Levoit air purifiers are some of the most popular portable room air cleaners on the planet. Most of the mini air filtration systems from this company have a simple, clean, functional design. Most importantly, they filter out air contaminants better than most, and they’re affordable.
The Levoit Core 300 I’m reviewing in this post is a $100-ish product. But as far as air filtration ability, it rivals top-end models such as the IQAir Health Pro Plus and others.
If you’re not certain about what features to keep your eyes peeled for when shopping for an air purifier, this air purifier buying guide got you covered.
A Quick Summary of the Levoit Core 300 Review
The Levoit Core 300 is a sub-$150 HEPA filter air purifier that filters out a decent amount of allergens within reasonable time. It’s a budget-friendly medium-sized room air cleaner that removes particulate allergen triggers such as pollen, mold spores, dust, and pet dander quite well.
As for removing heavier stuff such as smoke and Volatile Organic Compounds, this device isn’t lame. However, if you install a suitable filter (there’s 4 filter options to choose from) , it filters out toxins, some bacteria, mold, smoke, and VOCs really well.
But it’s not exactly a workhorse as far as smoke and VOC removal. You may have to invest in a larger, more effective unit for smoke and VOC elimination.
At this price point, this basic air purifier offers decent air filtration, a sleep mode/dimmer, am 8-hour timer, a display lock, and a filter-change indicator. But you won’t get any kind of built-in air quality sensor (unless you choose its smart version, the Core 300S.
Also, this unit doesn’t have an automatic mode. Plus, you can’t operate the device via any app. But none of these deficiencies detract from the Core 300’s performance.
It comes in a space-saving, efficient cylindrical design with a 360-degree inlet and outlet. And the best part? It offers HEPA filtration.
What’s more, this little air purification monster doesn’t pump ozone into the space being sanitized, making it a worthy option for decontaminating sensitive spaces such as baby rooms. In an earlier post, I recommended the Core 300 as one of the best nursery air purifiers ever.
In a medium-sized room measuring 145 square feet, the Core 300 reduced particulate count by a staggering 93%.
In a world where tons of expensive products provide way lower value than the price tag, the attractively priced Levoit Core 300 begins to look like a buy anyone should consider.
Now let’s dive right in and see what we got here…
A Review of the Levoit Core 300 Air Purifier
Is the Core 300 a good buy? There’s tons of air purifier models out there, and all of them clamor for attention. This levoit Core 300 review dives deep into the features and specs and actual performance of this Levoit purifier to help you decide if it deserves a slot in your budget.
Levoit Core 300: Shape, Looks, Weight, Dimensions
The dimensions of the levoit Core 300 are 8.7″ x 8.7″ x 14.2.” That’s a pretty small footprint. Whether you live in a small apartment or in a home with a medium-sized family room/living room, this device shouldn’t get in the way.
Evidently, the Core 300 is a product you can easily use as a bedside air cleaner, a nursery purifier, or even a tabletop air purifier for sanitizing your home office. You can install it on the carpet or bare floor. Or you can place it on a tabletop or other elevated surface just as easily.
How does the Core 300 fair in the looks department? Beauty isn’t the most critical aspect when buying an air purifier, but who wants to deal with an eyesore every morning? No one.
The Core 300 comes in a nice-looking cylindrical design, just like many Levoit purifiers. Being cylindrical and slim makes it easy to fit the unit into a small space or tuck it in a corner. Not that you need to hide it.
It’s a lightweight air purifier weighing 7.5 pounds. It lacks a handle, and it unsurprisingly also lacks castors. Because you don’t need wheels to move an air cleaner this light around. Even a young child can carry it with ease.
Air Purification Performance: How Large a Room Can It Clean?
Levoit recommends that those who love this air purifier use it in a 215 square feet room. This is a space that measures roughly 15Ft x 14Ft.
In a 215 sq. ft. room, the Core 300 replaces the existing air in the room with fresh air 5 times in every 60 minutes. It’s a medium-sized room such as your bedroom or living room. You can also use it in the nursery. Baby rooms are really small spaces, and your tot gets to enjoy 5+ air changes every hour.
You may also use it in the family room if you like. However, since this space is likely 100 sq. ft. larger than the recommended purification coverage of 215 sq. ft., don’t expect more than 5 air changes per hour.
The Core 300 has a CADR rating of 145. CADR stands for Clean Air Delivery Rate. When AHAM Verifide tests air purifiers from a given brand, they calculate a number called CADR.
