What Does a Whole House Purification System Cost?

Everyone benefits from cleaner air, but it can come at a price. The cost of a whole house purification system can range from $400 to $4,000 (in 2024 dollars), according to HomeGuide. However, the exact amount you spend on installation depends on the following:

  • Type of System/Filter
  • Brand of Equipment
  • Efficiency Rating
  • Size of Your Home
  • Labor and Other Installation Costs

In this guide, we’ll look at all these factors. It can help you budget for a whole house purification system that meets your household’s indoor air quality needs.

Air Purification System Cost Variables

The cost of central air purifiers varies considerably. The national average is $1,300, but you can spend just a few hundred dollars on a low-end system.1 Meanwhile, a high-end system can cost several thousand dollars. Why is there such a difference? To answer this question and help you understand how whole house purification systems are priced, here are the factors to consider:

Type of System

A purification system is generally defined by the type of filter it includes. The cheapest type is a single-function system, while multi-stage systems that remove the smallest particles are the costliest. Here are the average costs of the most common whole-house air purification systems:

  • Flat Filter ($10 to $70): A flat filter traps more particles than a standard HVAC filter and removes dust, pet dander, and mold spores. However, it’s the least effective whole-house filter type and must be replaced every 1 to 3 months.1
  • Electronic Filter ($300 to $1,000): An electronic filter attracts and traps airborne particles via an electrical field. An electrostatic precipitator uses an electrostatically charged metal plate. More effective at capturing smaller particulates, the filter plate must be cleaned every 3 to 6 months.1
  • Extended Media Filter ($100 to $300): This features a thick pleated material that captures particles. The filter box is installed in your existing ductwork. However, adding one requires installing a media filter cabinet, which may require retrofitting your HVAC system.1
  • High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) Filter ($600 to $3,000): A HEPA filter pushes air through a thick mesh to trap dust, pollen, and smoke. It can also capture bacteria and many viruses. Able to trap 99.97% of airborne particulates, some high-density HEPA filters can restrict airflow, so consult with a professional before installing one.1
  • Ultraviolet (UV) Light Filter ($200 to $400): A UV filter emits ultraviolet light to neutralize germs and mold circulating in the air. Maintaining the system is affordable; replacing the UV bulbs costs less than $70 annually. However, a UV filter does not remove dust, allergens, or smoke (hybrid systems include mechanical filtration for this, but the equipment can cost up to $1,800).1 
  • Portable Filters ($500 to $1,800): If you don’t have a ducted HVAC system, you can install a portable home air filtration system. It does not require professional installation, but annual filter media replacement costs $40 to $100.1


Many companies make whole-house air purifiers. Prices vary significantly from one brand to another. For example, brands such as Field Controls, Honeywell, and Reme Halo tend to cost less than higher-end names like Carrier, Trane, and Lennox. 

Each brand may offer various options at different price points. Shopping around can help you find an affordable solution. Look for products with Energy Star certification. Efficiency is important as the system must run constantly to achieve and maintain good indoor air quality. 

Also, try to find equipment covered by a long-term warranty. This requires installation by a licensed contractor but can result in savings on service over the system’s life.


Higher-efficiency filtration systems cost more. However, you must weigh the benefits of having one, such as relief from allergies and respiratory issues. If your pets shed a lot, a high-efficiency whole house purification system can remove excess hair and dander.

Whole-house HVAC filters are rated using a Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV). The most common ratings for air filters include:

  • MERV 1-4: The most basic type of filter that captures pollen, dust mites, and carpet fibers. It captures less than 20% of particles 3 to 10 microns in size.1
  • MERV 5-8: Suited for most homes, this filter blocks most common pollutants and 50% to 85% of particles 3 to 10 microns in size.1
  • MERV 9-12: Able to remove 85% to 90% of 3- to 10-micron size particles and up to 89% of 1- to 3-micron size particles, it can capture pet dander, mold spores, and fine dust.1
  • MERV 13-16: It can capture over 90% of 1- to 10-micron particles and 75% to 95% of 0.3- to 1-micron particles, meaning it can filter smoke, fumes, bacteria, and viruses.1

Home Size

The larger a home, the more powerful an air purification system it will need. A large house may also require multiple filtration units, as can one with multiple levels or an open floor plan. An installer must consider your home’s size, layout, and other features before determining the ideal type of system. The larger and more complex it is, the more it’ll cost to purchase and install.

Labor and Other Costs

Labor charges can add significantly to the cost of a whole-house purification system. With labor included, a whole-house HEPA system can cost $4,000. An extended media air filter or UV filtration system can cost up to $800 (installing a hybrid UV/mechanical filtration system can cost up to $3,000). Combining equipment and installation costs, an electronic filter can cost as much as $2,000.1

However, the total cost of installing a whole house purification system is determined by more than the price of equipment and labor. These are some other variables to consider:

  • Accessibility: If your HVAC equipment is in an attic, crawlspace, or other hard-to-access location, installing a whole house purification system will cost more.
  • HVAC Inspection: An inspection can identify any AC, heater, or ductwork problems before the filter system is installed, but costs $150 to $500.1
  • Ductwork Replacement: Installing an air purification system may require ductwork replacement (which can cost up to $500 per duct run) or duct cleaning, which averages $300 to $700.1
  • Outlet Installation: Installing a new electrical outlet to power the air purification system can cost $150 to $350.1

Contact Us to Learn More About Whole House Purification Systems

At Trio Heating & Air, we install innovative, high-quality air purification systems in The Greater San Francisco Bay Area area homes. We offer seamless installation and also provide filter replacements and air duct cleaning. Our experienced team is committed to improving your home’s indoor air quality. To learn more about whole house purification systems and inquire about costs and special offers, book an appointment with us or call (415) 223-5615.


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