On their own, negative air ions (NAI) are safe. In fact, they are found in abundance all around us every day. For instance, a pot of boiling water creates significant concentrations of air ions.   

Regarding air ionizers specifically, the question of safety is more complicated. Many air ionizers available in the market claim to be safe but lack thorough testing to justify their claims. Many manufacturers do not specify the ozone output, or the ion concentrations emitted by their products. Prioritizing research before purchasing an air ionizer is crucial to ensure that adequate testing has been conducted and the ionizer is indeed safe.  

With research, you’ll find that air ionizers make an excellent addition to help keep your air clean and safe.Negative air ions have been shown to inactivate and block aerosol transmission of viruses and bacteria [1][2][3][4][5]. 

Defining Air Ionizers and Ozone 

What is an Air Ionizer? 

Air ionizers are devices designed to purify the air in your surroundings by emitting negatively charged ions. These ions attach to pollutants found in the air, such as dust, allergens, and bacteria, and either cause them to drop out of the air or be drawn into a filter within the device.  

What Does Ozone Have to do With It? 

Ozone plays a controversial role in air ionizers. It is a variant of oxygen (O3) often generated by air ionizers, which is intended to react with and kill airborne contaminants such as bacteria, mold, and odors. Ozone produced by ionizers can inactivate viruses in the air and on surfaces [6]. Though proven efficient in purifying the air, inhalation of high levels of ozone from an air ionizer can be detrimental to your health. Because of this, it’s important to ensure that any air ionizer you consider does not significantly increase the concentration of ozone in your indoor environment.  

The Potential Effects of Ozone on Human Health 

Ozone, when present in high concentrations, can have damaging effects on human health, particularly impacting the respiratory system. Chronic exposure to unsafe ozone levels can trigger arange of health issues including throat irritation, coughing, chest pain, and shortness of breath. It can exacerbate pre-existing conditions such as asthma and may lead to the development of more serious lung diseases. Moreover, a few studies have also linked high levels of ozone exposure to harmful effects on the cardiovascular system. Hence, it’s crucial to manage the levels of ozone in our living spaces to maintain a safe and healthy environment.  

Is the Level of Ozone Produced by Air Ionizers Safe for Humans? 

The safety of inhaling the level of ozone produced by air ionizers largely depends on the specific product and its operation. Some air ionizers produce negligible amounts of ozone, and are considered safe for humans and animals. However, other ionizers may generate ozone levels that exceed safety limits established by health organizations. Chronic exposure to such concentrations can potentially harm both humans and animals, leading to respiratory issues and other health complications. Therefore, when choosing an air ionizer, it is very important to ensure it has been tested and certified to recognized safety standards, indicating it does not produce harmful levels of ozone.  

Different Types of Air Ionizers

There are primarily two types of air ionizers: electrostatic precipitators and ionizing purifiers. Electrostatic precipitators work by applying an electric charge to particles within the purifier, which are then attracted to plates with an opposite charge. These devices can effectively remove particulates from the air, but they

require regular cleaning of the plates. Ionizing purifiers, on the other hand, emit negatively charged ions that attach to airborne particles, making them clump together and more readily fall to the ground or attach to surfaces. While this method might not require regular cleaning like the former, it can leave surfaces around the home dusty. 

Air purifier or ionizer with houseplant on floor in living room
Air purifier or ionizer with houseplant on floor in living room

However, among the array of air ionizers available in the market, the AURA Ion Bar™ stands out for its superior performance and safety. The California Air Resources Board (CARB) limits emission for such devices at 0.050 ppm (parts per million). AURA Ion Bar has been tested extensively internally and by independent third parties for ozone production and was found to produce no detectable levels of ozone (less than 0.001 ppm).   

While some air ionizers utilize specialized filters to eliminate ozone, safety risks still persist. When passing air through a carbon filter, the carbon is consumed (molecule-by-molecule) by this process and eventually is exhausted. That means that a device that relies on carbon filters for ozone-safety can become dangerous if its filters are not properly maintained. Unlike typical ionizers that eliminate ozone by means of filtration, Ion Bar operates safely without the need for a filter.  

The AURA Ion Bar is a commendable option to consider. It is whisper-quiet, effective, and a filter-free solution that produces no measurable ozone.

So, Are Air Ionizers Safe or Not? 

In conclusion, the safety of air ionization largely hinges on the specific product and its operation. While air ionizers can effectively purify the air by removing dust, allergens, and bacteria, they can also produce ozone, which can be harmful to human health when present in high concentrations. Therefore, it’s crucial to choose an air ionizer that has been thoroughly tested and certified to not produce harmful levels of ozone. Among the products available, the AURA Ion Bar is set apart by its superior performance and commitment to ozone safety, ensuring a healthy and safe indoor environment while effectively purifying the air.

The AURA Ion Bar is set apart by its superior performance and commitment to ozone safety, ensuring a healthy and safe indoor environment while effectively purifying the air.  

Learn more about Ion Bar here.




  1. Hagbom, Marie et al. “Ionizing air affects influenza virus infectivity and prevents airborne-transmission.” Scientific reports vol. 5 11431. 23 Jun. 2015, doi:10.1038/srep11431 
  2. Zhang, Cheng et al. “Aerosol Transmission of the Pandemic SARS-CoV-2 and Influenza A Virus Was Blocked by Negative Ions.” Frontiers in cellular and infection microbiology vol. 12 897416. 29 Apr. 2022, doi:10.3389/fcimb.2022.897416 
  3. Comini, Sara et al. “Positive and Negative Ions Potently Inhibit the Viability of Airborne Gram-Positive and Gram-Negative Bacteria.” Microbiology spectrum vol. 9,3 (2021): e0065121. doi:10.1128/Spectrum.00651-21 
  4. Escombe, A Roderick et al. “Upper-room ultraviolet light and negative air ionization to prevent tuberculosis transmission.” PLoS medicine vol. 6,3 (2009): e43. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1000043 
  5. Jiang SY, Ma A, Ramachandran S. Negative Air Ions and Their Effects on Human Health and Air Quality Improvement. Int J Mol Sci. 2018 Sep 28;19(10):2966. doi: 10.3390/ijms19102966. PMID: 30274196; PMCID: PMC6213340. 
  6. Could ozone be an effective disinfection measure against the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2)? – PMC (nih.gov) 
  7. Are Ionic Air Purifiers (Ionizers) Safe or Bad for Your Health? | Home Air Guides 
  8. California’s Air Cleaner Regulation (AB 2276) | California Air Resources Board