Levoit’s Air Purifiers Lack AHAM’s Certification/CADR Rating
What is CADR? Are Levoit’s air purifier’s AHAM-tested? CADR is a number obtained when you multiply the airflow rate of an air purifier by its CFM. N0t every company hands over their air purifiers to AHAM for performance testing since it’s a purely voluntary action.
Levoit, for instance, doesn’t do that. Does this mean that Levoit’s air purifiers aren’t any good or are of questionable performance? Not at all. Quite the contrary, many Levoit air cleaning devices do a terrific job where many competing options are mediocre.
Nothing explains anything better than a clear and relevant example: Assume you purchase a nursery air purifier that removes 99% of a certain pollutant in a given particle size distribution, say 0.3 microns. Further, assume that the CFM of this device is 145.
The CADR of this imaginary air cleaner would be 99/100 (airflow rate/efficiency) x 145 (CFM). The answer is 143.55.
As you can see, the CADR of an air purifier is more or less equal to its stated CFM. But if the device has a really low airflow/efficiency, the CADR would be significantly lower than the CFM.
How Much Air Does the Levoit Core 300 Move in 15, 30, 60 Minutes?
The Levoit Core 300 has a CFM of 145. In a 215 sq. ft. room, it moves 145 cubic feet of air per minute. In 60 minutes, this unit moves 8,700 cubic feet/hour. In 30 minutes, it moves 4,350 cubic feet and 2,175 cubic feet in 15 minutes.
If you installed this device in a 215 sq. ft. room with a ceiling height of 8 feet, how many air changes (ACH) would you get? This imaginary room would have a volume of 1,720 cubic feet. If this device moves 8,700 cubic feet every 60 minutes, it would give you 5 air changes every hour in this pace. That is, 8,700 cubic feet/hr divided by 1,720 cubic feet). Make sense?
Using the same reasoning, this room cleaner would give you 2.5 air changes in a 430 sq. ft. basement and 10 air changes in a 108 sq. ft. baby room every 60 minutes.
Real-world Air Filtration Performance of Levoit Core 300
I put the Core 300 to work in a medium-sized room (145 sq. ft.) and cranked it up. With an air quality detector, the battery-powered Temptop LKC-1000S Air Quality Monitor, I measured the air quality of the room before the test.
Then, I let the purifier run for 1 hour before switching it off and taking the new reading.
Here’s the data the Tempton LKC-1000S spat out:
|What I Measured||Starting AQI||Ending AQI||(Earlier Data) for Competing Purifier, Core 300S|
As you can see from the air filtration data above, the Levoit Core 300 was able to reduce the air pollution (particles/particulates) in the room from 215 to just 15. 93% of the particles were removed in just 1 hour versus 91% for its smart version, the Core 300S.
The air filtration ability demonstrated by the Core 300 compares favorably to other performance numbers I’ve seen from more powerful options.
This device did a good job of cleaning up PM2.5 and PM10. It improved PM10 by 94.11% and PM2.5 by 84.62%. It was a really good performance especially when you consider it’s a low-cost air cleaner.
Filters of the Levoit Core 300
This is a true HEPA air purifier. And HEPA is the gold standard when it comes to filtering out particulates such as pet dander, dust, mold spores, tree and grass pollen, and more.
It’s designed to capture 99.97% of contaminants in the 0.3-micron size distribution. These are extremely tiny particles. You can’t see them without using a super-powerful microscope.
The filter comes wrapped in plastic. So, get the 3-stage HEPA filter out of the plastic package and click it right into its compartment. Below is how the filter looks like.
HEPA filters have a paper-like surface with many pleats/folds that increase the surface area immensely. That’s why they’re great at air purification. It’s a complex air filter that contains 3 super important sub-filters namely:
- Prefilter: The unit features a fine nylon pre-filter. This the first line of defense, the first filter contaminated air encounters as it streams into the air purifier via the motor’s powerful pull.The filter sits on the innermost side of the 3-in-1 filter. It captures fibers, lints, dust clumps, and other larger particulates.
- HEPA filter: It’s the main filter. It removes ultra-fine particles such as dust, pollen, mold spores, and whatnot.
- Odor filter: Also called an activated charcoal filter, it adsorbs VOCs, tobacco smoke, wildfire smoke, and other household odors.
These filters last 6-8 months months depending on the indoor air quality you have. Mine lasts 6 months on average.
The replacement filter for the Levoit Core 300 costs $30-ish. I’ve seen air purifier replacement filters that cost 3 times what the Levoit Core 300 air purifier costs!
I use a handheld vacuum cleaner with an upholstery attachment to get some of the dust and filth out of my filter. I don’t think vacuuming the filter helps loads, but it seems to help.
