To be honest the inexpensive Bell Howell Ionizer Air Purifier has been the most poorly rated air purifier by most consumers, despite the company’s reputation. I’m amazed that everyone from QVC to Target still sells this item. Some of the most frequent comments include:
1) “ozone smell” (which I will explain later)
2) “Hard to remove the cover to clean”
3) Broke down
The Bell Howell ionizer air purifier is a small room air purifier which uses almost the same technology as the ionic breeze, namely charged plates. If it was purely a negative ionizer (without the plates) it would be good for smoke, mold and pollution but with the washable plates it creates potentially dangerous ozone. As one consumer commented:
“It worked more or less ok for a few months except for the dang ozone smell you get sometimes, and then a few days ago I decided to clean the inside tube but after I reinserted it the thing stopped working. They designed this so poorly that the switch to turn it on is embedded with the button to take the removable panel off so any slight force will break the whole darn thing.
I was close to order an oreck cheap but decided against it and cancelled the order after learning you have to buy new filters. Was deciding to get the XL model but learned those things are garbage as well after reading the negative reviews.
It’s Just An Ionizer
Out of the 10 technologies available (to learn all ten watch the video on the home page of this site) negative ions are the only technology used in the Bell Howell Ionizer Air Purifier.
Negative ions have a positive effect on health and can remove odor and smoke. It does not work on dust or pollen however. By themselves they are an inexpensive technology. The problem with this air purifier is that it uses negative ionization plus a “wipeable” plate. Herein lies the problem.
Stages of Purification
Now let’s take a look at the filters and technology for cleaning the air. The Bell Howell Ionizer Air Purifierair purifier has 1 stage
Stage 1 Negative Ionization. While negative ions are healthy in the air the use of washable (or in this case wipeable) plates has a downside – it often creates Ozone which can irritate lungs as many consumers reported.
Pros and Cons
1 – Inexpensive
2 – No filters to change
3 – Will help smoke and odor
1 – Cheaply made
2 – Not effective for dust, pollen, germs
3 – No warranty
4 – Small rooms only
Specifications and Technologies
Bell Howell Ionizer air purifier
Purification Technologies: 1
Square Footage: 300 SQ. Ft. when using Turbo speed (or so it is claimed)
Replacement Filter Costs: 0
Yearly Costs: 30
Decibel Level: Unavailable
Warranty – none (except regular store return)
Number of Speeds – 2
Filters – 1
Air Purifier Rating
1. Technologies Included: (out of of 10 technologies) 1
2. Particle Removal (Allergens, Dust) 2
3. Immune System Threats (Germs, Virus, etc.) 0
4. Gas Removal (Odor, Chemicals, Smoke) 5
5. Longevity/Quality 2
6. Noise Levels N/A
7. Ease of Use 10
8. Warranty N/A
9. Customer Service/Reputation (reviews) 3
10. Price Value 2
Score: 25 = Poor
If you want to get rid of smoke in a cheap way (no filters) the Bell Howell Ionizer Air Purifier might be an option. For allergies or asthma sufferers I would keep clear and find a small HEPA air purifier.
A better idea is to spend a little more and get a lot more in return.