t need to do any guessing. The manual will tell you if the air purifier should be placed on the floor or table. 

In fact, some may tell you they need to be mounted on the wall.

So follow manufacturer guidelines.

Having said that, some common sense and understanding of how air purifiers work will help.

As mentioned above, if you have a small purifier, putting it on a table or desk makes more sense. But why?

Air moves horizontally and vertically.

Open windows, doors, and even the movement of you and your pets through the home moves air horizontally.

Air density also has a lot to do with how air moves. 

The density of air depends on how warm or cold it is, its pressure, and the amount of moisture in it.

Air is made up of molecules and gases, and the warmer the air is, the faster those molecules move.

For those of you who remember science classes of long ago, you should also remember that warmer air rises and cool air drops. 

This is because cooler air is denser.

So there’s lots of air moving around your home, and you want your air purifier placed on the floor or on a table to maximize airflow. 

And in a standard eight-foot-high room, that will be around 3 to 5 feet from the floor.

An Air Purifier Shouldn’t Be Placed on the Floor – In a Corner

Now that you know your air purifier can be placed on the floor, let’s qualify that a little bit.

There are many places on the floor where your air purifier should not be placed.

Don’t Put Your Air Purifier in the Corner


This has to do with your air purifier’s need for maximum airflow. 

Putting it in a corner or some out-of-the-way nook or cranny in your home will lead to inefficient operation.

Frankly, it would be pointless to run it at all. 

If you want clean air in that corner and nowhere else, go for it. Otherwise, no. 

Corners have low to no airflow, and airflow is completely blocked on two sides.

Don’t Hide Your Air Purifier behind Furniture

I understand not wanting some ugly thing — or at least not so pretty — sitting in a prominent spot in your living room. 

Because while there are some very nice-looking air purifiers, not all are.

But just like putting your air purifier in a corner, trying to hide it behind furniture will impede airflow. 

It’s always a good idea to check the owner’s manual. 

Still, the typical recommendation is that there should be 3 feet of space in any direction around your air purifier for it to function at optimal efficiency.

Keep Your Air Purifier Away from High Humidity Spots


Your air purifier could be placed on the floor or on a table as long as it’s not in a typically humid room. 

This would include bathrooms, kitchens, and basements.

Bathrooms mean bathtubs and showers, kitchens mean boiling water, and basements… well, basements are basements. 

They’re typically humid.

Remember, humid air is denser — heavier. And asking your air purifier to work in that environment will cost more money because it needs to work harder and use more electricity to do its job. 

You’ll also end up spending more on replacement filters.

So in this instance, we’re not saying an air purifier won’t work in this setting. 

Unlike putting it in a corner or behind furniture, it will still purify the air but will cost you much more.

Air Purifiers and Electronics May Not Work Well Together

The last thing to look out for when finding the perfect place for your air purifier is if they are too close to electronics. 

That may sound crazy, but it’s true.

It all has to do with wavelengths and how different wavelengths interact with each other. 

So putting a modern, state-of-the-art air purifier with lots of advanced tech close to other electronics could lead to damaging either the purifier or your electronics.

As always, check your owner’s manual. 

In many cases, the recommendation is to keep an air purifier at least 5 feet away from electronics.

Should an Air Purifier be Placed on the Floor? – FAQs

Is it okay to put an air purifier on the carpet?

While it may still work, many manufacturers recommend placing the purifier on a hard surface for the best results.

Should you sleep next to an air purifier?

Yes. Having an air purifier running in your bedroom while you sleep is beneficial.

How long does an air purifier take to clean a room?

This is different for every air purifier. Look for an air purifier that shows a CADR rating.

This is the Clean Air Delivery Rate, a measurement of how long the purifier takes to exchange stale air for fresh air.

Should an Air Purifier be Placed on the Floor? – Conclusion

Yes, your air purifier can be placed on the floor if you want.

But whether or not your air purifier should be placed on the floor or on a table ultimately depends on its dimensions.

If you have a large floor model, there’s a good chance the fan is at least 3 feet from the floor. 

But if you have a smaller model that may be only a foot or two high, you’ll want to place it on a table. 

In this way, it will be able to run at maximum efficiency.

READ NEXT: Will An Air Purifier Work Around Walls? Your Guide to the Right Air Purifier Placement