Search for Core 300-RF when shopping for this replacement filter.
A light comes on (change filter indicator) at month 6 announcing it’s time to change the filter.
Filter Options Available
Original filter: Is the filter the unit comes with. Not great for odors, but it gets rid of particulates really well.
Pet Allergy filter: Buy this if you have pets around. It tackles pet allergens and odors well.
Mold and Bacteria filter: Best choice if you’re trying to clean up mold spores and bacteria while deodorizing musty spaces.
Toxin absorber: The best choice for removing environmental toxins such as exhaust fumes, smoke, VOCs, and other hard-to-remove air pollutants.
Each of these filters fits the filtration chamber perfectly. And you can own all 4 filters and use them at different times to achieve different air filtration goals.
Noise Level Tests for the Core 300
Nobody wants an air cleaner that’s as noisy as a fighter jet. I tested the Core 300 to see if it was as “whisper quiet” as everyone online said it was.
Using a decibel meter, I stood 3 feet away from the Core 300 and measured the noise levels it produced when on Sleep, Low, Medium, and High modes.
Below are the noise level results I got.
|Mode||Noise Level in decibels|
The manufacturer states the noise levels of this air cleaner as 24-50db. I don’t know at what distance they measured. But I can quite confidently say that the Core 300 is pretty quiet even on the most powerful/highest fan speed (High).
To give you a clearer mental picture of how noisy 42 dB really is, it’s slightly noisier than quiet library sounds. I rarely run air purifiers on the highest setting. But when I did with this unit, I still slept soundly on the noisiest fan speed setting.
I no longer need to run this machine on high since the air quality in my bedroom’s improved dramatically since the day this unit arrived.
Setting Up the Core 300: Ease of Use
Setting up this unit is easy. Get the device out of the box. Take the 3-stage True HEPA filter out of its plastic packaging. Grab the top half of the device and twist it counterclockwise to open the machine.
Install the filter into the air filtration chamber. Replace the casing using clockwise turns. Plug the unit in, set up the timer, and leave the machine to do the job. It’s that simple.
This unit has a 360-degree air inlet with perforations on all sides of the housing. It draws in dirty air from all sides. Fresh air exits via the top. Therefore, you can place it pretty much anywhere you like around the house, even behind a wall if you’re starved of space.
Controls and Features of the Core 300
The smart version of the Core 300, the Core 300S, features an internal sensor that displays the status of the room’s air quality using double rings on the circular control panel. Take a look.
List of the Levoit Core 300 Features
Timer/Automatic Shutoff: A 2,4,6,8 timer allows you to set up a reasonable cleaning duration. This automatic shutoff feature turns off the Core 300 once the cleaning session completes.
Sleep Mode: Looks like a crescent moon with a star beside it. This feature dims the control panel at bedtime so you can sleep like a baby.
Display Lock/Child-lock Feature: Symbolized by a closed padlock. Helps lock in settings, preventing busy little hands and paws from modifying them.
Filter Change Indicator: Looks like a cylindrical air filter. The indicator glows when the filter gets too dirty and less efficient.
Display Off: Looks like a “miniature sun” and lets you turn off the display completely. It’s a useful feature for the baby room and light sleepers.
Fan Speed Adjustment Button: Looks like a fan and enables you to manually toggle between speed settings/modes.
- I indicates the lowest fan speed
- II indicates medium fan speed
- III indicates the highest speed
Levoit Core 300 vs Core 300S
The Core 300 and Core 300S have the exact same dimensions (8.7″ x 8.7 x 14.2″), but the Core 300 is slightly heavier than the app-equipped model which weights in at 5.95 pounds. One key difference between the Core 300 and Core 300S is that the Core 300S supports remote operation while also offering automatic air filtration.
This device connects to an app called VeSync. I didn’t experience any connection issues at all. The app works the same way as operating the device manually, except it isn’t, well, manual operation.
With VeSync, you can easily create custom schedules that make running the Levoit Core 300S a breeze. You can power the unit on or off with the app, turn the display on or deactivate it, or even decrease or increase fan speed.
One feature I really liked (and still like) is the app’s Smart Scenes. Once you create custom schedules, you can go a step further and create automatic actions on the basis of certain conditions.
For example, you can set up the app so that it instructs the device to start cleaning the air if the internal sensor notices any deterioration in indoor air quality.
Don’t want to use the app? No worries, you can use the auto mode instead. When you select the Auto mode, the internal sensor of the Core 300S tells the unit either to increase fan speed or slow things down.
