We tested three of Shark’s air purifiers to get an idea of what they can do for you within a reasonable budget. We placed the models in identical conditions looking for advantages across the board, specifically with how effective their filter systems are, their aesthetic value, and how long they take to clean the room.
The three air purifiers we tested were the Shark HP 102, the HP 201, and the HP202. What we found was that all three were based on robust designs, solid build quality, and effective utility.
The power of the fan motor and the surface area of the filtration system determine the effective volume a filter can purify. The HP 102 and 201 are designed for 500 square feet and 1000 square feet of space, respectively and are limited to home use. The more expensive HP202 is designed to effectively filter up to a 1200-square-foot room in an hour. It is also limited to home use, or else the warranty is void.
In testing, we found that while it is possible to filter slightly larger rooms, it is best to adhere to the design area for optimal operation and longevity of the hardware and filter.
Shark filters give you more than just the HEPA filter. They use electronic sensing technology to determine when the unit should come on, or increase its fan speed for more intense cleaning. It uses these sensors to also turn the system down once the air in the room returns to an acceptable quality.
The filter that comes in the box with all three models easily lasts six months. The company claims that can go up to a year, depending on the workload you subject the filter to. It traps visible contaminants like human and pet hair, as well as dander and dead skin.
The HEPA filter they use will trap particles as small as 0.2 microns. That level of filtration effectively reduces smoke, allergens, bacteria, and viruses. This is true for all three filters, HP 201, 102, and 202.
Within its filter case, which you have to replace in its entirety, there are pockets of activated carbon. Air that passes over this is filtered for odor molecules that get trapped and are then broken down. The same goes for volatile organic compounds like cooking smells and fumes.
The three models also have one added layer of security. They call it the Microban Antimicrobial Protection. And it’s not common to find an equivalent in other brands. The Microban is an antimicrobial treatment that prevents the filer case from becoming a breeding ground for bacteria and viruses.
The design of all three models is robust, using the central fan design concept to reduce noise levels while increasing airflow. A circular canister at the bottom allows air to pass over the sealed filter mechanism before being sent up to the sensors and the outlet. The best part of the design is that it doesn’t stay on when the air in the room is at acceptable levels.
The main design difference between the three models has to do with size and weight. The HP 202 which is rated for a 1200-square-foot room weighs 11 pounds and measures 10.8 inches in diameter and 22.5 inches tall. All three models have cylindrical form factors.
The HP 201 while measuring the same dimensions and weight as the 202.
And, finally, the HP101 which is 8.66 inches in diameter and weighs just 5.85 Pounds.
All three models have the Eco Mode feature. Once the particulate count in the room has been reduced to acceptable levels the Shark filter will enter Eco mode and reduce the speed of the fan. This reduces the already silent running even further while reducing power consumption.
Overall, the Shark air purifiers live up to the manufacturer’s promise. We found its build quality, along with its design features, and affordable price a value proposition that was well worth consideration. The thing to note with all three filters is that the technology inside is identical. One costs more than the other only because of its size.
With changes in size, come the changes in filter surface area which in turn dictates the size of a room that can be filtered in an hour. The bottom line is that you get all the same bells and whistles and all you are left to do is choose which size you have to get to suit the room you plan to place it in.
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Shark HP102 Air Purifier
Shark HP201 Air Purifier MAX
Shark HP202 Air Purifier MAX