While the Core 300 lacks this capability, it’s not a deal-breaker since you can always set up self-managing cleaning intervals using the built-in timer.
No Huge Performance Difference Between the Core 300 and Core 300S
The table above shows particle removal data from the Core 300 and Core 300S at different times in the same room. Evidently, the performance difference between the Core 300S and the Core 300 isn’t significant even though the Core 300S has a slightly smaller CFM of 141.
While the Core 300 reduced particulates by 93%, the Core 300S cut particles by 91%, which isn’t a significant difference.
Core 300 Cleaning and Maintenance Tips
- Cleaning the air purifier is a task you can complete in under 10 minutes. Get a dry rug and wipe down the 360-degree inlet, the 360-degree outlet grille, and the rest of the housing. This removes loose dirt from the surface. If there’s any kind of stubborn dirt on the purifier, dip a cloth in a mildly soapy solution, wring the water out, and use it to agitate the stain/dirt.
- You can also remove the filter and light-vacuum it with an upholstery tool.
- Never wash the filters because, well, they’re not washable. Learn more about how to clean a HEPA filter here.
- Replace the filter every 6-8 months. But you can replace the filters sooner or later than this if your air quality situation warrants that.
- Avoid running the air purifier 24/7/365. Since it has an 8-hour timer, simply set up a decent cleaning internal and…live your life. This shuts down the air cleaner when the indoor air decontamination duration ends. This saves energy and money. Plus, making the machine work for an optimal amount of time may increase its longevity.
Levoit Core 300 FAQs
Below is a bunch of questions anyone looking to invest in a good air cleaner for the baby room or any other indoor space might be interested in:
What Room Size the Levoit Core 300 for?
The Levoit Core 300 is designed to purify rooms as larger as 215 square feet. A square footage of 215 is more or less the same as a room measuring 15 feet in length and 14 feet in width (15ft. x 14Ft.). If put to work in larger rooms than the recommended purification coverage, expect fewer air exchanges per hour. And if tasked to purifier a smaller space, expect the device to circulate the air more times than it would in a 215 square foot room.
Are Levoit Air Purifiers Good?
Levoit air purifiers are some of the best portable room air cleaners on the market today. Many of these purifiers are affordable options that sanitize indoor air as well as more powerful models if not better. The best thing about Levoit air purifiers is that they remove mold spores, pollen, dust, and other contaminants without recontaminating indoor environments with byproducts such as ozone. Some people experience chemical sensitivity when exposed to this oxygen-based gas.
How Does Levoit Core 300 Work?
Once the product arrives from Amazon or whichever company, unbox it. Stand it on the floor or table and twist the upper part counterclockwise to access the filter cartridge.
Get the filters out of the plastic that covers them. Then, replace the upper part and give it a clockwise twist to close the air purifier.
Finally, plug the device into a power source and choose one of 4 air cleaning intervals on the 8-hour timer and leave the unit to clean the room.
What’s the Difference Between Levoit 300 and Levoit 300S?
Both have a cylindrical shape and filter out pollutants using the same 3-stage HEPA filtration. However, the Levoit Core 300 is slightly heavier and more powerful because its CFM is 145 versus 141 for the Core 300S. You likely won’t notice any performance difference between these two devices. Another difference is that the Core 300S can be remotely operated via the VeSync app while the Core 300 can’t. What’s more, the Core 300S offers automatic air cleaning, and all these things make it about $40 more expensive.
Is Levoit Core 300 AHAM Certified?
No air purifier from Levoit has the AHAM certification, and that includes the Core 300. But this doesn’t mean the product is of questionable performance. Independent testing and at-home tests have consistently found Levoit air purifiers to be great portable room air cleaners.
Does Levoit 300 Come With Filter?
Yes, the Levoit Core 300 Comes with one filter. It’s a cylindrical filter comprising a HEPA filter, an activated charcoal filter, and a pre-filter. Remember to remove take the filter out and remove the plastic packaging that it comes wrapped in.
Levoit Core 300 Review: Verdict?
In the end, the Levoit Core 300 is a cost-effective air purifier that demonstrates an air filtration capability only seen in more powerful, costlier models.
Looks-wise, you won’t want to plug it into some corner so that those who come to visit with you won’t see it.
And because the air cleaner doesn’t crank out ozone, a known lung irritant in chemical-sensitive folks, you can put the Core 300 to work in the baby room. You can also run it in the bedroom, family room, living room, office, and other spaces.
I don’t know if you’ll love this air cleaner as I have. But many who pulled the trigger and purchased it have had no regrets.